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Books of the Year

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Everyone loves an end of year review list and we here at Stylist are no different. So, after heated debate and much book-swapping, here are the team’s favourite 10 novels published in 2010 - in no particular order, because that really would have caused all-out office war. Book tokens for Christmas? You could do much worse than spending them on these…

One Day by David Nicholls (Hodder, £7.99)

The book the whole office agreed on. Emma and Dexter meet at a graduation party in 1988 – and we revisit them on the same day every year. Romantic, witty, incredibly moving: this isn’t a book you like, it’s one you love.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett (Penguin, £7.99)

The brilliantly atmospheric, sharp-witted and brave story of three black maids in 1960s Mississippi. It’s been compared to both Gone With The Wind and To Kill A Mockingbird. Praise indeed but deserved.

The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson (Quercus, £7.99)

The feverishly anticipated third part of the Millennium Trilogy opens with anti-heroine Lisbeth waking up in hospital with a bullet in her brain and her murderous father in the room next door. From then on, it grips and doesn’t let go.

Room by Emma Donoghue (Picador, £12.99)

This Booker-shortlisted psychological drama is told from the perspective of five-year-old Jack, who since birth has lived in a small room with his young mum. Why? And can he cope outside? Hauntingly unforgettable.

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen (Fourth Estate, £20)

The new masterpiece from the author of The Corrections heralded with much hype in autumn – but it lived up to it. A funny, tender and utterly engrossing story of an American family at war with itself, it’s an instant classic.

The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas (Tuskar Rock, £12.99)

Told from eight very different perspectives, this prize-winning and thought-provoking tour de force sees a guest at a suburban barbecue strike a three-year-old child– an act that reverberates through the lives of all who witness it.

The Last Letter From Your Lover by JoJo Moyes (Hodder & Stoughton, £12.99)

Two women’s stories of passion and adultery spanning 50 years are woven together in devastating style - interspersed with real last letters between lovers. Our summer beach read resulted in much tear-dampened sand.

The Passage by Justin Cronin (Orion, £14.99)

It sounds like a run-of-the-mill horror as a vampire virus sweeps the US (possibly the world) but it is, in fact, an extraordinary tale of hope, love and redemption. Terrifying, moving and beautifully written.

The Hand That First Held Mine by Maggie O' Farrell (Headline Review, £7.99)

Tense, gripping tale of love and loss that weaves together the lives of two very different women to devastating effect: a chic, fearless and bohemian 1950s journalist and a new mum in noughties Britain. So good we virtually inhaled it.

The Thousand Autumns Of Jacob De Zoet by David Mitchell (Sceptre, £18.99)

The author of Cloud Atlas came back with a bang in spring with this enthralling historical masterpiece, set at a turning point in history on a tiny Japanese island. A dazzling epic about power, passion and, hell, pretty much everything.

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