Favourite Books


I read a lot. In 2012 I read over 100 books, 108 to be exact. I expect to read a similar number this year. 

The reason I read so much is fourfold:

  1. I am a quick reader.
  2. I have a 1 hour and 10 minute commute each way to work, therefore I have about 2 hours a day uninterrupted reading time.
  3. I don’t watch huge amounts of television.
  4. Frequently I select books that aren’t challenging, but instead quite quick reads.

I log all my books in Goodreads, a free online reading journal that I recommend for anyone, it is particularly useful if like me you read lots of crime thrillers that aren’t particularly memorable from the title alone but don’t like re-reading books! All the books I have read can be found there: http://www.goodreads.com/gceyre.

When coming up with my favourite titles I have deliberately excluded any Education Texts or Geography Texts; those will receive a blog post in their own right.

Please Mrs. Butler – Alan Ahlberg

please mrs butler

This is probably the book that I remember most from my childhood, having read it first when I was in Year 3. I have since re-read it a couple of times, and being children’s poetry is very accessible. I think the fact that I am now a teacher, albeit in a secondary rather than primary school has given these poems more meaning.

My particular favourites are ‘Please Mrs. Butler’ and ‘Scissors’; the full text of Scissors can be found on the poetry archive here.

Killing Floor – Lee Child

killing floor

The main type of novel I read is Crime Thrillers. The Jack Reacher series is my favourite (I can’t wait until the next novel comes out at the end of the month). I picked this novel, as although I am not sure it is my favourite in the series, it is the first so certainly a good place to start if you have not entered the world of Reacher before.

Tom Cruise has recently starred as Jack Reacher in the new film franchise, although I enjoyed the film immensely, if you read the books you will see why Tom Cruise, physically at least, was an unusual choice.

Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea – Barbara Demick


This novel is one of the first I have read about life in North Korea, and although I have since read others I still think this is the best. This non-fiction work follows the life of people living in North Korea and through doing so explains the challenges of every day life. It also goes some way to explaining how the government of North Korea keeps a hold on the countries population. Personally I found the most interesting part of the book the tales of how people have escaped from North Korea and then struggled to integrate into the free society of South Korea.

The American Dream – Harmon Leon


This book is written by a comedian, although it is not an out an out funny book. This book talks about the different versions of the American Dream and how the common ideal of the ‘American Dream’ can have different manifestations.

I frequently use the section on illegal immigrations when teaching migration in Geography. There are a couple of paragraphs that describe the illegal crossing of the US/Mexico border.

Rivers of London – Ben Aaronovitch


I don’t normally read fantasy novels; however this is a fantastic series. I read this book when it was first published, I was captured by the title’ rivers of London’. However it is now a series of four ‘Peter Grant Novels’, with more to come!

I don’t want to spoil any of the magic of this novel but it has some great moments set in London and some good descriptions of noteworthy parts of the city.

More Favourites

The books above are my favourites of the moment. However this is a constantly changing list; and choosing only five is difficult.

The ‘widget’ below shows my favourite books on Good Reads, which are constantly changing.


Categories: Book Notes