When recommendations for reading material are everywhere, how do you decide which ones to take? How do you balance your typical reading with stuff you’d never normally consider? How do you discover new books?

This blog is my answer to those questions. First-rate books are books you think are first-rate or books which I can be one of the first people to rate. Posts fall into two categories:

Favourite Books
These entries combine two of my favourite things: books and talking to people about books. I’ll ask someone what their favourite book is, read it, talk to them about it and then write it up. Read these for the broadest range of personal recommendations.

New Fiction
Based on recommendations which are as out-of-my-hands as possible (online reading lists or awards shortlists for example), I’ll read and review fiction releases from the last 18 months. I expect this will be novels only, but I’ll never say never to a short story collection.

Between these two categories I’m hoping not only to broaden my reading but also to have meaningful discussions about words, stories, and the impact these can make.

I’ll be reading as widely as I can, so even if nothing takes your fancy it’s still worth subscribing to e-mail updates. You never know what’s coming up!

I’m very interested in whether you’ve read any of the books I have, or they remind you of anything else we could read together. Please don’t be shy about liking and commenting when you have something to say.

I look forward to reading with you.

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