1. A Little Life, by Hanya Yanagihara
Yanagihara’s devastating chronicle of love, abuse, and the ineluctable complexity of human relationships captivated a global audience of readers when the book was released in 2015, sky-rocketing the American author into international renown.
2. Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
An essential component of any good bookshelf, Adichie’s masterful narrative weaves together the contingencies of three lives during the Biafran war, with extraordinary finesse, compassion, and historical sagacity.
3. The Blind Assassin, Margaret Atwood
Arguably Atwood’s finest work to date, The Blind Assassin is a brilliant instance of meta-fiction, imbued with Atwood’s characteristic originality, abruptness, and grim profundity.
4. What I Loved, Siri Hustvedt
Siri Hustvedt has a uniquely brilliant aptitude for writing about art, and What I Loved paints a thoughtful, moving picture of the relationship between artistry, identity, loss, and prosaic domesticity.
5. The God of Small Things, Arundathi Roy
Given that, last year, Indian wordsmith Arundathi Roy lately released her first work of fiction in 20 years, it might be a good time to revisit the novel that made her famous. The God of Small Things is a heart-wrenching exploration of family, romance, and the unspoken rules that govern – and confine – the terms of human existence.
6. On Beauty, Zadie Smith
British novelist Zadie Smith confronts the ramifications of racial identity, ideological friction, and the acrimonious hypocrisy of academia, in the context of a mixed-race family living in the figmental university town of Wellington.