10 of the best books from the last 10 years

Our list of the best paperbacks you might have missed.

Within the abundance of new books each year, we’re left wondering what gems we might have missed along the way. There are always some that refuse to get lost in the ether, that seem to be immune to being forgotten because they’re hilarious, heartbreaking or thrilling. So here are ten of the best paperback books from the last ten years that everyone continues to talk about, re-read and recommend.

Confessions of a Forty Something F**k Up

by Alexandra Potter

If you’re looking for a laugh-out-loud, relatable read that people can’t stop talking about, look no further. Meet Nell, a forty-something f**k up, who in a world of perfect Instagram lives, is still desperately trying to figure hers out. But then Nell meets Cricket, an eighty-something widow with whom she forges a rare friendship. With Cricket’s help, Nell is finally starting to turn things around. . . Whether you’re 20, 40 or 80 years old, this Bridget Jones-esque story will have you laughing, maybe even crying, in solidarity with how life doesn’t always work out the way we want it to.

The Atlas Six

by Olivie Blake

The Atlas Six is a bestselling fantasy sensation and TikTok phenomenon that continues to seduce readers into its world of dark academia. You’ll follow six magicians as they fight for a place in the Alexandrian Society, where members enjoy a lifetime of power and prestige. But each decade, only six practitioners are invited to fill five places – who will survive, the empath, the cosmologists, the telepath? Run, don’t walk, to find out before the third and final book in the trilogy graces the shelves in January 2024.

The Miniaturist

by Jessie Burton

Maybe you’ve seen the major BBC TV series with the same title, but have you read the award-winning book? It’s 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman arrives in Amsterdam to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brant, who gifts her a cabinet-sized replica of their home. As she engages the services of a miniaturist, an elusive and enigmatic artist, his tiny creations start to mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie and unexpected ways. . . Even when you’ve uncovered the mysterious secret at its heart, this is the kind of intoxicating book you’ll still want to read over and over.


by Raven Leilani

Longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, this is a book that just keeps on giving on the subject of what it means to be young, Black and female. Edie is just trying to survive her dead-end job in an all-white office. And if life wasn’t already a little bit difficult, she then finds herself falling head-first into an entanglement with a wealthy, older white couple. A brutally funny and painfully honest page-turner, Luster sheds light on the experience of a young millennial woman frantically trying to make sense of her place within the world, and how to style her hair.

The Four Winds

by Kristin Hannah

With the Richard and Judy’s Book Club seal of approval, this powerful historical novel about the resilience of the bond between mother and daughter is without a doubt, unmissable. Texas, 1934. Elsa Martinelli finally has everything she had wished for – a family, a home and a livelihood on a farm on the Great Plains. But when drought threatens her family and community, Elsa must decide whether to stay and fight for the land she loves or flee to California in search of a better life. This is a story that will break your heart and bring you to tears, but it will also be one of the best books you’ll read this year. 

Children of Time

by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Adrian Tchaikovsky’s award winning space-opera spans three books and refuses to be lost in time. Children of Time is the first novel in an epic trilogy of humanity's battle for survival. The human race has left a dying Earth, following beacons indicating successfully terraformed worlds, desperate to find a new home among the stars. But this new Eden puts two civilizations on a collision course, both testing the boundaries of what they will do to survive. A gripping must-read for any science fiction enthusiast, you need to pick up this book to find out who will inherit this new Earth. . .

The Cat Who Saved Books

by Sosuke Natsukawa

If you’re here reading this, you know that books are so much more than words on paper. And this international bestseller is a charming and heartwarming tale that explores just that - the power of books. For Rintaro Natsuki, his grandfather’s second-hand bookshop is a place of refuge, and when it becomes under threat of closing, he meets a talking tabby cat called Tiger. As the two embark on magical adventures to save books from people who have imprisoned, mistreated and betrayed them, Rintaro is inspired to attempt one last rescue mission. . . A heartwarming testament to courage and caring for others, The Cat Who Saved Books continues to resonate with the hearts of book lovers everywhere.

The Clockmaker's Daughter

by Kate Morton

Kate Morton’s trademark mix of secrets, lies and mysteries has had readers lost in her worlds of historical fiction for years. On your next free Sunday afternoon, grab a blanket, a hot drink, and The Clockmaker’s Daughter and let her transport you to Victorian London. A group of young artists plan to spend a secluded summer at the beautiful Birchwood Manor. The scene is idyllic, but one hot afternoon, a gunshot rings out. A woman is killed, another disappears, and the truth of what happened slips through the cracks of time. After a century of hiding the truth about that fateful day in 1862, the mysteries of Birchwood Manor’s eclectic residents and their secrets are finally revealed in the present day. . .

This is Going to Hurt

by Adam Kay

Guaranteed to make you laugh, comedian and former junior doctor Adam Kay provides a no-holds-barred account of his time on the NHS front line. This is Going to Hurt continues to draw us in with horrifying, heartbreaking but hilarious behind the scenes of a world that many of us have always wanted to see revealed. A multi-million bestseller, and a BBC adapted series featuring Ben Whishaw, these secret diaries are the ultimate conversation starter for anyone who's curious about the endless days and sleepless nights of a junior doctor, and the inner-workings of the NHS.

The Wife Between Us

by Greer Hendricks

Imagine a marriage with secrets, twists, and unexpected turns that rival Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. You'll be hooked from the first page by this shocking romantic thriller, as you follow Nellie's journey into her husband Richard's past. Nellie thinks she knows everything about his previous marriage, and didn’t once think she’d become the object of obsession for his ex-wife Vanessa. Full of twists so good that you won’t see them coming, you’ll be eager to share the suspense with your fellow thriller-seeker friends once you’re finished.