I would appreciate it if people recommended their favourite reads of 2012 rather then just posting a list . I had planned on reading 100 books but managed only to reach 76. The fiction books I read were My favourite of these was, by far, The Fish Can Sing by Icelandic Nobel Prize winner Halldor Laxness. It is a beautifully written book set in the early in the 20th century in Iceland. It is about a young boy Álfgrímur, and his adoptive grandparents and the community of misfits and eccentrics that live with them in their house. I absolutely adored the grandfather and the grandmother in this story. Another Icelandic novel I enjoyed was The Hitman's Guide to House Cleaning. A Croatian hitman working in New York finds himsellf on the run. He ends up in Iceland after killing and taking the identity of an American televangelist. He finds Iceland and its people bewildering.. I also loved "Life of Pi" but I don't think I need to summarise it because it is a well known novel. MY favourite non-fiction reads were **Talking Hands: What Sign Language Reveals About the Mind by Margalit Fox. Margalit Fox is a journalist who has a master's degree in linguistics. She accompanies a linguistics team to an isolated Bedouin village in Israel. The village had been found seven generations before by a deaf Egyptian and his Palestinian wife. Two of the couple's sons inherited the recessive gene for deafness. Three generation ago, after numerous cousin marriages, the hereditary deafness resurfaced with 10 children born deaf in that generation. Those children and their families started to create a new language which they passed onto the next generation. Now there are about 150 deaf people in a village with a total population of 3000. This language, known as Al-Sayyid Bedouin Sign Language (ABSL) is one of the world's newest language and is of great interest to linguists as it is a key to how language started and how our minds are programmed for language. Island of the Lost: Shipwrecked at the Edge of the World - Joan Cruet In 1864 two different crews are shipwrecked on different sides of Auckland Island south of New Zealand. Because an impassable ridge separate the two crews they are unaware of each other presence through the whole of their ordeals. One crew has good leadership and the men pull together to survive. Luckily this crew are able to salvage items from their wreckage. The second crew has poor leadership. Their captain becomes catatonic after the shipwreck. The only man who seemed to have the skills and drive needed to survive is one of the common seamen and the officers are not willing to let him take control. This crew also do not have the luxury of a wrecked boat close to shore and there are few seals on their side of the island. Bending the Willow: Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes by David Stuart Davies. Excellent book that looks at the 10 years Jeremy spent playing the role of Sherlock Holmes, including his battle with manic depression (bipolar order) and heart disease.