My non-fiction book of 2014 is H Is For Hawk by Helen Macdonald. Sharing an obsession with raptors with her father, Macdonald is sent into an, uhm, tailspin after his death and impulsively decides to buy a goshawk. She buys hawk-food, stuffs her fridge in Cambridge full of it and attempts to become a real life falconer. Winner of the 2014 Samuel Johnson non fiction prize this is perhaps the best book on birds since JA Baker's classic, The Peregrine.
My classic fiction book of the year is The Mezzanine by Nicholson Baker. An office worker's thoughts as he spends his lunch hour buying shoelaces, eating a hot dog and reading Marcus Aurelius. It's like Virginia Woolf's The Waves if The Waves was, you know, good.
My philosophy/intellectual history book of the year is The Age of Nothing by Peter Watson. This is a book about the contemporary existential dilemma: how best to live in a - largely - Godless era. Watson had me at the introduction where he mentions 4 of my favourite contemporary moral philosphers: Thomas Nagel, Ronald Dworkin, Jurgen Habermas and Charles Taylor.
My science book of the year is Our Mathematical Universe by Max Tegmark which has become something of controversial best seller. Tegmark believes that we are living in 4 different levels of multiverse and that we're all just really numbers anyway. Being perfectly honest I didn't quite understand the last fifth of the book, but I'll bet it was pretty smart stuff. You can read my full review, here.