Oh, the agonies of deciding which novels will make the 'books of the year' list and thus which others will not! I've whittled down my long list of 24 to a more manageable dozen or so, but with my current reading looking as though it will join the chosen few, it's still 'fluid'.
I can give you the first batch now, arranged not hierarchically, but simply in the order in which I read them:
State of Wonder by Ann Patchett - I've been going on about this book, but so have many others; it's a work of integrity and clarity with compassionate intelligence behind it; it's a story which holds the reader long after the final page has been turned, and it poses questions of ethics to exercise the intellect. Wonderful. (I do like the paperback cover - it won't be out 'til June, though).
That's enough to be going on with, but there will be more soon.