If on a Winter's Night a Traveller - Italo Calvino
I *adored* this book. Funny, clever without being condescending and with a heart so big it envelops you with every page.
Very rarely do you come across a novel that actually understands the Reader (note the capitalisation there) but this spoke to me from page one.
It's not just a 'love story' between the reader (little r) and the written word either. Even though it was written in 1979, there is an underlying satirical subtext exploring how we are 'fed' our culture that resonated with me now in 2013.
I'm also very glad I read this after Cloud Atlas as it's a clear influence (something I had confirmed when researching this after finishing it) and I would've been cross with Mitchell instead of just appreciating the homage.
A word of warning though. Make this a 'nook' book. Hide yourself away. Throw yourself under the duvet. Distractions will only get in the way.