This year has been a wonderful literary year. I got to start a fantastic podcast, got to travel to a tropical island and I have read 51 fantastic stories that have carried me all over the world and back and forth through time. However, only 10 can make it into my favorites list. In no particular order we have:
- Eleanor and Park. This book was gut wrenching. This story of first love is brutally honest. Set in the 1980’s it was in many ways a trip down memory lane but it deals with some pretty heavy stuff that both teenagers and adults can relate to.
- Semper Sonnet. What a fun summer read this was. It is a great thrill ride for anyone who loves Shakespeare.
- Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald. This book gave me a whole new look on Ernest Hemingway and life in the 1920’s of the lost generation. It’s a wonderful book that transports you to the past.
- The Nightengale. I do believe that I cried from beginning to end with this one. This was another gut wrencher. It is raw, gritty and such an honest look at the relationship of two sisters. In fact, this more of a story about sisters than it is about World War II.
- Marlene I was never much of a fan of hers until I read this book. She is a fascinating modern woman. This book delves into her life and it’s up and downs.
- The Memory Painter. I believe this was my fastest read of the year. I was slightly panicked because I realized I needed to review it in two days and I had yet to read it. However, that turned out to not be an issue given that this is such a great story. Once I picked it up I couldn’t put it down. I was easily able to finish it before I had to get my review up on the blog.
- Dido’s Crown. Such a fun romantic book. I love Rose’s writing style and have found the heroine to be someone I could really rally for. It’s for this reason that Wine, Women and Words is reading this book for January and I can’t wait to talk about it more.
- The Gap of Time. Such a fantastic take on a Shakespear classic. I love the infusion of jazz with a story of love and loss.
- The Tsarina’s Legacy. Have I mentioned that I love Jennifer Laam’s books? Because I do. Her stories have a way of sucking me in. Like I mentioned when I had her on the podcast, her stories are like crack (there, Jen, you have your official quote). This was a fun return to the world of Veronica and the legacy of the Romanovs.
- The Forgotten Room. I just finished this one this week and I absolutely loved it. I will be posting a review soon so I don’t want to give too much away. But this one had me on edge and hungry for more. As well as giving me a good swoon at the end. Because really, who doesn’t love a good swoon?
I do want to list some honorable mentions. I reread the Lemoncholly Life of Annie Aster for the podcast and I have to say it was just as good the second time as it was the first. I also want to mention Madame Presidentess, for being a big lesson in women’s history. And finally the Veins of the Ocean. I love stories that center around family drama. This one was such a real look at families and being able to break away to live your own life.
What were some of your favorite books of the year? What books are you looking forward to reading next year?