Although not my most productive reading year ever, I did manage to read over 100 books in 2013! I track my reading on Goodreads. So if we’re not friends there, you should join me!
Here are my favorite fictional books of 2013.
(with apologies for the repetitiveness to my Goodreads friends as these are my edited reviews from what I posted there through the year)
A Week in Winter by Maeve Binchy: I love Maeve Binchy. This is the last book she wrote before she died so even though it wasn’t my favorite, I’m still listing it. It’s quintessential Binchy – even down to the female character who falls in love with and then is burned by a handsome married business man.
A Place in Time: Twenty Stories of the Port William Membership by Wendell Berry: I love this community and WB’s way of seeing into the heart of people. Many times, I was struck by the deep truth of his characters’ comments
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan: I devoured this book in about 24 hours (even staying up way too late to finish it). The characters were really interesting, the storyline was strong and compelling, and I didn’t guess the solution to the mystery before it was revealed. The underlying commentary/reflections about the impact of modern technology (particularly the internet) on society and personal life was particularly interesting and thought-provoking. I did a little fact checking with my programmer-husband and he verified the programming stuff for me. So I think even programmers would like this book!
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty: I’m recommending this more because of the conversations/self-reflection that it prompted than because of the actual book itself. The story is interesting and the characters are pretty well-drawn. It’s a good, quick read. What the main character goes through really struck me – particularly about how many little decisions can add up to really big changes over time.
The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy by Jeanne Birdsall: What a lovely story!! I can’t wait until Ellie is old enough for me to read it aloud to her. The plotline is interesting, the characterizations are fun, and I love the interactions between the four sisters. I think boys would be interested in this story too, even though most of the main characters are girls – there is one main character who is a boy.
The Mysterious Benedict Society (The Mysterious Benedict Society #1) by Trenton Lee Stewart: I was only going to give this four stars on Goodreads but Nik said that he was trying to start conversations with me and I was completely ignoring him because I was so wrapped up in the book. I suppose if the ending is so good that I’m not even hearing my husband, I should give it five stars! This was a fun book!
I also enjoyed:
- The Quilter’s Apprentice (Elm Creek Quilts #1) by Jennifer Chiaverini (plus a few others in this series. I’m working my way through it.)
- the other two The Mysterious Benedict Society books by Trenton Lee Stewart
- The Unseen Guest (The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place #3) by Maryrose Wood
- The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
- Beach Stree Knitting Society and Yarn Club by Gil McNeil