Last week I asked you guys to pick your favorite book you've read this year. Thanks so much to all those who have responded! Now get your Christmas list ready because here is the list of what everyone thinks you should add to your TBR pile:
REVOLUTION by Jennifer Donnelly. It's YA, and it's a contemporary historical novel thing
that's too difficult to explain. Everyone should read this book. It's emotional, has powerful
themes and ideas, and the character development is superb.
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White, YA paranormal fantasy
Cinders by Michelle Davidson Argyle, adult literary fantasy
Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen was one book that stood out for me recently, it is so well written and its details so vivid you became part of the circus world the story surrounds.
MISTWOOD, a YA fantasy by Leah Cypess. It was so beautifully written that at times it made me think of poetry. The world building was excellent, character development was compelling, and there were great twists.
THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak (genre YA), but it was released in 2007, so I'm not sure it counts.
ROOM by Emma Donoghue (genre Adult Fiction). Riveting, poignant, and unique. It's written from the perspective of 5-year-old Jack who was born into and has lived his entire life in a space he calls “Room,” an 11 x 11 shed where he and his mother are held capti
I avoid 800-page books like the plague, but the fact that I couldn't put THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO down once I picked it up says something, I guess.
The Help by Kathryn Stockett. I read it for book club, and thought it was fantastic :) Don't know what genre it fits into besides historical fiction, though!
SOULLESS by Gail Carriger (steampunk/paranormal/romance).
SHIVER by Maggie Stiefvater (YA/paranormal/romance).
But my absolute faves were all of the Stephenie Plum series by Janet Evanovich (mystery/romance/comedy). A friend has been pushing me to read this series for years, and once I got started, I couldn't stop. I read all 16 books in less than two months (sorry, family, for neglecting you, lol).
I'm in the middle of THE PASSAGE--don't know yet if it should make your list...
in medias res
The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. I thought about that one a long time, and tore through it when reading. Not sure what genre it was-- Adult. Fantasy? It was definitely commercial fiction. With paranormal elements. Hmm.
Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult. I know it has been around for years, and I have to admit, it was the cover that turned me off. It was breathing a strong feminine vibe. But, having a background in secondary education, it had been suggested at least 100 times (no exaggeration) so I finally cracked it open. Once I did, I couldn't put it down. It made me think, it made me reflect, and it made me consider explainations I never wanted to think about. Not only was it a great book, it was one of the most valuable reads thus far in my life.
I LOVED LOVED LOVED "Thieves of Manhattan" by Adam Langer (perfect for writers and aspiring writers as it cleverly blasts/satirizes the publishing industry for all the fake memoirs of recent years but also celebrates New York, writing and genres)
Barbara Demick's "Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea." (nonfiction). It depicts the awakenings and journeys of several defectors, and provides a history of a place I knew virtually nothing about.
ASH by Malinda Lo was my favorite book this year. It's gorgeous, literary, lyrical fantasy (shelved in YA fantasy)
Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich. If you're having a bad day, pick up a Janet Evanovich book, and you're sure to feel better in a jiff.
Also read Official Book Club Selection by Kathy Griffin. Love her humor and honesty.
A Precious Jewel by Mary Balogh. All I can say is .... I LOVE Mary Balogh. She rocks the
The Host by Stephanie Meyer -- deliciously creepy. Not as good as Twilight series, but still an interesting read. Could have been a little shorter.
Terry Pratchett's I SHALL WEAR MIDNIGHT, a Tiffany Aching & Wee Free Men novel (4th book).
For fantasy it is hands down RED SEAS UNDER RED SKIES by Scott Lynch. It's the second in the Locke Lamora series which is like a fantasy Renaissance Venice & Ocean's Thirteen mixed together.
For Literary it would be OF BEES AND MISTS by Erick Setiawan. It's actually magical realism. And if you get a chance, read this guy's story. He came to the US as a teen w/o his family, not knowing English at all and put himself through college. Amazing.
And I know it didn't get great reviews (and I like an underdog) so I'm going to put THE SWAN THIEVES by Elizabeth Kostova (author of The Historian) on this list as well. I thought the book was beautiful.
Nora Roberts Bride Quartet Series as the best for me this year. I'm reading the last of the series and have enjoyed them all.
It's a toss up between MATCHED by Ally Condie (lovely writing and world building)
and BRIGHTLY WOVEN by Alex Bracken (I adore the characters in here).
THERE ARE NO CHILDREN HERE by Alex Kotlowitz. Non-fiction written in the late 80's early 90s about Chicago's housing complexes for low-income families. It followed the story of one family for two years. Awesome.
"Escaping the Tiger," by Laura Manivong,
closely followed by "Crossing the Tracks," by Barb Stuber.
The book that made me think writerly thoughts the most was "Under Heaven," by Guy Gavriel Kay. That one had me tied in knots wondering how to do this and that....
I finished Unwind by Neal Shusterman a few days ago. I'm not sure yet if it'll be my favourite book for the year, but I'm still in a daze just thinking about it. It got me in the gut like The Hunger Games did, so that's my recommendation.
The Strangely Beautiful tale of Miss Percy Parker by Leanna Renee Heiber -romantic, gothic, fantasy. Truly beautiful and passionate in an innocent way.
Favorite kids' book: The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman.
Favorite adult book: The Help by Kathryn Stockett.
Rough Canvas by Joey W. Hill (m/m romance)--really this whole series was awesome (this is the only book of the series that is m/m, the rest are m/f romances). However, these are not for the faint of heart. If you're new to erotic romance, start with one of the other recomendations and "graduate" to these, lol.