Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Best Books of 2013

I have a slight problem with doing a 'Best Books of 2013' because I really don't believe that what Goodreads thinks I've read this year is the full total of everything I've actually read. As you may have noticed, my internet presence this year has been somewhat... sporadic this year and so I've only listed things as 'currently reading' on Goodreads when I remember to, thus I'm pretty sure some important stuff has been overlooked!

However, ignoring that I do just so happen to have exactly ten books on my Five Star list for 2013, and they are as follows (in kind of the order I read them):

  1. Maus by Art Spiegelman (review) - Brilliant, quirky and very important. Awesome graphic novel which I should have read sooner. 
  2. Wild by Cheryl Strayed (review) - The best memoir I've read in a while. Totally inspiring and beautifully written. I need to buy myself a copy so I can read it again. 
  3. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor (review) - This was a re-read of a series that I thought was great as a child, and it really stood up to re-reading. Not easy reading because it's about difficult issues, but very well written and really well told. 
  4. Full Frontal Feminism by Jessica Valenti (review) - Lots of people kind of hated this book, and I think having read their thoughts that it's probably worth a re-read because I tend to get carried away with people making points that are brilliant and which I agree with and gloss over the other stuff. That said, this book does make many brilliant and important points and has a lot of great reasons why feminism should be important to everyone. 
  5. Rags & Bones: New Twists on Timeless Tales edited by Melissa Marr & Tim Pratt (review) - This was a brilliantly timed arrival, as it turned up the day before we went to see Neil Gaiman, whose publicist is responsible for sending this collection to me, as he had written one of the stories in it, a retelling of Sleeping Beauty which was, of course, brilliant. There were a lot of stories in it which were particularly great and it was nice to read something which had some fairytales but also some other classic tales as well as some lesser known ones. 
  6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky - I never got around to reviewing this for some reason, I think because I loved it so much it was difficult to talk about it, and also probably because I watched (and also loved) the film at around the same time so it was a bit of an overload. I wish I had written about the book now because to be honest, the film is kind of overriding it in my head. All I really remember is that I prefered the ending of the film, which is totally ok to say when the director of the film is the guy who wrote the book, right? 
  7. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green & David Levithan (review) - I only read this a couple of weeks ago after picking it up on our epic book buying spree in Leeds, and it really didn't disappoint. It was full of awesome characters and didn't play out at all the way I thought it was going to. 
  8. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell - Also didn't get around to writing about this, again because I was overwhelmed by the awesome. Eleanor and Park were both awesome, and it was so well written and beautiful and the ending was totally not what I expected. Loved it. 
  9. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (review) - If I had to pick a favourite book of the year, just one, this would be it. It's my favourite of his books as well I think, and basically it's just beautiful and brilliant and you should all read it. 
  10. Attachments by Rainbow Rowell - Yes I did just put The Ocean at the End of the Lane in the middle so you wouldn't notice there are two Rainbow Rowell books on this list, but I just finished Attachments and I adored it. Such awesome, gorgeous, quirky characters who I totally love now, and such a lovely, romantic, unusual plot. Rowell for the win. 
An an honourable mention needs to go to This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz, which has to be the cleverest and most beautiful collection of short stories I've read this year. 

So there's that. This post took me a looooong time to write as I've been totally flat out with a horrendous cold/flu type thing and unable to take anything for congestion or do much about my horrible cough except drink honey and lemon :-( Once I've recovered I hope to be back to blogging more regularly!


  1. Ooh such an interesting list. I didn't know what to think about This Is How You Lose Her - definitely memorable though.

    Tanya Patrice

  2. Congratulations about the infant! You really *ARE* already blessed before 2014 and what a merry Christmas indeed! Now there'll be another child for posh birthday parties a year hence.

    If you'd rather be a guest than hostess, I hope to see you at my reading themes as of February 1. XOXOXOXO, Carolyn.

  3. I have some of these on Mount TBR, more on my library list, and YES ABOUT ATTACHMENTS AND THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER. I want to reread/rewatch that one soon actually - it seems like the kind of book you could revisit pretty often without it getting old... Happy reading for 2014 muffin!

  4. Just came across your blog. I read Eleanor and Park last year and quite enjoyed it. Haven't read Perks, but I did like the movie. And of course, Thunder is a classic.

    Great list.

  5. Oh and Bex? I feel an appreciative bond with anyone still supporting physical books. :)

  6. Rainbow Rowell does have a great way with dialogue that I just love - not surprised to see that two of her books are among your favorites!