Books in 2013

1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – starting the year off in style with my all-time favorite book.
2. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins – LOVE
3. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins – THESE
4. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins – BOOKS!
5. Moneyball by Michael Lewis – my mommybrain skimmed some of the baseball stats, but overall an enjoyable read.
6. Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt – wonderful, wonderful book – looking forward to reading more by this YA author.
7. I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith – orginally published in 1948 & out of my normal style, but fitting nonetheless thanks to my recent Downton Abbey obsession.
8. Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott – Love me my Anne Lamott; perhaps could have done without a harsh reminder of how challenging it will be to raise teenagers in this world. :S
9. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh – Everyone should read this book; it is marvelous. My library put a little romance sticker on the spine (why do they feel the need to do that?) but it is a story about so much more than that. Such a great read.
10. Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead – Children’s literature is so fantastic…excellent stories at a reading level that allows me to plow through in one short evening.
11. Falling Angels by Tracy Chevalier – another selection inspired by the pre-Downton era & a pleasant one at that, especially with the varied voices of narrators/characters with each changing chapter.
12. A Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling – it took far longer than I would like to admit to adjust to all of the British slang and many, many changes in POV/narrator when I started this book, but once I got into it, I was hooked. Totally different than HP; totally sticks with you, just the same.
13. Divergent by Veronica Roth – another excellent teen series with a female protagonist and female author (but perfect for female or male readers).
14. Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand – nonfiction is not my normal thing, but this was such an interesting read; totally had me hooked and flipping pages, just like a novel.
15. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky – started this morning, finished this afternoon. Feel in love with the narrator. Moved by the story. Now wondering what the film version is like.
16. Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks – I haven’t read a Sparks novel since college, so maybe I’m a bit rusty, but I did not see the ending coming with this one and it gave me just what a Nicholas Sparks novel should – goosebumps and tears! I am such a sucker. 🙂
17. The Fault in our Stars by John Green – I’m on a bit of a YA kick here. I guess I’m calling it research should I ever find myself back in a middle or high school English classroom, but really, they’re just good, quicker reads. This particular one utilized a very successful, albeit pretty mature, teenage girl’s narrative voice.
18. Morgan’s Passing by Anne Tyler – first read of a friend’s favorite author….such a kooky protagonist in this story, but he and his story grew on me and kept me reading to see what would happen next.
19. When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead – great kiddie lit read; especially wonderful for fans of A Wrinkle in Time.
20. Making Babies: Stumbling into Motherhood by Anne Enright – Normally I love a good memoir, especially ones by mamas, but this one wasn’t my favorite. Turned out to be a slower and less entertaining read for me than expected.
21. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – Had no idea what I was getting myself into with this one. Turned out to be another WWII story but of course it was also so much more than that. A long book, but written in such an interesting manner. Well worth 550 pages.
22. The Lightning Theif by Rick Riordan – another Sunday, another teen series begun (and enjoyed).
23. Little Bee by Chris Cleave – Intense read. Not at all what I expected, but such good narrative voices.
24. Carry On, Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed by Glennon Doyle Melton. Oh, Momastery. How I’ve come to love you in the last year and change. Such a good blog. And SUCH a good book. I knew a lot of the stories already, but even those had me laughing and crying all over again. And the stuff I hadn’t read previously? Fantastic.
25. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The new movie version of the film looks so shiny and pretty that I’m actually pretty excited to see it. But I realized I didn’t remember much from the book beyond West Egg, East Egg, a green light, a yellow car, a man named Gatsby and a woman named Daisy. Seeing as it’s been probably 15 years since I read it as a young high school student, my faded memory is perhaps excusable, or at least explainable, so I nabbed a copy, dove in, and loved it all over again. Now I’m determined to go back and reread more books from high school; I think I will get so much more out of them than I did back then!
26. Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary Schmidt. My mom got me a signed copy of this YA book a while ago and I just got around to reading it – so, so good! Shouldn’t have waited so long.
27. Tiny Beautiful Things; Advice on love and life from Dear Sugar by Cheryl Strayed. Laughter, tears and a lot of head nodding. So good.
28. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Excellent, excellent read. Devoured this book.
29. Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. Whoa. Big read. As in, heavy on my head but good for my heart. Need to read it again (and then again) to really take it all in, though.
30. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. First book read after birth of Lincoln (and it took awhile to get back into the habit!), and what a good/lucky choice. Fantastic book based in Biblical times and all about the power and strength and voices of women. LOVED it.
31. Raising Happiness by Christine Carter. “10 simple steps for more joyful kids and happier parents.” Great read and great, conversational tone behind the writing, although I’m not sure all 10 steps are what I would exactly call simple.
32. Deliberate Motherhood by The Power of Moms. 12 chapters dedicated to bringing more peace, power, order, and joy to mamas. All good stuff. Lots of head nodding and underlining on this one. Very worthwhile read for moms!
33. The Cutting Room Floor by Dawn Klehr. Part thriller, part romance – another quick YA read.
34. Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown. Like Twilight but mermaids. It is much better than that description perhaps makes it sound.
35. Deep Betrayal by Anne Greenwood Brown. Books II in the series. Told from another character’s POV, which is always fun.
36. What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty – read this because I wanted to read another book by her that wasn’t available and just loved it. Almost a romance/mystery w/ the memory loss that drives the plot. So good and kept me reading, reading, reading just as fast as I could.
37. 365 Days of Thanks by John Kralik – pretty cool concept and neat story. Inspiring me to write more thank you’s for sure.
38. Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst – all about making wise choices when hit with raw emotion. Scripture-based book with lots of real-life mom stories included.
39. In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvzrez – another good historical fiction read.
40. The Husband’s Secret– by Liane Moriarty – officially finished my last book of the year on Dec. 31 – pretty cool. & another great read from Moriarty! I love books that feature different narrative voices within chapters.


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