Best of 2013: My Favorites

Best Books of 2013

The new year is almost here. Why not start it off with a book list?

This list includes books that I read this past year and that impressed me in some way. There were others that I loved for different reasons, but for whatever reason, I did not include them here. It’s funny what ends up on your list after you’ve had a year to think about it. The real surprise here? The short story collection and that a memoir made the list.

Here’s my list in no particular order:

Life Itself by Roger
Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan
Night Film by Marisha Pessl
After Her by Joyce Maynard
Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk by Ben Fountain
The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach
This Cake is For the Party by Sarah Selecky
Panorama City by Antoine Wilson
The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami
The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to you all. Here’s to another year of reading!

Spring Break 2013 – My Book Bag

Spring Break Reading 2013

No big plans for break but what IS on the list, is a small road trip and hopefully lots of reading. Here’s what’s in my bag:

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle  by Haruki Murakami (use the hashtag #winditup2013 for more info on the read-along).
More Than You Know by Nan Rossiter
When She Was Gone by Gwendolen Gross
The Dinner by Herman Koch
The Autobiography of Us by Aria Beth Sloss
Panorama City by Antoine Wilson

Don’t think it will all get read but a girl has to have options. What will you be reading this weekend?

Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

The Sunday Salon: Wish List

I had an incredibly busy Sunday so instead of boring you with the details, I’ll share my Christmas wish list instead. What do you think I want for Christmas? Well, books of course! Hardback, paperback, e-book, I don’t discriminate.

Matterhorn Book Cover

Full Dark, No Stars Book Cover


How To Live Safely Book Cover

The Neighbors Are Watching Book Cover

The Water Wars Book Cover

Super Sad True Love Story Book Cover

There are others. Yes, there are always others but it’s late, and I’m tired so my list is short. I don’t think there is anything quite as perfect as a book for Christmas but I never seem to get any.

Hope you all had nice weekends. Southern California is having a little bit of a rain storm right now. Everyone has gone to bed and here I am typing and listening to the rain outside. It’s the first bit of quiet I’ve had all day. I’m tempted to sit here and enjoy it a bit but I know I will be wiped out at work tomorrow if I do. So, off to bed I go. Good night (or Good Morning) depending on when you read this.

My Shelves Overfloweth

I am usually pretty good at pacing my reading to include a couple of review copies, along with a book or two that I am reading just for fun. However, due to the generosity of several bloggers and publishers, I have a nice, healthy stack of books that I must get to within the next couple of weeks. I know that this causes stress for some bloggers but these are all books that I am dying to read so I am anxious, but in a good way.

So, in an attempt to organize my chaotic self, here’s a quick list of what I will be reading over the next few weeks in no particular order:

Book List 1

Book List 2

The Glass Room by Simon Mawer
Let The Great World Spin by Colum McCann
Keeper by Kathi Appelt
The Passage by Justin Cronin
Legend of a Suicide by David Vann
The Secret Lives of People in Love by Simon Van Booy
First They Killed My Father by Loung Ung
Trackers by Patrick Carman
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks
Black Hills by Dan Simmons

Well, enough with the list, off I go to put a dent in it.

I Read (and Love) Banned Books

In honor of Banned Books Week, I’d like to take a moment to list some of my favorite books. I read them and immediately fell in love with them. Many of them were read when I was in college but I re-read them whenever I can and they all have a permanent home on my bookshelf.

I realize that some of these were challenged, as opposed to ‘banned’ but you get the idea. When they are old enough, I hope my kids enjoy them as much as I do.

It’s Time For Summer!

I love lists!! I especially love summer reading lists. During the summer months I work the same amount of hours that I normally do but for some reason, maybe the fact that the days are longer, I feel as if I have more time to read.

This year I will be spending a lot of time by the pool because I signed my daughter up for eight weeks of swim lessons. That means that I will have an extra thirty minutes of reading time each day. That’s heaven to me!

There are a lot of lists coming out right now but the list that I always keep an eye out for is NPR’s. Well, NPR actually comes out with several lists for summer so if you want to check them out, click here.

This summer I hope to pick up and finish the rest of the Harry Potter series. I stopped at book four (when I had kid #2) and never picked them up again. I got completely sidetracked by sleepless nights.

What one book are you looking forward to this summer?

My Need to Read (or Finish) Pronto List!

When I find myself a tad overwhelmed by my reading list, it helps for me to see the book covers all in one spot. I keep a spreadsheet to track all of the books that are sent to me and I use it to create a timeline of sorts so I can schedule my reading appropriately. However, nothing seems to work as well as seeing the covers all in one place. So this is what this post is about. This is my visual aid to myself.

Cemetery Dance by Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston

I have a handful of pages to finish on this one. I just need to sit down and finish it! I brought it to work today so hopefully this will be crossed off my list by the end of today.

Love and Biology at the Center of the Universe by Jennie Shortridge

I am almost done with this one as well. There’s a lot for me to relate to here so I have been taking my time with it but I hope to be done with this one by this weekend. I have a little surprise planned for later with this one too.

Foreign Tongue by Vanina Marsot

I just started this one. I am planning something special in conjunction with the review and there will be some surprises for this one as well!

Shanghai Girls by Lisa See

I got this one as part of Library Thing’s Early Reviewer program. I am halfway done with this one. I blame the Festival of Books because I was all gung-ho on reading it and then got sidetracked with the event. Had a hard time picking it up again but plan to finish it this weekend.

Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

My friend recommended this one to me ages ago and I haven’t had a chance to read it. I promised him that I would get to it this month so it is on the timeline.

Prayers for Bobby by Leroy Aarons

This is my book club’s pick for June. Haven’t started it yet but I still have some time for this one.

There now. After this weekend I should be caught up. Not too bad, right?


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