My Top Ten Books Read in 2013

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The obligatory top ten post. These are chosen from the books I read in 2013; they weren’t necessarily published in 2013 and I didn’t count re-reads.

Drawing Down the Moon by Charles Vess Book Cover

Drawing Down the Moon: The Artwork of Charles Vess–I’m a fantasy reader at heart and Charles Vess does amazing fantasy artwork for some of my favorite authors. His book is beautiful all on its own.

Cover of This is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz

This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz–This was a sleeper. I really didn’t like it much until the last 2 pages or so and then it blew me away.

Cover of Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys–A heartbreaking and yet uplifting story of the millions killed under Stalin’s rule. I couldn’t stop reading it.

Cover of The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck–I said no re-reads but I’m throwing this one in the mix. I, um, hated this when I had to read it in high school but when I re-read it this year, I kind of fell in love. Somewhere over the past 20 years I seem to have become a Steinbeck fan.

NOS4A2 by Joe Hill Book Cover

NOS4A2 by Joe Hill–This sealed the deal: I am a diehard Joe Hill fan. Smart horror with heart. Right up my alley.

Those were far and away my favorites of the year but I said top ten, so these will round out the list, in no particular order:

Cover of Oral History by Lee Smith

Oral History by Lee Smith–This author can’t really miss for me and this book was no exception.

Cover of Mountainfit by Meera Lee Sethi

Mountainfit by Meera Lee Sethi–This slim book packed quite a punch for me. Short essays about nature somehow become more universal in Sethi’s hands. I’m still wishing for an illustrated edition.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer, read by Rebecca Soler–Cinderella as a cyborg mechanic? And that cover? Yes please. The narration was fantastic as well.

Cover of Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Sijie Dai, translated by Ina Rilke, read by B. D. Wong–Beautifully written and narrated throughout but the ending won me over on this one too.

Cover of The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister

The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister–The ingredients are essential for more than just recipes; they are essential for life as well. The lush descriptions of food left even this picky eater hungry! For a minute.

What do you think? Agree? Disagree? What were your top picks for 2013?

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  1. It's a very vague goal of mine to get back in the swing of things with Character Connection. My blogging overall has gotten so spotty that I don't know how to make it a regular feature though! I need to just make it a priority.

  2. Onyl read The Grapes of Wrath about 5 years ago and it had a huge impact. I was humbled by the genius, but needed to read chick-lit for the upcoming week to balance myself… Don't think I'll re-read it anytime soon.

  3. I have so much catching up to do with Joe Hill's backlist because I loved NOS4A2 too! And loved Cinder too.

    Tanya Patrice

  4. I really want to read Ruta Sepetys. I had it out from the library a couple times, but it just never happened.

  5. I totally agree with Grapes of Wrath. 🙂

    P.S. I was wondering about the state of Character Connection! I miss it. I want to write more character posts this year. Will you be bringing it back? Can I help you somehow? Let me know!

  6. The Grapes of Wrath is a good one. John Steinbeck ranks as one of my favorite authors.

    And N0S4A2 was definitely one of my favorite reads this year, as well. Such a good one. If it wasn't certain before, it's certain now–Joe Hill is one of my favorite authors.

  7. I have only read Cinder on your list and that was in 2012! I loved that one and really meant to get to the sequel this year, but that didn't happen! I really want to read the Joe Hill book though!

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