On the last day of 2013, it seems only appropriate that we look back on our year and take stock of what we’ve read. This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic facilitates said stock-taking by asking about the 10 best books we read in 2013. I have to say, I didn’t read anything this year that absolutely blew me away or that I would add to my list of all-time desert-island favorite books. But here are my 10 favorite books of the year, which I couldn’t possibly rank in order, so I’ve just listed them in the order in which I read them:
1. Anna Gavalda, Hunting and Gathering — I’m a sucker for a good love story, and this one is charming and somewhat philosophical and Parisian!
2. Jonathan Eig, Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig — I don’t read a lot of nonfiction, and I don’t really care much about sports, but I really loved this fantastic biography of one of baseball’s greatest legends.
3. Rainbow Rowell, Eleanor & Park — What more can I say about this book? It’s teen romance the way teen romance SHOULD be done.
4. Robin LaFevers, Grave Mercy — Medieval Brittany! Forbidden love! Political intrigue! Killer nuns! This book pushes so many of my happy buttons, it’s ridiculous.
5. Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo — I’ll admit, it was tough going at times. But this classic tale of revenge is so suspenseful and well-plotted that I don’t begrudge a minute of reading the complete and unabridged edition.
6. Ben Macintyre, Operation Mincemeat: How a Dead Man and a Bizarre Plan Fooled the Nazis and Assured an Allied Victory — I can’t quite believe it, but TWO nonfiction books made it onto my top 10 list this year! This is one of the most readable, entertaining books about WW2 espionage that I can imagine.
7. Maggie Stiefvater, The Dream Thieves — While not destined to become one of my all-time favorite books like The Scorpio Races, this book is further evidence of why Stiefvater is awesome and should keep writing dark, tortuous romantic fantasy forever.
8. Mary Doria Russell, Doc — This book is not only a great Western (and I don’t really care about Westerns) but a great work of historical fiction. I felt transported to Dodge City in the late 19th century, and it was one heck of an interesting ride!
9. Cheryl Mahoney, The Wanderers — I know, I keep talking about this book, and Cheryl is probably afraid I’m a crazy stalker person by now. But honestly, I just really liked this book, which reminds me of the excellent fantasy novels I read as a teenager that introduced me to the genre.
10. Kate Ross, Whom the Gods Love — Honestly, why aren’t ALL novels about Regency dandies who also solve murder mysteries? I mean, seriously.