Monday, December 30, 2013

The Best Books of 2013!


If I've written a complete review of any of the books listed, the link is embedded in the title. Short descriptions of all the titles listed below can be found here


2013 – Best Book of the Year
Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

2013 – Best Book Sure to be a Classic (Published in 2011 but I read it in 2013)
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

2013 – The Best Novel of the Year
The Benediction by Kent Haruf

Runners-up:
Dog Stars by Peter Heller (2012),  Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell, The Fault in our Stars by John Green (2012), The Good Lord Bird by James McBride, Transatlantic by Colum McCann, Someone by Alice McDermott, and What Changes Everything by Masha Hamilton

2013 – The Best Nonfiction Book of the Year
Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward

2013 – The Best Memoir of the Year
Bootstrapper by Mardi Jo Link

Runner-up:
The World’s Strongest Librarian by Josh Hanagame

2013 – The Best Historical Fiction Novel of the Year
The Good Lord Bird by James McBride

Runners-Up:
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent, Transatlantic by Colum McCann, The Blue Fox by Sjón, Testing the Current (originally published in 1984, reissued in 2013) by William McPherson

2013 – The Best Debut Novel of the Year
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

Runners Up: Two Great Novels published in 2012 that I read in 2013
Fobbit by David Abrams

2013 – Best Post-Apocalyptic Novel (Published in 2012 but I read it in 2013)
Dog Stars by Peter Heller

2013 - Best Books about War Told with Irony
Billy Lynn’s Long Half-timeWalk by Ben Fountain (Published in 2012)
Fobbit by David Abrams (Published in 2012)

2013 – The Best Book Club Book in Years (I led two discussions of it in 2013.)
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

2013 – Best Book for Book Club Discussion in 2014
What ChangesEverything by Masha Hamilton

2013 – The Best “Tapas” Book(s) of the Year (short stories or novellas)
The Tenth of December by George Saunders
and
The Blue Fox by Sjón

2013 – Best Love Story
A Tie between Two Young Adult Novels – one from 2012 and one from 2013
The Fault in our Stars by John Green (2012)
and
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (2013)

2013 – Best “Escape” Novel
Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

2013 – Best “Grits” Book – Evoking the American South
The Cove by Ron Rash
and
Flora by Gail Godwin

2013 – Best “Cure for a Bad Day” Book - Fiction
The Cleaner of Chartres by Salley Vickers

2013 – Best “Cure for a Bad Day” Book - Nonfiction
The Telling Room by Michael Paterniti

2013 – Best Thriller or Suspense Novel
31 Hours by Masha Hamilton (Published in 2009)

2013 – Best Mystery
How the Light Gets In by Louise Penny

2013 – Best Mystery/Historical Fiction (and I learned a lot reading it)
The Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye (Published in 2012)

2013 – Best Super Nutrition Novel (Informative as well as a Great Read)
The Good Lord Bird by James McBride
Transatlantic by Colum McCann
What ChangesEverything by Masha Hamilton

2013 – Best Super Nutrition Nonfiction Book of the Year (Informative as well as a Great Read)
Salt, Sugar, Fat by Michael Moss
and
Catherine the Great by Robert Massie (Published in 2011)

2013 – Best Humorous Book of the Year
Dad is Fat by Dave Gaffigan

2013 – Best Book for the Soul
Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

2013 – Best Children’s Picture Book
The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

2013 – Best Children’s Book for Middle Readers
Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo (Ages 9 – 12)

2013 – Best Children’s Book for Kids Who Prefer Video Games to Books
Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabensein (Ages 8 – 13)

2013 – Best Children’s Series I Discovered This Year
The Sixty-Eight Rooms by Marianne Malone (Ages 8 – 12)

2013 – Best Young Adult Novel Published in 2013
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

2013 – Best Young Adult Novel Published Before 2013 (but I read it in 2013)
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

2013 – Best Cookbook (and self-serving promotion of the year)
Tastes and Tales Along the Tunnel of Trees  (Caveat: I co-edited this as a fundraiser for the RFC Fire and Rescue Squad.)

6 comments:

  1. Every book you recommend turns out to be a great book! Thanks for this compilation!

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  2. Great list! You have some books I really need to read on here.

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    Replies
    1. I'm sure you'll find at least one you'll enjoy.

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  3. I need to try Benediction. I think I started Plainsong a long time ago and just wasn't in the right mood, but it's time to try Mr. Haruf again. Thanks for reminding me.

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    1. Benediction starts faster than Plainsong so that may help. Go back to Plainsong though - it's wonderful.

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