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December 29, 2013 / Leslie

2013 Reading Wrap-Up

It didn’t feel like I read a lot of books in 2013, but when I looked at my Goodreads totals found I had read 105 books in a variety of genres. Fifty-seven of them were audiobooks. The inclusion of audiobooks has doubled my reading in the past few years.

Favorite Books

In no particular order, my favorite books read or listened to in 2013:
Lexicon by Max BarryOtherTypistWe Are Water by Wally Lamb

Lexicon by Max Barry
A brilliant novel with an original concept, suspenseful story line and compelling characters. A mix of genre with science/speculative fiction overtones but also a suspenseful action thriller with a mystery to be solved and a little romance on the side.

The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell
Psychological suspense and an extremely unreliable narrator made for a compelling story that put this historical fiction high on my recommended list. The ambiguous ending added to the intrigue.

We Are Water by Wally Lamb
Difficult and at times disturbing topics were expertly handled in this beautifully written piece of contemporary fiction centering on the complexity of modern life in America. In addition to being one of my favorite novels this was my favorite audio production of 2013.

 

Looking For Me by Beth HoffmanThe Night Guest by Fiona McFarlane Backyard Bird Sanctuary

Looking for Me by Beth Hoffman
Beautifully written and timeless in its portrayal of a young woman growing up. I adored the country setting and the author’s love of nature.

The Night Guest by Fiona McFarlane
A haunting, emotional and at times alarming psychological tale of aging and dementia. It will make you want to pick up the phone and check on elderly friends and family that live alone.

Gardening for the Birds by George Adams
A treasure trove of information and handy reference guide to creating a native landscape and bird friendly backyard.

 

Written In Red by Anne BishopRosie Project by Graeme SimsionThe Humans by Matt Haig

Written in Red by Anne Bishop
This was a novel I choose on a whim while looking for something different, and it was a refreshing surprise. Adult urban fantasy with no romance and no sexy vampires, just great storytelling in a well-constructed world, and I love good world building.

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
A quick, light read with sharp, clever writing about a man who, never having been on a second date, sets out to find a wife in a purely logical manner. While marketed as a romance, this is a witty, humorous story that will appeal to a wide range of readers.

The Humans by Matt Haig
A member of a highly evolved alien species is dispatched to earth to take over a professor’s body and destroy his work. Told from the point of view of the alien, his witty, dry and humorous observations about people and what it means to be human are what makes this story work so well.

Challenges

I only participated in a couple of challenges this year. I completed the What’s In A Name Challenge but it was more fun than a challenge. A couple of weeks ago I remembered that I had signed up and was able to find a book I had already read this year to fit each of the categories. It felt a little like cheating.

I’m just not good at year-long challenges. I find I enjoy the readalongs and short-term reading events such as Readers Imbibing Peril or Vintage Science Fiction Month, so no big challenges next year and more low pressure events.

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15 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. laurelrainsnow / Dec 29 2013 2:01 pm

    Congrats! I see some of my favorites on your list, like The Night Guest and Looking for Me. I’ll be posting my wrap-up on New Year’s Eve. Have a great holiday.

    Like

  2. Leeswammes / Dec 29 2013 2:23 pm

    I also really enjoyed The Rosie Project and The Humans. Whether they’re on my final list, I’m not sure yet. I also keep away from challenges (except for one that challenges us to read more Dutch books). I’m just going to read whatever comes my way (or has been gathering dust already).

    Nice that audiobooks are working for you so well. A good way to increase your reading time. Hope you have another good year next year!

    Like

  3. Mary / Dec 29 2013 2:25 pm

    I loved Looking For Me. It’ll be on my post of favorites on Tuesday.

    Like

  4. Beth Hoffman / Dec 29 2013 2:28 pm

    I’m delighted and honored to see my novel on your list. Thank you so much, Leslie!

    Like

  5. Diane@BibliophilebytheSea / Dec 29 2013 5:21 pm

    I did like the Other Typist and Wally Lamb and Beth’s books as well.So many great reads to choose from.

    Like

  6. A Fresh Tomorrow / Dec 29 2013 6:27 pm

    Nice list. It was a good year for books…

    …oh wait, that’s every year.

    Like

  7. Sheila (Book Journey) / Dec 29 2013 9:15 pm

    Wow that is impressive… my goal was 100 and I am not going ot make it due to my summer hiatus 😉

    Like

  8. BermudaOnion / Dec 29 2013 9:23 pm

    Looking For Me is the only one I’ve read and it’s on my list of favorites too.

    Like

  9. irene / Dec 29 2013 10:47 pm

    I haven’t read any of the books you’ve read, nor have I read Wally Lamb, but it sounds so good. Thanks for sharing, you’ve done well. I must check out Good reads, I’m so bad at keeping rack of my reads.

    Like

  10. Arti / Dec 30 2013 12:04 am

    Nice lists. I’ll keep them in mind. All best wishes for 2014! I look forward to more birding info and book reviews under your apple tree. Happy New Year, Leslie!

    Like

  11. Beth F / Dec 30 2013 9:12 am

    You can’t cheat with What’s in a Name!! The Other Typist was *this close* to making my best-of list.

    Like

  12. postingfornow / Dec 30 2013 10:13 am

    Looks like you had a great reading/listening year. Happy New Year!

    Like

  13. sagustocox / Dec 30 2013 11:00 am

    Looks like you had some great reading this year. The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell is on my wish list. I loved Beth Hoffman’s book.

    Like

  14. Lloyd Russell / Dec 30 2013 6:16 pm

    The only one of your favorites that I have read is Looking for Me. I, like sagustocox, loved it.

    Like

  15. stacybuckeye / Dec 30 2013 9:00 pm

    I loved Beth’s book as well and it’s the only one I’ve read. I’d like to get to the Night Guest this year.

    Like

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