Sunday, February 06, 2011

Reading Recap: 2010

It's that time of year again -- my world-famous annual reading recap. OK, it's only famous in my own mind, but that still counts, right?

Amazingly enough, I had time to read 90 books last year! I'm pretty impressed considering I was busy starting a new job, planning a wedding, getting married and destroying friendships left and right. All I can say is, most of the books I read were short, with tons of young adult books and mysteries.

Here are my Top 11 2010 picks (yes, 10 would be a better number, but I couldn't keep it to 10!):

1) The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett -- I lugged this 900-something page doorstop with me on my Maui honeymoon. I figured it would give me something to do on the 8 hour plane ride. I don't know if the soothing sun and plentiful mai tais had anything to with it, but I absolutely loved this book. It was like a raunchy soap opera set in 1100s England. I had trouble putting it down.

2) The Passage by Justin Cronin -- You may think you want to make out with vampires. This book will change your mind! These vampires are super scary and they've taken over the world thanks to a government experiment gone bad. What I liked best about this book was the great sense of hope the characters had. No matter how bad it seemed, they believed it was going to get better. (I would be screaming my head off and hiding under the covers, but I'm a giant wuss.)

3) Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger -- I have a soft spot for Audrey Niffenegger. The Time Traveler's Wife is one of my favorites. This strange tale about identical twin girls living in London captured my attention. The writing is exquisite. Some of the plot points leave a little to be desired. All in all, I was left thinking about the characters and the story for months after I was finished reading it.

4) The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson -- Book 3 in the Millennium Trilogy. If you haven't picked up these books, run to the book store and buy them. It's my favorite adult series. And don't worry if they take awhile to get into -- it gets better and then it gets exquisite. This book moved like molasses, but it gave a very satisfactory conclusion to the trilogy. Great characters, great storyline, great ending!

5) The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson -- Book 2 in the Millennium Trilogy. I LOVED this one -- Lisbeth is one of my all-time favorite characters. She reminds me of a female House. Just be warned - there's a cliffhanger ending so you'll want to have Book 3 nearby.

6) Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins -- The final book in the Hunger Games trilogy. If you haven't read these books, run out right now and buy them. They are amazing. This book made me laugh, cry and bite my nails. It was a well worthy ending to a great series!

7) Angelology by Danielle Trussoni -- The first 3/4 of this book was a blast -- it was like the Da Vinci code with angels. I couldn't put it down. It was extremely entertaining. The last few pages sucked, but we won't talk about that. A sequel is in the works, so maybe the ending has a purpose.

8) The Forgotten Garde by Kate Morton -- I really like Kate Morton's writing style. She writes dreamy novels with storylines spanning multiple generations. Family secrets abound and the characters are full of life.

9) Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead -- I think this is one of the best teen vampire series around. Rose completely kicks butt. She doesn't sit around pining for a boy to rescue her. Instead, she rescues herself. This is the last book in the series - it was one of the best series endings I've ever read.

10) Distant Hours by Kate Morton -- More gorgeous prose by Kate Morton! This book had a great gothic feel - lots of twists and turns. I kept thinking I knew what was going on and was wrong every time. It was a sweeping multi-generational mystery.

11) The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart -- I had a blast reading this book - actually, the entire trilogy. Although it was geared to a younger audience than I normally prefer, it had great themes of friendship, family and embracing your unique talents. I breezed through all three in the series.

Now it's your turn. Disagree with any of my choices? Did you read anything spectacular in 2010? I can always add more books to my TBR pile!


nerdshoveler said...

Do you have any particular method for tracking the books you read?

Eljabo said...

I use a couple of sites, because I'm nerdy that way. Goodreads is like Facebook for books -- I like to use it for socializing, reviewing, etc.

I use LibraryThing to track (I have trouble remembering book names so it prevents me from checking out the same books over and over again by mistake.)

I typically tag a book with the year and month I read it (2011-Jan). At the end of the year, I search my library for the appropriate year and it brings up everything I've tagged.

The cool thing about LibraryThing is it also gives you suggestions based on what books you enter so you can get ideas for new books to read.

Wow! That was a really geeky answer!