Friday, December 26, 2014

Best Books of 2014

Here are the best books that I read in 2014 in no particular order. 

Villa Triste by Lucretia Grindle
Villa Triste
A fascinating and beautifully written novel; it's a combination of a modern day mystery and a historical fiction book set in Nazi occupied Italy.  You can read my review here.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Me Before You
Don't judge this book by its cover - it may look like a cheesy romance, but it is a deeply moving story of self-discovery, quadriplegic life, and the difficult topic of euthanasia. You can read my review here.

Runner by Patrick Lee
The best kind of thriller, with non-stop action and well-developed, compelling characters.  You can read my review here.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
All the Light We Cannot See
A beautifully written story about a blind girl living in France during World War II.  You can read my review here.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman
If I Stay (If I Stay, #1)
A truly moving story about a girl who experiences a terrible tragedy and has to make a life-changing decision about her future. Warning - this book will make you cry! You can read my review here.

Landline by Rainbow Rowell
A good women's fiction summer read about the relationship between a working mother and a stay-at-home dad; Rowell has a gift for character development and natural dialogue.  You can read my review here.

The One and Only Ivan by Daniel O'Malley
This is a fascinating juvenile fiction book written from the point of view of a gorilla.  It's not the kind of book I would have picked up myself, but I was amazed by how the author makes you identify with the animals.  You can read my review here.

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Eleanor & Park
I loved this story about a weird girl and a geeky boy falling in love with each other; the author really gets inside the kids' heads and makes you feel their pain and joy..  You can read my review here.

Shake Down the Stars by Renee Swindle
Shake Down the Stars
An unexpectedly emotional read about a mother falling to rock bottom after the death of her daughter, and how she makes a new life for herself. You can read my review here.

The Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman
This book about a woman's process of self-discovery following the death of her mother was such a quick and easy read; the author has a knack for capturing conversations that are both poignant and funny.  You can read my review here.  

The Martian by Andy Weir
The Martian
A snarky engineer gets left behind on the planet Mars, and has to figure out how to survive by his wits until a rescue mission can be launched.  I'm not normally a science fiction fan, but this read like it was a true story.  You can read my review here

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
A delightful summer read about a snarky bookstore owner who is drawn out of his grumpy solitude by a quirky and charming book sales rep and a surprising little girl.  You can read my review here.

Leaving Unknown by Kerry Reichs
Leaving Unknown
A quirky and delightful coming of age story with unconventional and loveable characters.  You can read my review here.

I figured that since it was 2014, I should pick my 14 favorite books of the year.  As of December 13, I only have 13 that really stood out, so I wonder if I will read any really fantastic books in the last two weeks of the year?  Once again, my favorite books cover a variety of genres.

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