Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Best Books of 2014…So Far



Top Ten Tuesday is the weekly meme hosted by the excellent blog The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is the best books I’ve read so far this year. We’re not quite at the halfway point of 2014 yet, but I just finished reading book number 50 last week. My reading this year has been a good mix of adult and YA, re-reads and new books, books I had to read and books I want to read. And, so far this year, I have given 11 books 5 stars on Shelfari, and only 7 books (mostly read for a tween book club I co-host where the kids and I don't agree on anything) 1 or 2 stars. That’s a pretty good spread for me. Last year I read a lot of mediocre books, and I’m thrilled that 2014 has been a much more pleasant reading experience.

1) Night Broken by Patricia Briggs – The newest Mercy Thompson book. Briggs had me worried for a few pages there, but this was an incredibly satisfying addition to the series.

2) Venetia by Georgette Heyer – Another charming Heyer romance, perfectly read by Richard Armitage. Venetia and Damerel’s relationship, which slowly built from a close friendship to love, was a nice change from the instalove in many contemporary novels.

3) The Animal Book by Steve Jenkins – A juvenile nonfiction book that I picked up after reading possible award buzz about it. It was an easy read, but the information was fascinating and the illustrations were gorgeous.

4) Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour – One of my favorite reads of the year so far. A perfect novel.

5) For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund – This post-apocalyptic retelling of Persuasion, my favorite of Austen’s novels, was amazing. A creative and compelling introduction to Peterfreund’s world.

6) Silence for the Dead by Simone St. James – So far, I have read and loved all three books Simone St. James has written. But her latest book is my favorite, by far. A riveting, emotional read.

7) Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson – An interesting take on what might happen if some people were suddenly gifted with super powers, and chose to use them for evil. Sanderson certainly has the ability to take dark worlds and imbue them with humor and action.

8) Winger by Andrew Smith – For as crass as this book sometimes was (it was about teenage boys in a boarding school, after all), it certainly ripped my heart out and stomped on it. A well-written, if depressing, novel.

9) Easy by Tammara Weber – My first foray into New Adult. This book had a lot to say on a powerful subject, but Weber did a great job balancing a serious subject with a steamy romance.

10) The Distance Between Us by Kasie West – A highly enjoyable YA contemporary romance with a snarky heroine and a sweet, earnest love interest.

Honorable Re-read Mentions:

1) The Girl with the Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier – I hadn’t read this book in a few years, but it was just as perfect and beautiful as I remembered.

2) Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs – This book is one of the best in the series. Mercy and Adam are amazing together in this novel, and the pack figures heavily in the story. So, so good.

3) Keeping the Castle by Patrice Kindl – When I realized that I had read the book three times in less than two years, I decided it was time to buy it for my collection. It’s just such a happy book!

Come find me on Shelfari!

11 comments:

  1. I've heard a lot of good things about For Darkness Shows The Stars. I'm glad that you enjoyed it so much :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The funny thing about that novel is that I only really picked it up after reading the negative comments about the cover and Peterfreund's defense. Her comments were so thoughtful that I felt compelled to read the book. I'm glad I did because it is absolutely stunning. I can't wait to see what else she has to offer about that world!

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Kimberly

      Delete
  2. Night Broken was on my list too! I loved it! Great list!
    My TTT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Mercy Thompson books just keep getting better and better. I'm super excited for the book of short stories that's coming out this September. More Mercy stories to tide us over until the next novel!

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Kimberly

      Delete
  3. Keeping Castle sounds like great fun! I've read other books by Patrice Kindl, but not that one.

    Here's my TTT:
    http://wendimlee.blogspot.com/2014/06/top-ten-ya-books-i-read-this-year.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I adore Keeping the Castle. It's an incredibly easy read, and it's not all that original if you've read a lot of Jane Austen, but it's just so happy! It seems to have become my go-to book when I'm feeling down.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Kimberly

      Delete
  4. Nice picks. The Distance Between Us made my list too, such a cute romance and it made me want to reach into the book and pull Xander out of it. Keep hearing such great things about WInger, really want to read that one myself.

    Char @ Reviews from a Bookworm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I totally know what you mean about keeping Xander. He was such a great guy! I can't wait to read On the Fence, and see how that story measures up.

      Winger is such a fantastic book, but it is emotionally draining. Be prepared!

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Kimberly

      Delete
  5. I've only read STEELHEART from your list. I love Sanderson, but this one fell a little flat for me I think because I was expecting more from him. He wasn't up to his own standards in this one, but it was still entertaining.

    Susan
    www.blogginboutbooks.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've actually only read two of Sanderson's novels (Steelheart and The Rithmatist), so I didn't have as much awareness of his usual writing style. My brother keeps telling me I need to read Mistborn, so my opinion of Steelheart might change a bit after that. I will say, I did actually like The Rithmatist better than Steelheart, but I enjoyed both.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Kimberly

      Delete
  6. Nice list, I haven't read any that are on your list!

    Happy Reading

    ReplyDelete