Monday, December 30, 2013

On My Nightstand: 2013

Remember last year's post about the books I read? Well I've kept track, and in the interest of giving (You know the line. Repeat after me: I'm a giver!) and making sure that you have some good pages to turn, I'm sharing the books that kept me from doing laundry occupied my time and shared space on my nightstand this year.

I'll list them by month, then title and author. I'll give you a little blurb on those that are my particular favorites.


Help, Thanks, Wow--Anne Lamott

One Thousand Gifts--Ann Voskamp
      Dreamy writing, wonderful message.

The Sense of an Ending--Julian Barnes


The Silver Linings Playbook--Matthew Quick
     The movie was good, the book was better.

Where'd You Go, Bernadette?--Maria Semple
      Any main character that hates all Canadians piques my interest. (Not that I have anything against Canadians. I just found that very funny.)

Argo--Antonio Mendez

The Girls from Ames--Jeffrey Zaslow
     If you've maintained friendships with girls who "knew you when" you'll enjoy this book.


Fall of Giants: The Century Trilogy--Ken Follett

Winter of the World--Ken Follett

Pride and Prejudice--Jane Austen
     A particular favorite that I revisit every few years.


80 Days--Matthew Goodman
     The true story of the widely known Nellie Bly, the unknown Elizbeth Bisland and their quest to see who could travel around the world in 80 days first. Exciting, interesting, and true!

Calling Invisible Women--Jeanne Ray

Carry On, Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed--Glennon Doyle Melton
     Melton's book is at turns thoughtful and humorous. Her ideas that we are more alike than different and that Love Wins are ideas I can get behind.

A Red Herring without Mustard--Alan Bradley
     If you haven't read any of Bradley's books starring precocious 11 year old Flavia de Luce, you are missing out. Flavia is fascinated with chemistry, bicycles and death and is hell bent to solve the mysteries that seem to find their way into her life. Entertaining and then some.


Flight Behavior--Barbara Kingsolver
    I have yet to read one of Kingsolver's books that leaves me flat. She is a wonderful writer with well developed characters and interesting plots.

The Interestings--Meg Wolitzer

I Am Half Sick of Shadows--Alan Bradley
     More Flavia!!

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk--Ben Fountain


Wave--Sonali Deraniyagala
     The harrowing story of how the author survived the 2004 tsunami while her family (parents, husband, and two sons) perished. Horrifying, beautiful, and compelling.

A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again--David Foster Wallace

The Happiness Project--Gretchen Rubin

The Lion is In--Delia Ephron

How to be Good--Nick Hornby

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime--Mark Haddon (another re-read)

The Handmaid's Tale--Margaret Atwood

The Chaperone--Laura Moriarty
     A fictionalized account of actress Louise Brooks and her chaperone on a trip to New York City in the summer of 1922. A page-turner that left me wanting to read more by the author.


Me Before You--Jojo Mayes

Tell the Wolves I'm Home--Carol Rifka Brunt
    Set in the 80's when AIDS was a terrifying and stigmatizing scourge about which little was known. A wonderfully wrought story of sisters, family, and love.

What Alice Forgot--Liane Moriarty (not to be confused with Laura Moriarty, above)
    A story of love, indifference, anger, forgiveness, and amnesia.

The Art of Fielding--Chad Harbach
   Love and baseball. Lots and lots of baseball.

The Cukoo's Calling--Robert Gilbraith (who is really J.K. Rowling)


The Hypnotist's Love Story--Liane Moriarty

The Silent Wife--A.S.A. Harrison

The Moonflower Vine--
   An old-time novel--the author's only book. Well developed characters with good story lines. This is a re-read for me.


Black Water Rising--Attica Locke

Red Sparrow--Jason Matthews

Eleanor and Park--Rainbow Rowell
     Don't let the author's name put you off. This was one of my favorite books of the year. Set in the 80's, I related to so much of this book. I loved the characters, the plot, the writing, the flow of this book. It left me wrecked to read anything else for quite a while afterwards.

The Great Gatsby--F. Scott Fitzgerald
     A re-read. Yep. It still holds up even all these years after reading it my Junior year in English class.

Attachments--Rainbow Rowell

The Husband's Secret--Liane Moriarty


The Art of Hearing Heartbeats--Jan-Philipp Sendker


I somehow did not manage to read a single thing during the whole month of November. I dunno. Maybe I read cereal boxes.


Double Down: Game Change 2012--Mark Halperin and John Heilemann

Hyperbole and a Half--Allie Brosh
     Blogger Allie Brosh has put much of her blog in book form. Her blog, which is half writing, half cartoon, and all fabulous is made up of the stories that make up her life. In the book she talks of her dogs (her dog Simple Dog and my Dumb Dog simply HAVE to be related), a psychotic goose, being the god of cake, and her personality (trust me, funnier than it sounds.) She also describes her descent into, slog through, and slow climb out of debilitating depression in a way that should be required reading. (trust me, this is, somehow, in some ways, also funnier than it sounds) I read this book in about a day. Fast, funny, and terrifyingly relatable.

One Summer: America 1927--Bill Bryson
     I love Bill Bryson. If he wrote a story about phone books, I would read it. I am only half-way through this book, and I'm amazed at the many important things that happened in the very busy summer of 1927.

2013 wins over 2012 by almost 10 books read. (42 1/2 to 33) Yowza! It's a wonder I got any laundry done at all this year.  (Said the woman writing this in her pajamas. ;)  ) In 2014, I'm just planning on foregoing laundry and having my family wear togas and go commando so that I can READ ALL THE BOOKS!

If you read something wonderful and feel you have to tell someone or you may burst want to share it, please share in the comments section. I'm always looking for the next book for my nightstand.

Thanks for stopping by to read my ramblings this year. May you have a blessed 2014!

blog comments powered by Disqus