The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. This book is not really a thriller but does have some of the suspense that murder mysteries contain. The book is well written. The author manages to take a disturbing subject and make it, in the end, healing.
The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Banks. This novel is about the working-girl heroine, Jane Rosenal. This is a coming of age book about awkward Jane that skips to various points in her life. For me, this book is best described as Catcher in the Rye meets Bridget Jones's Diary.
People of the book by Geraldine Brooks. This novel is about a book manuscript conservator Hanna Heath is hired to work on. This religious manuscript, the Sarajevo Haggadah, is 500 years old. The novel covers both Hanna's 20th century restoration and the history of the book itself as Hanna discovers a series of tiny artifacts in the codex. This novel is very well done and this Pulitzer Prize winning author does not disappoint.
The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry. Set in Salem, Massachusetts, The Lace Reader takes full advantage of the witch trial history of the locale. This novel grabbed my attention at the beginning and held it throughout.
"There is lace in every living thing: the bare branches of winter, the patterns of clouds, the surface of water as it ripples int he breeze.... Even a wild dog's matted fur shows a lacy pattern if you look at it closely enough."
The Likeness by Tana French. Detective Cassie Maddox goes undercover to solve the murder of a post-grad in this murder mystery with a unique twist. This was a hard-to-put-down book!
Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay. This well-paced novel alternated between Julia Jarmond's modern-day story and Sarah's 1942 situation. It is also story of family secrets. I found the novel to be moving and well-written. In some ways it reminded me of Suite Francaise.
This year I also have a few new categories.
- Amarcord: Marcella Remembers by Marcella Hazan. I have no idea why I felt compelled to finish this book. OK, I do. My mother loaned the book to me. The first section of this book was very interesting. I enjoyed reading about Marcella's journey from Egypt to Milan and reading about her time at Lake Garda during World War II. She has some very interesting stories to share, especially the one about the skeleton.
The last 2/3 of the book involved a lot of self serving name dropping and that was considerably less enjoyable. The book became a slog to read. The low point was when she devoted an entire chapter to a child-like criti...moreThe first section of this book was very interesting. I enjoyed reading about Marcella's journey from Egypt to Milan and reading about her time at Lake Garda during World War II. She has some very interesting stories to share, especially the one about the skeleton.
The last 2/3 of the book involved a lot of self serving name dropping and that was considerably less enjoyable. The book became a slog to read. The low point was when she devoted an entire chapter to a child-like criticism of famed food editor Judith Jones.
Have you ever seen a horror movie that was so bad that it was funny?
- Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession by Julie Powell. The book was poorly written and the author's behavior so abhorrent that I wonder why she put it in writing. Who would want to commemorate that?! Throughout the book, I kept on thinking to myself, "She knows her mother's going to read this, right?" This book has become a family joke. Oh look! Cleaving is now available in paperback!
- The Postmistress by Sarah Blake. Simply put, I wanted to love this book and I did not. The premise of the book was good but the characters did not develop and the book lacked heart. It was a slog.
- Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah. I picked this up after reading and enjoying Magic Hour. This book was like reading a Lifetime movie. If there was a cliche to be had, it was employed and every song, food, fad of the 1970's was referenced.
- Unaccustomed Earth: Stories by Jhumpa Lahiri
- The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani
- Amarcord: Marcella Remembers by Marcella Hazan
- The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
- The Madonnas of Leningrad by Debra Dean
- Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella
- Names My Sisters Call Me by Megan Crane
- The Day I Ate Whatever I Wanted: And Other Small Acts of Liberation by Elizabeth Berg
- The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank
- Twilight (Twilight #1) by Stephenie Meyer
- New Moon (Twilight #2) by Stephenie Meyer
- Eclipse (Twilight, 3) by Stephenie Meyer
- Breaking Dawn (Twilight #4) by Stephenie Meyer
- Cause Celeb by Helen Fielding
- We Are All Fine Here by Mary Guterson
- Nanny Returns by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus
- Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession by Julie Powell
- Look Again by Lisa Scottoline
- The Senator's Wife by Sue Miller
- East of the Sun by Julia Gregson
- Dedication by Emma McLaughlin
- Shanghai Girls by Lisa See
- Citizen Girl by Emma McLaughlin
- The Help by Kathryn Stockett
- Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweetby Jamie Ford
- Brooklyn Colm Toibin
- People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
- Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See
- The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry
- The Map of True Places by Brunonia Barry
- In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathaniel Philbrick
- Airhead (Airhead #1) by Meg Cabot
- Being Nikki (Airhead #2) by Meg Cabot
- The Postmistress by Sarah Blake
- Coventry by Helen Humphreys
- The Clique (The Clique #1) by Lisi Harrison
- Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
- Runaway (Airhead #3) by Meg Cabot
- Best Friends for Never (The Clique #2) by Lisi Harrison
- Jinx by Meg Cabot
- Insatiable by Meg Cabot
- My Fair Lazy: One Reality Television Addict's Attempt to Discover If Not Being A Dumb Ass Is the New Black; Or, A Culture-Up Manifesto by Jen Lancaster
- Shadowland (The Mediator #1) by Meg Cabot
- A Desirable Residence by Madeleine Wickham
- Revenge of the Wannabes (The Clique #3) by Lisi Harrison
- I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti by Giulia Melucci
- Soulless (The Parasol Protectorate #1) by Gail Carriger
- Changeless (The Parasol Protectorate #2) by Gail Carriger
- Invasion of the Boy Snatchers (The Clique #4) by Lisi Harrison
- Ninth Key (The Mediator #2) by Meg Cabot
- Me & Emma by Elizabeth Flock
- Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah
- Reunion (The Mediator #3) by Meg Cabot
- Darkest Hour (The Mediator #4) by Meg Cabot
- Haunted (The Mediator #5) by Meg Cabot
- Twilight (Mediator Series #6) by Meg Cabot
- The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium #1) by Stieg Larsson
- The Girl Who Played with Fire (Millennium #2 ) by Stieg Larsson
- The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (Millennium #3) by Stieg Larsson
- Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah
- The Likeness by Tana French
- Hurting Distance by Sophie Hannah
- Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
- Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr.
- A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick
- In the Woods by Tana French
- Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
- House Rules by Jodi Picoult
- Saving Max by Antoinette van Heugten
- Comfort and Joy: A Novel by Kristin Hannah
- Everything Must Go by Elizabeth Flock
- Blameless (The Parasol Protectorate #3) by Gail Carriger
- High Tea by Sandra Harper
- Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhonda Janzen
- The Baker's Apprentice by Judi Hendricks