Friday, December 20, 2013

Best Books I Read in 2013

This year was kind of the year of re-reads. I went back and read some of my old favorites, and found that time either made me love them more or see more flaws. It's kind of funny how that happened. But this list is about books that I discovered this year, and while some of them were also published this year, many of them were merely new to me.


Edgy and fractured, compassionate and harsh, this book exemplifies everything that is good in YA fiction today. I have never read a book with such a distinct voice that tells a story so different from my own yet manages to make me feel every emotion of the characters so honestly.

An honorable mention goes to The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr.


This book shocked me, and not necessarily in a good way. I'm usually not a fan of horror stories, but this one was somehow moving in its grotesqueness. And Heyborne was a well-deserved recipient of many audiobook awards for his work on this one.

An honorable mention goes to Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool, narrated by Justine Eyre, Cassandra Campbell and Kirby Heyborne.

Historical Fiction

This is a book that every single person should read. It talks about a lot of big issues that affect millions of people around the world but that tends to get swept under the carpet. It might be about Sudan, but there are refugees and people without clean water all across the globe.

An honorable mention goes to Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick.


I love poetry: the emotion, the imagery, the beauty of words. But I don't think that I have ever connected with a book of poetry as clearly and personally as I did with this one. It's like Szymborska got inside of my head and wrote down everything I didn't have the words for.

An honorable mention goes to Native Guard by Natasha Trethewey.


This book blew my mind. I've always been obsessed with time in literature, but this makes the most intellectual conversation I've even had on the subject sound like playground chatter.

An honorable mention goes to The Beowulf Poet edited by Donald Fry.

Reading List Analytics
Out of the 110 books I read this year, there were 41 picture books, 33 novels, 14 audiobooks, 15 nonfiction and 7 poetry collections. I gave 37 books five stars, 38 books four stars, 23 three stars, 11 books two stars and 1 book one star.

Best Books of 2012
Best Books of 2011
Best Books of 2010


  1. I have to know... what book did you give one star to?

  2. `Please Ignore Vera Dietz' is a novel of magnificence. It's about bullying and grief, abandonment and ignoring a problem until it festers and explodes. But above all else, it's a novel of forgiveness. Forgiving people their mistakes and bad choices, the hurts inflicted and sorry's never given.