Saturday, January 18, 2014

Best books of 2013

With my family at the City Lights Bookstore
 in San Francisco in August
Here are the best books I read in 2013. Click the title to read my review. These are listed in approximate order of how much I liked them (#1 being the best). I'd love to hear what you thought of any of these books. If you've read any, please leave me a comment.

You can also refer to best books lists back to 2001 here. Enjoy! (This is cross-posted in Marie's Book Garden.)



Fiction
1. A Tale for the Time Being, Ruth Ozeki: Canadian novelist finds a diary of a Japanese girl washed up on the beach…loved this lyrical, spiritual tale and got to see Ozeki read from the book
2. The Sleeping Dictionary, Sujata Massey: Pom loses her family in a tsunami, and her life takes many difficult courses around Indian independence (another one of my favorite authors)
3. Cinnamon and Gunpowder, Eli Brown: England, 1819…female pirate kidnaps a male chef…great foodie adventure!
4. And the Mountains Echoed, Khaled Hosseini: vivid landscape and complex, multilayered, and interesting characters
5. The Street of a Thousand Blossoms, Gail Tsukiyama: sweeping, WWII-era story of two orphaned brothers in Japan
6. The Cuckoo's Calling, Robert Galbraith: J.K. Rowling’s new detective novel—worth a read!
7. Major Pettigrew's Last Stand, Helen Simonson: stiff English major and Pakistani shop keeper fall in love
8. In the Woods, Tana French: Irish literary detective novel
9. Bruised, Sarah Skilton; young adult fiction
10. Cross Currents, John Shors; takes place in Thai desert island struck by the tsunami
11. The Burning, Jane Casey; another Irish detective novel
12. Maisie Dobbs, Jacqueline Winspear: historical detective novel
13. The Little Book, Selden Edwards: time travel in Austria
14. The Chosen One, Carol Lynch Williams: young adult fiction

15. The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint, Brady Udall: coming of age novel of abandoned Native American boy

Nonfiction
1. Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner and Saint, Nadia Bolz-Weber: the title says it all—memoir of a tattooed, alcoholic ELCA pastor with an emergent church
2. Somewhere Inside: One Sister's Captivity in North Korea and the Other's Fight to Bring Her HomeLaura and Lisa Ling: one sister rescues the other sister in North Korea
3. Wave, Sonali Deraniyagala: A woman loses her entire family in the Sri Lankan tsunami and battles huge grief
4. Talking Taboo: American Christian Women Get Frank about Faith, Erin Lane and Enuma Okoro, ed.: essays by female Christian leaders about taboo topics
5. The Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Times, Jennifer Worth: Inspired “Call the Midwife,” which I love
6. Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison, Piper Kerman: Inspired “Orange Is the New Black” show, even better than the book
8. Notes from a Small Island, Bill Bryson; author returns to USA after living in the UK
9. The Invisible Girls: A Memoir, Sarah Thebarge: cancer survivor befriends Somali refugees
10. Bruce, Peter Ames Carlin: the life of the Boss
11. Loud in the House of Myself, Stacy Pershall: poignant memoir of mental illness
12. Banished: Surviving My Years in the Westboro Baptist Church, Lauren Drain and Lisa Pulitzer: insider account of what makes the hateful Westboro Baptist Church function
13. Cyndi Lauper: A Memoir, Cyndi Lauper with Jancee Dunn: she’s quirky, strong, and fascinating

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