Best Reads

These "Best of..." are not based on books published in the year listed but books that I read that year and gave a ✰✰✰✰✰ rating.  The order in which they are listed is the order in which I read them, not how I would rank them in relation to each other.  If you would like to read what I have to say, almost all books from the beginning of 2011 on link to my review.  Enjoy!

Best of 2013 Fiction
Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (Favorite Book)
The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Painted Veil by W. Somerset Maugham (Favorite Book)
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

Best of 2013 Nonfiction
The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown

Best of 2013 Audio
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell

Best of 2012 Fiction
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas 
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Private Life by Jane Smiley
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
Swamplandia by Karen Russell
Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier
11/22/63 by Stephen King
Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Best of 2012 Nonfiction
Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides (Favorite Book)
Night by Elie Wiesel
The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris by David McCullough
Games without Rules by Tamim Ansary (Favorite Book)

Best of 2012 Audio
Lamb by Christopher Moore (I only gave the book itself three stars, but the audio is outstanding-it is an odd book-link to the review if you are interested in more information.)
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston (narrated by Ruby Dee)
Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier (narrated by Will Patton)



Best of 2011 Fiction
I, Claudius by Robert Graves
Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
The Forever Queen by Helen Hollick (Favorite Book)
Juliet by Anne Fortier 
Room by Emma Donoghue
Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
Spiral by Paul McEuen
The Tiger's Wife by Téa Obreht
The March by E.L. Doctorow
Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier
Moloka'i by Alan Brennert
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (Favorite Book)

Best of 2011 Non-Fiction
Anne Morrow Lindbergh by Susan Hertog
Schuyler's Monster by Robert Rummel-Hudson
The Happiness of Pursuit by Davis Phinney (with Austin Murphy)
The Fear by Peter Godwin
Plastic: A Toxic Love Story by Susan Freinkel
Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea by Barbara Demick
Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

Best of 2011 Audio Books
Parrot and Olivier in America by Peter Carey (narrated by Humphrey Bower, who does such an excellent job with Parrot’s and Olivier’s voices that I thought there were two separate narrators)
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
(narrated by Allan Corduner, who is absolutely pitch perfect as the narrator, “Death”)


Best of 2010 Fiction
The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer 
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalid Hosseini
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad


Best of 2010 Non-Fiction
Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Over the Edge of the World by Laurence Bergreen
Sisters of Sinai by Janet Soskice
1776 by David McCullough
King Leopold's Ghost by Adam Hochschild


Best of 2010 Audio Book
The Help by Kathryn Stockett (I rated this a four star book, but the audio is the best I have ever heard-definite five star if you listen to the audio.)