Top Books of 2014

I read a lot of good books and I find it hard to pick favorites so I figure if I make enough categories, I should be able to fit most things in. So without further ado...

My 2014 Top

3 Classics
  • Dr Jekyl and Mr. Hyde (with Frankenstein) - I was surprised how much I liked Dr. Jeykle and Mr Hyde because I didn't really care for Frankenstein. I am glad I read both because the comparison was interesting. Although I still haven't read Deadliest Monster and really want to. 
  • The Moonstone - The original mystery novel. And it set the standard well.
  • Cranford - So different from Gaskin's other works but nevertheless quite enjoyable.
3 Re-reads
  • North and South - It's dangerous. I read the book then I want to watch the mini-series. Then watching the mini-series makes me want to re-read the book!
  • Anne of Green Gables - As Elaine mentioned, my views on the characters change as I age and start to relate to it different, but I still love it as much as ever. 
  • Sense and Sensibility - I know some people think its a weak link in Austen's works but I love it. Probably because I feel like I am Elinor (which not coincidentally, is how we spell Lucy's middle name :-) )
3 Children's books
  • Wind in the Willow - I can't believe I hadn't ever read this before. It makes me sad I didn't read it as a child because I don't think I can ever replicate how I would have experiences it back then but I'm glad I read it as an adult. 
  • The Story Girl - I've read the Anne series and the Emily series but didn't even know about this one. Love the kids and their relationships with each other.
  • Children of Noisy Village - Read aloud with Lucy. She got the sequel as a Christmas present this year and I'm just as excited as she is to get started on it.
3 Non-fiction
  • Bringing up Bebe - This didn't' really change the way I parenting but then again, I didn't read this as a parenting book. If I did, I probably would have found it annoying. But I am fascinated with different cultures and parenting so I found this really interesting examination of that, and of expat living in general, another subject of interest to me.
  • Root Cause - This is good - if you have Hashimoto's. If you don't, well, lucky you.
  • The Story of the Von Trapp Family Singers - I don't care that their story is a perfect match to the movie or that this book supposedly tells a slightly different story than the other one she wrote. Read it for what it is and enjoy it.
3 Series
  • Thursday Next - I have a hard time recommending this because its very odd and I can easily see people not liking it. But I do like it. a lot.
  • CS Lewis Space Trilogy - These are hard and weird and I don't think I even got 10% of what Lewis was trying to communicate, but at least I tried.
  • Lord Peter Series - Well written British murder mystery. Shockingly, I liked them :-)
Most likely to cause me to wake up a small child with my laughter
  • Dad is Fat - Hilarious
Modern Fiction
  • Someday, Someday Maybe - I don't read much modern fiction so there wasn't a whole lot of competition but this wasn't bad.
The Series I probably should give up but can't quite (yet)
  • Rhys Bowen's Royal Spyness Series. I like Rhys Bowen series. They are light reading and I'm never really surprised at the endings but they are amusing. The Royal Spyness has always been my favorite and what I consider her funniest. But she's starting to really stretch to keep it going. I should stop reading them but I'm still kinda invested and am not quite to the point of leaving them on the shelf.
Book I'm Most Proud of Myself for Reading
  • How to Read a Book: I started it in high school. 15 years later, I finished it. Good job me!
  • Runners' up: Pilgrim's Progress and That Hideous Strength. Both are good, both are hard to get into.
3 Least Favorites
  • The French House - It might have been interesting if you had really learned anything about the house itself instead of just the people that stayed there so they could surf. But even then you'd have to 1) understand who everyone was and 2)get past the horrible financial decisions the owners/authors made. That fact alone caused me to want to throw the book against a wall. If it wasn't an e-book, I might have but I couldn't take out my anger on my poor innocent kindle.
  • The Book Thief - I had an very interesting discussion with my church book club ladies about this. That part was good. The book itself, not so much.
  • Bellfield Hall - I can't really say anything bad about this book. In fact, I had no recollection of this book at all when I saw it on my list of books read. And that might be the worst thing you could say about a book, at least the others inspired some sort of feelings in me.  But even reading the story summary left me blank. The name of the main character seemed vaguely familiar but the rest - nothing. I would blame myself but this is the only book on my list I can say that about. I may not remember all the small details about each mystery and every side characters middle name, but I could tell you the basic plot and main characters. So, I'm gonna say its you and not me, Bellfield Hall.
And last, but certainly not least, my...

 Overall Favorite 
  • Jane Eyre - I've read it before at least once and it was fine but for some reason it really spoke to me this year. Isn't it amazing how reading is such a partnership between the author and the reader. Even if the book doesn't change but I do, it can seem completely different? Books. Gotta love 'em.

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