My Top Five Books of 2014

I read fewer books this year than usual.  I hit a couple of ruts and also started many books and never got into them.  I did read some good novels though, especially towards the end of the year.  Without further ado:

My third annual top five books that I have read this past year:

The Book of Unknown Americans,Christina Henriquez, -heartbreaking tale of immigrant family from South America trying to live the American Dream.  On many top lists for year deservedly.

Everything I Never Told You, Esther Ng – tale of an Asian-American family living in an Ohio town.  Suburban angst mixed with racism, marital woes and all other sorts of fun stuff.

The Goldfinch, Donna Tart – I have talked to so many people this past year who tried and tried but just couldn’t get through The Goldfinch.  It indeed is quite a hefty one but I enjoyed it, especially the end.  I appreciated the story, you really got into who the characters were and really got absorbed into it.

How You Lose Her, Junot Diaz – A novel of how to treat a woman I guess?  I love Junot Diaz novels.  I don’t understand a bunch of it as they’re always throwing Spanish in but its great.

The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion – An easy breezy book about a super nerdy College professor who goes about looking for a wife in “off the spectrum” ways in which he lives his whole life.  A fun novel.  I’m on the wait list for the sequel that just came out.

My 2013 Top Five

My 2012 Top Five

I love end of the year best book lists.  It’s my go-to for finding something good to read.  Some of the ones I look at:

Here’s to a prolific 2015!

Book: In the Garden of Beasts

I picked the wrong book to get me out of my reading block.  Although it is always interesting to read about the crazy Nazi’s and the unbelievable reality of not that long ago, I just can’t get too into it.  I had trouble reading Larson’s other books, and don’t think I ever finished them, but I am happy that I did plow through this one.  I didn’t like the pacing of this book.  It seemed like some of the book went into minute details of days and weeks for chapters and chapters and then it quickly went over years at a time in several paragraphs.  There really is not much plot to it besides the history behind it all.  Yawn.

PJH Rating:  **1/2

Book: Truth and Beauty

A memoir written by Ann Patchett, one of my favorite authors, about her friendship with Lucy Grealy who also was an author.  They meet after college and both struggle but eventually find success as authors.  Lucy’s facial disfiguration from a childhood illness is her obsession, her crutch and eventually leads to her tragic downfall.  I really liked this short book and couldn’t put it down…just like all of her fiction that I have read.

PJH Rating: ****1/2