Best Books I Read in 2013

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I realized at the beginning of this year that it had been a very long time since I’d read a book. I read constantly, but almost all of it is articles on the web. I hadn’t read a grown-up fiction book in ages. So I decided to change that. I ended up reading a lot this past year, and I wanted to mention some of my favorites. They are listed here in the order I read them.

  • The Road by Cormac McCarthy – I don’t think any book has ever affected me the way this one did. It was easy to imagine me and my son as The Man and The Boy, which made me anxious the entire time I was reading it. That feeling pushed me to read it as fast as I could. It’s a wonderful book, and I don’t think I could bring myself to ever read it again.
  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman – This book does a great job of showing the world from the perspective of a young child. As with The Road, the scenes between the father and son felt like a gut punch.
  • Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey – I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It just pushed all the right buttons for me. After reading it, I immediately read both sequels. They were both very good, though not quite as good as the first. I’m eagerly awaiting the next book in the series, as well as the possible TV show.
  • The Rook by Daniel O’Malley – Another fun one, with possibly the best first chapter ever. Lots of great characters, too. And the main character’s letters to herself are a great device for introducing the reader to the world.
  • The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch – I hesitated to read this one, since I don’t tend to like fantasy settings. But I’d heard so many good things that I gave it a try, and I’m glad I did. It’s a fascinating world, and I’m looking forward to reading the sequels.
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – The best word I can think to describe this is “lovely”. Such a beautiful story, with so many dream-like elements. I find myself thinking about it quite a bit. This is one I could see re-reading regularly.
  • Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie – If you follow sci-fi news you’ve probably seen quite a bit of praise for this book. It’s well deserved. It can get confusing in places, but not in a frustrating way. More of a, “Oh, I should have paid more attention to that part. But since I didn’t, now I get to go back and read it again. Yay!” way.