Literary Quote of the Month

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies," said Jojen. "The man who never reads lives only one." - George R.R. Martin, A Dance With Dragons

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Sunday Salon... A look back at some of my favorite books, and a look ahead...

It's a brand new year and I'm already anticipating all the wonderful books coming along! There have been many best of 2009 lists out there such as the lists from Books on The Nightstand, Library Journal, and January Magazine. Here are some of the books that I read this year and would include in a best of list...

The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist

Little Bee by Chris Cleave

The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

The Impostor’s Daughter by Laurie Sandell

Knight of Desire by Margaret Mallory

The Man Who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

Hotel on The Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford

Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Last Night in Montreal by Emily St. John Mandel

Benny & Shrimp by Katarina Mazetti

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

There were lots of books I enjoyed this year, but the books above stood out for one reason or another. I loved both Hotel on The Corner of Bitter and Sweet and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, both of which I chose for my reading group this year. I also enjoyed Burnt Shadows... I will write reviews for all of these soon, in the meantime I have links for all the other reviews so if you missed any of them this year you can catch up (just click on the book title)... What books were your favorites this year?! Have you read any of the books on my list?

Then there are the books that I didn't get a chance to read yet... Here are 5 books that I am making it a point to read ASAP (my own mini challenge!)... The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley (The second book in the series is coming out in March!), Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger, The Girl Who Played With Fire by Steig Larsson, Waiting for Columbus by Thomas Trofimuk, and The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt. Challenges are great because they focus your attention on a goal, and this little nudge is probably all I need to get these off the TBR pile! ... Are there books on your TBR pile that you're looking forward to finally reading? How about any books you've read about that you're looking forward to reading period?!

Speaking of challenges, I've already signed up for one, The Graphic Novels Challenge, and look forward to stepping out of the box and explore that genre a bit more... Another great thing about Challenges is that you can usually join in at any time. I joined The Japanese Literature Challenge a bit late, but found a lot of wonderful Japanese authors to explore! The Challenge was easy with only one book needed to be read to meet the requirements, but I still have a few more weeks until it ends and I'm going to try and slip in another book! Have you signed up for any Challenges?! I would love to hear about what challenges you're going to read for!

So, on to the New Year! Memoir Mondays will still be on mondays, as long as there are memoirs to be read! And I'm playing around with the idea of a cookbook review meme called What's Cooking... I'm going to heat up January with lots of Romance! I have a great giveaway coming up from Hachette Book Group, and I've saved some great romance book reviews starting next week! If you're not into romance ( Ok, guys I know you're out there!) there will be plenty of other book reviews too! Not to mention the start of a regular Book Club selection post with a reading group guide. I am also going to add more Kindle/eReader specific content because I just love my Kindle and there is just so much going on in the digital world... And finally NEXT MONTH is my Blogoversary! Watch out for some great giveaways all month long (in Feb.) as a thank you to EVERYONE who's made Chick with Books blossom into the blog that it is today!

Have a Great Week! Happy reading... Suzanne


Nicole (Linus's Blanket) said...

Happy New Year!

A lot of the books you mention are on my TBR for this year. so I am glad that they are on your best of list.

Book Dilettante said...

That was a nice list of books you recommend from 2009! Happy New Year!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

More excellent books. That's my hope for 2010. I know what I like, so I just need to focus on finding and reading those.

Sounds easy, right?

Eva said...

I haven't read ANY of your faves, but I have read three of your asap books (the Bradley, Niffenegger, and Byatt), and they were all fun reads! :)

I'm a challenge addict, so I don't think you really want to know all the challenges I'm reading for, lol, but I'm probably most excited about the African Diaspora Challenge, Our Mutual Read (Victorian lit), and Science Book Challenge. I'm loving the Japanese Challenge too, and I'm in the Graphic Novels one with you! :)

Heidi V said...

If it wasn't for you and J.Kaye I wouldn't have decided to do any. I'm still tossing the idea around about the Nancy Drew one. The cool thing is there is some many and you can cross them over.

Literary Feline said...

Several on your lists are ones I hope to read this year. A couple you mention I read and really enjoyed (Last Night in Montreal and Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet). I can't wait to read your reviews.

Good luck with your challenges this year! And, of course, have fun. :-)

I hope you have a great New Year, Suzanne!

Helen's Book Blog said...

I just started the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo...we'll see how it goes

Nan said...

Great list of books! I really want to read Little Bee soon. I've been hearing so much about it.

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Nicole!
Thanks for stopping by! It's fun that even as much as we all read, we still have different books in our TBR pile! I look forward to reading your reviews on some of these!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Harvee & Readerbuzz!
I'm with you both- need more good books! :D I love seeing what captures my attention in the bookshop! And yes, it sounds easy to find those books that make our heart skip a beat, but it just isn't that easy!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Eva!
I just checked your blog out (which is fabulous!) and I can see you enjoy challenges! It is amazing that you have time for anything but reading! :D But you have encouraged me to check out a few more! I'm glad you enjoyed 3 of the books on my TBR list! It's a good sign!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Heidi!
Hey, I haven't heard about the Nancy Drew Challenge! I am going to have to search that one out. I just loved Nancy Drew! My mom use to buy me a book once a week and I would devour it on a Sunday afternoon!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Literary Feline!
Wasn't Hotel on The Corner of Bitter and Sweet just wonderful! It was such a great story! I wish I could say more, but don't want to spoil it for anyone!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi hcmurdoch,
The thing with The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo is that it's not the usual mystery novel. Larsson is meticulous in his laying out all the players and scenery, etc. and this makes it kind of slow at the start. (A big complaint for some) but if you can stick it out the ending is worth it! Lisbeth Sanders is a GREAT character! Good luck and let me know what you think!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Nan!
Little Bee was such a wonderful read! It was a surprising read to because you didn't have any idea really what it was about before hand because the publishers made it kind of mysterious... And Nicole Kidman just bought the rights to make it into the movie and to play the main character! I hope you enjoy it!

Margaret Mallory said...

WooHoo! I made your 2009 Best List!! Yay! I'm so pleased.
Margaret Mallory

Michael Kindness said...


Thanks so much for including Books on the Nightstand with the likes of Library Journal!!


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