I tried to organize them for you this year. Books I read together in a series are grouped in boxes. I used Amazon Affiliate links, but obviously you can get these books anywhere or borrow a lot of ’em (like we did). Books I loved are asterisked!
Fantasy / YA
Ender’s Game – Everyone said I needed to read this, and I kind of didn’t love it. It was a little too Lord of the Flies for me? I guess? Like, kids killing people? Although I adored the Hunger Games, so go figure. My friends insist I need to read the whole series before I pass judgement.
The False Prince – I need to read the rest of the books in this series; it was cute. The boys would like this.
The Thief – I actually started this and abandoned it, I can’t remember why, I probably just got sidetracked, it’s still on my to-read list.
Reached – Book 3 of the Matched series – I really should re-read to refresh my memory, I read this series kind of overlapping with the Divergent series and both plot lines get tangled up in my head. I think I liked the first in this series best, but I remember liking how this book wrapped things up.
Daughter of Smoke & Bone * – Apparently this book got a lot of hype when it came out, and I’m rather glad I missed it. I read it without knowing what to expect. It is quite unlike anything I’ve ever read, and the writing has kind of a different twist, I like the author’s voice. If you’re religious, the seraphim / fallen angel storyline can be a little weird, but if you can suspend reality it works.
Allegiant (Last book in the Divergent Series) – I listened to this one on audiobook while I worked, and… eh. To be fair, I don’t think I should have overlapped this series with the Matched series (I read both at the same time waiting for books to become available at the library). I will say I didn’t love the first book as much as everyone else did, so I kinda stuck with this just for the sake of finishing. Maybe I’d like it better if I started over and read it straight through.
Grave Mercy – interesting. I liked it. Didn’t love it completely though (there’s a particularly ridiculous scene that kind of ruined everything), but it’s a really different premise (assassin nun) and is well researched and well written.
Seraphina * Absolutely gorgeous writing. It’s a tad slow in the first part, but then it picks up. Expertly plotted. Really different dragon story, loved the characters. Can’t wait for the next book (it’s a long wait, March of 2015).
Throne of Glass – I’m currently reading this. So far it feels a lot younger / simpler, a little less rich and colorful, after reading Seraphina.
The Fault in Our Stars – My friend Kat recommended this to me. I really liked it, lots of language though. I think it would make a really good book club group if you don’t have pearl clutchers (I am one, kinda) over the f-bomb.
Eleanor & Park – By Rainbow Rowell. I really loved this along with the rest of the planet. TONS of language, though it makes sense to set the scene and background of (particularly) Eleanor’s home life. Love that she’s chubby. Love the ending.
Fangirl – By Rainbow Rowell. A ton of language again, which made less sense for me. I didn’t like this as well as Eleanor & Park.
Historical / Classics
Religious / churchy / scriptural books I read this year
Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife – Life after death book, if you like that kind of thing, and I’m kind of fascinated with it. This one is believable, and I liked it.
Visions of Glory – I hesitate to even add this one to the list. It surged in popularity amongst members of my church this year, and I read it because I rather like ‘beyond the veil / life after death books,’ but I have a lot of issues with this book. While at first I liked some parts of it, after marinating on it and talking with some others, I cannot recommend it. There are some fairly unbiased and unemotional (people get kind of rabid over this book) reviews here and here.
The Gospels Made Whole – Bible & LDS scripture telling the story of Christ’s life as a whole. I quite liked this.
Apocalyptic Commentary of The Book of Isaiah * – E. and I are still studying this, it’s my favorite Isaiah ‘help’ book so far. General Christian reference, not LDS specific.
The Book of Isaiah: A New Translation With Interpretive Keys from the Book of Mormon (Obv. LDS perspective)
Writerly books I read this year
The Hero with a Thousand Faces (Started last year, continued to reference this year.)
The Writers Journey (Started last year, continued to reference this year.)
The First Five Pages * My favorite how-to book so far.
Notable Series the Kids Read
I did not keep very good track of what the kids read this year. We didn’t really have any family read-alouds, as J, N, and K just tear through things on their own.
J. read the entire Nicholas Flamel Series (6 books)
He also read all the books in the Erec Rex Series, though I guess it ends on a cliffhanger and there isn’t much word from the author so he’s worried she won’t finish it.
He read the Beyonders Trilogy after I was finished with it.
He started the Leven Thumps Series, but then grandma gave him…
The Kane Chronicles for Christmas so he’s switched to that, I think he’s close to finishing the first book.
N read the whole Fablehaven Series, as he was kinda little when I read it aloud to J.
He followed that up with the Beyonders Trilogy after J. & I had read it.
Grandma gave him the first few books in the Unfortunate Series of Events books, and I believe he’s knee deep in the first one right now.
Miss K. has discovered the Magic Treehouse Series – which I think are kind of terrible, but she loves them and blows through them quickly.
She’s also liking the new (young) Amelia Bedelia books, which are cute and fun.
Grandma got her the first couple of Amy Wild, Animal Talker books from Usborne, and she is reading the second one now.
I’m sure I’m forgetting things, but I think that’s fairly accurate. Any recommendations for me? Here’s my Want to Read list on Goodreads – not in any particular order. (I finally switched from Shelfari this year.) What did you read and absolutely love this year?