Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 In Review

In just a couple of hours, 2009 will be over.  For the first time, I kept a list of all the books that I read this past year.  I'm disappointed in that I read only 65 books this past year (I got distracted with a Lost rewatch.  I also started Battlestar Galactica this year and have been consumed with watching that series).  In looking over the books I read the past year, I see books by old favorites such as Michael Connelly and Janet Evanovich (what is a year without Harry Bosch and Stephanie Plum).  I started dabbling in graphic novels which I am enjoying.  Plus, I had my yearly reread of the Harry Potter series (this  year I listened to every book and that was a huge undertaking).  I didn't start this blog until a couple of months ago, so there were some fantastic books that I read but haven't mentioned before that I'd like to say just a few words about.

For any fan of Twilight, I suggest that you try Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy series.  Now, don't get mad at me Twilight fans (because I'm one of you also - go Team Jacob) but the Vampire Academy books are awesome. The characters are better developed than Twilight and the story is much more compelling.  Plus, one of my biggest problems with Bella of Twilight is that she's not very strong as a woman.  Rose, the heroine of Vampire Academy, lets nobody walk over her.  I love that about her.  Richelle Mead also becomes a stronger writer with each book.  By the time I got to Blood Promise, the fourth book, I couldn't believe the difference in the writing from book one.  So, if you're not too impressed after the first book, keep going.  It gets impressive.

For science fiction fans, I recommend you give Kristin Kathryn Rusch's Retrieval Artist series a try.  I listened to this entire series this year and enjoyed it a lot.  The series takes place in the future when humans have colonized other planets.  They're basically detective novels but they take place in outer space with aliens, interspecies laws, and space ships. 

One my favorite books this year was The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley.  This is a straight up mystery novel that follows eleven year old Flavia de Luce as she solves a murder in 1950s England.  Flavia is a chemist who has a fondness for poisons.  One day, she finds a body in the cucumber patch outside her family's kitchen. Flavia decides that only she has what it takes to solve the murder.  This book is highly engaging.  What amazed me most about it is that Alan Bradley sold his character so well that I had absolutely no difficulty in believing that an eleven year old was capable of solving this murder.

Those are just a few of the books from 2009 that I really enjoyed.  Now let's see if we can  make some progress on my To Be Read pile in 2010.  Happy New Year!



  1. Happy New Year! 65 books is nothing to complain about! I didn't tally mine up, but don't know if it would even compare. Thanks for sharing a few of your favorites! ( I have to put my list together for the end of this week!) I have Sweetness in my TBR pile and need to read it so I am all set for book 2! And I will give Vampire Academy a go because I loved the Twilight series! Take care!

  2. What a great list! So, you only read 65 books this year? Shame on you! I'm sitting pretty on about 20 books. I think I'm going to break down and read the Vampire Academy series. You should check out the House of Night series too.

  3. I read the first book in the House of Night series and felt guilty about spending money on more books when I have so many piling up around my room. But, in ordering Christmas presents, I found book 2 and 3 for $4.50 so I bought both of those. I'll get to reading those soon.