As you know, I set myself a challenge last year on goodreads, and I’ll be honest that even when I set it I wasn’t sure I’d meet it. I wanted to set myself something that was a little bit of a challenge after all. I set it at 32 books for the year. I almost didn’t make it, but I’ve been serious about trying since October. I finished last night. I thought what better way to start our year-end reviews off than with the top 10 books I read in 2014. 2014 was a good year after all. Plus, I know that some of you still have a little bit of time off and might enjoy some of the top 10 books I read in 2014.
Eleanor & Park was perfect. Many of us haven’t experienced moving to a new school, but we have experienced bullying. I can promise you that if you’ve ever been there then you’d want to know Park. He’s the kind of guy who makes you feel good about your awkwardness even if he’s doing it on the down low. Plus, they share in so many of my favorite things and nerdy topics that it’s hard not to get lost in the story. The main reason this made my list of top 10 books I read in 2014 is because of the music and comics factor that reminded me of my own relationships.
President Me: The America That’s In My Head is the kind of book that makes me think long after I’ve finished reading it. I find myself driving around LA, to the airport, or even just listening to someone have a political debate and recalling something from the book. You won’t agree with everything he has to say, and I think that’s the point. It’s Adam Corolla so you can expect a humor book, but you can also expect this book to make you think about how you actually feel. Top 10 books I read in 2014 should include books that leave me thinking long after I’ve finished reading them, right?
I’ll admit that I started this book, because I wanted it to be on my list of top 10 books I read in 2014. This is the kind of book that I can really get behind right now. Eula Biss is discussing the concerns and fears she had before the birth of her son and then of course the stress of having a son. You’d have to be crazy to not be a little nervous about raising a small human being, and I know that definitely wanted this book to reinforce some things I already knew about it. It did! I know that I am pro-vax, and I know that the science behind my reasoning is accurate. Eula Biss presents to me the same science I’d already read a billion places so I felt confident in her thoughts. I’d recommend this book even for anti-vax people, because I think it’s important to get as much information as possible on both sides of the argument.
This book is surprising. It starts out as a Post World War I book about a newly impoverished mother and daughter who definitely don’t see eye to eye on things. They have to take in a couple of paying guests, renters, to maintain their house. The book takes a few twists and turns until it finally turns into a crime novel that confuses you in so many ways. I found myself rooting for the person who committed the crime to go free in a completely unacceptable way, but it made sense considering the times and how everyone was being treated. I heard about this book through NPR’s Barrie Hardymon so I knew this book was likely to end up on many top 10 books of 2014 lists, and I wasn’t surprised to see it on my list of top 10 books I read in 2014.
May We Be Forgiven was absolutely one of the top 10 books I read in 2014. I love dark comedies. If you enjoy them too then I know you’ll love this book. This book is like a roller-coaster that doesn’t exactly leaving you excited at the end. You love the story, but you can’t find yourself really liking any of the characters. They all kind of annoying you in different ways. When it comes down to it though, I knew that I loved the story. I loved hearing about what was going on in their lives and watching the characters grow. I felt like eventually they might be likeable.
I’m certain that I should have been able to see what was happening in this story just based on reading other Gillian Flynn novels. That is to say that you shouldn’t have expectations. You should know that everything isn’t as it appears. I was fairly certain this would make my top 10 books I read in 2014 list, but I honestly didn’t like it as much as Gone Girl.
This book was intense. This book is about a small boy with a strange mother. She has been damaged by love causing her to be unable to function normally. You watch her transform over one weekend and then transform again. You find yourself cheering for the thing that you know is wrong, but you want it so badly. This book isn’t new, but it was definitely on my list of top 10 books I read in 2014.
Fangirl wasn’t as good to me Eleanor & Park, but it makes my list of top 10 books I read in 2014, because in the end I was smiling. The first half of the book was slow and difficult for me, but I kept waiting for it to come around and it did. Plus, I’ll be honest with you the main male character in the book reminded me of one of my best friends. He was a blond barista who was always smiling and making people’s day. I can assure you that my friend does just that every day.
Is there anything more heartbreaking than a story where the mother or father die of some tragic illness? No, I don’t think so, but I loved this book. There were so many heartwarming and hilarious stories about the deceased parent. You feel so happy for these kids. Sure, they lost something super important in their lives, but you see that the family is working so hard to keep it together and the memory alive in a way that feels healthy for all including the dad’s new relationship. That is the main reason this book made my top 10 books I read in 2014 list.
I bought this book last year sometime when it was being banned to high school students in certain areas of the United States. First of all, I couldn’t believe we were still banning books. Secondly, I couldn’t believe we were banning them simply for mentioning masturbation. Don’t we all agree yet that most teenagers masturbate? Mostly though this book is hilarious, but it’s also a great look into what reservation life is like for most. I believe this is something we need to think about as a society and that is why this book is making my top 10 books I read in 2014 list.
Let me know if you’ve read any of these books and what you thought of them. Do you see any that you might want to read?
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