Friday, January 31, 2014

Faves of 2013

I had a great reading year in 2013. I discovered a bunch of new fave authors and fell in love with some surprising books. I think my reading taste is mostly the same but it has changed in two ways:

1. I give up on books that are not clicking with me far quicker than in the past. If I am not into it, I don't persevere, and I attempted and abandoned at least 50 books in 2013 (some of them I was over 50% into). This makes it hard for me to say exactly how many books I read last year as so many were returned to my library unfinished or still sit on my kindle half read. I do know I completed 100 fiction books :)

2. I am drawn to more cruise-y, relaxing books lately. This is (I am sure) in direct correlation with how many academic texts I am reading for uni. I am so mentally exhausted after study that I don't have the energy to invest in dense and complicated works. I really enjoyed some light fiction and found some new faves that I may not have loved as much in the past but they were perfect for me in 2013.

My picks are a mix of really amazing books, and also books that I just really enjoyed reading :)

Top Nine picks -- in no particular order

 The Vanishing Moment by Margaret Wild

Loved this so much. Margaret Wild is amazing and this book was really different and completely touching and I loved everything about it <3

 All The Truth That's in Me by Julie Berry

This was not at all what I expected ~ it's gorgeous and heart-breaking and lyrical and has this beautiful, stomach-hurting love story and page-turning mystery. I so highly recommend you check this book out.

The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty

I love all of Liane's work and this book was her most addictive, most page-turningly suspenseful yet. I can't wait to see this on the Big screen! Liane is a genius and, IMO, one of Australia's finest writers :)

 Paper Chains by Nicola Moriarty

Gorgeous and sad and serendipitous and completely absorbing. I loved this story and it's characters and it's message. I am so looking forward to more Nicola Moriarty ~ she's amazing and writes exactly the kind of books I love to curl up and read <3

 Haze by Paula Weston

I trust by now you all know how much I love this series -- I am a huge advocate for the Aussie YA, upper YA paranormal series. Shadows (book one) was a surprise love for me in 2012 and the best news is Haze amps it up and is even better. This was ridiculously good and ticked all my boxes (especially the swoon/crush aspect). I love these characters so much and I especially love that I have no idea where Weston plans to take her readers with this series.

 If He Had Been With Me by Laura Nowlin

I loved this book so much. Autumn is a gorgeous narrator and I stayed up past 2am to finish it off. This was a sleeper hit which made it all the more awesome. I am so hoping Laura Nowlin has more for us soon!

Swimming At Night by Lucy Clarke

(Also published as The Sea Sisters). I just loved so much about this UK debut. The travel and surfing and Australia and Bali and the twists and turns were compelling and absorbing. Can't wait for more.

 Wildlife by Fiona Wood

Fiona Wood is amazing and Wildlife is a funny, sad, captivating, hopeful and touching stand-out. Bonus: camping (one of my fave settings).

The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton

I've read all of Kate Morton's work and this one is easily my favourite yet. It took a little bit to get into the book but it was so completely worth it. This mystery is stunning and the review/twist is outstanding (I did not see it coming). I love how her stories haunt the reader long after the last page has been turned.

And some bonus recommendations (because I couldn't choose which book to award the tenth spot to)

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West -- for giving me a late-read-into-the-middle-of-the-night good time (light hearted and swoony!)

Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington -- for surprising me and sucking me in and delivering a truly captivating story with a lot of heart and depth.

The Sky So Heavy by Claire Zorn -- love this Aussie YA debut set in the Blue Mountains (my hometown :)). The plot is compelling and the characters felt real -- this is one for fans of Tomorrow, When the World Began.

Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil -- for all the smiles and good times. Such a lovable and fun read.

You Had Me At Hello by Mhairi McFarlane A UK chick-lit novel that was just the right blend of fun and swoon and humour and heart.

Champion by Marie Lu -- for the brilliant ending and June and Day <3

Here's to another brilliant reading year in 2014!

Are any of my faves also faves of yours? 

(I just snuck this post in in January, haha. Winning!)


  1. I've only read Wildlife (which I also loved) from your top 9 but Life in Outer Space was one of my faves and I've just finished The Sky So Heavy which I thought was fantastic :)

    Thanks for the post Nomes. I'll have to check out some of your other faves x

  2. I received The Husband's Secret for Christmas, definitely looking forward to reading it! And I too really enjoyed The Secret Keeper, loved the WWII setting and the twistedness of Dolly's character and the surprise ending :)

  3. I definitely want to get in the habit of DNF'ing books too, I tend to make myself sit through it, hoping that things will change. I'm glad to see that Haze and If He Had Been with Me made it to your list of favourites, as they were definite favourite reads of mine too. I hope 2014 is a another brilliant reading for you Nomes!

  4. I loved Life in Outer Space -which I just read - and Paper Chains, I guess I'm going to have to hunt down the others in your list !

  5. Great list, Nomes! I need to check out Shadows & Haze. I've heard such good things. I got Lucy Clarke's new book in the post today - sounds like another good one!

  6. Nomes! So nice to see you blog about your favorite books in 2013. I have Paper Chains, Wildlife and Life in Outer Space in my bookshelf so I really should bump them up knowing that you loved them. I've read The Distance Between Us and liked it but I wasn't blown away. If He Had Been With Me looks good, I'm going to add that to my wishlist.


Thanks for the commenty love :)