Best Books of the Year

As the year draws to a close, it's only natural to reflect on what the year brought into your life. Books are always a big part of that for me. I find new books (or at least new to me) by browsing bookstores (online and mortar) or by word of mouth. Sometimes I take a risk based on an online review. That's getting more common for me. Since I thought it might be for you as well, I decided to share the ups and downs of my year and invite you to do the same. 

What was the best book you read this year? The best new author you discovered? The most astounding non-fiction? The biggest disappointment? Don't limit yourself to one per category. I know that sometimes it's impossible to choose just one and I won't make you.
Here's my choices. Maybe you'll find something you just have to read.

The Best Book:
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Wild Fling or Wedding Ring by Mira Lyn Kelly

Honorable Mention:
All Larry Brooks' back list. He's like a darker, more twisted version of Harlan Coben.

Blood and Circumstance by Frank Turner Hollon. He always amazes me because he writes such tight stories in like 200 pages and this is no different, except he completely blew my mind with this. Ambiguous endings don't usually make me happy, but this one just made me reread the story, trying to build a case for the ending my heart wanted.

Sugar Creek by Toni Blake. What can I say? She's one of my favorite authors.

Highway to Hell - John Geddes. Written by an ex-SAS officer who is boots-on-the-ground in Iraq. Timely and informative.

The Quest for Cosmic Justice by Thomas Sowell. I "discovered" Thomas Sowell because, well, frankly, I'm an economics junky. But he's written on so many subjects that one has to classify him a true renaissance man. Clear thinking and wise.

Reaper's Line:Life and Death on the Mexican Border by Lee Morgan. Another timely book. Written by an ex-border patrol officer, this illuminates a lot of what's really going on at our southern border.

And for me, there's always a special category labeled "Writing Books."

Most Disappointing:
The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. I don't think I need to elaborate  about this choice.

The Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King. I'm not very forgiving when an author takes the easy way out and gives the character an "I'm TSTL" moment to make the plot work out. What else can you call it when a "retiring" pirate strips her ship of all it's weapons while still sailing the waters where she plied her trade? Something bad then proceeded to happen. Uh, gee. Ya think? (Gotta wonder—didn't her editor notice either?)

So here's my favorite part. Share your favorites with me (or your disappointments.) What did I miss that I absolutely should read?


  1. Suzie, thanks so very much for including me in your picks--I'm honored!

    I've got a couple new (to me) contemporary favorites this year. The first is Toni Blake, but she's already up there :-) and the second is Victoria Dahl. If you haven't read her stuff, start with TALK ME DOWN. I loved it and will be chewing through her backlist over the next couple months.
    All my best in the new year!! Mira

  2. Love The Hunger Games. Great pick. If you haven't already, I would suggest GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (Millenium Trilogy) by Stieg Larsson. The best!

  3. Suzie, my favorite books for 2010 --that rocked me our of my world -- are the Stieg Larson books about the power and defiance of goth girl Liz Salander (The Gurl with the Dragon Tattoo, etc.) They were the best books/movies of the year for me because they showed that a tiny girl could beat the crap of any guy that attempted to crush her.

  4. The Hunger Games was really good! I haven't read Larry Brooks but I definitely will based on your recommendation. Thanks!