Sunday, December 28, 2008

Top 10 Books of 2008: Julie's List

I can't believe it's almost the end of 2008 and I've been working like a dog. Since it's that time of year again, it's yet again time for our Top 10 Lists. I'm on my 56th book for the year as I'm doing this list, so I guess it could be edited if the books I read between now and 12/31 deserve being on the list.

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory: This is probably by far my favorite book of 2008. It's rich in elaborated history, romance, intrigue, sex and politics of the Tudor Dynasty. It's told by Mary Boleyn a.k.a. "The Other Boleyn Girl" which gives the history a unique view. The Other Bolyen Girl review

Certain Girls by Jennifer Weiner: I can always count on Jennifer Weiner to make me laugh and make me cry. This one was no different. Her view on family and mother/daughter relationships hit it on the nose. Plus it brought back one of my favorite characters, Cannie Shapiro. It's chick-lit but so much more than your standard book in that category. Certain Girls review

The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian: I have to thank Lisa for turning me on to this brilliant writer. As you can see 2 of his books made my top 10 list for the year. If you haven't read him, maybe you should and see why. The Double Bind is truly brilliant, thought provoking and keeps you on your toes until the end. The Double Bind review

Peony in Love by Lisa See: Another author that has 2 books on my list. I have never read many books based in China and/or Chinese history. I found myself entralled with this book and I couldn't put it down. What a tale of love and mistakes that a person can't take back. How one decision can change the course of many lives. Peony in Love Review

Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen: I admit I didn't want to read this book at all. I couldn't comprehend it being good. I mean a book about the circus?! It was brilliant and so well written. The ending is perfect. A true must read even if the subject isn't something that you would usually find interesting. Water For Elephants Review

The Winter Rose by Jennifer Donnelly: Another shout out to Lisa for sending me this book to read. It was wonderful and a great historical fiction book. Ms. Donnelly writes so vividly that you feel you are right there in England during the time period. The characters are easy to love and easy to hate, which is all it takes for me to enjoy a book. I'm sure I'll be reading The Tea Rose early in 2009. The Winter Rose review

Midwives by Chris Bohjalian: See above for my rave on Mr. Bohjalian. This was another thought provoking book about how split second decisions can alter lives and how we never really move on from them. Midwives review

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen: What a fun read. It wasn't quite as terrific as Garden Spells but definitely a lot better than most Sophomore novels. Ms. Allen will keep me coming back buying her books because of her way of writing wonderful characters and the setting of the novels. The Sugar Queen review

Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See: A book about friendship, love and misunderstandings. How the way you say something and someone else interprets it can ruin lives. In a world of emails, it's easy to see how this might happen more frequently. I found again that Ms. See's writing style and subject matter to be beautiful and relatable. Snow Flower & The Secret Fan review

The River King by Alice Hoffman: I read this early in 2008 and really enjoyed it. I found the book to be haunting and a daunting coming of age story. As with most Alice Hoffman books there's a bit of magic that surrounds the story but to me that is what makes her stand out as an author. The River King review

I can't wait to see what will make the list for 2009. I highly recommend any of these books if you have not yet read them.


Serena December 29, 2008 at 9:30 AM  

You've inspired me to create my own top 10 list.

Thanks for the recommendations.

Alice December 29, 2008 at 12:28 PM  

Sweet! It's here! I look forward to this list. I can't wait to see your least favorite books list too.

Anonymous ,  December 29, 2008 at 9:21 PM  

Snow Flower, Water for Elephants and The Other Boleyn Girl were all excellent - glad to hear that you enjoyed them too!

tinylittlelibrarian January 6, 2009 at 10:01 PM  

I totally de-voured the Other Boleyn Girl in 2007! I've got to get on to the Boleyn Inheritance now.

The Sugar Queen and Snow Flower were great and I was suprised as you were to enjoy Water for Elephants.

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