It’s the end of another year and the time when we put together lists of our favorite things. My favorite list to compose will always be the best books of the year. I am and always will be a big reader. I love picking up a new book and letting it take me away. Unfortunately this year, due to overwhelming school reading, I did not get to read as many books as I would have liked. But, of the books I did read, I found some great books to put on my list this year. Hopefully there will be even more next year because I got the Nook I wanted for Christmas! Talk about a perfect present…
1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett: If you saw the movie, that’s great but you must, must, must read the book. The movie was done really well but nothing can compare with the moving story of Skeeter and Aibileen set in 1960s segregated Jackson, Mississippi. Stockett based the novel on her own experiences with her black nanny growing up and the feeling and truth of these women shine through. There are plenty of tears as you read about the intensity of racism and the oppression of segregation but there is so much hope and love and plenty of laughs. This may be one of my all-time favorite reads!
2. The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson: I am not a huge fan of thrillers and mysteries but sometimes I pick one up based on a recommendation. The Devil in the White City was one such book, only it wasn’t recommended to me by mystery readers but rather by architecture lovers. That’s because this novel is not your ordinary mystery book; it chronicles the life of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair while divulging the treachery of America’s first serial killer, H.H. Holmes. The suspense of whether the fair will be completed and the gargantuan efforts of America’s leading architects parallels the story of the cunning Holmes as he fools everyone around him. The story takes an often forgotten historical event and brings it into fantastic detail. Larson will leave you enthralled with the sheer detail and size of this great American fair and in awe of the mind of a serial murderer. You won’t be disappointed.
3. The Best Advice I Ever Got by Katie Couric: While I already wrote about this book as part of my “Book that Inspires” series, I definitely think it’s a book worth mentioning on my favorites list. The incredibly inspiring and insightful essays make this book a great gift for anyone trying something new, graduating from school or embarking on a brand new adventure in their life.
4. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling: You might have read all of these books already but I couldn’t help mentioning Harry Potter since I finally completed the series over the summer. I loved these books when I was younger but, since the books came out over several years, I got older and not as interested in the wizarding world of Harry Potter. I picked up the series again while taking my Elementary Literacy class and really began to appreciate the intricacies of the story. Rowling’s imagination can not be beat and the series is thrilling in its details. It is definitely a series I appreciated as an adult and hope to share with older elementary students and beyond.
Current Read: Bee Season by Myla Goldberg
Future Reads: One for the Money by Janet Evanovich, The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks, The History of Love by Nicole Krauss