Goodreads 2013 Reading Challenge – A KNOCKOUT!

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Read 60 books in 2013? Sure, that’s a snap. In fact, I knocked it out of the park with 79 books – a total of 32% past my goal! When the year started, I wasn’t sure I could do it. However, a week’s vacation pushed me forward. I had my absolute favorites that I can’t stop talking about, and those that I am lucky I even finished. I never give up on a book, no matter how many times I wanted to with some of them. I found that this year I read a lot of books that in the past I never would have touched.

Here is a complete listing of what I read, along with the rating I gave it:

Title Author My Rating
Bared to You (Crossfire, #1) Sylvia Day 3
Cross (Alex Cross, #12) James Patterson 4
Sundays at Tiffany’s James Patterson 3
The Perks of Being a Wallflower Stephen Chbosky 4
Assassins (Left Behind, #6) Tim LaHaye 3
Divergent (Divergent, #1) Veronica Roth 4
Torn Together Emlyn Chand 3
The Indwelling (Left Behind, #7) Tim LaHaye 3
Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist Michael J. Fox 2
Sunshine Robin McKinley 3
Insurgent (Divergent, #2) Veronica Roth 5
The Mark (Left Behind, #8) Tim LaHaye 3
Seven Wonders Adam Christopher 3
Desecration (Left Behind, #9) Tim LaHaye 3
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Seth Grahame-Smith 2
Worth The Weight (The Worth, #1) Mara Jacobs 4
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1) Stieg Larsson 3
The Storyteller Jodi Picoult 4
Walking Disaster (Beautiful, #2) Jamie McGuire 3
The Girl Who Played with Fire (Millennium, #2) Stieg Larsson 5
Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1) Kami Garcia 3
The Remnant (Left Behind, #10) Tim LaHaye 2
Armageddon: The Cosmic Battle of the Ages (Left Behind, #11) Tim LaHaye 4
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Millennium, #3) Stieg Larsson 4
Fifty Shames of Earl Grey (Fifty Shames #1) Fanny Merkin 4
American Gods (American Gods, #1) Neil Gaiman 3
The Shambling Guide to New York City Mur Lafferty 5
The Siren (The Original Sinners, #1) Tiffany Reisz 5
Glorious Appearing: The End of Days Tim LaHaye 2
The Angel (The Original Sinners, #2) Tiffany Reisz 5
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald 2
The Prince (The Original Sinners, #3) Tiffany Reisz 5
Reflected in You (Crossfire, #2) Sylvia Day 4
London Falling Paul Cornell 4
The World’s Strongest Librarian: A Memoir of Tourette’s, Faith, Strength, and the Power of Family Josh Hanagarne 5
Amped Daniel H. Wilson 4
Shades of Milk and Honey (Glamourist Histories, #1) Mary Robinette Kowal 4
Straight Noelle A. Schmitt 4
Second Glance Jodi Picoult 3
Animal Cracker Andi  Brown 3
Under the Dome Stephen King 3
Mean Season Heather Cochran 5
The Mistress (The Original Sinners, #4) Tiffany Reisz 5
A Jane Austen Daydream Scott D. Southard 4
Removed S.J. Pajonas 5
Falling for You Heather Thurmeier 5
The Longest Way Home: One Man’s Quest for the Courage to Settle Down Andrew McCarthy 2
Something Strange and Deadly Susan Dennard 4
Alphabet Dating Monique McDonell 0
Zoo James Patterson 3
Grishma Kelly Anne Blount 4
Escape from Eden Elisa Nader 5
Beautiful Darkness (Caster Chronicles, #2) Kami Garcia 3
Wintergirls Laurie Halse Anderson 5
Broken (Broken, #1) A.E. Rought 4
Baby Proof Emily Giffin 5
Rivers Michael Farris Smith 3
Worst Case James Patterson 3
Village Books Craig McLay 4
Who Is Evelyn Dae? Volume 1 Sarah LaFleur 4
Big Girl Panties Stephanie Evanovich 4
The Butterfly Sister Amy Gail Hansen 5
The Cuckoo’s Calling (Cormoran Strike, #1) Robert Galbraith 3
Allegiant (Divergent, #3) Veronica Roth 3
Rooted Amy Good 4
Entwined with You (Crossfire, #3) Sylvia Day 2
vN (The Machine Dynasty, #1) Madeline Ashby 0
Hopeless (Hopeless, #1) Colleen Hoover 5
No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days Chris Baty 5
Released (The Nogiku Series #2) S.J. Pajonas 5
A Perfect Holiday Fling (Moments in Maplesville) Farrah Rochon 4
Take Me Home for Christmas (Whiskey Creek, #5) Brenda Novak 4
Christmas Delivery Susan Willis 3
Snowed Over Angie Stanton 5
A Hero’s Heart Amber Daulton 5
Backward Compatible: A Geek Love Story Sarah Daltry 5
On Strike for Christmas Sheila Roberts 4
Miracle on I-40 Curtiss Ann Matlock 3
The Chocolate Snowman Murders (A Chocoholic Mystery #8) JoAnna Carl 0

As you can see, I gave a decent amount of 5/5 stars, quite a few 4, and some that I did not rate. The ones I want to tell you about are the UNIQUE ones, the ones I COULD NOT PUT DOWN and you need to read NOW.

1. The Siren by Tiffany Reisz – If you know me personally, you know I can’t stop talking about this book. It was risky, to say the very least. I love her writing … it is beautifully written and I simply could not put it down. If you’ve read 50 Shades of Gray – you haven’t ready anything yet.

2. The World’s Strongest Librarian by Josh Hanagarne – I had never seen a book trailer until this one. I saw an ad, scanned it with my phone, and the subject intrigued me. This book is about a man and his struggle with Tourette’s and how he came to manage it. If you love to laugh, pick this up. It’s got some pretty nice messages, too.

3. The Shambling Guide to New York City by Mur Lafferty – If you’re a writer, hopefully you’ve listened to Mur’s Podcast, I Should Be Writing. If you haven’t, go to the itunes store and listen now. She is inspiring, and introduced me to my first urban fantasy book after selling this book while motivating others on her podcast. She has very clean, straightforward writing, and her characters are very unique. The sequel is out in March.

4. Removed by S.J. Pajonas – I’ve never been a science fiction fan. But when I started following S.J. Pajonas and her venture into self-publishing, I had to read this book. This book isn’t just science fiction. Are you ready for this genre? New Adult Science Fiction Romance. Whoa. And it is amazing. She tweeted about her editing process and her marketing strategies. This is a book not to be missed!

5. Escape from Eden by Elisa Nader – I was on Twitter one evening and entered a contest to win a signed hardcover of this book. I won. I read it. I LOVED IT. This young adult novel is romantic, suspenseful, and scary all at the same time. It’s so close to realities that exist in the world today that people don’t want to believe are really there. Easily one of my favorites this year.

6. Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson – I’m not sure how I found this book. I checked it out from my library’s digital site. I read this in less than a day. I simply could not put it down. It was so tragic that it chilled me to the bone. By the time I was in the last chapter’s, I was shivering and in tears. I must warn you that the subject matter is very dark, but it is moving book.

7. The Butterfly Sister by Amy Gail Hansen – This was a suspenseful mystery that had me guessing until the end. The author knew right where to place clues and her pacing was incredible. It came highly recommended by a friend and I am glad that she did. It’s a quick read!

8. Released by S.J. Pajonas – Yes, I know she was on my list already. This is book 2 of her series. It is not very often I can say this, but book 2 is better than book 1. Often times I find that the first book in a series is the best. While Removed had romance, Released had all the passion. And the last line of the book will have you on Twitter, nagging the author to finish book 3.

9. Who is Evelyn Dae? Vol. 1 by Sarah LaFleur, Illustrated by Matthew LaFleur – This cleverly written story leaves a girl searching for her past and who she is. It is a unique book told through journal entries and illustrated by Sarah’s husband. His interpretation of the character is amazing. Vol. 2 is out as well, and you can get both volumes in paperback.

10. Backward Compatible by Sarah Daltry and Pete Clark – Have you ever wondered what would happen if 2 geeks fell in love? This book is told from both the male and female point of view. There’s no sex, just romance, and a lot of nerd talk. If you’re a gamer, or just a geek like me, this is the perfect book for you.

These were my favorite books of 2013. Each one links to Amazon to buy their book. If you buy their book, please do them a HUGE favor and leave a rating and/or review on Amazon and Goodreads. Also, follow them on Twitter, tell them I sent you over 🙂

So what does 2014 hold for me when it comes to reading? Hopefully 60+ books on my READ list. I am going to keep my goal at 60 because I am currently working on finishing and publishing my second book, and would like to finish the first draft of my Chick Lit book I started. Of course, I plan on NaNoWriMo in November, too!

Do you agree or disagree with my favorites? Why? Which did I miss? I would love to hear from you!! If you leave a suggestion, please link to the Amazon Kindle page for it in the links!

 

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