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Friday, February 07, 2014

Top 3 Books I Read in 2013

This year I read forty books. Down three from last year. Granted I had a few re-reads, but the idea is to go up, not down. I also decided, since I love the Channel Awesome year-in-reviews so much, I'd talk about the best and worst books I read this year for the first time. Now remember, these didn't necessarily come out this year. And they're not necessarily indicative of the star rating I gave them.

Eleanor & Park


The more I think about this book, the better it gets. Reflecting on Eleanor makes me fall more in love with her. I recall Park as a tragic figure, both well-off and heroic, but trapped between two worlds.  And how hard he worked to get what he wanted. The tragedy of their story is more important than any Romeo & Juliet pastiche.

Fangirl


Fangirls is just a romance, with little-to-no kissing, sex, dating, or romantic tropes. It doesn't have much plot, many events. It's really just about a girl going to college, dealing with this new life change. How would an introvert react to strangers coming into her room?  Dealing with shady students? And she's a writer who loves Harry Potter Simon Snow fan fiction. It anchors her in this time of chaos. Doesn't sound like anybody I am know.

The Boy Who Couldn't Sleep and Never Had To


And of course, another book that reminds me of the past. I guess you shouldn't take any of these recommendations as critical accolades. They're just books that I personally associate with, which marks them higher. I just love the friendship these two boys have. Bonding over late nights of XBox and Mountain Dew. Just talking about stuff, trying to get through high school without suffering too much.

Here's the interesting thing. And it kind of worries me. None of these books are spec fic. At least, not really. "Boy Who Couldn't Sleep" has some small elements, but they're insignificant to the character arc. I read plenty of fantasy, but none of them resonated with me like these ones. These are all high school/college love stories/coming of age. Guess at my heart, I'm just a big sucker.
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