Saturday, December 31, 2011

Best Reads of 2011

Best Historical Fiction:

The House at Riverton by Kate Morton (Completed October 29, 2011)

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles (Completed August 27, 2011)

The Help by Kathryn Stockett (Completed August 1, 2011)

The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb by Melanie Benjamin (Completed July 19, 2011)

The Beauty Chorus by Kate Lord Brown (Completed May 14, 2011)

Best Non-Fiction:

Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal by Conor Grennan (Completed October 11, 2011)

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff (Completed August 18, 2011)

Resistance: A Woman's Journal of Struggle and Defiance in Occupied France by Agnes Humbert (Completed August 9, 2011)

Far and Away: A Prize Every Time by Neil Peart (Completed April 23, 2011)

Spitfire Women of World War II by Giles Whittell (Completed February 26, 2011)

Series I Continue to Love:

Death Bringer (Skulduggery Pleasant Series, Book 6) by Derek Landy (Completed October 7, 2011)

Spell Bound (Women of the Otherworld Series, Book 12) by Kelley Armstrong (Completed July 25, 2011)

Empire of Ruins: The Hunchback Assignments III by Arthur Slade (Completed May 8, 2011)

Fables Volume 15: Rose Red by Bill Willingham & Company (Completed April 15, 2011)

River Marked by Patricia Briggs (Mercedes Thompson Series, Book 6 (Completed March 12, 2011)

A Lesson In Secrets by Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs Series, Book 8)

Classics That I Loved:

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins (Completed October 6, 2011)

Favourite Fantasy Reads:

Prince of Thrones: Book One of The Broken Empire by Mark Lawrence (Completed September 23, 2011)

The Way of Kings: The Stormlight Archive - Book 1 by Brandon Sanderson (Completed September 1, 2011)

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (Completed September 10, 2011)

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness (Completed April 16, 2011)

Daughter of the Forest (Book One of The Sevenwaters Trilogy) by Juliet Marillier (Completed January 15, 2011)

The Fallen Kings Cycle Book 1: The Sworn by Gail Z. Martin (Completed January 10, 2011)

Honourable Mentions:
Among Others by Jo Walton
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (The Inheritance Trilogy #1) by N.K. Jemisin

Best Canadian Read:

The Virgin Cure by Ami McKay (Completed September 3, 2011)

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley (Completed May 15, 2011)

Favourite Graphic Novels:

The Unwritten - Volume 1: Tommy Taylor and the Bogus Identity by Mike Carey, Peter Gross, and Company (Completed August 26, 2011)
The Unwritten - Volume 2: Inside Man by Mike Carey, Peter Gross, and Company (Completed August 26, 2011)
The Unwritten - Volume 3: Dead Man's Knock by Mike Carey, Peter Gross, and Company (Completed August 26, 2011)

Trilogy I Was Sad To See End:

The Infinity Gate (DarkGlass Mountain Trilogy, Book 3) by Sara Douglass (Completed July 28, 2011)

Fool's Fate by Robin Hobb (The Tawny Man Trilogy, Book 3) (Completed June 19, 2011)

Books That Stand-up to a Reread:

Outlander (Outlander Series, Book 1) by Diana Gabaldon (Completed July 10, 2011)

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (Completed June 28, 2011)

Best Young Adult Fiction:

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly (Completed June 23, 2011)

My Most Excellent Year by Steve Kluger (Completed March 11, 2011)

Book That I Didn't Expect to Love But Did:

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness (Completed May 25, 2011)

Best Short Story Collection:

Dreams Underfoot by Charles de Lint (Completed April 11, 2011)

Book That I Am Still Thinking About:

Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami (Completed February 5, 2011)


  1. Kailana, did you review The Help? I somehow missed it if you did :( I have not read it yet and have developed some pretty negative preconceived notions about it. Wondering if I should give it a fair shot??

  2. Wow, what a best-of list, Kelly!!! Charles de Lint (yaaay, and I love this collection too);I read Revolution because of your review, I just haven't posted my thoughts yet (I liked it!); did you cry at the end of Fool's Fate? I did ( I love both this series and the Farseer series); yaay for Fables (thanks you you, Rhinoa, everyone, I'm getting hooked on these!), and Woman in White being a classic you loved!

    Happy Reading and Happy 2012 to you.

  3. Anonymous2:43 AM

    So many of these are waiting for me on my shelves. Thanks for getting me excited to read them :)

  4. Yours is a list I dread because it will make me buy more books.
    It's a great list once more, diverse and interesting but I'm quite lucky, I got those I'm most interested in already. The book about the Spitfire women is one I do not have. It looks interesting.

  5. We'll have to agree to disagree on Kate Morton :P And I love your non-fiction list! Other than the Helene Hanff, which I've read, they all sound like things I should get my hands on ASAP.

  6. I loved The House at Riverton (I read it last year), love The Woman in White and really love Fables #15! I'm reading The Night Circus right now and I believe it will be my final read of 2011. I really want to read A Discovery of Witches. Great reading this year!

  7. I already had a couple of the books on "women in war" on my list from reading your reviews. Need to check the library again for some of them.

    Great covers on a lot of your titles, and I'm partial to a good cover.

    While I've read and enjoyed some of the others, there are several new possibilities on this list, too. Little Princes sounds really good.

    You've had a great reading year, Kelly! Wishing you Good Reading in 2012!

  8. I am, of course, so glad The Night Circus ended up here! :)

  9. I've read 3 Kate Mortons and like each one better than the last... I've read one Susanna Kearsley and have The Rose Garden in my tbr pile!!!

    anyone ever tell you that you are a reading fool? lol lol.. you and Becky amaze me at how much you read!!! it's fantastic!

    Happy New Year Kelly

  10. That's a great list Kelly! I've only read 5 of them but agree highly on those 5. There are others there I want to read. I still haven't got around to Kate Morton, although I own 2 and The Unwritten sounds like a series I'd like.

  11. Ooh, what is The Beauty Chorus? Is it about women pilots in WWII? I just read a non-fiction about it, though I didn't love it. The Spitfire Women book looks so good. Where are your reviews of all these great books you've read? :-P

  12. Great list! The Beauty Chrous has an amazing cover! I love love love Fables #14 and #15. I'm so glad you did too.I hope 2012 is a great year for you!

  13. Wow! What a great list of books that you read and loved. I think I am going to place just about all your books here into my to-read list, AND bonus for me...I have to end of this coming week to finalize that list before I stop adding to it for the year - will create another list for books I come across during 2012 but will not read them....for the most 2012. Anyway, your list impresses and so many of them really interest me.

  14. Great list! I also loved Mrs. Tom Thumb, Revolution, A Discovery of Witches this year. I also really want to read Resistance in 2012.

  15. What a great list! So many titles that I've enjoyed as well (especially Kearsley's The Rose Garden) You read SO much and I love the way you've put this list together with the various categories and all the tempting cover images. Looks like 2011 was a great reading year for you!

  16. I loved House at Riverton, Rules of Civility, and The Night Circus. A Discovery of witches is on my tbr list

  17. Such great books here. I see several I've read and loved and several more that are going on my wishlist for 2012.

  18. Love your categories. SO many good books on your lists!

  19. 84, Charing Cross Road is one that I really want to read but keep forgetting about. And I've heard Little Princes mentioned a MILLION times but didn't ever realize it was non-fiction (d'oh!).

    Happy new year Kelly!! :)

  20. What a great and extensive list! Many I've read, some new to me.

  21. So fun to see your list, and I love seeing book covers so thanks for taking the extra time to post them.

    Norwegian Wood is one of the Murakami books I keep thinking I'll pick up in the fall and never do. I've got to get to it.

    Great to see The Way of Kings on your list. That is one book I'll be thinking about for a long, long time.

    I was just mentioning to someone else that I love the covers for those Patricia Briggs books and should really start reading them so that I can have an excuse to buy them!

  22. **Peppermind Ph. D: No, I did not review The Help. I really wanted to, but just didn't accomplish it. I might try to squeeze it in before January is over with.

    **Susan: I love Charles de Lint! I enjoyed other reads by him this year, too. I like to read him at least a couple times each year. I was so sad to see the end of Fool's Fate. I loved that trilogy! I really need to read the rest of the Farseer trilogy...

    **stacybuckeye: I hope you enjoy them when you get the chance to read them!

    **Caroline: lol I am always happy to inspire people to buy more books, but I do know that can be a problem! I really should read the books I have all ready... The Spitfire Women book was very interesting!

    **Ana: I know... That makes me sad... And, yes, I think you would love all of my non-fiction selections!

    **Amanda: I just have to read The Distant Hours by Morton. Then she needs to write something else... And, yay, Fables! I am so excited the newest one is in the mail on its way to me. :)

    **jenclair: Little Princes was really good. I very much enjoyed it.

    **Amanda: The list wouldn't be complete without The Night Circus. I am thinking I am going to reread it in audio. :)

    **Pat: I just have to read The Distant Hours. I will probably work it in sometime this year. I love Susanna Kearsley!

    hahaha, thanks! The guy calls me something similar but I am not always sure he means the same thing...

    **Nicola: Kate Morton is a great author. And, yes, The Unwritten is so much fun. I am surprised you haven't read it all ready!

  23. **Aarti: Some of them I haven't reviewed, but I did review those two. They were both really good!

    **Vasilly: I am excited about the new Fables that is on its way to me in the mail!

    **ibeeeg: I hope you enjoy them! And what a great way to make your list... I should do something similar...

    **Carrie: Resistance was very good. I hope you get a chance to read it!

    **Melwyk: I love Kearsley! I had to keep coming up with categories I must admit... Some of the books were not necessarily my favourite books of the year, but they needed to be mentioned at the same time...

    **bookmagic: I hope you enjoy A Discovery of Witches!

    **Andi: I hope you enjoy those you have added to your wish list. :)

    **Care: Yes, I picked my favourite books and then made categories to suit them. :)

    **Trish: Little Princes did make the blogging rounds but it is well-worth reading.

    **Staci: Thanks!

    **Carl: I thought the covers made it look rather pretty. :)

    Norwegian Wood is a book I am still not sure what to make of!

    And, yes, I was actually at the store tonight trying to find a hardcover copy of The Way of Kings that wasn't so damaged as the one I have... No luck... It keeps the book in my mind even if reading it hadn't!

  24. Glad to see The Night Circus on your list. I must get my hands on a copy of Resistance. I see a few other WWII novels that I have to check out as well. Happy new year!

    1. I think you will really enjoy Resistance. And The Beauty Chorus. And Spitfire Women for that matter!

  25. River Marked FTW!!

    Seriously, can't wait for the next Mercy book! I recommend that series to everyone.

    1. I can't wait until more Mercy books, either!!!

  26. So it was here that I first heard of The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb (it was great review).

    A Monster Calls seems to make the Best of 2011 list of everyone who read it. Must find what what the fuss is about :)

    1. I loved The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb! (And thanks!)

      I was surprised by how much I enjoyed A Monster Calls. It was very well-done!

  27. What a great list, I love your categories! I think I'm the only person left who hasn't read The Help yet... that needs to happen soon. I added quite a few of your favorites to my wishlist, of course!

    1. I was happy to finally get around to The Help this year. I wanted to read it before I saw the movie.

  28. Fantastic list here, thanks for sharing! I'm glad I've read a couple at least :)


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