Wednesday, December 16, 2009

My Favourite Books of 2009 Are...

I hope by now that my book list at the bottom of this page has been of interest to some; I love to share great books back and forth.   My taste in books is fairly broad/erratic/random: fiction; non-fiction; memoirs; mystery/suspense; Canadian literature as well as internationally-based-or-written books; some fantasy; some heavier reading; some lighter reading.  There's really no rhyme or reason to what I like, for better or for worse.

With the year drawing to a close, I thought I'd take a moment to highlight some of my favourite books of the year, with the thought that someone else might enjoy them as much as I have.  I'd also really love to hear from anyone else who has a favourite book or two (or ten!) to recommend from the past year.

If I had to narrow it down to my top ten of 2009, I'd list the following (in no particular order):
  • A Moveable Feast, by Ernest Hemingway
  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, by Shaffer and Barrows
  • Twilight (the series of four), by Stephenie Meyer
  • A Short History of the Tractor in Ukrainian, by Marina Lewycka
  • The Gargoyle, by Andrew Davidson
  • Three Weeks with my Brother, by Nicolas Sparks and Micah Sparks
  • The Philosopher and the Wolf, by Mark Rowlands
  • Charles The Bold (series of three), by Yves Beauchemin
  • Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (series of three), by Stieg Larsson
If I was absolutely forced to reduce the list to my top five (which really feels impossible because I really loved all of the above), I'd reluctantly suggest the following - again, in no particular order:
  • A Moveable Feast, by Ernest Hemingway
  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, by Shaffer and Barrows
  • Charles The Bold (#1), by Yves Beauchemin
  • Twilight (#1), by Stephenie Meyer
  • The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest (#3), by Stieg Larsson
I also have to say that I'm in the middle of reading (again) Thomas Hardy's Far From the Madding Crowd; Hardy has always been a favourite of mine and so I have no doubt that this book will be added to my list of favourites - he's one of my absolute favourite classic authors!


...What about you?  What are a few of your favourite books of the year?  Do tell!


  1. I have not read many books this year (or at least I cannot remember reading more than 5 this year). I really enjoyed TSAR by Ted Bell which is essentially a James Bond style book. Other than that, I've enjoyed both Microsoft Excel books (both well over 1000 pages :)) I've read this year (does that count? :))

    I'm thinking I've got to try reading the Twilight series. The other books you enjoy appear to be more artsy books than what I'm into, but if you recommend them, they must be good, so I might try and check them out...

  2. I also loved Tractors and Guernsey. I'm hoping to read the Larsson series soon (it was on my wish list).

    I loved Book of Negroes, Forgotten Garden and Cutting for Stone as well as Post Birthday World.

    Cutting for stone and Guernsey are probably my two top picks.

    Great topic!

  3. I loved Book of Negroes and Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali!

  4. Hi Ruth,

    Thanks for the list. I can't wait to try some of your favourites.
    Here are some I really enjoyed (in no particular order). I'll have to start keeping a list like you do, because I can't even remember some of the amazing books I've read this last year.
    1) Stones from the River (Ursua Heigi)
    2) My Sister's Keeper and Plain Truth (Jodi Piccoult)- not literary classics, but good reads!
    3) The Shack- William P. Young
    4) Still Alice - Lisa Genova
    5) Book of Negroes- Lawrence Hill
    6) She's Come Undone- Wally Lamb
    (didn't like his new one The Hour I First Believed though)
    7) Sarah's Key- Tatianta de Rosnay - this one HAUNTED me for days. Couldn't get it out of my mind
    8) Havah, the Story of Eve- Tosca Lee.
    9) Do They Hear you when you cry?
    Fauziya Kassindja- I read this years ago, but it remains one of my favourites (it's about one woman's legal fight to claim genital mutilation as grounds for refugee status). I read it on a school trip (the first time) and had to wear sunglasses so my students didn't see me bawling while reading it!
    10) The Gargoyle- also loved it.

    I'm currently reading A Virgin's Tale (Sherri Smith) which is excellent, and have Pope Joan and Cry, the Beloved Country on deck.

    Can't wait to see other people's suggestions.


  5. Interesting choices. I really must read the Guernsey book.

    The best read (by far) of my year was Fugitive Pieces. This book haunted me & moved me in inumerable ways and will be read again.