Tuesday, December 28, 2010

10 for 2010

2010 was an awesome year in books for KyusiReader. I've managed to read 70 books this year, despite my very hectic schedule. What can I say, if you find something really important, then you find the time to do it, right?

So what books did I like this year? It was a tough call, considering that I've read so many different genres and discovered new authors this year. Nevertheless, I've narrowed my favorite reads to 10. Here they are (in no particular order):

  1. Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned by Wells Tower: This fascinating collection of short stories will leave you wanting for more. Tower's debut collection features a cast of misfits in modern-day America in very unusual scenarios. I'm not a short story reader myself, but EREB left me satisfied.
  2. Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli: The best graphic novel that I've ever read. Mazzucchelli's work touches on several themes such as architecture, Greek mythology, and music
  3. Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi by Geoff Dyer: Dyer's novel art and love is one very memorable read. It's actually two novels in one.
  4. Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness: Ness's brilliant young adult trilogy, Chaos Walking, makes other YA novels seem amateurish. The best in the trilogy is this book.
  5. The Neverending Story by Michael Ende: I love the movie, but I love this book more!
  6. Skippy Dies by Paul Murray: Murray's Booker longlisted novel is the funniest novel I've read this year which is set in a prep school in Ireland.
  7. The Monk by Matthew Lewis: This is the first book I've read this year. It has also become my favorite Gothic novel.
  1. Born Round by Frank Bruni: Reading this memoir by Bruni, the New York Times restaurant critic, made me realize how difficult it is to review restaurants. I don't know how I'll manage to eat 3 dinners in a day!
  2. Service Included by Phoebe Damrosch: This brilliant memoir by a former captain in one of New York's finest restaurants is not to be missed. What is it about books and food that make them go well together?
  3. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot: This book appealed to the science geek in me.
So there you go, dear reader. Looking at the list, I can't help notice how my reading patterns have changed through the years. Before, all my top 10 for the year were purely novels. Now, I see:
  • 2 contemporary novels
  • 1 classic novel
  • 2 young adult novels
  • 1 graphic novel
  • 1 short story collection
  • 2 biographies
  • 1 science non-fiction book
How about you, dear reader? What were your favorite reads for this year? And would you like to guess which of these 10 is my favorite book of the year?


Sean said...

Hay. I'm so jealous. I need to read more. Maybe I should start with Skippy Dies?

Peter S. said...

Hi, Sean! Yes, I love Skippy Dies!

C.B. James said...

I love The Monk. I'm glad to see it make your list. I think I need to look into Skippy Dies.

Rise said...

eI'm most curious about by EREB and the Dyer. I mostly liked fiction this year. Here's my list.

Peter S. said...

Hi, C.B. James! I'm sure you'll find Skippy Dies hugely enjoyable!

Peter S. said...

Hello, Rise! I think you'll find EREB to your liking.

Stepford Mum said...

Oh Peter, more for my wishlist, and me with that resolution not to buy more books until my TBR shrinks significantly!

I agree that Monsters of Men was the best of the Chaos Walking trilogy. Fantastic, it was. I also bought The Monk this year afer reading your review, so will read it next year.

I won't guess your best book, as I look forward to hearing about it at the discussion in January. Happy New Year!

Peter S. said...

Hi, Stepford Mum! I can't wait to hear your thoughts on The Monk. I found it so readable, even though some of the antics of the characters were definitely overboard. Hehehe.

Ryan G said...

Love Neverending Story......great book.

Peter S. said...

Hi, Ryan! Yes, it's a great book indeed. Now I'm curious as to the other books Ende has written. But I couldn't find them in bookstores though.

Tina said...

I need to read The Ask and the Answer and Monsters of Men, stat. And I need to find a weekend where I can just immerse myself in Todd's world without interruption.

I'm posting my Top 10 reads tomorrow. It's kind of hard to pick -- I read so many good books this year. I think I'll have to add about 5 runner-ups or something. ^^

Peter S. said...

I can't wait to know your top 10, Tina!

fantaghiro23 said...

Hey, Peter. Yay for Monsters of Men! And ever since I ordered Skippy Dies for you, I've been mightily curious about it. Will most likely get that book soon. Same thing with Henrietta Lacks, since you say you love it so much.:)

Peter S. said...

Oh, I just know you're gonna love Skippy Dies, since you taught at an all-boys school. Skippy Dies is set in an all-boys prep school in Ireland!

SariJ said...

Nice list Peter. I did not read as many as you, so this year I am challenging myself to read at least 100.
Here are my top five for 2010
Dracula in Love by Karen Essex
The Passage by Justin Cronin
The Poisoner’s Handbook by Sara Poole
Horns by Joe Hill
The Time Traveler’s Guide to the 14th Century by Ian Mortimer
Happy New Year and happy reading!

Peter S. said...

Hi, SariJ!

I've also read The Passage. Very, very thrilling, no?