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Topic: what's your book of the month/year 2008?

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Subject: what's your book of the month/year 2008?
Date Posted: 1/29/2008 11:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/26/2005
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so, for 2008, of what you have read, what is your "book of the month"....how about "book of the year"?  No requirement except that you read the book this month/this year.   Why is it your favorite?

BOOK OF YEAR 2008:  Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum

RUNNERS UP:  The Book of Lost Things     OR  The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox OR The Double Bind

JANUARY:     The Book of Lost Things by Connelly

It's my favorite so far because it take familiar tales and retells them along w/some great life lessons for the main character, a boy who is 'lost' after the death of his mother.

FEB:  The Book of Bright Ideas by King.  A wonderful book of a girl growing up in the early 60s.

MARCH:  The Seduction of Water by Carol Goodman.  I've got a shelf full of her books, this is the first one I've read.  It's not what I expected since it says it's about a gal who has alot of 'almosts' like 'almost professor, almost phD' but it's more a mystery of her exploring what happened to her mother who was a writer who suffered an untimely death.

APRIL:  Almost Moon by Sebold.  Quick read and well written. 

MAY: Secondhand World by Min.  Story of a Korean girl born in the US.  Quick but thoughtful.

JUNE: Dead and Unwed by Davidson.  First of the Queen Betsy books (i've already read the others, just never the first).  FUNNY ONE;    The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by O'Farrell   GREAT ONE!

JULY:  The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian.  Well written with a great culmination at the end.  Contender for book of the year.;  AND   Veil of Roses by Fitzgerald.  Incredible journey of Iranian woman to America.

AUG: Sleeping Beauty Proprosal by Strohmeyer.  Cute easy chick-lit about a fake engagement.  (a month full of fluff)

 Sept: The Circus in Winter by   Day, OR Garden Spells by SAA

Oct:  Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum... hands down, book of the YEAR winner.  All others are runners up at best.

Nov: The Red Scarf by Kate Furnival....one great book about revolutionary Russia and the people whose lives are torn apart

Dec: Thank You for All Things by Sandra Kring....two books this year made the list!  Great story of a girl figuring out what family means

Last Edited on: 12/15/08 11:41 PM ET - Total times edited: 21
Date Posted: 1/30/2008 2:09 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2005
Posts: 20,024
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Ive read a lot of great books this month but Id have to say The Loch by Steve Alten was the best this month. It was a great book not only about Loch Ness and the monster with a new and plausible theory but also about relationships and family. I enjoyed it.

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 2:13 AM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,805
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Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Kingsolver for January as a book that made me think.

For pure fun and reading enjoyment - High Noon by Nora Roberts

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 9:23 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 8,410
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So far The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.  I give that one a 5/5!

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 11:18 AM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 242
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why'd this double post?

Last Edited on: 1/30/08 11:19 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/30/2008 11:18 AM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
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I'm almost done with The Vampire's Seduction by Raven Hart and so far it's the best book I've read this year!  (and it's not as full of seduction as you'd think based on the title.  It actually has plot and well developed characters!)

Last Edited on: 1/30/08 11:18 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/30/2008 1:08 PM ET
Member Since: 7/24/2007
Posts: 2,825
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The Vampire trilogy by Stephenie Meyer.

I LOVE it and I never read this kind of stuff!

They are;

Twilight, New Moon and Eclipse

Put them on your WL for sure!

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 1:18 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2008
Posts: 8
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I just finished The Fifth Vial by Michael Palmer.  It was great!

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 965
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For me it was Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin. This is such a departure from what I normally read. It was just a fun, light read. I normally read books that are a little more serious, intense or even sad so this was just a nice change of pace for me. So much so that I plan to order more books like this and mix them in with what I normally read just to lighten things up occasionally.

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 4:05 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,536
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It would have to be the Saffron Kitchen by Yasmin Crowther.  It's a beautiful story of a woman who had to flee Iran after breaking a social rule.  Then years later, she flees England (because of something she does to a relative) and returns to her old village.  It's a story of hidden pasts, mother/daughter relationships, redemption, etc.  It gives an honest portrayal of Iranians without being judgmental.

Date Posted: 1/30/2008 5:51 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2006
Posts: 2,246
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Hmmm, well, I don't know if it will be my book of the year, but this was definitely the best book I read in January: The year of living biblically : one man's humble quest to follow the Bible as literally as possible, by A.J. Jacobs. PBS link: http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/details/9780743291477-The+Year+of+Living+Biblically+One+Mans+Humble+Quest+to+Follow+the+Bible+as+Literally+as+Possible It's in the humor section of the library, but it's much more than funny. It made me think about my Judeo-Christian assumptions, and the things I assume about literalists.

ETA: for February, it's got to be Here if you need me, by Kate Braestrup.The author is a woman left with 4 young kids when her husband, a highway patrol officer, was killed in an accident. She became a UU minister and chaplain to the wildlife officers in Maine. This is one of the most honest books I have ever read. Honest about death, about spirituality, about one's relationship with God and others. I didn't agree, BTW, with all her theology, but you can admire and respect what you don't agree with, if it's well-founded and well-stated. There is humor in this book, tragedy, hope, faith, fear. PBS link here: Link



Last Edited on: 2/18/08 7:53 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/2/2008 1:50 AM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2008
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my favorite book for january - actually, i can't decide yet.  either Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs or the Kingmaker, Kingbreaker duology by Karen Miller (The Innocent Mage/The Awakened Mage).

Date Posted: 2/2/2008 8:30 AM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2007
Posts: 1,033
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So far in 2008 I've only been able to finish 1 book.. a little slow I know, but it is what it is! Anyways, being behind the times, I finally read Memory Keepers Daughter and absolutely fell in love with the book...

Date Posted: 2/2/2008 9:11 AM ET
Member Since: 11/26/2007
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My book for Jan would have to be The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri.  I really had no desire to read this book and someone had gotten it for me for Christmas so I picked it up and started it while I was waiting for some PBS books to come in the mail and I couldn't put it down!  It was fabulous!  I love the way Lahiri writes, it's just beautiful! I let you know what book I loved for Feb next month!

Date Posted: 2/2/2008 10:40 PM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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Beth Ann - if you liked The Namesake you should read Lahiri's first book, Interpreter of Maladies. I liked it so much that I re-read it a year later.

My book for January is 1776 by David McCullough. Excellent book.

My book for February is Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry with Girls of Tender Age by Mary Tirone Smith running a very close second.

March - I read a lot of so-so books this month! Nothing spectacular unfortunately. My March best book would be one I read so that I could discuss it with my 8 year old son - My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George. We both liked it.

April - This one is a tie. I read 10 books this month which is a lot for me. We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver has me still thinking about a week later. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson was so compulsively readable that I finished it in less than 24 hours.

 May - A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. Every bit as good as all of the rave reviews.

June - Blackbird by Jennifer Lauck. Compelling memoir of her childhood.

 July - no contest, The Lost Men: The Harrowing Saga of Shackleton’s Ross Sea Party by Kelly Tyler-Lewis was the best book I read this month. Well research and well written account of Shackleton's Ross Sea Party and the amazing conditions they survived. Many direct quotes from the men's diaries.

 August - so many good books this month! A 3-way tie between Homeland by John Jakes; The Queen's Fool by Philippa Gregory; and Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather.

 September - couldn't decide so I'm listing two,The Clothes They Stood Up In and The Lady in the Van by Alan Bennett and Finn by Jon Clinch

 October - I read a good classic, Howards End by E. M. Forster and a good mystery, Gorky Park by Martin Cruz Smith. I've become an Arkady Renko fan!

 November - I read nine books this month, a lot for me! I read a wide variety so it is hard to choose just one. The best ones were Sacajawea by Anne Waldo (a whopper at 1300+ pages), Red Square by Martin Cruz Smith, and Walking Up A Rainbow by Theodore Taylor, excellent YA historical fiction.

 December - This month was a great month for me with 11 books read however, few were outstanding. My two favorites this month were The Road by Cormac McCarthy and Tell No One by Harlen Coben. The Road was a surprise for me - for some reason I didn't think I would like it but it really made an impression on me and the reader (I listened to this one) was excellent. Tell No One was good enough for me to check another of his books out of the library.

Last Edited on: 1/1/09 9:39 PM ET - Total times edited: 11
Date Posted: 2/2/2008 10:54 PM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2007
Posts: 270
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Should I add a new post for each month? Or just edit this one?

Anyway, my favorite book from January would have to be Dragonspell by Donita K. Paul. It was a surprisingly good plot and I can't wait to get the sequels! Also the book was inspiring to me, which doesn't often happen. I'm usually not the type to look beyond the surface of the story.

February: Magician by Raymond Feist. I know Feb. isn't over yet, but this book amazed me so much I'm listing it aleady. It was a little predictable at first, but after the first few chapters it got really good. 9.5 out of 10!

March: Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. It was really good and I can't wait for books 2 and 3.

April: Deltora Quest by Emily Rodda. It's actually 8 books, but I had an anthology version. They're childrens books and very easy to figure out secrets or plots, but I really enjoyed it. I stayed up until almost 3am one night to finish it. 8 out of 10

May: Well, this month I've been doing a lot of re-reading, and it's hard to decide. But I did really love Brandon Sanderson's kids' book, Alkatraz vrsus the Evil Librarians. It was really funny, and I can't wait for the next in the series!

Last Edited on: 5/31/08 3:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 4
Date Posted: 2/3/2008 5:17 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 1,385
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Caryn--I loved Shadow of the Wind--that's was my 2007 Book of the Year. My book of the month for January was Atonement by Ian McEwan. I am not sure if it will stand up as my 2008 Book of the Year.

Date Posted: 2/3/2008 11:14 AM ET
Member Since: 4/4/2007
Posts: 155
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My favorite for January was The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

Date Posted: 2/3/2008 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2007
Posts: 908
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I read two great books in January that made it hard to start other ones! And actually I happened to be reading both of them at the same time.

The Time Traveller's Wife- very well written, I normally love time travel anyways, but this was from a totally different perspective.

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks- written about the European plague in the 1600's, it was hard to put this down!

Date Posted: 2/3/2008 7:47 PM ET
Member Since: 9/26/2005
Posts: 4,490
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Oh, Brenda....both great books!

So, now it's Febuary...

Date Posted: 2/3/2008 11:01 PM ET
Member Since: 6/11/2007
Posts: 4,868
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  • January: In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer by Irene Gut Opdyke
  • February: Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
  • March: On Parole by Akira Yoshimura

Last Edited on: 3/21/08 1:56 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/4/2008 11:03 AM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2007
Posts: 3,129
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I like "book of the month" idea.  Here's mine for January:

Fiction:  A Prayer for the Dying, by Stewart O'Nan.  Dark, suspenseful story of diptheria encompassing small town in the 1800's.  Terrific writing.

Non-fiction: The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan.  Account of the 1930's Dust Bowl/Great Depression era.  Horrifying yet fascinating accounts of how terrifically difficult life was on the Great Plains. 

Edited to make sense!

Last Edited on: 2/4/08 1:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/4/2008 5:35 PM ET
Member Since: 6/12/2007
Posts: 1,905
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It's been awhile since I have read a book that stayed with me even after finishing it.  It's been a week since reading it and I still think about the characters.  A Student Of Weather is a great book about two sisters... Lucinda, and Norma Joyce.  These sisters completely opposite of each other both fall for the same guy, and drama entails.  I can never say to many good things about this novel. 

Date Posted: 2/4/2008 6:33 PM ET
Member Since: 7/27/2007
Posts: 1,424
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I read several great books in January, but the best book was probably A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini.

Date Posted: 2/4/2008 6:38 PM ET
Member Since: 12/22/2007
Posts: 589
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For January, the best book I read was The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom. The memoir of woman who, along with her family, worked in the Dutch underground to save Jewish people from the Nazis.