Seriously. If I had to narrow down these holidays to a single theme, it would be Cookies & Canines. Okay, technically TWO themes but they do occasionally converge. Like earlier tonight when I came across mom’s dog, Caramel, chewing on a molasses cookie that apparently fell off the kitchen table. Let’s just say that dog demonstrated a “less than festive spirit” when I attempted to divest him of the cookie. Hours later, he’s still riding his sugar high.
So, yes, Cookies & Canines…
As for the dogs…
Caramel – sleeping off his sugar high? And, by the way, who names their male dog Caramel? I can’t blame mom because she adopted him after his former owner surrendered him.
All told, I will have read about 80 books in 2013. Not bad, but down from previous annual averages. I think that part of the problem this year was the fact that I got bogged down in a lot of mediocre reads. Not bad reads – those I’ll just give up on – but middling reads, those books you continue reading in the hopes they’ll improve. Sadly, in almost all cases, they do not.
In order to improve my reading efficiency in 2014, I consulted a bunch of Best of 2013 lists, read the reviews, studied the synopses, consulted the covers, and eventually distilled the titles down to 25 Maybe-Must-Reads:
Ancillary Justice – Ann Leckie
The Interestings – Meg Woltizer
League of Denial – Mark Fainaru-Wada
The Circle – Dave Eggers
Tenth of December – George Saunders
Super Graphics – Tim Leong
A Tale for the Time Being – Ruth Ozeki
Gorgeous – Paul Rudnick
Life After Life – Kate Atkinson
Nexus – Ramez Naam
NOS4A2 – Joe Hill
Neptune’s Brood – Charles Stross
Brilliance – Marcus Sakey
Dogtripping – David Rosenfelt
Vampires in the Lemon Grove – Karen Russell
The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman
The Goldfinch – Donna Tartt
The Isle of Youth – Laura Van Den Berg
Love Minus Eighty – Will McIntosh
On Looking – Alexandra Horowitz
This Explains Everything – John Brockman
Time Warped – Claudia Hammond
Anything That Moves – Dana Goodyear
Schroder – Amity Gaige
Lives of Tao – Lesley Chu
Familiar with any of the above titles? Are there any you’d recommend? Any you’d advise me to steer clear of?
Better yet, what were YOUR Top Reads of 2013?