Friday, March 30, 2007

Books I Read in March

Yesterday’s Love by Michele Ashman Bell. A fluffy romance about a woman who find herself in a major depression and recovers with the help of a long lost high school friend. It was one of my "treadmill books" this month!
Rating: B +
Genre: Romance

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. About a devil giving advice to his nephew, a new devil, on how to win the soul of a man on earth. Lots of profound insights.
Rating: B +
Genre: Religion? Hmmm...

Gilead by Marilynne Robinson. This one won the Pulitzer Prize a few years ago. It’s about an old man who is nearing death, and he’s writing this memoir of his life, and things he wants to tell his young son after he’s gone.
Rating: A-

Genre: Literary Fiction

The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus. One girl’s terrible, frustrating nanny experience in New York. I thought it was very obnoxious and depressing. (My 2nd treadmill book of the month!)
Rating: C+

Genre: Literary? Fiction

The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George. Wow, a huge book! I loved learning about this time in history and all the fascinating characters surrounding Cleopatra. I NEED to go there and visit now!
Rating: A
Genre: Historical Fiction

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Location Part 2

I'm excited to start participating in the Booking Through Thursday questions!

Location, Location, Location, Part 2
Booking Through Thursday

Where do you do most of your reading? Your favorite spot? (Show a picture, if you want to!)
(And yes, I understand that these might not be the same thing--your favorite spot could be the beach, but you do most of your reading at home . . . in which case, tell me about both!)

My answer:

I have two favorite spots at home. The first is on a little loveseat sofa in what we call the "piano room"... the little living room that is set away from the main living area of the house, so it's sometimes quieter, less activity, less through traffic, etc.

The second place is in my bed, late at night, or early-ish on Saturday and Sunday mornings... or on sleepy afternoons, or mid-mornings... or maybe even right in the middle of when I should be making dinner!

Books and Movies and Concerts and TV Stuff Coming Up

There's lost of stuff coming up this summer that I'm so excited about. Here's all the dates I'm trying to keep in my head:

April 23: Hereos starts up again.
April 25: Josh Groban on American Idol

May4: Spiderman #3 release date

May 25: Pirates #3 release date.

May 29: Shannon Hale's latest book,
Austenland, comes out.
July 13: Release date for
Harry Potter #5 movie

July 21: Harry Potter's final episode is out!
August 6: Seeing Rush in concert... maybe....

August 7: Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer hits the book stores.
August 28: Josh Groban in concert... I REALLY better be there!

Anybody know when the next Eragon book is coming out? I can't find any info on it and I'm thinking it's time! PLEASE!! The cliffhanger for Eldest is... is... unbearable!

I still feel like I'm forgetting something here. What else is happening this summer that I need to add to my books/movies/music/TV list?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George

Wow! I loved this book. I've had it on my "mental" to read list for a couple of years now, and finally got to it with the push of the Historical Fiction group. It's only taken me... three months or so to read this 950 plus page book, but I have been fitting it in between other books too. However, for the past week, this one has consumed me.

Obviously, it's a fictional account based on the life of Cleopatra. However, the author lets the reader know what things she based on well-known accounts, and what stuff she totally made up. I found it fascinating to read about this time period, these characters, the culture... everything. (Sometimes the war talk and politics bogged me down, but it was interesting too!) Now I'm really hoping to see Rome, Egypt, Greece, The Nile... some day. Add that to my to do list!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Treadmill Books

The other day while at the library, I did something I haven't done in a long, long time. That was to browse through the shelves and pick up a book that I knew nothing about and had no intention of reading before walking in that very second. I used to do this all the time before joining online groups, reading blogs, and subscribing to book magazines. Now, my list of books to read is huge, as most of you know, and I go into the library usually with the intention of grabbing a certain book, or if not that, then a book or author I've heard of will jump out at me and I'll add that to my bag.

The reason I found myself browsing was because I was in the large print section, just trying to find any old large print book. The reason for the large print? (No, I'm not THAT old yet! :) ) But I have taken up treadmill walking, an activity I find I actually enjoy IF I have nice fast-paced music blasting AND a nice book to read. And I've found that the larger the print the book has, the easier it is to read as your head is bobbing up and down!

So, that made me think of yet another list... what qualifies for a good treadmill book?

  1. As already mentioned, large print is very nice. Thus, the great idea I had to check out some "real" large print books.

  2. Also, hardback books work much better in the little book holder, I've discovered.

  3. The less amount of concentration needed the better! So, it's a go for fluffy books, YA books, just for fun books....

  4. I need to be able to stop reading after 1/2 hour. If it grabs me too much and I want to keep reading after walking, this is not good.

  5. BUT.... if it grabs me just enough that I can't wait for walking time the next day, this is good! Great exercise motivation!

  6. Short books are better, so can I get done with them fairly quickly and see lots of progress.

So, are you wondering yet what book I picked off the large print shelf for my next treadmill book? It's called Willowwood by Mollie Hardwick, published in about 1980 I think or something. Anyone heard of it?

But the thing that caught my eye? On the front it says "a Victorian romance." Now how could I pass that up?

The Nanny Diaries by Emma Mclaughlin and Nicola Kraus.

It's not very often that I read a book that I don't really like at all. I only made it through this story, about a nanny's experience, one just to see what happens to the little boy that she takes care of, and let's just say it wasn't a happy ending. On the front of my book The New York Times says about this book, "devilishly funny." Sheesh, I found nothing AT ALL funny about it; in fact it was overwhelmingly sad and depressing.

I came close to just bagging it several times, but it was my treadmill book of the week, and since I was there, walking, and it was there, waiting to be read, I read it.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Book Bloggin' Buddies List

So I've started another side bar of links to book blogs that I'm slowly discovering. If you see yourself added to my list and would rather NOT be... please let me know and I'll take you off! If you aren't there and you'd like to be, please let me know and I'll add you in! I'll just be slowly adding to it as I find people!

Thanks for the bloggin' fun so far!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Ten Books I Can't Live Without

In doing some blog hopping, I found Kailana's blog about what ten books you couldn't live without. So, in helping her with her quest, I'll add my list here. But, I want you all to know this is a VERY painful endeavor! Sheesh. I can't live without ANY of my books! But, if I HAD to narrow it down, here's what I'd keep. My critera for doing this was to ask myself, what books do I enjoy reading over and over, or do I THINK I'd enjoy reading over and over; ones that never fail to give back.

1. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I know, nothing too surprising here. But there's just something about how this book is written that makes it enjoyable over and over again. I doubt I'll ever get tired of it.

2. Wurthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Another book that grabs me every time. I know some people HATE it, but I love the tragic love stories with a tortured "hero". Love 'em!

3. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. When I read this one for the 2nd time, I thought, "wow! I missed so much the first time around! This book has EVERYTHING in it!" It's just a great story from all angles.

4. Katherine by Anya Seton. I'll be reading this one for my 2nd time soon and I can't wait. I love the historical aspect of this book, as well as the romance. I love ALL Anya Seton's books, but this one's my favorite.

5. The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien. In order to get my fantasy fix, these books better be on the list. These books are amazing; the style, the story, the characters, the intensity, everything. I find it interesting that nearly all fantasy books to follow have been compared to these. No one seems to quite measure up.

6. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. Add this to the list for some fun, comic relief! Such a fun book. And I'm often found taking it off the shelf just to read that last encounter between Anne and Gilbert, after all their bickering, to have that last little.... talk... it's great!

7. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. I just love all of Card's books, but especially this one. The ending blew me away, one of those drop your jaw endings (like Eldest that I read awhile back! Wow!) . I'm sure I'll get more and more out of this book every time I read it.

8. The Far Pavillions by M.M. Kaye. This was the first big, huge book that I read where I remember coming to the end of it and actually being sad that it was over. I hated to see it end. I'll be reading this one again soon for an online group and really look forward to it. It will be interesting to see if I have the same reaction.

9. The Long Walk by Slavomir Rawicz. One of the most amazing and inspiring stories I've ever read! And I could read it over and over, so it has to be on this list. Great book!

10. And since I'm so infatuated with them right now, I'm going to add Stephenie Meyer's books about Edward and Bella here on the end! Twillight and New Moon and coming soon Eclipse. At this point in time, I can't live without them!

The Screwtape Letters and Gilead

This past week I finished two books from my TBR Challenge list. It helped that they were also both books chosen for my F2F groups too!

The first one was The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, a book I’ve had for awhile and was glad to finally get too. It was an interesting book, one I found I had to concentrate on to really "get" what he was saying. The premise of this book is basically that Screwtape, and expert devil, is writing encouraging and full-of-advice letters to his nephew, Wormword, as he is trying to win over the soul of some nameless ordinary man on earth. It was strange to have a devil’s point of view and to have everything be flip flopped, meaning, the Enemy was God and Our Father was Satan. I underlined a few interesting little tidbits that jumped out at me:

"It is funny how mortals always picture us as putting
things into their minds: in reality our best work is done by keeping things

"Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one– the
gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones,
without signposts."

"The whole philosophy of Hell rests on recognition of the
axiom that one thing is not another thing, and, specifically, that one self is
not another self. My good is my good and your good is

And so on. Lots to ponder in this book.

The other book I read from my TBR list was Gilead by Marilynne Robinson. I’ve heard people talking about this book for awhile now, and wanted to know what all the fuss was about. Also, it won the Pulitzer Prize recently (last year?) so it must be good, right? :) It, too, was quite the spiritual book, full of profound insights into life. However, I didn’t mark it up or take notes this time. Oh, well. It’s simply about an elderly man, writing to his young son at the end of his life, hoping to tell him things of his past, lessons he’s learned, all the stuff that he’d talk to him about when he got older, if he (the dad) was still around. It had some funny stuff, some sad stuff, and lots of good stuff to take to heart. I really enjoyed it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

"What I've Read" Book Tag

It's a book tag! I lifted it from Emily's blog. Bold means "I've read it" and italics means "I want to read it." Let me know if you decided to participate too and I'll come take a look at your list!

1. The DaVinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18 The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44.The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. The Bible
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58.The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According to Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte's Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96.The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

Wow! I've read quite a few from this particular list!

Friday, March 16, 2007

All About Me

Hi fellow book lovers! I'm Suey! Welcome to my blog! 

I started this blog several years ago (ten at the time of this writing) to keep track of all my bookish pursuits. While that is still a main part of the blog, it's now morphed into more of a place to discuss books with other like-minded fans and to connect with the community. 

Here you'll find lots of lists, since I seem to get into that. Top Ten lists, favorite lists, what I'm reading lists, book club book lists, and such. You'll also find reviews (or discussions or thoughts) on nearly every book I read. 

Now and then you'll see me either participating in or hosting a read-along. I love doing these things. They are like a little mini one-book book club. 

Recently I've been bitten by the writing bug and so posts about that adventure will be creeping in more and more often. (I've added a tab up top so you can find these posts quickly if you'd like. I've also created a website dedicated just to that.)

There'll also be many posts about "life's other adventures" which include my other media consumption: music, movies and TV. Generally, I love everything pop culture and you'll see a lot of that here. Also, there'll be a few personal posts about family adventures. 

The past year has found me embracing a new passion... the world of Korean pop culture. I have discovered a huge love for Kdramas (Korean TV) and Kpop (Korean music.) This blog has changed to fit in this new love and you'll find many posts describing this awesome world of entertainment. There's also a YouTube channel that you'll want to check out where we are able to totally gush about this genre.

But in the end, no matter the subject of the post, hopefully you'll have some fun clicking around here and joining in my bookish and other adventures!

Random facts about me:
  • I'm a mom with four kids ages 26 to 17. The two oldest are married and we now have a baby granddaughter!
  • I work 12 hours a week at the library in the administration office.
  • I've hosted a neighborhood book club for twelve years.
  • Besides reading and blogging, I love to watch TV and movies, go to music concerts and Broadway shows, travel and take pictures.
  • Recently I've discovered the blast that is Kdramas and Kpop. The Korean wave grabbed me and swept me along!
  • I've also been known to quilt a bit, and scrapbook a bit.
  • I host (and co-host) a four times a year blogathon called Bloggiesta and a once a year celebration called Utah Book Month.
  • Favorites include: Josh Groban, thunderstorms, chocolate chip cookies, jeans and t-shirts, Prison Break, Walking Dead, Super Junior, authors, mountains, BBC shows, Tom Hiddleston, loud music and open windows.
  • Unfavorites: the dentist, cuss words, being late, hot days, celery, heights, sick kids, diets and getting old.
  • Favorite bookish things: YA, classics, historical fiction, science fiction and fantasy, lists of all sorts, accessible authors, swoony scenes, the Printz award, and Markus Zusak.
Here's what my rating scale means:

Five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ : One of the best books I've ever read!  Terrific, couldn't put it down

Four stars ★ ★ ★ ★: Very good. I really enjoyed it a lot.

Three stars ★ ★ ★ :  Good... I enjoyed it.

Two stars ★ ★ : It was okay, didn't love it, but didn't hate it. And there was some stuff that bugged me.

One star ★ : Would not recommend, poor and lost interest.

Here's where to find me:

Email: jenstusue AT yahoo DOT com

Review Policy:

I'm currently not accepting books for review as my interests have changed and I'm not reading much. Click here for a full explanation!

Books Read in 2007


99. Diary Queen by Catherine GIlbert Murdock. Rating: A Genre: YA Romance

98. Enthusisasm by Polly Shulman. Rating: A Genre: YA Romance

97. Rules by Cynthia Lord. Rating: A Genre: YA Fiction

96. The Remains of teh Day by Kazuo Ishiguro. Rating: B+ Genre: General Fict.

95. Coraline by Neil Gaiman. Rating: B+ Genre: YA SF

94. The Nether World by George Gissing. Rating: B+ Genre: Classic

93. Skipping Christmas by John Grisham. Rating: A Genre: General Fict.

92. The Underwood Sea by Michael Lawrence. Rating: A Genre: YA SF


91. Like Water For Chocolate by Laura Esquivel. Rating: B+. Genre: Lit. Fiction

90. Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale. Rating: A. Genre: YA fantasy

89. Party Princess (Princess Diaries Vol. VII) by Meg Cabot. Rating: B+. Genre: YA Romance

88. Twilight by Meg Cabot. Rating: A. Genre: YA paranormal

87. Things Hoped For by Andrew Clements. Rating: A Genre: YA

86. The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley. Rating: A
YA Fantasy

85. Haunted by Meg Cabot. Rating:A

84. Small Eternities by Michael Lawrence. Rating: A

83. An Assembly Such As This by Pamela Aidan. Rating: A-
Fan Fiction

82. Extras by Scott Westerfeld. Rating: A-

81. Mallory's Oracle by Carol O'Connell. Rating: B+


80. Darkest Hour by Meg Cabot. Rating: A-
YA paranormal

79. A Crack in the Line by Michael Lawrence. Rating: A-

78. Reunion by Meg Cabot. Rating: B+
YA paranormal

77. Love, Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. Rating: A
YA Lit. Fiction

76. Evening Class by Maueve Bincy. Rating: A-
Lit. Fiction

75. Things Not Seen by Andrew Clements. Rating: A
YA Fantasy

74. The Ninth Key by Meg Cabot. Rating: B
YA paranormal

73. Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell. Rating: A+

72. Paint the Wind by Pam Munoz Ryan. Rating: A-
YA Lit. Fiction

71. Diary of a Whimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney. Rating: B+
YA Lit. Fiction

70. Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins. Rating: A-
YA Lit. Fiction. Newberry Winner


69. Igrain the Brave by Cornelia Funke. Rating: B

YA Fantasy

68. Song of the Sparrow by Lisa Ann Sandell. Rating: A

YA Fantasy

67. Sea Glass by Anita Shreeve. Rating: A

Lit. Fiction

66. Shadowland by Meg Cabot. Rating: A-
YA paranormal

65. Code Orange by Caroline B. Cooney. Rating: B+
YA Adventure

64. The Old Willis Place by Mary Downing Hahn. Rating: A-
YA paranormal

63. Incantation by Alice Hoffman. Rating: B
YA Historical fiction.

62. Castle Dor by Arthur Quilerr-Courch and Daphne du Maurier. Rating: B+
Lit. Fiction.

61. Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner. Rating: A
Lit. Fiction, Pulitzer Prize 1972

60. How to Be Popular by Meg Cabot. Rating: B
YA romance


59. Ida Mae Tutweiler and the Traveling Tea Party by Ginnie Siena Bivona. Rating: B+


58. Getting the Girl by Markus Zusak. Rating: A-

YA Fiction

57. Beneath a Marble Sky by John Shors. Rating: A

historical fiction

56. The Stand by Stephen King. Rating A-

55. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer. Rating: A
YA paranormal fantasy/romance

54. The Rest Falls Away by Collen Gleason. Rating: A
Paranormal fantasy/romance

53. Fighting Ruben Wolfe by Markus Zusak. Rating: A
YA Fiction


52. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalad Hosseini. Rating: A
literary fiction

51. The Taker's Key by Martine Leavitt. Rating: B
YA Fantasy

50. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling. Rating: A
YA Fantasy

49. Possession, A Romance by A.S. Byatt. Rating: B+
literary fiction

48. Sixpence House by Paul Collins. Rating: A

47. I Am The Messenger by Markus Zaskak. Rating: A

46. All American Girl by Meg Cabot. Rating: B+
YA Romance

45. So Many Books, So Little Time by Sara Nelson. Rating: B+

44. Teen Idol by Meg Cabot. Rating: A
YA Romance

43. If You Can Talk, You Can Write by Joel Saltzman. Rating: A

42. The Prism Moon by Martine Leavitt. Rating: B+
YA Fantasy


41. Zorro by Isabel Allende. Rating: A
Contemporary Fiction

40. Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports by James Patterson. Rating: A

39. The Quilter's Apprentice by Jennifer Chiaverini. Rating: B+
Contemporary Fiction

38. The Dragon's Tapestry by Martine Bates (Leavitt). Rating: A

YA Fantasy

37. The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud. Rating: A
YA Fantasy

36. Austenland by Shannon Hale. Rating: A-

35. Papa Married a Mormon by John D. Fitzgerald. Rating: A
non-fiction memoir/biography

34. Heck Superhero by Martine Leavitt. Rating A-

33. Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt. Rating: A
YA Fantasy

32. The Pilot's Wife by Anita Shreeve. Rating: A-
contemporty fiction

31. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson. Rating: A-

30. The Lost City of Faar by D.J. MacHale. Rating: B
YA Fantasy

29. Pale Immortal by Anne Frasier. Rating: B+


28. Katherine by Anya Seton. Rating: A
historical romance

27. Maximum Ride: School's Out Forever by James Patterson: Rating: A
YA SF/Fantasy

26. Avalon High by Meg Cabot. Rating: B+

YA romance/fantacy

25. Nights of Rain and Stars by Maeve Binchy. Rating: A-

Literary Fiction

24. The Virgin Blue by Tracy Chevalier. Rating: A

Literary Fiction

23. Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson. Rating: A-
YA SF/Fantasy


22. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood. Rating: A

21. The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson. Rating: B+
Junior fiction

20. Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley. Rating: A-
YA fantasy

19. Willowwood by Mollie Hardwick. Rating: B+

18. A Modern Comedy by John Galsworthy. Rating: A-


17. The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George. Rating: A-
historical fiction

16. The Nanny Diaries by Emma Mclaughlin and Nicola Kraus. Rating: B-
contemporary fiction

15. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson Rating: A-
literary ficiton, Pulitzer Prize winner

14. The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis Rating: B

13. Yesterday's Love by Michele Ashman Bell Rating: B


12. Listening to Lions by Gloria Whelan Rating: B+
YA historical fiction

11. Fairest by Gail Carson Lavine Rating: A
YA fantasy

10. Kira-kira by Cynthia Kadohatu Rating: A
YA fiction: Winner Newbery Award

9. Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver Rating: A-
YA fantasy

8. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield Rating: A
literary fiction

7. Lion Boy by Zizou Corder Rating: A-
YA fantasy

6. The Eustace Diamonds by Anthony Trollope Rating: B


5. The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks Rating: A-

4. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak Rating: A
YA historical fiction

3. Point Blank by Anthony Horowitz Rating: B+
YA adventure

2. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse Rating: B

1. The Forsyte Saga by John Glasworthy Rating: A

All Time Favorites: An Ongoing List!

These are my five star, I love them with all of my heart, books! The cream of the crop. The books I push. The ones that make me smile with the memory of reading them. The ones I want to read over and over again. The ones that I wish I could read again for the first time. 

My favorites.

This list is organized by loose genre categories. I've decided to mix up the YA with the adult. Trust me, it won't matter. A good book, is a good book... YA or otherwise! Some of these are long time favorites, others new favorites. I'll add to the list as even more new favorites are discovered.

Favorite Classics
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Tess of the D'urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Middlemarch by George Eliot
The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Dodie Smith
The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy

Favorite Fantasies/Distopian/Paranormal
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien
Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
Finnikin of the Rock (and trilogy) by Marlina Marchetta
Pivot Point and Split Second by Kasie West
Daughter of Smoke and Bone (the whole trilogy) by Laini Taylor
Under the Never Sky (and trilogy) by Veronica Rossi
Legend (and trilogy) by Marie Lu
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson
The Queen's Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner
Poison Study by Maria V. Synder
The Name of the Wind (and trilogy) by Patrick Rothfuss

Favorite Historical Fiction
Katherine by Anya Seton
The Far Pavilions by M.M. Kaye
Pope Joan by Donna Wollfolk Cross
Sacajawea by Anna Lee Waldo
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park
All Truth That's In Me by Julie Berry
Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
These is My Words by Nancy Turner
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
Blackmoore by Julieanne Donaldson
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See

Favorite Horror/Sci Fi
Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova
The Hollow City by Dan Wells
The Passage by Justin Cronin
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Favorite Contemporary/Romance
Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Antsy Does Time by Neal Shusterman
The Distance Between Us by Kasie West
On the Fence by Kasie West
The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelsen
Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Sing Me to Sleep by Angela Morrison
I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

Favorite Literary Fiction
A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Life of Pi by Yann Martell
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wrobleski
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
Room by Emma Donoghue
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

Favorite Non Fiction/Memoir
Seabiscuit by Laura Hillendbrand
The Long Walk by Slavomir Rawicz
Coop by Michael Perry
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Sloot
84, Charring Cross Road by Helene Hanff
The Glass Castle by Janette Walls

And, if you're interested to know what my Top Ten Books have been over the years, here's that list:

Top Ten 2021

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

19th Century Lit Online Yahoo Group

Click HERE for a link to our group page.

Currently discussing:

The Ambassadors by Henry James

Future reads:

April 1: Armadale by Wilkie Collins
May 13: The Story of an African Farm by Olive Schreiner
June 3: Pan by Knut HamsunMcTeague by Frank Norris
The Marquise of O by Heinrich Von Kleist
The Wonderful Adventures of Mrs Seacole in Many Lands by Mary Seacole

Previous Reads:

Howard's End by E. M. Forster
Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte
Middlemarch by George Eliot
The Coming Race by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins
A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon
The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg by Mark Twain
Under the Greenwood Tree by Thomas Hardy
Dr. Wortle's School by Anthony Trollope
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
American Notes for General Circulation by Charles Dickens
Daniel Deronda by George Eliot
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser
East Lynne by Mrs. Henry Wood
The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy
The Odd Women by George Gissing
War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
Aurora Floyd by Mary Elizabeth Braddon
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte
Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll
The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot
Tess of the d'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
Villette by Charlotte Bronte
The Possessed (The Devils, The Demons) by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Maias by José Maria Eça de Queirós
The Red and the Black by Stendhal
Bleak House by Charles Dickens
The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy
Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
The Bostonians by Henry James
Persuasion by Jane Austen
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope
No Name by Wilkie Collins
The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Cousin Bette by Honore de Balzac
Uncle Silas by Sheridan LeFanu
Silas Marner by George Eliot
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
Effi Briest by Theodor Fontane
The Wings of the Dove by Henry James
The War of the World by H. G. Wells
The Law and the Lady by Wilkie Collins
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The Nether World by George Gissing
The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins
Eugenie Grandet by Honore de Balzac
The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad
The Dead Secret by Wilkie Collins
New Grub Street by George Gissing
The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell
Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev
Hester by Margaret Oliphant
The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad
Wylder's Hand by J. Sheridan Lefanu
Hunger by Knut Hamsun
The Island of Dr. Moreau by H. G. Wells
The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
The Eustace Diamonds by Anthony Trollope

Classic Books Online Yahoo Group

Click HERE for a link to our group page.

Currently working on:

A Modern Comedy by John Galsworthy


Feb 1 -“Berlin Alexanderplatz” by Alfred Döblin
Apr 1 -“A Passage to India” by E.M. Forster
May 1 -“Free Fall” by William Golding


1984 George Orwell
A Child's Christmas in Wales Dylan Thomas
A Modern Comedy John Galsworthy
A Room With a View E.M. Forster
A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens
Alice Adams Booth Tarkington
Anne of Green Gables L M Montgomery
Brideshead Revisited Evelyn Waugh
Cranford Elizabeth Gaskell
Doctor Zhivago Boris Pasternak
East of Eden John Steinbeck
Ivanhoe Sir Walter Scott
Madame Bovary Gustave Flaubert
Mansfield Park Jane Austen
My Antonia Willa Cather
Nutcracker ETA Hoffmann
O Pioneers! Willa Cather
Of Human Bondage Somerset Maugham
Persuasion Jane Austen
Peyton Place Grace Metalious
Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen
Rebecca Daphne DuMaurier
Rob Roy Sir Walter Scott
Tess of d'Urbervilles Thomas Hardy
The Christmas Books Charles Dickens
The Christmas Shoes Donna VanLiere
The Custom of the Country Edith Wharton
The Forsyte Saga John Galsworthy
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Hobbit JRR Tolkien
The House of the Dead Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Last Days of Pompeii Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton
The Portrait of a Lady Henry James
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
The Wind in the Willows Kenneth Grahame
Uncle Tom's Cabin Harriet Beecher Stowe
Vanity Fair William Makepeace Thackeray

Historical Fiction Online Yahoo Group

Click HERE for a link to our group page.

Previous Reads:

Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles (Margaret George)
Here Be Dragons (Sharon K Penman)
Russka (Edward Rutherfurd)
The Game of Kings (Dorothy Dunnett)
Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
Within the Fetterlock (Brian Wainwright)
Aztec (Gary Jennings)
The First Man in Rome (Colleen McCullough)
The Hound of the Baskervilles (Arthur Conan Doyle)
Alias Grace (Margaret Atwood)
The Egyptologist (Arthur Phillips)
The King Arthur Experiment (various)
The Agony and the Ecstasy (Irving Stone)
Queen of Swords (Judith Tarr)
One Thousand White Women (Jim Fergus)
Shogun (James Clavell)
Memoirs of Cleopatra (Margaret George)


The Book of Saladin (Tariq Ali)
The Sunne in Splendour (Sharon Kay Penman)
Katherine (Anya Seton)
The Far Pavillions (MM Kaye)

My Face to Face Group

What We've Read So Far


May: The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy
June: The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

Oct: The Color of Water by James McBride
Nov: The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
Dec: Angels and Demons by Dan Brown


Jan: Armadale by Wilkie Collins
Feb: At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon
Mar: Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Apr: A Thief of Time by Tony Hillerman
May: Emma by Jane Austen

Sept: Harry Potter and biography of choice
Oct: Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel
Nov: Seabiscuit by Laura Hillenbrand
Dec: The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith


Jan: Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
Feb. The Peacegiver by James L. Ferrell
Mar: Plain and Simple by Sue Bender
Apr: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
May: Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

Sept: Wisperings and Shattered by C.K. Bailey
Oct: Charms for the Easy Life by Kaye Gibbons
Nov: A Girl Named Zippy Haven Kimmel
Dec: P.G. Wodehouse books on Jeeves and his adventures


Jan: The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks
Feb: The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
Mar: The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
Apr: The Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All by Allan Gurganus
May: Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson

September: all three Stephenie Meyer books and Harry Potter #7
October: Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
November: Mallory's Oracle by Carol O'Connell
December: Skipping Christmas by John Grisham


Jan: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Feb: Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Mar: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Apr: 1776 by David McCoullough
May: Blessings by Anna Quindlin

September: Jodi Picoult books and Bill Bryson books
October: The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery
November: Blink by Malcolm Gladwell
December: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee


January: Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
February: The Princess and the Hound by Mette Ivie Harrison
March: Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
April: The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
May: Janette Rallison books

October: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
November: The Hunger Games and Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
December: Mrs. Mike by Benedict Freedman


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