My 13 Top Picks from 2013

Oh, how to narrow down the dozens of awesome books that came out this year?  There were 27 books published this year that I enjoyed well enough to give 4- or 5-stars.  27!  So, I tried to pick only 13 and give you a bit of an idea of what I enjoyed so much about them.


The Hero's Guide to Storming the Castle (The League of Princes #2)The Hero’s Guide To Storming the Castle by Christopher Healy
MG epic fantasy
I loved the world of The Hero’s Guide, loved the characters, loved the clever, witty humor, and loved how just downright FUN it was.

A Tangle of KnotsA Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
MG magic realism
I loved the twist of magic, how all the characters’ stories wove together, and — of course — the yummy recipes. Recommended for fans of Matilda.

Hokey PokeyThe Hokey Pokey by Jerry Spinelli
MG fantasy
I loved the nostalgia of childhood that flowed from these pages, the fun that the author had with words, and the end was pretty cute, too.


The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2)Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
YA real-world fantasy
I loved this one for the multi-dimensional characters and their relationships with one another.

Strands of Bronze and GoldStrands of Bronze and Gold by Jane Nickerson
debut YA folk tale retelling
I loved this one for the lovely language and how it kept me on edge, wondering, and guessing. Recommended for fans of Entwined.

The Madness Underneath (Shades of London, #2)The Madness Underneath by Maureen Johnson
YA paranormal
I loved the fun twist of creepy and clever, of macabre and mundane, and the cool concept made even more awesome with each plot twist.

Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School, #1)Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carringer
YA historical paranormal
I loved how witty and clever the author was, and how vividly and unapologetically she built this world of steampunk and secrecy.

Shades of Earth (Across the Universe, #3)Shades of Earth by Beth Revis
YA sci-fi
Though as a general rule, I tend not to like final books of series, this one I loved b/c it not only lived up to my expectations, but surpassed them.


Steelheart (Reckoners, #1)Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
Adult sci-fi
I loved this one for the sheer sci-fi awesomeness of the concept, and the twists and turns that the plot took. Recommended for fans of Ready Player One.

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler
debut Adult biographical novel
I love reading about the Fitzgeralds and their fascinating life and the era they defined.

The Honest Toddler: A Child's Guide to ParentingThe Honest Toddler: A Child’s Guide to Parenting by Bunmi Laditan
debut Adult nonfiction parenting humor
I loved this book for being a hilarious parody of every parenting book I’ve ever read, and giving me a laugh when I desperately needed one.

A Noble GroomA Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund
Adult Christian historical romance
I love — ocassionally — a good Christian historical romance, and this was definitely a good one, with lots of great historical info and a heart-wrenching romance.

The Ghost BrideThe Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo
debut Adult historical fantasy
I loved how this book was nothing like I’d read all the rest of the year, how atmospheric the entire thing was, and how I felt I actually learned something from it.


About WNK

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