Friday, January 10, 2014

2013 Reading List, Part Two

I made a New Year's resolution a few years ago to read a book a month. I kept it that year, and have kept it up since! Lots of the things I read are trash and just for entertainment (#truth). Sometimes I push myself to read a classic or something that I feel will enrich me in some way. Occasionally I find an author I love and devour everything they've written before moving on. My favorite book of all time is The Lord of the Rings trilogy but I'm just as likely to read a Shopaholic book! 

The vast majority of what I read is what I can get for free on my Kindle app through the Louisville public library. Do other cities have a service like this??? It's freakin awesome. You can borrow up to three books at a time and after two weeks the books just expire. It is 100% free and there are no trips to the library to return books and zero chance of late fees! Loves it.

So, with all of that said, here is the second half of my 2013 list. You can see the first half of my list here. Maybe you will find a new book that you'd like to read and hopefully I'll get a few recommendations from you of what I should read next!!

90-Day Geisha by Chelsea Haywood -  This book was recommended to me by my library website and I loved it. It's about an all-American girl who spends some time as a Tokyo hostess. It was really interesting to see the private world of the Tokyo clubs from an insider's perspective. One trip that I MUST make someday is to Japan to see the cherry blossoms and to have my own (increasingly rare) geisha sightings. So interesting!

Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella - Like all of her books, this is a light, entertaining and quick read. Enjoyable and fun, I read everything she writes!

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan - The library recommended this one to me after I loved 90-Day Geisha and, eh, it is okay. It's supposed to be "an insider's look at the Asian JetSet" but it definitely read a little more like a typical fictional chick lit story than a realistic/gritty behinds the scenes type thing. Maybe, if I had known that going in, I would have liked it more!

Cornbread Mafia by James Higdon - Loved this book. It's an in-depth look at the largest marijuana bust in US history which just happened to be based here in Kentucky. I learned SO much about the history of the state and the Louisville area, too. I think it would have been fascinating, even if I didn't live here, though! I talked about it so much that I wound up with a "Run Johnny Run" t-shirt as a Christmas gift (a reference to the head honcho on the book cover who is still on the lam!)! Haha!

Evening Bags and Executions,  Clutches and Curses, Shoulder Bags and Shootings, Tote Bags and Toe Tags by Dorothy Howell - These books are all part of a series that centers around a character named Haley Randolph. She is a flighty, handbag obsessed woman who keeps finding herself accidentally associated with murder. They are sort of fashion/mystery novels which are sometimes flippant but definitely entertaining and fun. They are perfect reads for the elliptical and I flew through these four back to back on my library app.

The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis - This is the first book in a trilogy that centers on character Nina Borg, a public health nurse, mom and compulsive do-gooder who can't say no to a person in need of help. It is set in Denmark and is an interesting mystery involving child trafficking, murder, danger and deceit. It kind of reminds me of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, same kind of quirkiness by Scandinavian authors, if that makes sense. Has the same kind of feel like maybe a little bit has been lost in translation? I enjoyed it and moved on to the second installment of the trilogy, below.
Invisible Murders by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis - The second installment of the Nina Borg trilogy, this one was definitely different than the first. Invisible Murders also takes place in Denmark and has the same Scandinavian feel. It is a mystery and adventure story that involves terrorism, gypsy refugees and radiation poisoning. The Nina Borg character is a little bit un-killable, like Jack Bauer on 24 or Robert Langdon in the Da Vinci Code series, but I don't mind suspending disbelief for the sake of entertainment! LOL! I'm on the wait list for the third installment now!

Locked in Time by Lois Duncan - The library recommended this one for me after I read a few mysteries in a row. I realized after I was about 2/3 of the way through it that it is a young adult/teenager selection... oh well! LOL! It's about a 17 year-old girl who moves into a Civil War mansion in Louisiana with her dad and step mom after her mother dies. There's all kinds of creepiness and hints of something sinister. Not a super complicated nor difficult to figure out mystery, but I think my older daughter would really like it! 

So I read a total of 21 books in 2013! Not bad! There was definitely a lot of fluff but I read some really challenging and intellectually stimulating things, too! I'm already working on my first book of 2014 and would love some suggestions if you know something I must read! 

Do you see anything here that you'd like to read? Have you read anything fantastic lately??


  1. One day when my girls are little older I'll get to read like I use to! I'm hoping to read a book a month this year and I think a couple on here will definitely be read! thanks for sharing! I do love a good book!

    1. A book a month really is doable and I was surprised at how much I had MISSED reading once I really started doing it again! Hope you find the time to stick with it! :D

  2. The Boy in the Suitcase sounds like an interesting read! But I never have time to read books anymore - the ones that I've bought in the last few years are just sitting on my bookshelf collecting dust. :( So while I don't have any recommendations of recent works, I will instead share my favorite book: The Green Mile by Stephen King.

    1. Oh, my husband is a major Stephen King collector! We have that one (and every other one) around here, but I don't think that I've read it! I'm definitely going to now! Thanks!!