10 books you should read this year


Is your goal for this year to read more books? (My goal is!) If you need ideas, here are 10 books I have read and loved (in no particular order):

1. White Oleander by Janet Fitch. Don’t be fooled by the film. This novel is a great read and can be truly inspirational when it comes to surviving hard times and following your dreams. My favorite quote; Never apologize, never explain. In particular, I like the descriptive language used. There are so many great images and beautiful words!

2. A piece of Cake by Cupcake Brown. This memoir is about a girl who has a rough start on her life in various foster homes. Her voice is so gripping and she has been through so much! What I find inspirational about this book is how she manages to put her life together and study law. If you need some motivation, just read this!

3. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami. I didn’t think Murakami was something for me. I believed it to be sci-fi and way too spaced out. This was until I read Norwegian Wood. Mainly, I just wanted to know what all the fuss was about. I didn’t regret it, and it ended up being one of my favorite reads this year. This novel is everything; romantic, sexy, inspirational, whimsy, mysterious, happy and sad. If you haven’t read it yet, I truly recommend this book to be your first in 2010!

4. The glass Castle by Jeanette Walls is yet another memoir. It’s really interesting and vivid and deep. We follow Jeanette while growing up, with her artist mother and alcoholic father. This could sound dull and tragic, but this book is filled with great adventures, love and the imagination of a little girl.

5. On the Road by Jack Kerouac. You have probably read this already. And if you haven’t yet, then you should! What I like about this book is the craziness, the adventures and the longing to live outside the box. I love this quote; “The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn…” Who doesn’t want to be one of those people?

6. Never let me go by Kazou Ishiguro. I really really like this book. It is so different. We follow the childhoods of children living at a boarding school. But they are not regular children, and this is no regular boarding school. I don’t want to reveal the twist here, but trust me, this is one of the greatest novels I have ever read.

7. The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides. I know you have all seen the Sofia Coppola film, but don’t let this novel go just because you have seen the film. I think the novel is just as great! I can also recommend Middlesex by the same author. He draws some awesome pictures in his books!

8. Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl. This is a great novel, with some awesome personal relationships and lots of visual images. It is also full of literary quotes and references, perfect for a book lover like me! Each chapter is even named after a classic novel!

9. Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. My favorite book of 2009! Based upon a true story, this novel is truly great. The author, in the novel named Lin, has escaped prison in Australia and is now hiding in India. His adventures and experiences are dangerous, filled with great relationships, funny and sad. But most of all, I think this books gives a great picture of India. The slums, the people, the drugs, the mafia, the colors, the smells, the life, the death, the history, the danger and the joy. The book is huge, but truly worth the effort.

10. The book Thief by Markus Zusak. This book is about death. And life. And it’s about the love for books and the second world war. There are so many sweet moments in this story, but also dangerous moments and a lot of tension. And I really like the way it is written. I’ve heard of people staying up all night to read this, and I can totally understand why!

And here are some novels I have bought recently, but have yet to read:

Can you recommend me some great novels?


{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna January 2, 2010 at 12:17 am

Oh, thanks for doing this post! Very handy for me, considering one of my new years resolution for 2010 is to read more. I’m checking out these titles in my local library catalogue right… now.


Sarah January 2, 2010 at 6:55 am

Thanks for the suggestions – I added them to the 300+ books already on my wishlist!


Sundari Carmody January 2, 2010 at 12:30 pm

I also plan on reading more this year. I haven’t finished Shantaram (I started in 2008!) and I feel like I should.

I really enjoyed Norwegian Wood also. It was great. Have you read The Wind Up Bird Chronicle? I read that first and loved it. I plan on buying another of his books. Your suggestions of Jack Kerouac’s On The Road and the Virgin Suicides are definitely going on my list.

Great list.


Jodi January 2, 2010 at 5:54 pm

Oh my goodness On the Road is wonderful! If you like that one you might like Dharma Bums as well which is written superbly. More reading is always my goal. I’ve been thinking of starting an online book club. Kind of like a read and discuss type of thing. Would anybody be interested? :)


Jodi January 3, 2010 at 8:52 pm

Yay! I know I feel the same way. It would be really nice to discuss!
Ah this is so exciting :) I’ll probably set it up on my blog really soon, so I’ll definitely keep you posted.
And of course I read your blog, it’s wonderful.. thanks for replying!


emma January 4, 2010 at 10:25 pm

hello lovely!

the book thief and the virgin suicides are two of my favourite books.

my recommendations to you are:

jonathon safron foer – read extremely loud first as it is easier to get into, then everything is illuminated. he has a way with words like no other author.

audrey niffenegger – the time travellers wife and her fearful symmetry. absolute musts if you havent already read

scarlett thomas – the end of mr y. a bit of a strange one, but my most favourite book ever.

donna tartt- the secret history. an absolute classic. brilliant

if you have time, please check out my new vintage shop




[z:six] January 5, 2010 at 5:36 am

Great recommendations! I’m hoping to read more this year as well, and will definitely keep your list in mind when I head to the library.

Here are some of my recommendations:-
Life of Pi; Yann Martel
Totto-chan; Tetsuko Kuroyanagi
The Secret Life of Bees; Sue Monk Kidd
The Time Traveller’s Wife; Audrey Niffenegger


Jessica January 18, 2010 at 2:05 am

Just found your blog over the weekend.
As soon i finished reading this post, i ran to the library and picked up White Oleander & The glass castle.
Started reading White Oleander this morning and i litteraly had to force myself to put the book down to come and write this comment :)
I am adding your link on my blog !
Hopefully we’ll stay in touch and i’m looking forward to all your future reading suggestions !



Angel September 2, 2010 at 5:41 pm

oh yea, read more!!! that’s my new semester resolution as well. soulmate again! lol
I know Norwegian Wood actually. it’s also popular in China when I was in high school. but sad that I didn’t really read the whole book, just read the description and brief. shame on me.
so my resolution of this year is not only “read more” but also “do more!”
so my conclusion or inspiration of this post should be
“Thinking is not valuable until you actually start acting!”
Thanks for implying that to me!!! :)


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