Since 2014 is just around the corner, I figured it's about time I put up a list of books I'd like to read to kick off the new year right! Usually, I make a list of 30 to start with and go from there, but I've noticed I often stray far and wide from that long of a list. So, I decided to make it more focused in hopes that books I really want to read won't get lost among others. Here are the top ten (always subject to change and in no particular order, of course):
1. The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt. I will begin the new year with this one because it is hot, hot, hot right now; I own it already; and it's a Chunkster, which I love and had chosen to apply to the reading challenge I signed up for this year - the Chunkster Challenge.
2. The Storyteller, by Jodi Picoult. I love Jodi Picoult, but haven't really read anything of hers lately. I've heard many say her writing/ideas have gone downhill and that The Storyteller is a major comeback to her usual self. I don't know about all that, but I'm hearing good stuff, so I definitely want to read this one. Plus, at 460 pages, it counts as a Chunkster...yep, another for my reading challenge. I hadn't even put it on my list of possibilities for the Chunkster Challenge because I hadn't realized it fit the rules. Bonus!
3. Death of Bees, by Lisa O'Donnell. This is a newbie to the TBR pile. I've read numerous blog reviews praising both the story and the writing, particularly the book's gripping opening lines.
4. gods at war, by Kyle Idleman. I've read this Christian nonfiction author previously and this book has been on my TBR for the past year. The idea behind the book is that there are many things that fight for your attention, for your heart, for the glory that rightfully belongs to God. This book will be a great piece to carry over my 2013 goal of taking a good look at myself. There's always room for improvement.
5. The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien. This one is taught at my school (not by me) and holds that weighty literary merit feel...I feel like I should've read it by now.
6. The Memory Keeper's Daughter, by Kim Edwards. Numbers one through four on this list have been newer books, but this one comes from a longstanding position on my TBR list. I tried to get around to it in the fall, but didn't. So here it is, up front and ready.
7. Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides. Meets the Chunkster Challenge, although I didn't realize it, and it's another longstanding TBR book. My secondary challenge is to read from my TBR list as much as possible! Need I say more?
8. One Thousand Gifts, by Ann Voskamp. If this book sounds familiar, you're not crazy. This is at least the third time it's been on my blog. It was on my top ten for 2013 and I've decided it will be a New Year reread every year. It has a message I feel is detrimental to my life and I want to make sure I keep it fresh in mind. I may not review it (I did a mini review as part of a series of personal posts in April 2013 - see here), but the topic will come up again whether I do a review or not, I promise.
9, 10, 11. Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant by Veronica Roth. I WILL read Divergent by March when the movie comes out. I've always intended to read this book, but knew I had to wait for all books in the series to come out first. My memory doesn't hold detail well enough to wait a year or so for a new book in a series. I hear there is a fourth book coming in the summer (?), but figure if I spend March reading these three, June isn't that far away. So this is more like an 11 book list. And guess what? All three books meet the Chunkster Challenge Rules.
This is quite opposite of how I started my reading last year. For 2013, I started with quite a few smaller books to get my count up quickly, kind of motivating myself. Surpassing my reading goal by eight books in 2013 has been motivation enough to up my Goodreads goal and "go big or go home."
Two things I know for sure. This is going to be a great start to my reading for the year. And I've totally miscounted the number of chunksters I typically read (I think I looked to higher page numbers than 450 when I counted this past year's chunksters). But with five books on this list that I didn't expect to be chunksters when I made my original goal, I think I need to up my goal for the Chunkster Challenge!
What's on your list for the start of 2014?