I'm home sick today, so why not talk about books? That's what I would have done all day anyways :) (that, or help people use the internet.... the joys of public libraries!)
I've continued with the whole 'keeping track of my books' thing, and I like it. As knitting, running, etc picks up, reading definitely slows down. But that's okay - I read a lot of great books this year anyways. Enough to do a top 10? Maybe... Turns out I made it to 6! 6 favourite books of 2011!
Favourite books of 2011:
1. Name of the Wind
I'm only a geek when it suits me. The rest of the time I'm just .... Someone who enjoys XKCD. But when I saw this author mentioned in Library Journal, I thought it sounded like something I'd enjoy. I was so right. I will buy this book. I don't tend to be a big fan of 'high fantasy'. It's all too long and complex. Wordy might be what I mean. Names that are 30 letters long and all look the same. This isn't like that. This book is awesome. It's written as the main character is narrating the story of his life to a scribe.
2. The Wise Man's Fear
Part two of the Kingkiller Chronicles. Almost as good as the first. I really can't wait to re-read them. I waited and waited and waited for this book. Something like 2 months! (even library staff have to wait!) It was so worth it. It was a bit more work, maybe even a bit of a slog through some of it. But in the meanwhile, I'll be doing the "when's the next book?!?!?" dance. Often.
3. Still Life
When I started my weird mystery kick, people kept recommending Louise Penny. I didn't get around to reading any of her books until this summer. I enjoyed them enough that I read all of them throughout the remainder of the year. Her books take place in Quebec, mostly in a small village called Three Pines. There's a lot of commentary on Franco/Anglo issues, and a lot of uniquely Canadian things. (Hello Double-double, I love you as a culturally identifiable drink. Just ew, I'll take a tea, thanks.) I thought they were really well written, and I enjoyed the humour too.
4. Geek Wisdom
My boss actually told me about this book! She's got a much better grasp of current events/pop culture than I do. I'm not enough of a geek to know all the references in this book. Like I mentioned, I don't read fantasy. I don't watch things like Star Wars. But when I saw a whole page devoted to "The cake is a lie", I won't deny it. I squeeed like a small child. (and I don't even play Portal?!) It was a quick fun read while still being interesting and even a bit thought-provoking.
5. The Sisters Brothers
I'm on the fence about this one. I just finished it a few days ago, and I enjoyed it.... But I'm not sure that I enjoyed it in a '2 major awards' sort of way. There was one chapter that just ruined it for me. I was determined to finish, so I kept on with it... But at that point, I just didn't want to. But I absolutely love the cover, so a big gold star for that! And congrats on the awards. Had that awful chapter been omitted, I would not have disagreed. Maybe I have delicate sensibilities.
6. Started Early, Took My Dog
Not Kate Atkinson's best, I don't think. But even when not her best, still excellent. I adore Kate Atkinson's writing style. Her characters are fantastic, and you're always left guessing. A friend/former colleague described her books as quirky British mysteries, and it's the perfect description. Lots of characters, lots of inter-connected plot, but well done. Very well done.