With hours to go until 2014, I’ve decided to look back at some memorable books from 2013. This isn’t meant to be a best-of (or worst-of) list–they’re simply books that were weirdly notable in some way:
The Lord of Opium by Nancy Farmer: 11 years is a long time to wait! And I still haven’t read it.
The Sequel I Didn’t Need, But it Was Good Anyway
Son by Lois Lowry: yes, I was very nervous about the Gabe-as-a-teenager thing, but it all worked out.
The Better-Than-Its-Prequel Sequel
Unlucky Charms by Adam Rex: wonderfully timey-wimey, with less character confusion and more irreverence than Cold Cereal.
Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick: if the title doesn’t creep you out, the cover should. High-quality minimalist horror.
Best Animal and Household Appliance Mashup
Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo: finally, a vacuum cleaner I can support, and a well-deserving squirrel hero.
The Masterpiece I Didn’t Understand
The Thing About Luck by Cynthia Kadohata: I must be the only one who didn’t like this book. I couldn’t even finish it–the writing seemed sloppy, or maybe I just need books with strong, non-meandering plots.
The “Eh” Book I Really Liked
Most Anticipated Companion Novel
Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein, of course.
Most Disappointing Series Conclusion
The Grimm Conclusion by Adam Gidwitz: needs a heaping dose of subtlety.
Yes, if it’s The Mouse With the Question Mark Tail by Richard Peck. He somehow makes the well-trod premise wholly original.
Deceptively Simple, Yet Somehow Effective
The Book(s) with an Interminable Waiting List
Boxers and Saints by Gene Luen Yang: it’ll be Christmas 2014 by the time my library request arrives.