As I mentioned in a post earlier, I would post my 'Book of the Year' and here it is. I need to specify that the lists are merely books I read this year and hence, are my favourites. Each book is unique and is a great story on its own. Actually when I started doing this for 2005, I asked myself this question - how could it possibly to list only one book when there are several genres out there? Because I did it for fun (and for myself) at that time, I ignored this question and went ahead to list one anyway. Trust me, it is a tough decision. It is like asking me to choose a piece of cake when there are a dozen of others with different designs and flavours! (I have a sweet tooth! Ha!)

So this time around, I told myself I have to be more specific and fair. Still, it is a tough decision to make. But I suppose it is for the best. Anyway, I have shortlisted the books and listed them into three categories (Fiction & Literature, Mystery & Crime/Thrillers and Fantasy). As I did not read a lot of romances or horror fictions this year, this explains why I left them out from the shortlisted list.

Well, I think I have rambled enough. Here are some of my favourite books:

Fiction & Literature
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
The Mango Season by Amulya Malladi
Veil of Roses by Laura Fitzgerald
Blind Submission by Debra Ginsberg
Loved Walked In by Marisa De Los Santos
The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani

Mystery & Crime/Thrillers
The Treatment by Mo Hayder
Sacred Cows by Karen E. Olson
No Time For Goodbye by Linwood Barclay
In the Woods by Tana French
The Likeness by Tana French
Out by Natsuo Kirino
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
Feast of Souls by C.S. Friedman
Enna Burning by Shannon Hale
Briar Rose by Jane Yolen (I classified this book under this category since it deftly blends the legend of Sleeping Beauty)
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

So... are you ready to read further?

My 'Book of the Year' under the Fiction & Literary category goes to... Blind Submission by Debra Ginsberg!
Reason: This book had me utterly speechless right after I finished the book. First, I was totally blown away by the plot, it is original and not to mention there is humor, intrigue and suspense in this story. What's more, I love reading books about books, and this is just one of them!

Another 'Book of the Year' under the Mystery & Crime/Thrillers category goes to... The Likeness by Tana French!
Reason: Her novels are always so intense and full of suspense. I remember I was "wowed" by her debut novel, In the Woods where it features a young boy and his other two friends have gone into the woods and disappeared. Twenty years later, the boy who came out alive became a detective, and the murder case he was asked to resolve reminds him of the childhood trauma so many years ago. In The Likeness, the protagonist (not to confuse with the protagonist from In the Woods) became the victim and although it is still a psychological suspense, it focus more on one's weakness and what it takes to be an undercover to find the killer. Seriously, this book really had me hooked from the beginning till the end!

Finally, the 'Book of the Year' under the Fantasy category goes to... Feast of Souls by C.S. Friedman!
Reason: I swear I had a hard time deciding on this one! Why? Because there are also books by big authors like Shannon Hale and Neil Gaiman, and both of them are my favourite authors! However, this book stood out among all because of the complex plot, the interesting cast of characters and what's more, this is a story about sorcery and magic. It is believed that the darkness does not lies from the magical power but within the hearts of men instead (I love stories that deals with humanity). As usual, it is the good versus the evil and I am already looking forward to the next instalment already!

So this is it! Goodbye 2008! Here's to another great reading year!

18 Responses
  1. Anonymous Says:

    I loved Kite Runner too. Even A thousand spledid suns was amazing. I am going to look for 'Love walked in' this weekend.

  2. Alice Says:

    I love the list, Melody! Looks like I'm going to have to start on my copy of Feast of Souls soon! :D

    I'm also looking forward to reading some of the titles you've already listed here for my 999 Challenge. What a lovely coincidence!

  3. Ana S. Says:

    lol, I love your cake analogy :P

    And I really like your choices, especially the fantasy ones. The only one I haven't read is actually Feast of Souls. I'll have to amend that!

  4. Josette Says:

    Wow, I'm so adding these books to my Books-to-buy list! I want to be blown away by them too.

    I've watched The Kite Runner movie. Really touching and sad. Friendship is indeed a beautiful thing.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    The Kite Runner is one of my favorite all time novels - so touching.

  6. Ladytink_534 Says:

    I've only read The Thirteenth Tale but these all are ones that I've thought about picking up.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    You have successfully sold Blind Submission to me! :)

  8. The Bookworm Says:

    I'm adding Blind Submission to my wish list now.
    Happy New Year :)

  9. Shana Says:

    Great list, Melody. I especially enjoy your Fiction & Literature recommendations!


  10. Melody Says:

    Violet - I'm hoping to watch the movie adaptation of The Kite Runner soon. I hope you'll enjoy reading Love Walked In. :)

    Alice - Oh, I'm glad to hear you've a copy of Feast of Souls! Go read it! :D

    Nymeth - I can't resist writing about that cake analogy, LOL. And I really hoping that you'll pick up Feast of Souls soon. I think you might like it. :)

    Josette - Indeed friendship is a beautiful thing! I hope you'll enjoy these books as much as I do!

    Stephanie - Yes! There are a few touching scenes that made me sniff.

    Jen - That's great! :) I can't wait to hear what you'll think of them after you've decided to read them.

    Matt - I'm glad to hear that! :D

    Naida - 'Yay' about the adding the book to your wishlist! And Happy New Year to you too! :)

    Shana - Thanks! I'd much fun doing it!

  11. I know what you mean, Melody! Sometimes you have to sample all the cakes. Haha!

    I can see why many of the titles made your shortlist. Some I have read and others I hope to one day read.

    You've reminded me that I need to get my copy of Likeness back from the person I loaned it to . . .

    I hope you have a wonderful New Year!

  12. Iliana Says:

    I have to break my favorites into categories too. I just can't seem to narrow my lists down :)

    I'm so excited to see In the Woods and The Likeness on your lists - I'll be posting my favorites soon and those are going to be on it. Well, especially In the Woods - I think I liked the first one better. See, I'm still struggling with that :)

    I definitely have Blind Submission on my wish list Melody. I remember when you first blogged about it and it does sound like a winner.

  13. Melody Says:

    Wendy - Oh, I'm hoping you'd read The Likeness soon! Can't wait to hear your thoughts on it! :)

    Iliana - I can't wait to see your list! I admit I had difficulties narrowing down those list, but I had to do it, right? ;)

    I'm hoping you'd enjoy Blind Submission as much as I did!

  14. Wow! Even with genres I'm not sure I could pick favorites. :) I have been wanting to read Briar Rose for a while now--will have to check it out!

  15. Julia Says:

    Congrats to all the books you have accomplished this years! That lot of books!! Good luck to the new books you be reading soon for the challenge :)

  16. Marg Says:

    I am so glad to see Blood of Flowers on your list. I loved that book when I read it a while ago.

  17. Melody Says:

    Trish - Trust me, I'd a hard time deciding on one, but oh it was so much fun! LOL. I'm hoping you'd read Brian Rose soon!

    Julia - Thank you! :) It was fun, and I'm looking forward to this year's reading. :)

    Marg - I really enjoyed reading Blood of Flowers! I'm hoping to read more by this author.

  18. Marg Says:

    Me too. I have no idea when her next book is out though.

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