Monday, December 15, 2008

So what was your favourite new book this year?

I'm getting ready for my book chat meeting this week. We'll be sharing our favourite new books of 2008 with each other. I'm having a lot of trouble picking.

There've been a few new entries in ongoing mystery series that I've quite enjoyed.

Devil Bones, by Kathy Reichs was a gripping entry into the Temperance Brennan series. It was sadly lacking in Andrew Ryan activity, but otherwise lived up to the usual excitement of the series.

Careless in Red, by Elizabeth George was something of a departure from the usual for Thomas Lynley and Barbara Havers, but that was all to the good, as I felt that it rejuvenated a flagging series.

For teens, I haven't even gotten around to reviewing some of the books that I've loved this year.

The Summoning, by Kelley Armstrong will, I think, offer some relief to fans of Twilight who are missing the series now that it is done. Plus, it is better written, and only the first in a series that promises to be a page-turning supernatural thriller.

Would You, by Marthe Jocelyn tackles a difficult topic with a wry humour that has the reader laughing and crying throughout.

Little Brother, by Cory Doctorow, which I did review, is a 1984 for a new generation.

For kids, I just don't know. I haven't found many of the picture books I've looked at particularly inspiring. There hasn't been a Grumpy Bird to steal my heart yet this year.

I'm still thinking. This has been both an excellent and a disappointing year for books.

So what about you? What have been some of your favourites?


Monica said...

Hands down, the Book of Negroes by Laurence Hill. It was engaging and compelling. His ability to capture the maturing voice of a negro woman at the aging stages of her life was incredible. I felt her joy, her fear, her hope and her growing acceptance of her life and legacy. By far a book that I will recommend to many for a long time.

MadJenny said...

I've been hearing great things about this book. I'm on the waiting list for it at the library, and I can't wait. Lawrence Hill was interviewed on CBC one day a couple weeks ago, and he sounded like a fascinating guy.

ru said...

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. I loved it so much that I was inspired to do two things: resume my personal habit of longhand correspondence in the new year and plan an entire quarter of book club meetings based around epistolary novels.

oh, and if you were having second thoughts, don't bother reading brides of the impaler by edward lee. full of terribly naughty sex, but most of it is with dirty homeless girls, so it loses its edge...

False Prophet said...

Lawrence Hill is a nice guy in person too--he was at HPL for our One City Many Stories kickoff. Humble, gracious and erudite.

This year I liked Havemercy for giving the genre of adult fantasy a well-deserved kick in the ass. I gleefully anticipate the authors' next book.

I found most of The Cellist of Sarajevo to be maudlin but the chapters dealing with Arrow, the female Bosnian sniper, were extremely compelling.

Implied Spaces was a creative science fiction novel with a not-so-subtle (but good-natured) poke at the MMORPG, LARP and recreationist communities.

How Jesus Became Christian was a very informative take on the development of early Christianity and the contemporary culture of Judaism which influenced and interacted with it. The author's bias, however, made the conclusion a bit too much of a manifesto. And a kind of redundant one at that. ("What? 2000 years of anti-Semitism has its foundation in the New Testament? I'm shocked! Shocked, I tell you!")

faerie-writer said...

My favourite new YA books this year have been Melissa Marr's 'Ink Exchange,' Elizabeth C. Bunce's 'A Curse Dark as Gold,' Karen Bass's 'Run Like Jager' and Maggie Stiefvater's 'Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception.'