The Best Books of 2012

It’s been way too long since I have blogged about anything. But seeing as it’s the end of the year, I thought I would blog about my favorite books this year. So here we go in no particular order:

The End Of Your Life Book Club – was an amazing book. It’s about a man whose mother is diagnosed with pancreatic cancer (terminal). Her son (the author) goes to the hospital with her for her chemo. They turn it into a book club. They read together and discuss books and life. Through those discussions and the choices they make in what to read, they connect and communicate in a way that probably would not have otherwise been possible. The book was touching and amazing. 

The Racketeer – I have to say that I had given up on John Grisham books. They became formulaic and I got tired of reading about basically the same character all the time. But I picked up The Racketeer and was drawn in from the first page. It reminds me of the firm. The plotting is tight and the idea is original. It harkens back to why I loved Grisham so much. I thought I had it figured it, then it went in a new direction. Loved it. 

The Art Forger – BA Shapiro takes on one of my favorite topics – art. The story is about an artist who had been in a scandal in the art world and was still trying to recover. She is approached by a gallery owner with a proposition – paint a forgery of a painting that was stolen from the Gardener Museum in 1990. I don’t want to say any more than that. The book is fantastic. 

Wild – a memoir of a woman with no experience hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. She chooses to do it to get away from her flirtation with heroin and the death of her mother. It’s a story of personal redemption and forgiveness. It was not my favorite book of the year, but it’s definitely in the top ten. I could identify with a lot of what she went through and I respect her immensely for tackling such a momentous trek. 

Gone Girl – I won’t say much about the plot for those who haven’t read it. I don’t want to give anything away. I will say this – I saw NONE of the plot twists coming and each one was bigger than the last. An insane roller coaster ride in which you’re never quite sure what’s up or down. 

The Expats – a modern spy novel. Again a novel with crazy plot twists. Fast paced and unexpected, it’s a really good spy story. The basic plot is a woman CIA agent leaves the agency so her husband can take a job in Luxemborg. The question becomes whether her husband is a banker…..or something else. 

Defending Jacob – What would you do if your son was accused of murdering a classmate? That is the basic premise of Defending Jacob. The book rests on the riddle of whether he actually committed the crime, how the parents believe what they do, and how everyone justifies what they did. An engrossing tale.

Watergate – Thomas Mallon’s fictional take on what really happened. The book was intriguing and written in such a manner that it seems like he was a fly on the wall for most of the events. He paints a vivid picture of the people and the time. I savored every word. 

11/22/63 – probably my favorite book of the year and made me love Stephen King all over again. A time-traveling tale of preventing the Kennedy Assassination. A love story. A sci fi adventure. All wrapped into one. Awesome in size and task. It’s a must-read.

The Paris Wife – a lovely tale about Hemingway and his first wife, Hadley and their time in Paris. I adored this book. One of my favorites. I will read it again. 

There it is. My favorite books this year. Hopefully I can provide some inspiration if you are stuck in a reading rut. Happy reading!

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