Best Books of 2014

A Month of Favorites

Top Ten Tuesday

And…drumroll…it’s time for the Best Books of 2014! 

My Best Books of 2014 have some similarities this year:

  • Exquisite writing 
  • Twisty, turny plots 
  • Debut authors (3 in my Top 10, 2 of my Honorable Mentions)
  • New to me authors (all but 1 of my Top 10 and Honorable Mentions)

Shannon at River City Reading made the point that most of us have been trumpeting our favorite books of 2014 for awhile now (if not in one, consolidated list), so what else can we really say about them? So, I thought I’d pretend I was back in high school and award yearbook style “Superlatives” to my favorite 2014 books!

On to the winners….

Best Books of 2014

The Best Book of 2014

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin (review)
Most Likely to Be Added to My All-Time Favorites List
Most “Quotable”

The Rest of the Top Ten

Back Channel by Stephen L. Carter, Historical Fiction (review)
Most Thinly Veiled Nonfiction
Best Female Heroine

Bittersweet by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore, Fiction (review)
Most Backstabbing P
lot Twists
Best Example of Wealthy People Behaving Badly

Black Chalk by Christopher J. Yates, Fiction (review)
Biggest Surprise of the Year
Most Friends You Can’t Trust

My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff, Memoir (review)
Most Likely to Remind You of “Mad Men” 

Natchez Burning by Greg Iles, Historical Fiction (review)
Biggest Collection of Evil

Reunion by Hannah Pittard, Fiction (review)
Funniest Take on Step-Families
Most Irreverent

Shotgun Lovesongs by Nickolas Butler, Fiction (review)
Most Likely to Make You Long for Home
Best Portrayal of Male Friendship

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, Fiction (review)
Most Deserving of All the Hype
Scariest “Could Possibly Happen in Real Life” Scenario

The Wife, The Maid, and The Mistress by Ariel Lawhon, Historical Fiction (review)
Most Recommended Book of the Year
Best Example of My New Favorite Genre (Fiction Based on True Crime)

The Honorable Mentions

Best Books of 2014 - Honorable Mentions

An Untamed State by Roxane Gay, Fiction (review)
Most Likely to Leave You in Emotional Pieces

Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy by Karen Abbott, Nonfiction (review)
Most Entertaining War Book

The Martian by Andy Weir, Science Fiction (review)
Most Likely to Make You Like Science Fiction
Best “Main Character” Personality

What were your favorite books of 2014?

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  1. Diane@BibliophilebytheSea wrote:

    I love these year end TOPS lists. I’m working on mine.

    I also enjoyed: The Wife, The Maid, and The Mistress

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  2. Great list! I really like that you did something a little different 🙂

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  3. I completely agree with your choice of AJ Fikry. I’m going to buy myself a copy of Station Eleven, it’s not my normal type of book, but everyone is raving about it, so I have to read it 🙂 Great list!

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
    • admin wrote:

      Definitely try Station 11 – it wasn’t my type of book either and I loved it!

      Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  4. Carmen wrote:

    Nice sentence summaries. You’re right, most of them have been on your previous lists coming up to this one. Great list! I added a few to my TBR list.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  5. I do want to read Station Eleven, once the hype has died down a little bit. I have yet to come across a negative review of it. I also want to read Karen Abbott and Andy Weir. My favorites this year were two classics, To Kill a Mockingbird and All Quiet on the Western Front.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
    • Flo wrote:

      Ah thanks a lot to give me a trick to resist a little to Station Eleven: a negative review! Whatever I think about them, they help me to make up my mind.
      I’ve read All Quiet on the Western Front when I was a teenager; decades after, my memory of it is still vivid.

      Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  6. Such a great list, Sarah! I’m definitely going to have to read Station Eleven; I can’t stand it. 🙂 Thanks for sharing all of these and their corresponding reviews; I’ll definitely be referring back to this for some books that I need to read.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  7. I enjoyed Black Chalk, though not enough to be on my top lists, it was just an ok book for me. Thanks for sharing! Here’s my Favorite Books of 2014.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
    • admin wrote:

      I recommended Black Chalk to a ton of friends and there was sort of a love/hate reaction…some loved it and some hated it…kind of like cilantro.

      Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  8. Flo wrote:

    Like you know, I’m still trying to convince myself I can read An Untamed State without falling into pieces.
    A.J. Fikry was a nice read but I haven’t been impressed by it.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  9. Love that you did the superlatives! I totally agree that Station Eleven is most deserving of the hype, even though that usually makes me too nervous to read a book…it totally worked this time.

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
    • admin wrote:

      I agree – I tend to end up not loving hyped books quite as much since my expectations are so high. I started The Wife today and really like it so far…great writing!

      Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  10. Love your list! I haven’t read most of these so I’m really excited to add them to my TBR for next year and check them out. You have such great taste in books 🙂

    Posted 12.16.14 Reply
    • admin wrote:

      Why thank you!

      Posted 12.16.14 Reply
  11. Trish wrote:

    Ha! I love your high school superlatives. Totally agree about Mark from The Martian. Loved his sarcastic wit. I can’t wait to read Station Eleven and Untamed State is high on my wishlist.

    Posted 12.19.14 Reply

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