Rowan13's 2009 Reads

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2009

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Rowan13's 2009 Reads

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Editado: Set 8, 2009, 5:43 pm

Hi All,

I've been lurking for some time now and love this group. Like most on this site, I'm an avid reader. Last year I hit 115 books read and I'd like to at least beat that in 2009.

Here is my list so far:

1. Your Heart Belongs to Me - Dean Koontz
2. Guilty - Karen Robards
3. Every Secret Thing - Lila Shaara
4. Bitter is the New Black - Jen Lancaster
5. Barefoot - Elin Hilderbrandt
6. Motherless Brooklyn - Jonathan Lethem
7. Going Down - Jennifer Belle
8. Delusion - Peter Abrahams
9. Here's the Story - Maureen McCormick
10. Teaser - Jan Brogan
11. Time of My Life - Allison Winn Scotch
12. This One is Mine - Maria Semple
13. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
14. Testimony - Anita Shreve
15. Rescue Me - Gigi Levangi Grazer
16. The Associate - John Grisham
17. Amnesia - GH Ephron
18. Beat the Reaper - Josh Bazell
19. While My Sister Sleeps - Barbara Delinsky
20. Water Cooler Diaries - Joni Cole and BK Rakhra
21. Addiction - GH Ephron
22. The Second Opinion - Michael Palmer
23. Handle with Care - Jodi Picoult
24. Delusion - GH Ephron
25. True Colors - Kristin Hannah
26. Very Valentine - Adriana Trigiani
27. Sunday's at Tiffany's - James Patterson
28. Obsessed - GH Ephron
29. Wesley the Owl - Stacey O'Brien
30. Open House - Elizabeth Berg
31. Irreplaceable - Stephen Lovely
32. Somebody Else's Daughter - Elizabeth Brundage
33. Still Alice - Lisa Genova
34. Thirteen Reasons Why - Jay Asher
35. Guilt - GH Ephron
36. The Help - Kathryn Stockett
37. The Spellman Files - Lisa Lutz
38. The Geometry of Sisters - Luanne Rice
39. Tell No One - Harlan Coben
40. Dead Until Dark - Charlaine Harris
41. The Woods - Harlan Coben
42. Pretty in Plaid - Jen Lancaster
43. Sandcastles - Luanne Rice
44. Just One Look - Harlan Coben
45. The Pilot's Wife - Anita Shreve
46. Gerald's Game - Stephen King
47. Look at Me - Jennifer Egan
48. Life Sentences - Laura Lippman
49. Living Dead in Dallas - Charlaine Harris
50. American Rust - Phillipp Meyer
51. Club Dead - Charlaine Harris
52. What the Dead Know - Laura Lippman
53. Sleeping Arrangements - Madeleine Wickam
54. Practically Perfect - Katie Fforde
55. Dead to the World - Charlaine Harris
56. The Girl She Used to Be - David Cristofano
57. Home Safe - Elizabeth Berg
58. Still Life - Joy Fielding
59. Dead As A Doornail - Charlaine Harris
60. Definitely Dead - Charlaine Harris
61. Hedge Fund Wives - Tatiana Boncompagni
62. Are You There Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea - Chelsea Handler
63. Snowed In - Christina Bartolomeo
64. Hope in a Jar - Beth Harbison
65. Hold Tight - Harlan Coben
66. Say Goodbye - Lisa Gardner
67. I'm Down - Mishna Wolff
68. One For the Money - Janet Evanovich
69. Two For the Dough - Janet Evanovich
70. Three to Get Deadly - Janet Evanovich
71. The Last Child - John Hart
72. Darkly Dreaming Dexter - Jeff Lindsay
73. Relentless - Dean Koontz
74. All Together Dead - Charlaine Harris
75. The Last Bridge - Teri Coyne
76. The Castaways - Elin Hilderbrand
77. Intervention - Robin Cook
78. Best Friends Forever- Jennifer Weiner
79. Hide - Lisa Gardner
80. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius - Dave Eggers
81. Evil at Heart - Chelsea Cain
82. Four to Score - Janet Evanovich

A few of my favorites so far this year are The Help, Beat the Reaper, The Last Child. New author discoveries are Harlan Coben and Lisa Gardner.

Have a great day!

Set 8, 2009, 4:26 pm

Nice list, Rowan. Welcome to the group!

Set 8, 2009, 5:00 pm

Welcome! And congrats on breaking 75 in your first post! 8^}

Set 9, 2009, 12:50 pm

Thanks for the welcoming. I know drneutron, it just seems weird to hit 75 in the first post but I didn't want to wait until Jan to join. I need to pick up the pace a bit to beat last years number. Also, the last few years I have been able to take a vacation at home (without the family) and just read, read, read. As we're hitting Disney in November I won't have that luxury reading time.

Set 9, 2009, 4:28 pm

Welcome! That's a very impressive list of books.

Editado: Set 17, 2009, 2:49 pm

Wow! I was really hoping to spend more time here but work has been nutso lately. I'm also going to try to post more on other threads.

Here are the books for the last week or so:

83. Hell’s Gate Stephen Frey
Rating: 3 out of 5

The story revolves around mysterious forest fires in Montana and in particular one character, Paul, who is a Fire Jumper who is called to jump into the fires and fight them. I don't really know a lot about this profession so that is interesting, the main plot is pretty basic but an easy read. I’ve preferred Frey’s earlier work as it doesn’t seem he spent a lot of time in developing the plot in this book.

84. From Dead to Worse Charlaine Harris
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

85. Dead and Gone Charlaine Harris
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

I've enjoyed reading the Sookie Stackhouse series. I’ve found that as I learn more about the characters that I’m enjoying the books even more. This isn’t “literature” but they are a fun way to pass the time. I’m also watching the series on DVD.

86. Life as We Knew It Susan Beth Pfeffer
Rating: 4 out of 5

I picked this up after reading several LibraryThingers raving about it. It is a YA novel written in diary form about a teenaged girl’s experience in a post apocalyptic world in a small town. It's really excellent. There really isn’t a lot to the story but the character development is really very good. I highly recommend it to anyone that hasn’t read it. I liked it so much I picked up another of Pfeffer’s. Same experience but with a teenage boy in NYC called Dead and the Gone. So far so good but I’m not drawn in so much as the previous one.

Set 17, 2009, 11:14 pm

#6: I just recently read Life as We Knew It, too, and loved it. Glad to see it has another fan!

Set 18, 2009, 7:55 am

Hi alcottacre,

Have you read Dead and the Gone yet? I liked it but not as much as Life As We Knew It. I'm not sure if its because its a teenage boy or that its in the city (or maybe a combo of both).

Also, I'm looking to read more YA novels - do you have any suggestions? I'm really not big into scifi. Obviously I've done the Harry Potter and Twilight scene but its really not my thing. Any ideas would be appreciated.


Set 18, 2009, 5:54 pm

No, I have not read Dead and Gone yet. I will look for it - I am not sure if my local library has it or not.

As far as young adult books go, there are a lot of people here in the group who read them. We also have a thread entitled 'What I Am Reading - Young Adult' that you might go through.

I really never read all of that much young adult material until midway through last year, but I can tell you some of the authors who are highly thought of here in the group: J.K. Rowling, Cornelia Funke, Scott Westerfeld, John Green, Patricia C. Wrede. Those are some good authors to begin.

Hope this helps!

Editado: Set 18, 2009, 6:14 pm

>8 Rowan13:: Also, I'm looking to read more YA novels - do you have any suggestions? I'm really not big into scifi.

Since you mention Harry Potter and Twilight as examples, I'm assuming you include fantasy in with scifi. So, leaving those genres out, some YA you might try:

The Jungle Books by Rudyard Kipling - not at all like the Disney movie

The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer - a distopic look at socioeconomic issues and cloning

Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson - a young girl caught up in the yellow fever epidemic of that year

Hoot by Carl Hiaasen - typical Hiaasen humor, like his books for older readers without the sex

Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith - a Civil War story set out Missouri way, interesting for not really taking sides

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain - very enjoyable classic

Set 21, 2009, 1:12 pm

Thanks to you both. I will definitely look into those.

Set 24, 2009, 9:14 pm

Regarding YA books, I highly recommend The Adoration of Jenna Fox, The Higher Power of Lucky, Kira-Kira, Out of the Dust, Missing May and Speak...just to name a few! I'm currently reading a stunningly beautiful book titled The Wednesday Wars.

Set 25, 2009, 12:43 pm

Thank you Whisper!

Sorry I haven't been around much. A friend and coworker passed away this week from a motorcycle accident. There hasn't been much reading - too much sadness.

Set 25, 2009, 3:12 pm

I am so sorry. Your heart must be breaking.

All good wishes to you,


Set 26, 2009, 11:14 am

I'm very sorry to hear about your friend. My condolances to you!

Set 27, 2009, 4:07 pm

I am so sorry to hear about your friend. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Editado: Set 30, 2009, 12:42 pm

Thanks for the kind words.

Thanks for the YA recommendations. I got Fever 1793 and Speak out of the library this week. I'm enjoying Speak now.

I have some updating to do....

Editado: Out 11, 2009, 4:27 pm

87. The Dead and the Gone by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Rating: 3.5

This YA novel is written about the same catastrophe as Life as We Knew It but takes place in NYC. The story revolves around a teenage boy who is trying to take care of his younger sisters. I did enjoy this book but not as much as LAWKI. I’m not sure if its because I could better relate to the character (teenage girl vs boy) or the setting (rural vs city). Definitely recommended if you enjoy YA novels.

88. Sag Harbor by Colson Whitehead
Rating: 3

This was a recommendation from a daily book email I get from my local library. It is the story of a teenage boy and his summer antics. I have to say I really enjoyed the first half and was laughing out loud. The second half seemed to lose steam (or maybe I lost patience for teenage boy antics!). I did enjoy it. Wouldn’t read it again but it was worth finishing.

89. Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Rating: 3.5

Everyone is raving about this book but I just didn’t love it. I tend to prefer plot driven novels as opposed to character driven novels. I knew that it was a collection of short stories about Olive so that wasn’t the issue. I was reading it during a very sad time so maybe that contributed to my feelings. I’m glad I read it but was really hoping that it would be one of my favorites for the year.

90. This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
Rating: 4

I really loved this book. It is about a semi-dysfunctional family who are grieving about the death of their father. It was a quick read and I liked some of the twists and turns that the characters took.

91. How I Write by Janet Evanovich and Ina Yalof

A quick how-to by Janet Evanovich et al. on how to write a novel. I enjoy her Stephanie Plum series but they are very mechanical. Its interesting to hear how she sits down to write.

92. High Five by Janet Evanovich
Rating: 3.5

I’m liking this series. I started reading it this summer for some light reading. It's a little out there but enjoyable.

93. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Rating: 3.5

This was an LT recommendation for a YA novel. I enjoyed this read a lot. I really felt for the main character and was brought back to high school for a bit.

Out 1, 2009, 11:20 am

I'm adding your book #90 to my list.

Out 1, 2009, 11:25 am

Whisper, I also loved Book of Joe by the same author.

Out 2, 2009, 3:21 pm

Thanks for the recommendation.

Out 4, 2009, 12:46 am

I am also adding book 90 to Planet TBR (book 87 is already there).

Editado: Out 14, 2009, 7:56 am

94. Talk Talk by TC Boyle.
Rating: 3.5.
This was on my library pile for weeks before I got to it. I did really like it but felt that the end dragged a bit.

95. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.
Rating: 4.
I loved this book. This was an LT recommendation (alcottacre among others) and I am so glad that I read it. I have the sequel on request at the library and can't wait to read it.

I'm moving a bit slow through books these days. Last week both I and "the boy" were sick. Usually that means lots of reading but I was so exhausted I only had energy for tv. :( I did do a Breaking Bad Season 1 marathon which was fun.

Out 12, 2009, 5:25 am

Sorry to hear that you have been ill. I hope you are feeling better now!

Glad to see that you loved The Hunger Games as I did. I am putting off reading the sequel until the 3rd book comes out next year, since I hate cliffhangers!

Editado: Out 14, 2009, 7:56 am

Alcottacre I love that you are waiting. I only read the Harry Potter Series once all the books were out. I finally got a copy of the Hunger Games sequel from the library yesterday.

96. The Way Home - George Pelecanos.
The author is one of the writers for The Wire which I've never seen but hear is fantastic. This book was very well written and I was instantly involved in the story. The story is about a young man who has made a few mistakes in his youth and been placed in a juvenile prison. The story unfolds when he is released and is trying to do the right things. There is also a wonderful father/son aspect of this story.

Out 15, 2009, 12:07 am

#25: The Way Home looks very good. I will give it a try. Thanks for the recommendation!

Out 15, 2009, 12:30 am

I have Hunger Games on request at the library already and have added The Way Home as well, it looks good. Thanks

Editado: Out 19, 2009, 8:34 am

97. A Touch of Dead by Charlaine Harris
Rating: 3.5
I really thought this was the next in the Sookie series but instead it was a collection of short stories. I didn't think I would like it but I did. I'm not sure if I would have liked it without knowing the characters but it was enjoyable.

Editado: Out 20, 2009, 1:04 pm

98. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Rating: 3.5
I did enjoy the sequel to Hunger Games but not nearly as much as the first book. I felt that the author didn't spend any time reminding you why you loved the characters but assumed you would remember from the first book. Definitely worth reading and I'm looking forward to the third book. Off to Google when that will be released.

99. The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt
Rating: 3
This was a recommendation from several LTers. I didn't like it as much as I thought I would. I've been on a YA kick but maybe this was a bit young for my taste. Definitely worth reading but wasn't a favorite.

Out 20, 2009, 3:22 pm


I loved The Wednesday Wars, but then again, I have a lover of YA books.

Out 21, 2009, 11:42 am

I know Whisper! I'm sorry I didn't like it as much as you. Again, I think it may be the jr high aspect. The previous YA I've read were more teenage themed.

Editado: Out 28, 2009, 7:59 am

100. Commencement by J. Courtney Sullivan
Rating: 3
I didn't love this book but liked it. It took me a bit to have a feel for the characters of the story. I almost gave up before the 50 page mark but the title kept popping up everywhere as a fantastic book so I kept on.

101. Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko
Rating: 3.5
This was a YA recommendation from Whisper1. Thanks so much! I really enjoyed this read as the Alcatraz history was very interesting and the story line was very cute. This was one of those stories that I had to relate to my non-reading husband.

102. Smash Cut by Sandra Brown
Rating: 3
This was your typical Sandra Brown whodunit. It was good but I wasn't blown away like some of her earlier novels.

We leave for Disney on Sunday so I've been reading lots of guide books to prepare. I did buy a bunch of used paperbacks (5 for a $1) to bring with me so I don't have to lug tons of library books to FL.

Edited because my grammar was horrible. :)

Out 27, 2009, 6:06 pm

Have a lovely time in Florida!

Editado: Out 28, 2009, 4:19 am

Hi - I'm a bit late to the party but other YA writers you might enjoy are Mal Peet, MT Anderson, Siobhan Dowd, Melina Marchetta. I'll suggest E Lockhart's The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks or Sherman Alexie's The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian.
You could look at the Printz Award & Honour Books or the ALA Teen Book List for some ideas.

Enjoy your holiday

Out 28, 2009, 8:00 am

33. Thanks for the FL wishes. We'll have a great time.

34. Thanks for the suggestions. I've written them down for my next trip to the library.

Nov 15, 2009, 8:32 am

I just finished This is Where I Leave You. I found this book on your list. Thanks for the recommendation.

Nov 15, 2009, 12:27 pm

Glad you liked it Whisper!

Nov 17, 2009, 12:11 pm

Actually I just read your post and realized you didn't like it. Different strokes for different folks I guess.

Nov 17, 2009, 1:34 pm

Actually, I didn't dislike the book. I really enjoyed it when I first read it. It was witty and funny. I simply thought the author could have ended before he did.

Thanks again for the recommendation.

Editado: Dez 2, 2009, 1:35 pm

I think I was MIA all of November. Not a very big month for me. I'll need to step it up to beat last year's number of 115.

103. Peace Like a River – Leif Enger
Rating: 3

104. Land of the Living – Nicci French
Rating: 3

105. The Knife of Never Letting Go – Patrick Ness
Rating: 3

106. Fever 1793 – Laurie Halse Anderson
Rating: 3.5

107. The Innocent – Harlan Coben
Rating: 4

108. Alone – Lisa Gardner
Rating: 3.5

109. Breathless – Dean Koontz
Rating: 2.5

110. The Perfect Husband – Lisa Gardner
Rating: 3

Dez 2, 2009, 4:30 pm

I'll need to step it up to beat last year's number of 115.

Hang in there, you're almost there! :)

Dez 7, 2009, 12:37 pm

111. Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan
Rating: 3.5
I agree with the reviews that mention a lack of character emotion/development (which is why its not getting a 4) but I did love this book. It is the story of a missing teen girl and what happens to her family and friends afterwards. I couldn't put it down.

112. Crank by Ellen Hopkins
Rating: 4
I almost didn't pick up this novel as it is written as a series of poems. I told myself to read at least 10 pages and just got sucked in. I finished the 500pp in less than an afternoon. I loved this story of a "perfect" teen gone astray.

Dez 8, 2009, 5:03 pm

Crank looks pretty good. Thanks for the recommendation!

Editado: Jan 8, 2010, 12:32 pm

Esta mensagem foi removida pelo seu autor.

Editado: Jan 8, 2010, 12:31 pm

Even though its 2010 already, I just want to add in the last books of 2009.

113. Mathilda Savitch by Victor Lodato
Rating: 2

114. After You by Julie Buxbaum
Rating: 3

115. A Friend of the Family by Lauren Grodstein
Rating: 3.5

116. Hate List by Jennifer Brown
Rating: 3

117. Glass by Ellen Hopkins
Rating: 4
Love her work. Definitely one my favorite YA authors discovered this year.

118. No Second Chance by Harlan Coben
Rating: 3.5

119. Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
Rating: 3

120. The Turnaround by George Pelecanos
Rating: 3.5

121. Zeitoun by Dave Eggers
Rating: 4
This was as great as everyone has mentioned. Very quick read!

122. The Third Victim by Lisa Gardner
Rating: 3

123. A Lifetime of Secrets by Frank Warren
Rating: 3
I always loved to read the blog until it got blocked at work. Ooops! Anyway the library had this book and it was fun to read.

124. Identical by Ellen Hopkins
Rating: 3.5

So, 124 for the year is pretty great for me. Last year was 115 so I beat my number which is always my goal.

My newfound love of YA is really because of the great recommendations of other LibraryThingers so a big thank-you!!!!

Jan 8, 2010, 2:34 pm


Jan 8, 2010, 4:21 pm

Congratulations on besting your 2008 total! Good work.

Jan 10, 2010, 3:09 pm

Great work in surpassing your total from 2008! :)