Saturday, December 31, 2011

Year in Review: My Favorites of 2011

I read 442 books in 2011! I am pleased with that number. It is not as much as in previous years, but I am fine with that.

My top five picture books are:

Hooray for Amanda & Her Alligator. Mo Willems. 2011. HarperCollins. 72 pages.
Is Everyone Ready for Fun by Jan Thomas. 2011. Simon & Schuster. 40 pages.
My Side of the Car. Kate Feiffer. Illustrated by Jules Feiffer. 2011. Candlewick. 32 pages.
The Princess and the Pig. Jonathan Emmett. Illustrated by Poly Bernatene. 2011. Walker. 32 pages.
The Best Birthday Party Ever. Jennifer LaRue Huget. Illustrated by LeUyen Pham. 2011. Random House. 40 pages.

My top three children's books are:

Clementine and the Family Meeting. Sara Pennypacker. Illustrations by Marla Frazee. 2011. Hyperion. 164 pages.
Should I Share My Ice Cream: An Elephant and Piggie Book. Mo Willems. 2011. Hyperion. 64 pages.
Toys Come Home. Emily Jenkins. Illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky. 2011. Random House. 144 pages.

My top nonfiction picture book is:


If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet. Leslie McGuirk. 2011. Random House. 48 pages.

My top poetry picture book is:

Emma Dilemma: Big Sister Poems. Kristine O'Connell George. Illustrated by Nancy Carpenter. 2011. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 47 pages.

My top five middle grade books are:

Doggirl. Robin Brande. 2011. Ryer Publishing. 269 pages.
The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic. Jennifer Trafton. With illustrations by Brett Helquist. 2010. Penguin. 352 pages.
Small Acts of Amazing Courage. Gloria Whelan. 2011. Simon & Schuster. 224 pages.
The Light Princess. George MacDonald. 1864. 110 pages.
Heidi. Johanna Spyri. 1880/2009. Puffin Classics/Penguin.  320 pages.

My top five young adult books are:

Divergent. Veronica Roth. 2011. May 2011. HarperCollins. 496 pages.
Pathfinder. Orson Scott Card. 2010. November 2010. Simon & Schuster. 662 pages.
Withering Tights. Louise Rennison. 2011. HarperCollins. 288 pages.
I'll Be There. Holly Goldberg Sloan. 2011. Little, Brown. 392 pages.
The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan (#1 Heroes of Olympus) 2010. Hyperion. 576 pages.

My top twelve adult books are:

The Help by Kathryn Stockett. 2009. Thorndike Press. 722 pages.
The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb. Melanie Benjamin. 2011. Random House. 425 pages.
Strong Poison. Dorothy L. Sayers. 1930/1995. HarperCollins. 272 pages.
Our Mutual Friend. Charles Dickens. 1864/1865. 880 pages.
The Sunne in Splendour: "A fascinating portrait of the controversial King Richard III--a monarch betrayed in life by his allies and betrayed in death by history." by Sharon Kay Penman. 1982. 944 pages.
The Woman in White. Wilkie Collins. 1860. 672 pages.
The Virginian. Owen Wister. 1902. Penguin Classics. 370 pages.
Some Buried Caesar. Nero Wolfe Mystery. Rex Stout. 1938. Random House. 288 pages.
Kinfolk. Pearl S. Buck. 1945/2004. Moyer Bell. 408 pages.
The Small House at Allington. Anthony Trollope. 1864. 752 pages.
North and South. Elizabeth Gaskell. 1854-1855. 452 pages.
The Moving Finger. Agatha Christie. 1942/2007. Black Dog & Leventhal. 208 pages.

My top five Christian fiction books are:

The Colonel's Lady. Laura Frantz. 2011. Revell. 412 pages.
City of Tranquil Light. Bo Caldwell. 2010. Henry Holt. 304 pages.
Mine is the Night. Liz Curtis Higgs. 2011. Waterbrook. 464 pages
Bathsheba. (The Wives of King David #3) Jill Eileen Smith. 2011. Revell. 350 pages.
The Merchant's Daughter. Melanie Dickerson. 2011. Zondervan. 285 pages.

My top five Christian nonfiction books are:

Jesus + Nothing = Everything. Tullian Tchividjian. 2011. Crossway Books. 220 pages.
Note to Self: The Discipline of Preaching to Yourself. Joe Thorn. Foreword by Sam Storms. 2011. Crossway Books. 144 pages.
Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ. John MacArthur.
Through Gates of Splendor. Elisabeth Elliot. 1956/2005. Tyndale. 296 pages.
Lit: A Christian Guide to Reading Books. Tony Reinke. 2011. Crossway Books. 208 pages.


© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

6 comments:

Ellie Warren 10:58 AM  

That's a lot of books! I enjoyed The Help although it didn't make it onto my top ten for the year. I have The Lost Hero and its sequel to read and looking forward to them.

My best reads of 2011

hopeinbrazil 11:24 AM  

Your list of favorites looks enticing. I'll be checking out a few of those titles in 2012.

Kim 11:49 AM  

You are a reading machine! :) The Help will always be one of my favorites-
I am also wondering if you are really not hosting the A-Z Challenge this year? I am assuming not as I haven't seen it mentioned anywhere.
Have a safe and Happy New Year!
*smiles*

Becky 12:26 PM  

I am not planning on hosting any challenges next year--except for the ones on Operation Actually Read Bible.

Kim 8:05 PM  

OH bummer! Maybe next year (as in 2013) I will try to host it, if you don't mind. It is too late for 2012 I think, but maybe I can get my act together by then.
Happy New Year!
*smiles*

Kailana 12:39 AM  

The Help, The Autobiography of Tom Thumb, and The Woman in White made my best of post, too. :)

Post a Comment

I'm always happy to hear from you! To help fight spam, comment moderation has been set up for posts older than two days. Feel free to ask me questions or ask for recommendations!

Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

Unique Visitors and Google PR Rank

Free PageRank Checker

Pageloads Counter

Search Book Blogs Search Engine

The background is based on a background I found here...with some small adjustments on my part so it would work with the template.
Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

  © Blogger template Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP