These are the ten books I most enjoyed reading over the course of the past year. I’m sure there are some great books that I missed, and I would love to hear about them from other readers. Wendy Street, Library Director, Pella Public Library
11/22/63 by Stephen King. A time traveler tries to prevent the Kennedy assassination.
Bad Day for Sorry by Sophie Littlefield. I really enjoyed this light-hearted novel about a Southern woman who dispenses her own brand of justice to men who abuse women. I also recommend the other books in this series Bad Day for Scandal and Bad Day for Pretty.
The Cypress House by Michael Koryta. A supernatural thriller set in Florida during the Great Depression, I loved the atmospheric feel of this book as well as the suspenseful plot. Koryta is one of my new favorite authors.
A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin. The long awaited 5th book in Martin’s incredible Song of Ice and Fire series was a disappointment to many because none of the many story lines are resolved, but it’s a must read for fans of the series. If you like fantasy, you will love this series—but start at the beginning with A Game of Thrones.
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. This YP book has been around for quite awhile, but I just read it this year and am so glad I did. Set in a futuristic dystopia, a group of teens are expected to fight one another for survival in a nationally televised contest.
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I was completely enchanted by this well-written novel about an amazing circus and the magicians behind it.
One Was a Soldier by Julia Spencer-Fleming. An excellent mystery set in small town New York, this novel is also about soldiers adjusting to civilian life. It is part of a series I somehow missed until now, but I won’t miss future installments!
Room by Emma Donoghue. A kidnapped woman locked in a room does her best to raise her son. It’s very original and thought-provoking.
Sing Them Home by Stephanie Kallos. This lyrical novel is the 2011 All Iowa Reads choice. It’s about life, death, hope and redemption in a small town in Nebraska. It is full of wonderful, quirky, memorable characters.
So Much Pretty by Cara Hoffman. The author’s rage really grabbed me in this searing, compelling novel about violence against women and the denial prevalent in a small town.