Following in other blogger's footsteps, I'm going to try and have some best/worst categories for last year's reading, rather than the usual Top 10 list.
(There are links to my reviews, but some were read before I started the blog.)
Best Book Overall:
Miss Julia Speaks Her Mind by Ann B. Ross - everything about it was great!
Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen - just a lovely story;I loved the Waverley women and their mysterious gifts
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield - wonderful wordsmithing; kept me guessing!
Best Group of Characters:
Evening Class by Maeve Binchy - there are some companion books to this one, I'm looking forward to seeing the Italian classmates again.
Author I Was Happiest To See Again:
Joe Keenan with My Lucky Star - this former Frasier writer/producer is hilariously funny and he writes about one of my favourite things - Broadway musicals! He reminds me of PG Wodehouse, one of the funniest writers ever. The 2 preceding books, Putting on the Ritz and Blue Heaven are delights, too.
Best Drama Queens:
Dramarama by E. Lockhart - I love E. Lockhart's books and was happy to find this one as stellar as her 2 Boyfriend List ones. More Broadway - cue the jazz hands! Sayde (nee Sarah) is bored stiff in her Ohio town until Demi arrives - boring young black man in public, fabulous gay Broadway boy in private! The pair get a chance to attend summer drama camp and learn about their strengths and weaknesses on and off the stage. Funny, smart, bitchy, and a great read.
The Off-Season by Catherine Gilbert Murdock - I was so pleased to find that I enjoyed this one as much as Dairy Queen.
Most-Enjoyed Nonfiction Book:
Candy Girl: a year in the life of an unlikely stripper by Diablo Cody. I wrote a ton about this one, but now there's added coolness - Cody is the writer of the fab movie, Juno!
Book That Has Resulted in the Most Quotes at my House:
Television Without Pity: 752 things we love to hate (and hate to love) about about TV by Tara Ariano and Sarah Bunting
My husband and I both enjoy the Television Without Pity site, and he got me this book for Christmas. It's a mini-encyclopedia full of silly, annoying or badly awesome stuff about TV. For some reason the authors are anti-David Boreanz of Angel fame and describe him in later episodes as a "glazed ham in a trenchcoat." Poor Angel is now regularly called that in our home, despite the fact that we love the show. If you like the site or are a TV buff, this is great fun to have in your home. (It's very best for 90210 fans, which I'm not - it gets mentioned a LOT.)
Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. I haven't read The DaVinci Code and don't plan to, but I tackled this one for book club. And loved it! I'm not sold on all the conspiracy theories and it's very over-the-top, but man, it was a page-turner!
Best Soap-Opera, Book Style:
The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory - I could NOT put this one down!
I Like You: hospitality under the influence by Amy Sedaris - quite possibly the oddest book I've ever read, but the recipes, illustrations, and stories were very entertaining, if bizarre.
Best Book About Living a Great Life:
The View From Mount Joy by Lorna Landvik - I loved how Joe was able to find happiness despite a lot of sorrow throughout his life and that he passed that joy on to others, even the customers in his grocery stores.
Best Book About Reading:
The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby - I liked this one so much that I asked for the sequel for Christmas!
Runner-Up: 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff - a wonderful look at both the love of reading and a slower, kinder past
Best Historical/Hysterical Fiction:
An Inconvenient Wife by Megan Chance - explores how womanly hysteria was treated in the 19th century, but a huge, chilling twist reveals how a once-submissive woman can come into her own with a vengeance.