and whether they are worth it to read:
By far the best book I read last year was: "The Time Traveler's Wife". I still think about this book sometimes. I loved the characters, I loved the premise. It was just a stunning book.
"Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell" by Susanna Clarke: long long long book. very good in some parts, and the premise was great, but not very good with character development.
"Wicked" by Gregory Maguire: started out great and I really really liked the main character (an imagining of the Wicked Witch of the West). But, towards the middle, it fell apart and it just was a let down in the end.
"Watership Down": frickin classic
"The Poisonwood Bible"
"Star of the Sea" by Joseph O'Connor: Very very interesting books, both of these dealt with cultures and time periods that were peripheral histories to me...and to their credits they both made me want to learn more about the historical time periods that they were placed in.
Books that I read that were pleasant reads, but now that I look at the list I can not remember so much about them (still, they are good to read for the enjoyment in them):
"Behind the Scenes" at the Museum by Kate Atkinson
"Daughter of Fortune" by Isabel Allende
"The Secret Life of Bees" by Sue Kidd Monk
"The Dirty Girls Social Club: A Novel" by Alisa Valdes-Rodriquez
"The Golden Compass"
"The Passion of Artemisia" by Susan Vreeland
"The Probable Future" by Alice Hoffman
Wonderful books about terrible subjects:
"Lovely Bones" by Alice Sebold
"The Bondwoman's Narrative"
"Tale of Two Cities" by Charles Dickens
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