Denise's Best Reads of 2014

Another year is coming to a close and I am taking some time to look back at the books I've read and compiling a list of the best ones. This list is in no particular order (only because I couldn't make up my mind on the order) and some books have been lumped together (like a series or volumes). Here is my list:



The Martian by Andy Weir: This book had such a great mixture of humor and science. I learned and laughed at the same time. I enjoyed this even though science is not my favorite subject because the science was not overwhelming.



Belle Cora by Phillip Margulies: The main character of this book, a madam of a high fashion parlor house, isn't the most innocent woman. After reading about how she got to be a madam you can't help but grow to feel sorry for her and protective of her. Phillip Margulies created a vibrant story that showcases what life was like in California during the Gold Rush.



Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: What can I say about Outlander? This book transported me back in time to Scotland with Claire and never let me go. I loved the relationship between Claire and Jamie and was captivated by everything that happened to them. No other book that I have read in this series has been able to live up to this one.



Dominion by C.J. Sansom: This is a terrifying but captivating look at what life would have been like had England sued for peace during WWII. I love reading WWII historical fiction but this was a great twist to that with its alternate history elements. I highly recommend this if you love reading about WWII.



The Mercy Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs: Throughout 2014 I managed to read all the books in this series that have been published. I am not picking a favorite (you can't make me!) so I decided to put the whole series on my list. I absolutely love Mercy and some of the amazing secondary characters in this series. I love where Mercy is in her relationship (I won't say with who because I don't want to spoil anything for those who haven't read the series yet) and I can't wait to see what will happen next in the series.



The Girl Who Came Home by Hazel Gaynor: this was a beautiful look at what life was like for an Irish third class passenger on the Titanic. It was based on a real group of Irish passengers who went on the Titanic. I was a sobbing mess at certain parts of this but it was an absolute pleasure reading this.



Confessions by Kanae Minato: If I had to pick my best read of 2014 (which I didn't really want to do) it would have to be this book. Everything about this book is twisted. The characters are twisted people and what they end up doing to each other will have you on the edge of your seat. Just when you think that the book can't get any better, something else happens that will blow you away.




Finding Sky by Susan O'Brien: This was a great cozy mystery that had a competent and relatable main character and a really hunky male character to help her out. When I wasn't rooting for Nicki to solve the mystery and ride off into the sunset with her private investigator instructor, Dean, I was on the edge of my seat from all the suspense and action towards the end of the book. I can't wait to read more of this series.



Last Train to Babylon by Charlee Fam: I could really connect with and understand the main character, Aubrey. Some might find her anger annoying but I understood how she used it to mask her true feelings. This book touched upon things that I can really identify with (like the sometimes manipulative friendships between girls).



The Lord of the Rings Part 1 & 2 by J.R.R. Tolkien: One of my goals for this year was to finally read all three parts of TLOTR. Unfortunately I was only able to read the first two parts. Both parts were such a great adventure that I am so mad it took me so long to decide to read them. I will for sure read The Return of the King in 2015.