I’ve read a few absolutely stunning books recently and it inspired me to blog about them. I love to share my book recommendations, particularly when I find stories that I love (and that often bring me to tears). I’ve also thrown a lot of books aside unfinished so far in 2023…showing that I’m either getting crankier as I age, less patient, or just unwilling to put up with mediocre (or less). You can see the list of all of the books I’ve read so far in 2023 at Goodreads and let me know if you disagree with some of my discard pile (which is certainly possible since I tend to discard some highly rated books!).
So today we are going to focus on my top 10 so far for 2023.
A Quiet Life by Ethan Joella: This book is about three people living in the same city who are each grappling individually with loss and grief. They come together in unexpected ways and, by the end of the book, I was laughing and crying and I did not want to part with these new friends I had come to love. This was such a gem.
Carolina Moonset by Matt Goldman: I was hesitant to read this book because it’s about a middle-aged man who goes to spend time with his father, recently diagnosed with a form of dementia. I just worried that it would be quite dark; but the book was about so much more than this. It was about memory and grief, hope and love, family and friendship…and mystery. There was an intriguing mystery running through the story that really kept the plot going. And the writing? The writing was glorious.
Someone Else’s Shoes by Jojo Moyes: I find that Moyes’ books are very hit or miss. This one was a surprisingly amazing hit. The plot is put into motion when a woman struggling with her marriage and self esteem accidentally takes the gym bag of a much wealthier woman. The story is tender and filled with friendship and family. It’s also a lovely look at strength of character and life priorities.
A Thousand Roads Home by Carmel Harrington: This was a very sweet read about family, homelessness and friendship. Quite lovely.
Funny Farm by Laurie Zaleski: I don’t read many memoirs or nonfiction books but this caught my eye. This is the story of a woman who lives in South Jersey and runs a farm with over 600 rescue animals. It’s the story of her childhood and what led her to the life she currently leads.
The Girls in the Stilt House by Kelly Mustian: Two teenage girls are paired together through murder. The story includes issue of race, family and self-worth and has absolutely stunning prose.
The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston: I do not typically read romance novels and I’m surprised I even picked this up. But the description sounded just quirky enough to be promising, and it did not disappoint. The main character was adorable and endearing and the plot really kept me reading. It was one of those books that I wanted to read really slowly so that it would last, but that I also couldn’t read fast enough!
The Family Ship by Sonja Yoerg: An unusual premise – a very large family has bonded for years over the abandoned ship that sits in their yard. They’ve created an entire world of make-believe around the boat, until cracks in the family send them spinning out of control. A very interesting look at family, love, control issues and dreams.
The Wedding Dress Sewing Circle by Jennifer Ryan: This historical fiction piece is set in World War II in England and is based on true events. I really enjoyed learning certain details about the time period and seeing the Blitz from a very different perspective.
The Life Intended by Krisin Harmel: This was a tender look at a widow’s decisions as she gets ready to remarry. I felt like she played it perfectly from beginning to end and showed us a really thoughtful story.
Happy reading! I’d love to hear about your favorite reads so far in 2023.