It’s been a year since I started this blog. I haven’t written on a schedule but it’s been something fun to do when I feel like it! I hope you’ve enjoyed it! Just like last year, I’m sharing my top 6 books of the year. I read 31 books last year and listened to 2 audiobooks. I didn’t include the audiobooks in this list but Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey was excellent and he reads it so if you’re a fan, it’s a must listen!

  1. The Four Winds: This book was amazing!! The story is set in the Great Depression during the dust bowl in Texas. The main character is a woman who endures incredible hardship and finds her way during a terrible time for so many. I cannot recommend this book enough.
  2. Our Italian Summer: I read this book while on vacation in Hawaii. It was funny to be immersed in this fabulous adventure with all the sights, sounds and flavors of Italy and then put my book down and see the swaying palms and tropical everything of Hawaii. If you’ve ever wanted to visit Italy, this book will get you planning. The story centers around 3 generations of women who travel to Italy together. They all have their reasons for agreeing to the trip and in the end, they all get more out of it than they’d expected to. This book just made me happy!
  3. The Rose Code: This book was excellent!! I love historical fiction and this one is set in WW2. It’s a story about code breakers, many of whom were women. The book had a good pace and held some mystery that I couldn’t quite figure out until the author spelled it out. My only criticism is that the author should’ve ended the book earlier than she did. Sometimes it’s better to let the reader imagine the ending, rather than tie up all the loose ends.
  4. The Paper Palace: The author explores the tensions between a love from youth next to the love of a long marriage. It was well written and the story pulled me in quickly. This story had so much tension, an intense love story and honestly, some pretty awful childhood trauma so that’s a trigger warning for sure. The ending was perfectly executed.
  5. The Last Thing He Told Me: The pace on this book was really good and the story was tightly wound. One of the reviews said it was heartbreaking and I kept waiting for it. The story itself kept me engaged but I kept waiting for the promised moment it would feel tragic. It’s the ending… the last sentence on the last page that broke my heart. It was a beautiful and well written story that I read in just a couple days. That’s always a good sign!
  6. I’m torn… see below! 🙂

Ok first let’s talk about ‘Taste’ by Stanley Tucci. In my mind, he will forever be Julia Child’s husband in the movie Julie & Julia and also the endearing but also look down his nose assistant from The Devil Wears Prada. I started this book already admiring his work and the characters he’s played in so many good movies. His stories of a food-filled childhood, the family recipes he shares and the challenges and losses he’s experienced throughout his life made for a heart warming, thoughtful and delicious read. I really liked it. It made me feel good and it was a nice break from the stresses of my own life. Tucci also built a good case for giving a dirty martini another chance.

The Book of Two Ways was a deep, intense story of love and loss. The themes were complex and I felt that she went very in depth into a couple of them… almost too in depth and I understand why she did it but it did make it hard for me to keep going at times. That’s the only reason I didn’t make this my final pick. With that said, it was SO GOOD. Once I got through some of the technical jargon, the actual story was so incredibly good, the characters were filled with tension and the ending was exactly what it should be.

So maybe we call these two 5.5 & 6. They’re so different but I’m into them both for my last pick.

What are you reading right now? I’ve already read one good book that will probably be a top pick and I have a stack that I can’t wait to get to!

xo Bonnie