Best Books,  Random

2013 Recap

I always wait until the very last day of the year to write and publish my Best Books posts because I am always afraid of doing some marvellous last-minute reading that will change my whole Top Ten list. It hasn’t happened yet! Meanwhile, there are my 10 favourite books of 2013 and some reading statistics:

1. Life After Life by Kate Aktinson


2. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath


3. Body of Evidence by Patricia Cornwell


4. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn


5. Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives by Sarah Weinman


6. Z by Therese Anne Fowler


7. The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith ( alias J.K. Rowling)


8. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

burial rites_book

9. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf


10. The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton


In 2013

  • I read 39 books, 29 of which were written by women and 10 of which were written by men.


  • I read 9 books more than in 2012 and 16 more than in 2011.


I am very happy with almost everything I read this year and even if it made some terrible reading, it was fine. It helped me learn, grow and understand literature a bit more. I am very glad that, despite being more and more busy each year, I am actually reading more and more each year 🙂 Also, the fact that I read more books written by women than by men is only a reflection of my interests and my current work on gender, queer and feminist theories. So, no surprise there!

Which were your favourite books in 2013?



  • heavenali

    I am spending part of today writing my review of the year post. It will be up tomorrow. I am fairly sure The Luminaries will make my list too. I really want to add Burial rites and Z to my tbr but I am having to put a serious stop to book buying for the first three or four months of 2014.

    • Elena

      Can’t wait to read it! I think The Luminaries will make it to most bloggers’ best books lists.

      If I had to choose between Burial Rites and Z, I think I’ll go with Burial Rites for the winter and Z for the summer 🙂

  • Fleur in her World

    That is an wonderful list. I’ve read mainly from the past this year and I have to do some catching up with this year’s books. The Luminaries, Burial Rites and Life After Life are high up my list of priorities as I try to catch up.

  • Caro

    Ohhh, what a wonderful list. Reading more books written by women is something that I need to work on asap. Especially because I just checked out my lists for various challenges and there are only two female writers in there. I’ll have to do some modifying between today and tomorrow.

    Have a lovely end of the year!

    • Elena

      Happy end of the year to you too, Caro!

      You know where to find me if you need more women authors. I just tend to choose their works because of the themes, styles, settings etc. But I read some great fiction by men as well this year, only, I didn’t enjoy it as much as the titles on that list.

  • Helen

    Life After Life is on my list of favourites too. I loved it and want to read more Kate Atkinson books in 2014. I haven’t read any of the other books on your list yet but I’m hoping to read The Luminaries soon.

    • Elena

      I think anything and everything Kate Atkinson writes is brilliant, but if I have to recommend you any of her titles, it’ll be “Behind the Scenes at the Museum” because you can see Ursula’s character haunting the pages. They’re very similar and different at the same time, but both great.

  • Sam (@tinylibraryblog)

    Z made it on to my list too, what a wonderful book. And I was pleased to see The Bell Jar too, that’s been a favourite of mine since I was a teenager and I’ve reread it countless times since.

    I own Life After Life and should really read it!

    • Elena

      I read The Bell Jar for the first time at 24 (this year) and I wished I had read it before, probably on my late teens. It would have been extremely helpful and therapeutic.

      You have to read Life After Life (and maybe I’ll join you on a re-read). It’ll go better than A Reliable Wife, I promise!

  • amanda

    I think I recall your posts on each of these books–so I can’t say I’m surprised that you included any of them, you sang their praises so! Well done on reading more this year–wish I could say the same. Hopefully I’ll have my favorites up on my blog tomorrow. Don’t think I’ll have a full ten, though!

    • Elena

      Your comment means a lot, Amanda. If readers can remember how passionate I was about a book a year afterwards, my job is done!

      And I’m sure you’ll have a full ten!

  • Julia grumpyguidetobritain

    Great list! I wasn’t sure whether to read ‘Life after Life’ or not as I’m usually not into ‘slightly supernatural’ stuff. But after having read your review and seeing the book’s place on your list, I’ll definitely give it a go. Thanks!

    • Elena

      Hi, Julia! I would not define it as supernatural in any way because Ursula is not aware of her past lives. I hope you like it and I’m glad my reiew helped 🙂

Don't forget to share what you think!