Yes, it is ridiculous that I'm posting a best of 2015 in late March. I find this blog serves as my memory more and more lately though, and well, I'd rather it be late than never done at all.
Starting work in February colored my whole year. I bought myself Middlemarch just before I returned to work, and guess what? Still haven't read it. I know I will enjoy it...eventually. I loved Better Than Before, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and Godin's What to Do When it's Your Turn (and it's Always Your Turn) but all three were books that I read by skipping here and there. So that, even though I've probably read all three more than once at this point, I still have that nagging feeling I may have missed a page and haven't counted them as finished yet.
Here are the books I did finish---missing a handful, like Where the Red Fern Grows, Emily Henderson's Styled and Brooklyn.
Favorite novels: All the Light We Cannot See and What Alice Forgot; they couldn't be more different but both made me oh so happy while I was reading them.
Favorite nonfiction: Brown Girl Dreaming
I liked Eleanor & Park a lot, and got so much out of The Zimzum of Love. I checked Design Mom out of the library and just loved every page of it. I don't want to forget reading Young Fu at night with Sean, and Little Women with him and Nolan. Recently Nolan said someone was like Jo and I asked Jo who, and he said in his shocked voice, "Have you forgotten Jo March?" No, Nolie, never.
Essentialism was also very good, and came at the right time. Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant? was brilliant and funny, and Aidan loved it too.
I read more books I disliked in 2015 than possibly any other, maybe because of book club picks or maybe because of me. 2015 was rough.
One highlight was a reading challenge my friend Lara and I took on to read a short story a day during May, national short story month. And I loved it. I ended up skipping some days and reading more the next, but read 31 stories that month and wrote about it here.
A year of starts and stops (those last 30 pages of Big Burn are still waiting for me! Maybe today I'll finish it up). I read Savor in a gulp even though it is meant to be a daily read---because it was from the library. Love Lisa Congden's Fortune Favors the Brave and have kept it on my shelf at work for courage.
The handful of books I loved last year were worth all the forgettable pages from books I didn't love. Walking three miles with my boys to Barnes & Noble was a highlight, as were our many trips to the library and our new Mother's Day tradition of going to Tattered Cover in Denver.
My OLW for 2016 is rest, and in terms of reading, it means reaching for what I want, regardless of internal "shoulds" about finishing what's on my nightstand before starting another. Right now that means following up one Ruth Reichl with another. Here's to a year of good books!