As 2014 wraps up, I thought I would share my top five favorite authors I read this year. I want to note that this list of books I read this past year and not a list of books that came out this year. Some of these books are backlist books that I finally got around to reading. If you don’t know what backlist reading is, I suggest checking out Book Riot’s video about backlist reading.
These aren’t really reviews just a list books with a little bit of added information here and there.
1. Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, and So Much More by Janet Mock
I discovered her book the way most people did. She appeared on Piers Morgan Live, and Piers Morgan disrespected her gender identity throughout the interview. I bought the kindle version of this book instantly and regretted it. This book was so good. I wished I bought a hard copy instead. My suggestion, if you have the cash, buy a hard copy of this book. She is an amazing writer.
Sidenote: She appeared on a podcast called Black Girls Talking. I suggested listening to this particular episode of Black Girls Talking, because I feel as though you get more of a sense of who she is in this podcast than you do with her mainstream media persona. I’d like to emphasize that this is my opinion and not accurate information. The interview turned me into a fan of the podcast, and now I listen to it when I have the chance.
2. My Nature is Hunger: New and Selected Poems:1989-2004 by Luis J. Rodriguez
I read a book of Luis Rodriguez’s short stories about four years ago, and I instantly fell in love with his writing. He has a way with words. I know this that’s a cliche expression, but he really does. I’m not the only one who thinks so, because he was named Los Angeles’s poet laureate. The poem that struck a chord with me is called “Piece by Piece”, which you can read here. However, I strongly suggest going out and buying any of his books. You won’t be disappointed.
3. The Absolute True Story of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
I was introduced to Sherman Alexie back in 2006, when a friend at the time made us all watch Smoke Signals. After that movie, I was hooked. I read the short story the movie is based off of. Then years later, I read The toughest Indian in the World. Needles to say, Alexie is funny as always in The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian. Alexie will convince you to believe stereotypes about Indians, then twist the stereotype just to prove how wrong and ignorant you are. However, he does so with humor which is why his books are fun to read.
4. Lost at Sea by Bryan Lee O’Malley
Everyone knows Bryan Lee O’Malley’s work, because of Scott Pilgrim series, which I hate to admit, but I still haven’t read those books. I have read a few of his other books, which I loved. I react to O’Malley’s graphic novel’s the same way. I’m reading the books thinking this is a nice book, but then I hit the ending:
It becomes one of the best books I’ve ever read in that moment. Here’s a sample image of what you get in his books:
5. Fresh of the Boat by Eddie Huang
This memoir is an acquired taste, but I loved it. I plan to buy a hard copy, when I get a chance. He talks about social justice, and what challenges he faced growing up. Like most people, I discovered this book when I learned that ABC is coming out with a TV show based of his book. The book is funny, and worth checking out. I was already looking forward to the TV show, reading the novel made me even more excited to watch the show.
*This was written December 31, 2014, but was not published until January 2, 2014.