Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Best Books of 2013

I wasn't planning on posting a "Best Books of 2013". Why? Because I read lots of amazing books this year and I find it hard to pick just a Top 10. However, there are many books and authors that deserve recognition, so I'm doing this albeit a little differently.

I discovered audiobooks late 2012, but 2013 was really the year that rocked my ears. I discovered many new authors and narrators thanks to audiobooks. Here are my Top 5 books and narrators for audios.

The Witchcraft Mysteries by Juliet Blackwell and narrated by Xe Sands.
Xe Sands brings this series alive and if you only get to listen to one cozy mystery series on audio in 2014 definitely let it be this one.

Before I was a mystery-nerd I was a Dune-nerd and I read this series every year. I opted to listen to it this year and found that narrators Euan Morton, Katherine Kellgren, Scott Brick, and Simon Vance truly added a new love for me to this series. This was really my first introduction to Scott Brick and Simon Vance and I plan to listen to more books narrated by them.

Laini Taylor published one of my favorite YA fantasy series in 2012 and Khristine Hvam zoomed into my Top 5 narrators with her narration of Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Days of Blood and Starlight and more recently Night of Cake and Puppets. She has a unique voice that I love.

Penelope Keith! I think that's all I need to say. I was raised on british comedy and I loved her in "To The Manor Born". Finding out that she narrated a british cozy mystery series was like finding gold. She will forever be the voice of Agatha Raisin for me, and I love what she brings to this cozy mystery series.

I'm a huge Terry Pratchett fan. I'm also a Black Adder fan. Finding out that Tony Robinson (who plays Baldrick in Black Adder) was narrating Raising Steam. Well I had high expectations and thankfully he delivered. This was a fun audio and I hope Tony Robinson narrates more books by Terry Pratchett.

Every month Kensington, Penguin (Berkley Prime Crime) and many more publishers put out new cozy mystery series, and like a reader with a addiction I flock to them. So here are my Top 10 new series that I discovered in 2013. 

Ghosts! Sisters and a whole lot of murder. I'm so glad Lizbeth Lipperman wrote this story. It spoke volumes to me as a only child that always wondered what it would be like to have that many sisters. This is going to be a great series.

An Irish Mystery! Sheila Connolly, I adore you for this. I love British mysteries and I found this one so adorable with all it small town wonderful-ness (yes that is a word, I just made it up!)

Ghosts! Yarn! I read this and instantly wanted to move into the "Thank Goodness It's Fiber" shop. This was a great mystery.

Cookbooks and Cats! This was a great debut and I'm hoping its the start of a really long series as this first one was so fun.

I discovered Amish Mysteries in 2012 and I was thrilled to discover this series in 2013. I'm learning that Amish Mysteries are definitely my thing.

I don't think I've laughed so hard reading a cozy mystery before. The Goddaughter was so funny, and its sequel was even funnier!

Food! Good food! Amazing food! Death Al Dente appealed to my tastebuds and I plan to read the next book in the series.

Pies and Prejudice was one of my very favorite books of the year. This series is pure magic!

Sid the Skeleton completely stole my heart in this series. Sid and the whole family were so wonderful and I really thing this series is going somewhere big and definitely deserves a spot in my Top 10.

Agatha Christie! This mystery was full of books and mysteries and Agatha Christie and this series is now on my must-read list.

Okay so that's my Top 15 really. I read a lot of mysteries in 2013 and I listened to a lot of audiobooks. Due a ongoing illness I'm only going to be listening to audios in 2014. However I don't think I will be missing out since there are so many cozy mysteries on audio and I plan to listen to a lot of Agatha Christie's. My fellow reviewers, Tina, Tess, Melina and Anna will be reviewing lots of ebooks and paperbacks, so I'm pretty sure together we have all our bases covered!

Now at the end of this post I want to add a big THANK YOU. Personally 2013 was a tough year for me. It was also a great year. I discovered new authors and interacted with so many fantastic cozy mystery readers. I took a two month break for health reasons and I was thrilled that four devoted readers were willing to help me get the blog back up and running. I couldn't have done this without my readers though. So many emailed and messaged me and encouraged to get back to blogging and I'm so thankful for the motivation. Thank you to each of you and I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Years celebration and I look forward to 2014.


  1. Oh! You just made my morning! Thanks so much...and I'm so glad you're enjoying Blackwell's Witchcraft Mystery Series. They are so fun, and full of wonderful tidbits about San Francisco (bonus!).

  2. Oh, Bella! Thank you for making my day! So glad you enjoyed Death al Dente -- and I hope you find Crime Rib (July 1, 2014) just as yummy!

  3. What a list!! And I found a book or two I've yet to read.



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