This list is in no particular order, and out of the 90+ books I read last year there were 23 that I rated 5 out of 5 stars. It’s been quite hard to narrow the list down to 5, so I took out any books I have read in the past, any books that were more novellas and any books that were aimed, predominantly, at children. Before you start grumbling, this isn’t because I think novella’s can’t be well written or that children’s authors just don’t ‘cut it’ – I’ve based it on the fact that I wanted to cover the books that were lengthy, and I felt took me on a real immersive journey. So with that in mind, my first Top 5 Book of 2013 has to be;
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey.
This was a truly beautiful book. It was easy to envisage everything thanks to the descriptive style of writing used by Eowyn Ivey. The story follows a couple, Jack and Mabel, who have started a new life in 1920’s Alaska, but the baby she lost years before haunts Mabel. When a little girl suddenly appears on their land their lives suddenly become enriched by her presence. But is the little girl all that she seems?
The story was easy to follow and from the get go it is easy to fall in love with Jack and Mabel, I found myself wanting them to find happiness and overcome the pain of previous years. Eowyn wrote them in such a way that you could empathise with their worries, joys and pains. The backdrop of Alaska helped add to the atmosphere and pacing of the book, as the characters and story lines seemed to change with the seasons and the surrounding environment. Even the toughness of day-to-day life of owning a homestead in the middle of nowhere was captured beautifully and made it a believable read.
It may sound corny but I really felt as though I got lost in this book, it’s so well written I could almost feel the snow covering the ground around their little home and was wrapped up in finding out who the little girl really was, and you will too. I’d recommend this book to people who love a story with a bit of mystery and anyone looking for a good book to read this coming Winter, this one would be perfect with a cup of hot chocolate.