Monday, January 3, 2011

Better Than Chocolate - The Ultimate Addiction

My name is Laurisa White Reyes, and I am a bookaholic. I am as addicted to books as most people are to caffeine. I'm not just an avid reader. I ingest books, utilizing all my five senses in the process. I love the way a new book smells right off the shelf at B&N. I savor the texture of glossy covers and crisp, virgin pages. But the soft, fuzzy edges of a well-worn book are just as fulfilling. When I brush my fingertips over the words on a dog-eared page, I wonder what thoughts and feelings touched the previous reader's heart? Books whose spines are broken and whose covers are creased must have been treasured by someone before me and I yearn to know what makes that book so special.

Not only do I love to read, I am also a list-maker. You know what I mean. I make lists for everything. Daily to do lists, chore lists, grocery lists, meal planning lists, Christmas gift lists, and so forth. But nothing holds a candle to my reading list. I have an Excel spread sheet dating back to 2005 listing every book I've read for each year since. The titles are numbered, color-coded according to genre, and rated with one to four stars. Books I listened to rather than read are italicized. My favorite book each year is in bold. And all Newbery Award winners are highlighted.

In addition to my yearly list of books read, I also keep a list of books I intend to read each year. When I've completed a title, I strike it through. I have a list of books that I own that I haven't read yet, a list of books I started to read but never completed, a list of all the books I ever read prior to 2005, and a list of books I must read before I die.

Pathetic, aren't I?

I really don't spend as much time reading as you'd think. I rarely just sit down and read. I keep a book or two in the bathroom (the only place in the house where I can read undisturbed) and I listen to books on CD in the car while hauling my kids to and from school. Still, I manage to get through a good number of titles each year. I matched my record this year with thirty-seven titles. Yep. Thirty-seven. (I've read a total of 133 titles since 2005.) I've included the complete list below (in order of when I read them.)

Having read so many books, I've decided to throw in a book review once in a while for good measure. Since this post is already too long, I'll save my first review for next time. I will say this, however, my favorite book of 2010 was Labyrinth by Kate Mosse. ( She is a brilliant writer who uses words like Monet used color. She's a master. I also read her second book, Sepulchre, which was very good, but not as good as the first. Her third book, Winter Ghosts, is due out in February of this year. I can't wait to read it!

Okay, then. Here is my 2010 List of Books Read:

1. First Meetings in the Enderverse (Orson Scott Card) {Note: I'm a BIG Ender's Game fan!}
2. The Screwtape Letters (C.S. Lewis)
3. Lilies of the Field (William E. Barrett) {Note: I've read this at least six times since I was 12}
4. Dr. Jeckyl & Mr. Hyde (Robert Louis Stevenson)
5. Night (Elie Weisel)
6. The Broker (John Grisham) {Note: by far the most disappointing book I read all year}
7. Among the Enemy (Margaret Peterson Haddix)
8. Turn of the Screw (Henry James)
9. Shadow of the Giant (Orson Scott Card)
10. War of Gifts (Orson Scott Card)
11. 1984 (George Orwell)
12. The 13th Tale (Diane Setterfield)
13. Blink (Malcolm Gladwell)
14. Among the Free (Margaret Peterson Haddix)
15. Eclipse (Stephanie Meyer)
16. Dragon's Nest - Dragons of Deltora series (Emily Rodda)
17. Labyrinth (Kate Mosse)
18. My Antonia (Willa Cather)
19. The Bi-Polar Teen (Dr. David J. Miklowitz)
20. Sepulchre (Kate Mosse)
21. Fire In The Bones: A Biography of William Tyndale (S. Michael Wilcox)
22. 13 Reasons Why (Jay Asher) (Note: In my top 5 this year - A MUST Read)
23. The Road (Cormac McCarthy)
24. Shutter Island (Dennis Lehane) {Note: Heavy on obscene language}
25. Call It Courage (Armstrong Sperry)
26. Silence of God (Gale Sears)
27. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
28. Gossamer (Lois Lowry)
29. The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)
30. The Host (Stephanie Meyer) {Note: Way better than the Twilight books}
31. Peculiar In A Good Way (Mary Ellen Edmunds)
32. Captains Courageous (Rudyard Kipling)
33. The Adoration of Jenna Fox (Mary Pearson)
34. Outliers (Malcolm Gladwell)
35. E=MC2: An Autobiography of the World's Most Famous Equation (David Bodanis)
36. Flags of Our Fathers (James Bradely) {Note: Way, way better than the movie}
37. Mother Had A Secret (Tiffany Fletcher)


  1. Love your comment about Kate Mosse painting with words the way Monet paints with color. I share your addiction of books. I'm reading JANE EYRE on audiobook, Stephen King's book ON WRITING on my Kindle, and the first PERCY JACKSON book in "traditional book form." Read on.

  2. Yea! A fellow book addict! Haven't read Jane Eyre for a while. I should pull it off the shelf and dust it off.

  3. Hey, Thanks for finding me! I look forward to reading your blogs. I am disapointed that you didn't list Messengers in Denim! I know you read it a dozen times as you edited it for me, but I guess that was 2009 or was it 2008? Anyhow enjoyed your list. I started Screwtape letters again. This time we are reading it in our men's book club. What a treat!