Liz Dombeck’s Best Reads of 2014

dombeckMy name is Liz Dombeck, and I’ve been living in Evanston for almost 4 years after returning to Chicagoland from living on the east coast for 10 years.  I’m a former Spanish teacher that currently tutors and does varied volunteer work through my children’s school’s PTA.  I love reading, cooking, fitness, and travel.

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1) The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (2013)

I loved how this book was long, but easy to get caught up the story.  You meet the main character, Theo, when he is just a teenager and you really feel like you are growing up with him over the course of the novel.  His great loss has shifted the path of his life and reminds us how one moment can change the course of our future forever.

2) The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (2005)

It’s a narrative that weaves through time and perspectives to show the importance of the expression of love and its many manifestations.  It’s a literary novel for people that may not usually enjoy “literature.”

quiet-final-jacket3) Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain (2012)

This book is for anyone that is an introvert or has an introvert in their lives.  It really helped me to see why introversion can be an asset in a world that usually only rewards extroversion.  It also clarifies stereotypes about introverts, for example: not all introverts are shy.  A good read for self-reflection.

4) The Light Between the Oceans by M.L. Stedman (2012)

This was an emotional book about how choices that are made with the best intentions can lead to disastrous results for others.  The author lets the reader sympathize with each character, flaws and all.

5) The Secrets of Mary Bowser by Lois Leveen (2012)

This historical fiction book – based on limited knowledge of a real freed slave – gives a lot of insight into how people spied for the Union during the Civil War.  The description of the day-to-day lives of some free slaves living in the North opens up a different perspective on life before and during the Civil War.

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