My favorite books of 2011

Every month, I share some of the books that I read – books that might interest you, challenge you, or inspire you. I’d like to thank the Hawaii Public Libraries for keeping up with new books, a convenient online reservation system, and friendly librarians.

 Here’s a snapshot of the best books I’ve read this year.

 Best children’s book set in Hawaii:
* “Lio the Carousel Horse” by Carol Moen Wing, illustrated by Ruth Moen – about curiosity, trying new things, and making friends, filled with beautiful, colorful illustrations

Best young adult, don’t hate me because I’m part-angel fantasy:
* “Angel Burn” by L.A. Weatherly – about choices, accepting who you are, and responsibility

Best crime-solving, risk-taking fantasy:
* “Cast in Ruin” by Michelle Sagara – about the potential in all of us, building a home when everything is lost, and the freedom to choose

 Best riveting, action-packed stories-within-stories fantasy:
* “The Wise Man’s Fear” by Patrick Rothfuss – about the power of names, taking risks, doing right things, and masks that become reality

 Best science fiction with crumbling planets and fantastical vistas:
* “Children of Scarabaeus” by Sara Creasy – about manipulating nature, free will, and fighting for what’s right

Best science fiction with aliens, programmed soldiers, and interstellar war:
* “Enemy Within” by Marcella Burnard – about surviving torture, finding reasons to live, responsibility, and trust

Best inspirational Hawaii nonfiction:
* “Practice Aloha: Secrets to Living Life Hawaiian Style” (2010) compiled by Mark Ellman and Barbara Santos – about the meaning of aloha and how we can practice aloha in our lives

Best upbeat, out-of-the-box, I’ll-do-it-my-way nonfiction:
* “The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World” (2010) by Chris Guilliebeau – reminding us that “You don’t have to live your life the way other people expect you to”

Happy New Year and Joyful Reading!

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