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The Best of the “Best Books of 2013″ Lists

December 9, 2013
List of National Hockey League awards

You don’t get a trophy for winning The Best “Best Books of 2013” List, but maybe it’s still an honor. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

December may be the Christmas holiday season, but for bloggers, magazines, and news/entertainment shows, it’s the season of lists.  If we book lovers aren’t certain what we SHOULD have read this year, dozens (if not more) lists are out there to tell us.

To assist those who are already tired of lists or don’t have the time to look at all of them, I have read through (or skimmed) many of such lists (Top Ten books of 2013, Books You SHOULD Have Read in 2013, Best Books of 2013, etc…) and below are my opinions of the Best and Worst Book Lists of 2013 (in NON-list format)


10 Best Fiction Books of 2013-EW

Best Books 2013-PW

Both of these lists are in a gallery format.  Ugh!!  When I had an old computer, I hated galleries because it would take 30 seconds to get to another page, so reading a top ten list could take 5 minutes (if my computer behaved itself).  I’ve recently upgraded, but I still see the gallery as a cheap hits machine, and the gallery is probably used to fool advertisers, which isn’t my business, but still.  I don’t see a good reason to use a gallery, except to get cheap hits.

Therefore, any list that is put into a gallery format automatically gets ranked at the bottom of a lists ranking, no matter how good the list itself is.


Best Fiction of 2013-Guardian

The list itself isn’t bad, but all the photographs and headlines from the other unrelated articles on the margins are distracting and take away from the Top Ten list that I wanted to read.  As an American (from the United States), it’s interesting to see the differences between a U.S. “Best Fiction” list and a British “Best Fiction” list,  and I like to see how books from each genre are rated and listed.

But if I want to get distracted when I read (and sometimes I do), I’ll go to The Huffington Post.


Top 20 Picks for Best Books 2013-Amazon

The picks are displayed on one page and easy to find, which makes sense because Amazon is all about making it easy for buyers (though maybe not so easy for its employees, depending on who you talk to).


Best Books 2013- Slate

From here, you can go to other lists as well, like the “Most Crucial…” and “Most Overlooked….” Books of 2013.  I’m not sure what “Most Crucial” means, but I’m sure it was creative.

Slate could have tied with The Guardian for being the “Most Distracting,” but I wanted each to be a winner!


Best Books of 2013- Goodreads

This one has more genres than I’ve ever seen (Best Paranormal Fantasy?), and it’s voter based, which some readers may prefer over selections made by anonymous (alleged) editors.  Click on the winner, and you get the top 20 of every genre.  The only reason I don’t judge this as The Best “Best Books of 2013 List” is because there are too many books involved.  20 categories with 20 selections each equals 400 books (if my math is correct).  400 books?  I… cannot… comprehend!

And now for the drumroll…


Guide to 2013’s Great Reads-NPR

This is my favorite list because it’s not really a list and all (or a lot) of the books are displayed on one screen in a seemingly disorganized way.  I don’t know if NPR’s selections are any good or how they compare with the choices other book blogs made, but the spread is great!  And it’s not a list!  It’s more like a giant mass, but if you number them in order, I’m sure you can make a list out of it.


I might seem hypocritical because I make fun of lists but then I write post after post about them.  However, when it comes to personality faults, hypocrisy is pretty minor.  When we have so many opinions and attitudes, nobody can be consistent all the time, so if I’m going to be a hypocrite, I might as well be a hypocrite on something as unimportant as lists.  Also, I didn’t actually READ the lists.  I merely glanced at them, so I’m not sure if I’m a hypocrite if I make fun of lists and don’t really read them when I discuss them.

At any rate, the lists are there for you to check out, read through, or glance at.  What do you think?  Which list is your favorite?  What do you think of galleries?  Which book list do you think is the BEST BOOK LIST OF 2013?

  1. bdallmann permalink

    Brilliant post. I am one of those who is entirely sick of those “Best of” lists. I don’t need anyone telling me what I “should” have read. I read what I read for a purpose!

  2. Excellent post…and the award for “best of” list goes to……:) that will probably be a red carpet event at some point. Agree with bdallmann…we are intelligent enough to determine what we wish to read…not be pablum- fed ‘You must” or If you read only one book before you die…”….ah well. Have a great day.

  3. I just saw the Goodreads list, although I didn’t actually read it, since I’m pretty sure I haven’t read any books that were published this year.

  4. Great post. Great site. Keep it up!

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