1. Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson
What a great story. A virus in a futuristic cyber world (Snow Crash) infects the brains of those that view it or download it. The book follows Hiro who, through this demolished and dark world and advances cyber world tries to stop the virus from infecting millions. Cool imagery, and very original.
2. A Short Stay in Hell by Steven L. Peck
I have read this book 8 or 9 times and if never fails to chill me to to bone and open my eyes in regards to what eternity really is. A deeply moving philosophical story of a man who goes to Hell and must find the book describing his life to leave and dwell in heaven. Chilling, terrifying, moving, wonderful and real.
3. Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
I put Harry Potter so I can count them all as one book. These are truly some of the best books I have ever read. This year I read them for the 2nd or 3rd time (depending on which book) and loved every second of it. The third stood out because of the amazing Quiddich final where, while biking and listening to it I began cheering wanting Griffindor to win. (I couldn't remember who one and was getting really into it). What a tribute to the writing skills of the author.
4. The Scholar of Moab by Steven L. Peck
I just finished this one. I can't begin to describe the imagery in this book. The characters are very real and it is easy to care about them and want to keep reading. It is witty and clever and very moving. After reading it I sat for some time trying to come to grips that it was over and better understand all that I had read.
5. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
This had the same feel as Harry Potter, so naturally I liked it. It was darker, though. An adventure had by an unsuspecting man who finds a world underneath London full of adventure and danger. Also, has some of the scariest and worst villains of all time. Mr. Croup & Mr. Vandemar.
There were so many good books that I read this year. So many, but I think I feel good about these being the best and my favorite of the year.
A few I'm planning on reading next year:
The City and the City, The Hobbit (again), The Lord of the Rings (again), The New Testament (again), Jesus the Christ, Dune, A Short Stay in Hell (again), Starship Troopers, Hyperion (again), Anathem (again) and a lot lot more, I am sure. I usually like to reread really good books every few years which is why there are some that I will be rereading. The rest, (not listed because I don't really know what they are) will probably all be new books. Should be a good year.