Friday, November 7, 2014

Team OverDrive’s Best Books of 2014

ODbestbooks20142014 was a great year for books and eBooks and it’s hard to believe we’re nearing the end. To commemorate some of the great reads, we polled our staff here at OverDrive and asked for everyone’s favorites.

Click here for the complete list of titles!

All the Light we Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Melissa Higey, School Account Specialist II
I love the twists and turns of this book, as it moves back and forth in time and between several different narrators. The life of Marie-Laure, as a blind child and teen living during WWII is fascinating and beautiful. Loved it!

Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson
Dan Potash, Product Manager
In 2014 Tor published Words of Radiance, the second book to his "The Stormlight Archive" series. The series itself is a great read for anyone into Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings. It combines elements of a feudalistic society centered on the Hellenic ideas of honor and glory through war, with a hidden but emerging world of magic. As the protagonists become more aware of their own importance and power, they come closer to the knowledge of a world-ending event and the preparations needed to thwart such a catastrophe.

Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Heather Valentine-Gold, Account Specialist II
I borrowed the eBook from Cuyahoga County Public Library without knowing much about it, other than it came highly recommended, and I ended up loving the story and characters. While many of the sci-fi themes are familiar, they're wide-ranging and Brown manages to weave them all together in a completely new and entertaining way.

The Weirdness by Jeremy Bushnell
Rachel Kray, Collection Development Analyst I
A “hipster” sells his soul to the devil in a last ditch attempt to sell his novel. And there’s also werewolves and an evil wizard trying to end the world with a very special lucky cat. Hilarious with brilliant prose, this book in unlike anything else I’ve ever read.

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
Christina Samek, Launch Specialist I
It's part of a planned trilogy that I cannot wait to get my hands on! It's a fantasy novel with suspenseful and tragic elements. It's definitely not YA, but it's not strictly Adult, either. I'd rate it 17+. I love the use of the quest motif present in the novel and coupling that with a female lead makes the literary trope feel brand new. It's just great, everyone who has ever felt small or insignificant should read this. Anyone who has ever felt powerful should read this. Everyone should read this!

Redeployment by Phil Klay
Jim Monastra, Account Specialist
Redeployment is a collection of short stories about the war in Iraq, and the soldiers that are fighting. The stories are brutally honest, and at times hard to read, but difficult to put down because of the terrific writing. I'm really excited to see what Klay has in store for the future.

Shovel Ready by Adam Sternbergh
Michelle Ross, Collection Development Analyst
Reminiscent of Raymond Chandler and Ready Player One, this was an awesome futuristic and suspenseful read.

The Care and Management of Lies by Jacqueline Winspear / Read by Nicola Barber
Deb Halinski, Manager of Knowledge Services – Learning Systems
I love audiobooks because I do so much driving. This year I happened upon an extraordinary reader, Nicola Barber. Her voice is expressive and versatile (male, female, child, elder, British/American/Scottish/Irish and more) — so much so I can forget I'm listening to a single reader. Even more remarkable, she has the ability to spin individual words to portray complex emotions. I'm immediately pulled into the story, and I am sad every time I reach the end of one of her narrations!

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Melissa Marin, Marketing Specialist II
This book really stayed with me after I read it. The writing style is unusual and while it kept me at arm's length at first, I realized that it was for a reason. As the story unfolded, I found the writing more engaging. The more you learn about the mystery and the lies that are the core of the book, the more the book opens up, secrets become exposed and things become clearer. Very interesting.

The Jim Henson Biography by Brian Jay Jones
Adam Sockel, Marketing Specialist I
It's a must-read for anyone who grew up with the Muppets or Sesame Street. Reading about how his vision became a reality was fascinating. I highly recommend it.


If you would like more recommendations, we're always happy to create custom lists. Email us at for more information today!

**Please note that title availability may vary by geographic location and platform.*

Rachel Kray is a Collection Development Analyst at OverDrive.

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