Chick Lit/Women’s Fiction Recommendations for Best of 2013?

loveliestchocolate LinnieGayl: One of my favorite categories in AAR’s Annual Poll is Best Chick Lit/Women’s Fiction. In most years I’ve read several books in the category and have a hard time deciding which book to vote for. This year is different. With just one month before polling begins on January 13, I realize that I haven’t read a single chick lit or women’s fiction book that I would consider voting for in the 2013 Annual Poll.

So I decided to take the advice we give readers: Do a power search at AAR. For Chick Lit titles published in 2013 that didn’t produce very helpful results; only Katie Fforde’s A Perfect Proposal, which received a B- from Maggie, has been reviewed this year at AAR.

A power search for best Women’s Fiction yields more titles published in 2013, including the following that interest me:

* Shadows on the Nile by Kate Furnivall (B-) (This sounds like historical fiction or historical romance to me, so would love to hear from anyone about it because the description at Amazon says for fans of Amelia Peabody!)
* Just Like Other Daughters by Colleen Faulkner (B+)
* Teatime for the Firefly by Shona Patel (B+)
* Love Overdue by Pamela Morsi (B)
* The Time Between by Karen White (B+)
* Meet Me at the Cupcake Café by Jenny Colgan (B+)
* The Secret of Happy Ever After by Lucy Dillon (B)

I’ve liked books by Lucy Dillon before so am adding her The Secret of Happy Ever After to my list of books to try and read over the next month. And I’ve also heard good things about Jenny Colgan’s Meet Me at the Cupcake Café so that’s another possibility. But what else? I decided to ask my fellow pollster LeeB, who I know reads a lot of Chick Lit and Women’s Fiction, for her assessment. Here’s what she has to say:

LeeB: I’m a huge fan of UK authors, some of whose books are published in the US (usually a year or so after the UK release) or available via ebook. Other times I order from bookdepository.co.uk, not knowing if or when the book might be released in the US. Below are several books I really enjoyed.

Three Little Words by Jessica Thompson is definitely women’s fiction and is about forgiveness. Yes, there is a happy ending, but at times it was incredibly sad. Jenny Colgan’s The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris also will make you sniffle a time or two regarding one character but it’s an excellent read about a woman who starts a new career in Paris learning about chocolates. Definitely need candy on hand while reading it. I’m a huge fan of Cathy Lamb, and her latest book, If You Could See What I See, continues in her tradition of crafting funny and moving stories about families.

Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella is definitely chick lit and though it may not be her best book, I still laughed and enjoyed the characters. Other definite chick lit books that I enjoyed were About A Girl by Lindsey Kelk (a young woman pretends to be her photographer flatmate to take on an assignment in Hawaii); The Bride Wore Size 12 by Meg Cabot (what seems to be the concluding title in Ms. Cabot’s Heather Well mysteries); A Passionate Love Affair with a Total Stranger by Lucy Robinson (while recuperating at home after breaking her leg, a woman helps out friends at internet dating); Could It Be I’m Falling in Love by Eleanor Prescott (a former TV presenter joins in with other former celebs as they try to cope out of the spotlight).

LinnieGayl: Well, I did listen to Kinsella’s Wedding Night and didn’t like it much so will have to reject that one for me. But I’ve heard great things about The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris so that’s a definite possibility to add to my list.

How about you? Have you read any great Chick Lit or Women’s Fiction published in 2013? If so, what are you going to vote for in the Annual Poll? Any and all recommendations would be greatly appreciated. We’ve still got a little reading time left before the poll opens!

– LinnieGayl Kimmel and Lee Brewer

17 thoughts on “Chick Lit/Women’s Fiction Recommendations for Best of 2013?

  1. I have a couple of titles, and I think they qualify for Chic Lit/Women’s Fiction. Not sure where else I’d classify them. They were both excellent.

    The Rosie Project | Graeme Simsion
    Ladies’ Night | Mary Kay Andrews

    The Rosie Project combined humor and seriousness very well. Ladies’ Night, as is Andrews’ style, also shows both humor and lessons learned.

    Good luck.

    • Oh, I usually like Mary Kay Andrews so that’s a great suggestion. And I’ve heard such good things about The Rosie Project. Thanks!

  2. You forgot to mention Jill Mansell!

    I love her books…….her latest “Don’t Want to Miss a Thing is a wonderful book. It’s a “it takes a village” story full of lively likable characters. I recommend it whole-heartedly.

    • Oh my! How did I miss that Jill Mansell had a book out in 2013?? I must see if it’s available for download. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  3. I think the only book I read which both qualifies for the category and I really enjoyed was Lian Dolan’s Elizabeth the First Wife.

    (I’ll have to check if any others can be added.)

    • I think Elizabeth The First Wife is my favorite book of the year. I love educated heroines and throw in a Shakespeare festival…..I was in heaven!

  4. Of the books LinnieGayl talked about I’ve read all but the Lucy Dillon and I am not sure which I will be voting for as favorite women’s fiction. It’s between Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe and Teatime for the Firefly. I have to put a plug in for Christopher Bohjalan A Light in the Ruins. Excellent book. No real happy ending but very meaningful.

    I love all Lee’s recommends. I am really looking forward to reading The Best Little Chocolate Shop in Paris and several of the other titles look like things I will want to add to my TBR.

    • Thanks, Maggie, I downloaded Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe this morning and read a bit before I left for work. So far, I’m enjoying it. And I really want to read The Best Little Chocolate Shop in Paris.

    • I’ve read that; it’s more women’s fiction than chick lit. My favorite books by her are The Last Anniversary and Three Wishes.

  5. I don’t know if Laura Florand’s novella ‘Snow-Kissed’ could qualify for this category, or if it’s just considered contemporary.

  6. It has been a while since I have read many of these books, I did enjoy them:

    The Love Wars by L. Alison Heller,
    Christmas Wedding Quilt – Anthology by Emilie Richards, Janice Kay Johnson and Sarah Mayberry
    Candlelight Christmas by Susan Wiggs
    Down in Out in Beverly Heels (not too much romance, but I was fascinated how this woman who was homeless, but was able to fool so many people)
    Somewhere Between Luck and Trust by Emilie Richards- probably my favorite this year, but I tend to love Ms. Richards’ books
    While We Were Watching Downtown Abby by Wendy Wax – typical women’s issues, but I kept turning the pages.
    Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman – a little bit of a rough start, but I enjoyed how the heroine turned her life around.

  7. Karen White’s book was really good. I still have Morsi in my TBR pile and I think Dillon may be there too :)
    Beth Hoffman had one in 2013- Looking For Me

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