Ten Fiction Books I Want to Read This Year

Last week I shared the non-fiction books I want to read. For this week’s Top Ten Tuesday, I am going share the fiction books I want to read. Truthfully though, with me started school tomorrow, I’m not sure how much extra reading I’ll have time for either list; but, I’m going to give it my best shot! πŸ˜‰

Many of the books on this list (Not all!) are from Catholic authors that I’ve found (most through catholicfiction.net). Maybe it’s just me, but there seems to be a serious lack of contemporary Catholic novels. That’s a shame because I really think there is an audience for it. (Hopefully that will change in the future! Besides the authors I’m discovering, I am helping a friend do preliminary editing for a Catholic novel she has written. AND I have the seedlings of Catholic novel brewing – but more about that in the future. Maybe!)

Anyway, without further ado, here are the fiction books I’m hoping to read this year:

In Name Only

1. In Name Only by Ellen Gable. I had the opportunity to read and review Ellen’s newest book, “Stealing Jenny” a while ago. Now I want to work my way through her other books. This is the first one on my agenda.

The Best of Me by Nicholas Sparks

2. The Best of Me by Nicholas Sparks. I’ve read ALL of Nicholas Sparks’ books. {blush} His books are a [not-so] secret indulgence of mine. πŸ™‚ This is his latest release and I’m chomping at the bit to get my hands on it! (FYI, you’ve probably seen most of the movies that were made from his books. The movies are good, but the books are SO MUCH better.)

Rachel's Contrition

3. Rachel’s Contrition by Michelle Buckman. Just reading the book description givesΒ  me chills. I have a feeling this is going to be a powerful book.
Unfinished Business by Nora Roberts

4. Unfinished Business by Nora Roberts. I’m probably one of the few people in the world who hasn’t read a Nora Roberts novel. πŸ™‚ I noticed that the reviews on Amazon are mixed; however, this book caught my eye a while ago so I’m going to read it anyway. Hopefully I’ll like it.

Great Possessions by Mrs. Ward

5. Great Possessions by Mrs. Wilfred Ward. This book is listed as a popular classic, but I’ve never heard of it. (Not that THAT means anything!) The first few pages were interesting, so I added it to my list.

A Life of Joy by Amy Clipston

6. A Life of Joy by Amy Clipston. I’ve read and enjoyed all of the Kauffman Amish Bakery Series books so I am looking forward to reading this one as well.

The Inheritance by Lisa Barker

7. Inheritance by Lisa Barker. This book touches on some deep topics such as addiction, abuse and finally redemption.Β  From what I can tell, it looks like a well-written gripping story.

The Third Testament by John Eklund

8. The Third Testament by John Eklund. I’m intrigued with the premise of this book: A professor of a small Catholic college, Fred, is called by God (through dreams) to write the next testament of the bible. He accepts the call but then is besieged with hardships that test his faith.

The Gargoyle Code by Dwight Longenecker

9. The Gargoyle Code by Dwight Longenecker. This is a book that is very similar to C.S Lewis’ Screwtape letters, except from a Catholic perspective (and some other differences according the book description and reviews). I enjoyed The Screwtape Letters quite a bit, so I’m curious to see how this book compares.

Father Elijah by Michael OBrien

10. Fr. Elijah: An Apocalypse by Michael O’Brien. I’m not a huge fan of apocalyptic novels. They are usually over-the-top and unrealistic; but, I have high hopes for this one. I’ve seen reviews of this book over the years: all of which have been positive. I guess we’ll see. πŸ™‚

What fiction books are you planning to read this year (or have already read that you’d recommend)? Do share!

(P. S. If you are a Catholic novelist [or any author] who would like to send me a copy of your book to read and review here at Simple Catholic Living, feel free to contact me at carol (at) simplecatholicliving (dot) com.)

(Linked also to Works for me Wednesday.)

(This post contains affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy for details.)


  1. Can’t find your email so I headed over here to say thank you for praying with me…and also letting you know I’m joining you in prayers sweetie. ((hugs))
    Angela…recently posted…AN OLDIE,MOST POPULAR POSTMy Profile

  2. I’ve heard many things about Nora Roberts, but haven’t read any of her books. What a fun list and good luck on reading all of your books!

  3. I’ve heard that Catholic publishers will generally not consider fiction. Christian fiction was invented by and originally published by evangelical Protestants, so it doesn’t authentically represent Catholicism. I don’t know for sure,but my guess is that Catholic publishers won’t touch fiction because if it is too Catholic to be picked up by a secular publisher, then they have to worry about whether it is doctrinally correct, and, especially when dealing with sexuality and marriage, most who call themselves Catholic, who would be part of the audience for these books, do not agree with the Church and probably wouldn’t like books that push the Church’s position.
    RAnn…recently posted…Sunday Snippets–A Catholic CarnivalMy Profile

    • SimpleCatholic says

      That’s makes sense, RAnn. I guess there’s a fine line between being doctrinally correct and pushing the faith in people’s faces.

  4. Hello Carol! Thanks so much for putting my second novel on your list of “to read” novels this year! I’ve read some of the books on this list and you’ve got some great reading ahead of you! RAnn, you’re correct that most Catholic publishers won’t accept fiction. I attended a conference a few years ago and one major Catholic publisher said Catholic fiction doesn’t sell very well. (However, that hasn’t been my personal experience). So, for now, those of us who write Catholic fiction will continue to self-publish…
    Ellen Gable Hrkach…recently posted…Sunday Snippets – January 22My Profile

    • SimpleCatholic says

      Thanks, Ellen. I’m looking forward to working my way through them. πŸ™‚

      Does that mean that all the Catholic books on my list are self-published? Wow! Any suggestions, Ellen, on how to find more self-published Catholic Books, so I can support them?

  5. No, I think many of these are published through traditional publishers…Rachel’s Contrition is published through the fiction arm of Sophia Press (but they have since discontinued publishing fiction). Michael’s book is published through Ignatius and Ignatius does publish fiction, but not much…
    Ellen Gable Hrkach…recently posted…Sunday Snippets – January 22My Profile

  6. Yes, if it’s Catholic Fiction (I don’t believe Nora Roberts’ books are considered Catholic fiction…)
    Ellen Gable Hrkach…recently posted…Sunday Snippets – January 22My Profile

  7. Anything by Michael O’Brien is going to be good. Ignatius Press does carry some Catholic fiction.

    Dwight Longnecker is Father Longnecker of “Standing On My Head” http://gkupsidedown.blogspot.com/ blog fame. He writes well and is a convert from the Traditional Anglicans. It seems that he and Father George Rutler both express themselves well in what I would describe as British fashion.

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