My 2012 reading list has been heavy on urban fantasy and young adult, so most of my favourites will come from those genres, too.
Best and/or most enjoyable books read in 2012:
- Derek Landy - Kingdom of the Wicked
- JK Rowling - The Casual Vacancy
- Maggie Stiefvater - The Raven Boys
- Ben Aaronovitch - Whispers Under Ground
- Jonathan Stroud - The Golem's Eye
- Jonathan Stroud - Ptolemy's Gate
- Mike Mullin - Ashen Winter
Those were the books I've given five stars this year on Goodreads.
Both Stroud's Bartimaeus
series and Aaronovitch's Rivers of London
series were this year's discoveries for me, so I read and loved all the books in each series this year, but the rest were worth "only" four stars.
I went into The Casual Vacancy
expecting to be disappointed, after seeing a lot of critical reviews - I'd preordered it but once it arrived, I left it just lying around for a couple of months before even bothering to pick it up. But I ended up genuinely loving the book - it was absolutely one of this year's highlights for me.
Landy's Skulduggery Pleasant
series has quickly become my favourite currently on-going series (and will be in my top three of all time for a long time, I suspect), so the latest in that, Kingdom of the Wicked
, was my most anticipated book of the year - and it didn't disappoint; quite the contrary.
The Raven Boys
was an unexpected delight - I'm usually not keen on teen romance, and I've been associating Stiefvater with that (and The Raven Boys is very much a young adult book and there is some romance), but when a number of friends couldn't recommend it highly enough, I decided to give it a go - and I'm so glad I did.
Mullin's Ashen Winter
was the sequel to last year's Ashfall
, which I'd liked a great deal as well, but for me, this second book was even better.
Worst books read in 2012
The absolute worst was a self-published book I'd picked up for free on Amazon, but out of published books (and ones that came reasonably highly recommended/hyped, at that):
- Eric Flint - 1632
- Taheref Mafi - Shatter Me
- Brandon Sanderson - Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians
- Kristen Simmons - Article 5
was an excruciatingly awful read in all ways. (*hides from all the people here who love the series*) I found the writing/style incredibly bad, but most of my problems were with the content. I pretty much only persisted due to the trainwreck factor - reading on in horrified fascination.
For Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians
, I'm ready to admit I'm not in the target age group - but I love plenty of books aimed at middle grade readers, so I don't have an issue with children's books as such.
and Article 5
were both pretty heavily hyped YA dystopias which I disliked for different reasons - Shatter Me
had a dull plot, which didn't help, but the very stylised language didn't work for me at all, while Article 5
was just plain dull and full of stupid characters.
Overall, the majority of books I read in 2012 were in the "average" to "pretty good" category. I tend to pick books I expect to like, so while a lot of them ended up a bit meh, there weren't many I actively hated.