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Old 12-08-2012, 11:02 AM   #31
Yapyap
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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

1632 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.

Shatter Me 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.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:02 AM   #32
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Best
* Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand
* 11/22/63 by Stephen King
* Wool Omnibus by Hugh Howey
* When Will There Be Good News? by Kate Atkinson
* To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
* A Night to Remember by Walter Lord

Worst
* Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
* Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella (I hate chick lit novels, I have no idea why I read this one)
* The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
* Looking for Alaska by John Green
* The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
* The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:11 AM   #33
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I think Tim O'Brien is a candidate for 'one shot wonder'
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:23 AM   #34
Catlady
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I did a lot of rereading this year, choosing old favorites; the best rereads were
  • Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford
  • Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

First-time reads I enjoyed were
  • Dare Me by Megan Abbott
  • Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
  • The Lantern by Deborah Lawrenson
  • Black Angel by Cornell Woolrich
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:24 AM   #35
drofgnal
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The best (tie):

- Wool omnibus
- When Christ and the Saints Slept
- Armagedon (Leon Uris)

The worst

- Exodus
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:32 AM   #36
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I hardly remember what I've read but "The night circus" by Erin Morgenstern was quite good.
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:58 AM   #37
pdurrant
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Looking back over the books I've read this year, let me pick out a few:

Unsurprisingly, The Lord of the Rings is in top place.
Runners up (non-series):
The Man Who Used the Universe by Alan Dean Foster
Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi
The Book of Kells by R A MacAvoy

Worst? The ones I abandoned.
Bio of a Space Tyrant by Piers Anthony. I used to like his stuff, but since it was pointed out, his sympathetic depictions of paedophiles (in many of his books) is too much.

The Stoneholding by James G NAderson and Mark Sebanc. "Too much of an attempt to be epic, an entirely unconvincing world, and far too much back story shoved in willy-nilly."

Sabazel by Lillian Stewart Carl. Halfway in I just didn't care about anyone or anything in the story.

Runner-up stinker:
Net Force 'by' Tom Clancy
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Old 12-13-2012, 11:32 AM   #38
randyflycaster
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Books I really liked:

Destiny of the Republic

1858

A Country of Vast Designs

Unbroken

Grand and Sherman

Moneyball

Counterstrike


Books I was disappointed with:

Blue Highways

Out of my League

American Lion


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