Saturday, December 29, 2012

2013 is inching upon us! Which means two things:

1- Mayan's were wrong, we so didn't die. Well played Mayans, well played. (I'm seriously going to beat this Mayan-apocalypse-failure joke into the ground, I'm so sorry guys)
2- Time to share my favorite and top reads for 2012! (This is where the real fun begins, you know, sharing is caring and all that jazz)

I will admit, picking a top book for the following categories was hard, like, really freaking impossible hard. There are so many books this year I didn't get to read, so I couldn't count them, and there were quite a few blunders I read this year that took away time from the good books I could have been reading. Stab me with a sword and watch me bleed, why don't'cha. Sigh. But, I did manage to narrow it down from the small pile I did read (and silently promise myself to read more next year or the Book Gods will smite me with page paper cuts, ouch) and share them with all of you lovely peeps. 

Ready? It's time to share my favorites of 2012! 

TOP 2 INDIE BOOKS OF 2012

This was particularly difficult, and I'm still feeling the gut twist over this. I only read a few indie books this year, way less than I should have (bad Livi!) so it almost feels unfair to choose. Especially when I've heard so much positive response to Melissa Andrea's FLUTTER and Tabatha Vargo's WICKED FATE. They're definitely on my immediate to-read lists as soon as I get an inch of free time. 

But out of the few that I did manage to read, here's my top two. 

NUMBER ONE 



I haven't exactly been shy in expressing my love for the two main characters of this exceptional YA Dystopian-Romance novel, Echo and Ayden. So it should be no surprise that, when I thought of what my favorite Indie book would be, BURNING BRIDGES immediately came to mind. You can read my review of this spectacular novel here on Goodreads, but trust me when I say you're better off just grabbing the book and diving headfirst into the story. 

NUMBER TWO 



This was definitely another easy favorite of mine. While I didn't sink into the book as easily as I have with others, something kept pulling me back to it, be it the mystery surrounding one key character, or the romance that brewed on the surface between two others. And that ending? Now I NEED the second book! 



And now, moving onto the next major category! Picking two indie books was nearly impossible, but I had to select two traditionally published books for my favorites of the year, too. Umm, if picking indie books for the year was hard, this one had me FREAKING OUT. I almost wished there had been a ninja in the dark corner of my room to take me out so I didn't have to pick! 


TOP 2 TRAD BOOKS OF 2012

My brain is still trying to go over how I managed to select only two out of this mosh-pit of insanity. There were simply too many books this year, WAY too many. There was THE EVOLUTION OF MARA DYER by Michelle Hodkin, INCARNATE by Jodi Meadows, CLOCKWORK PRINCE by Cassandra Clare, I could list books all day. But just like I mentioned above, I ran into a few books this year I'd rather not remember, nor do I care to. Some flopped so hard in my brain, I had to take a few days to get over them, and it cut into the time I could have been slugging away at all these other awesome reads just waiting for me. 

But, if I had to pick only two books, I did my best to pick two that have impacted me both emotionally and mentally. 

NUMBER ONE



Oh my gosh, where do I even start with this one? Just thinking about it brings a huge wave of varied emotions. THRONE OF GLASS was one of those books I really dug into during Hurricane Sandy's nightmare, and it was probably the perfect book for the event. Dragging me from our powerless house to a castle of glass coupled with a mix of love, lust, determination, and mystery, I still feel intensely powerful about this book. THRONE OF GLASS gave me a broken heroine, twisted by the salt mines and captivity, and let her blaze to life with the touch of a guard and the prince. The turn of each page brought a new shade to each character, expertly navigating emotions and cultivating them just right so your heart pounded when Celaena's did, felt the rush of excitement when she did, it all blended together perfectly. 

But by far the moment that has kept with me from this book rests in the final battle within its pages. Celaena is losing, terribly losing after being drugged by the competition, and for a moment, it all seems lost. The connection she makes in her rawest moment of weakness with a specific person reduced me to tears, and I nearly shook trying to turn the page. It's rare that I find myself choking on emotion with books, but when I do, I know it will be a favorite and a MUST RE-READ of mine forever. 

NUMBER TWO



Holy crap. There are no words for how I feel for Divergent, except... Divergent. The love that builds in a pulse-pounding reality, the struggle on the main character's shoulders, and the well balanced secondary characters left me in pure awe and literally unable to sit this book down from the moment I picked it up. I hadn't even realized how deeply I had sunk into the world of Veronica Roth's until my Dad woke up at 4AM, only to come and find me sitting on the kitchen floor, head in the book. 

And don't even get me started on Four... just... oh Tobias, my heart! (/swoon indeed!)



Now we move onto the smaller, single categories. Equally as hard to pick, but still each deserving of their titles. 

TOP FANTASY READ of 2012



Dragons, sylph, and reincarnated lives? Oh, so much love.


TOP DYSTOPIAN READ of 2012


This was a total no-brainer. Divergent was good, but best Dystopain HAD to go to BURNING BRIDGES by Nad├Ęge Richards!

TOP PARANORMAL READ of 2012


You want freaky? How about dead animals, mental hospitals, and back-from-the-dead people? 

TOP ROMANCE READ of 2012


Three words: Jem and Tessa. That love scene had me swooning so hard I nearly fell off my bed reading it... so scandalous, so delicious, I WANT MORE! 

TOP COUPLE of 2012


Tobias and Tris; Four and Six!

TOP BFF's of 2012


Celaena and Chaol! (Yes, I know you really can't count them as a 'bff' pair, but since they're not technically together in ToG...FRIENDS THEY SHALL BE!)


And finally, what I would consider to be the biggest award for the year, my top YA Read of 2012!

TOP YA READ OF 2012


A HUGE congrats to Michelle Hodkin for THE EVOLUTION OF MARA DYER! 

While BURNING BRIDGES stole my dystopian virginity, DAZZLE sparked a mystery lover within me, THRONE OF GLASS captured my fantasy realm, DIVERGENT showed me strength from the inside out, and each other top book of the year sparkled a little more into my life, none of them could hold a candle to the wild, dramatic, intoxicating power of EVOLUTION. 

It's no secret I'm a HUGE Michelle Hodkin fan. I'd follow her like a groupie if it was legal. I'd love to pick her brain on a rainy day in a musty bookshop, letting her chat about her process and where all the darkness that swallows each page of her novels comes from. From the minute I latched onto her debut novel, THE UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER, I was horribly, impossibly hooked. All I could think about is Noah, Noah, Mara, and yeah, Noah. The way Hodkin writes her stories, leaving you to question the words on each and every page as real or false, imagination or reality, it's scary. It's hauntingly dark and gorgeous. And most of all, it's my favorite YA read of the year. 



Alright, so that's it for me! What about you? Any special books this year that you'd call your top read, or maybe you have a top for a couple genres like I did? Share in the comments! 

4 comments:

  1. Love this list. :) Divergent and Incarnate are both fantastic books! The Evolution of Mara Dyer was a great follow-up to Unbecoming, as well! :)

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    1. Divergent is so fresh in my mind, I'm still swimming with the crumbled world they live in. As for Incarnate, there was something fresh and deeply emotional about it that really stuck with me the whole year.

      And Mara Dyer is just so... ahhh, I could swoon over that series for years and not miss a beat. Haha!

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  2. Love love love! I have to say that Divergent and Throne of Glass totally make my list too!

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    1. Throne of Glass definitely was something, huh? I'm praying the next book brings Chaol a little closer to Celaena, wink wink. ;)

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