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02 January 2013 @ 05:37 pm
Big Book List 2012  
Well it’s that time of year again when we get to review things. First up for me is always what books I’ve read. I didn’t get through as many in 2012 as I have in pervious years, but then I knew that wasn’t going to happen. Goodreads – which is a fun place – tells me that I managed 45. Here they are, grouped how much I enjoyed them rather than just a random list, and if you want any information on any of them or want to chat about them, fire away! Books are love.

Fantastic = the best of the best. The ones that I felt the urge to tell everyone bout, multiple times, including strangers on the bus. The ones that I bought other people because I had to share. The ones that I really, really enjoyed.
Great = the best of the rest. Books that I would reread, or lodged themselves in my head so thoroughly that rereading might be redundant.
Good = books that I enjoyed, but since book-lovers can't afford everything these ones you could save your money on and find them in the library.
Okay = books are books and therefore wonderful, but I can't help feeling that these ones could have been better.
The Bottom of the Pile = well if you have nothing else to read

Fantastic

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Deathless by Catherinne M. Valente
Thirteen by Kelley Armstrong (last in series)
The Usual Rules by Joyce Maynard
Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
Black Widow: The Name of the Rose by Liu and Acuna (graphic novel)

Great

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld (first of series)
Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch (third of series)
Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah
Dear Zoe by Philip Beard
Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O’Brien
Divergent by Veronica Roth (first of series)
Insurgent by Veronica Roth (second of series)
Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
The Mouse That Roared by Leonard Wibberley
A Storm of Swords: Steel and Snow by George RR Martin (fourth of series)
Selected Poems by Simon Armitage (poetry)
Rapture by Carol Ann Duffy (poetry)
Black Widow: The Itsy-Bitsy Spider by Grayson, Rucka, and Jones (graphic novel)
Under the Big Top: A Season with the Circus by Bruce Feiler (non-fiction)

Good

The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter
Team Human by Sarah Rees Brennan and Justine Larbalestier
Ultraviolet by R. J. Anderson
Guantanamo Boy by Anna Perera
Love is the Higher Law by David Levithan
The Calling by Kelley Armstrong (second in trilogy)
The Hunter and The Hunted by Kelley Armstrong
Of Mutability by Jo Shapcott (poetry)
Circus Mania! by Douglas McPherson (non-fiction)
Black Orchid by Gaiman and McKean (graphic novel)
Avengers: The Intiative (1) Basic Training by Scott and Caselli (graphic novel)
Avengers: The Initiative (2) Killed In Action by Scott and Caselli (graphic novel)

Okay

Chocky by John Wyndham
The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
Obernewtyn by Isobelle Carmody (first of series)
Bullyville by Francine Prose
Children of the Dust by Louise Lawrence
We All Fall Down by Eric Walters
After The Bomb by Gloria D Milkowitz
The Last War by Martyn Godfrey
X Men Origins by Sean McKeever et al (graphic novel)
X Men Origins II by Stuart Moore et al (graphic novel)

The Bottom of the Pile

If Winter Comes by Lynn Hall
Avengers: Road to Marvel’s Avengers by Peter David et al (graphic novel)

Previous Big Book Lists: 2011, 2010, and 2009.

I’m not sure what the big book releases of 2013 are going to be, but I’m keeping an eye out for: The Rising by Kelley Armstrong, which is the last book in a YA trilogy; the first book in Kelley Armstrong’s new series; the third (and final) Divergent book by Veronica Roth; the third (and final) Justin Cronin and Patrick Rothfuss books (although I think those will be a while coming); and I believe Neil Gaiman has a new novel on the way.

I got Dodger by Terry Pratchett for Christmas and after reading Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies I hunted down the rest of that series in a discount bookstore, so those are currently at the top of my to-read pile. What are everyone else’s to-read lists looking like?
 
 
feeling: thoughtfulthoughtful
 
 
 
Random Wonderings of a Curious Girl: One bookbook_junkie007 on January 2nd, 2013 10:18 pm (UTC)
My to-read pile is a bit of a mess because I keep taking books out of the library/buying books but never getting around to them. I still have books from when I was ten that I haven't read yet (Great Expectations, anyone?).

My main goals for this year are to finish the book I'm currently reading: The Man Who Loved Books Too Much, which I received as a Christmas gift last year and just got around to; take another crack at Game of Thrones because I got 60 pages in, read all of Ned Stark's POV for the rest of the book, then didn't finish it (my grandpa encouraged me to give it another try); and read the Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, the Silmarillion, and Unfinished Tales because I was never interested in it when I was younger.
inkvoices: dr who:arm yourselves (with books)inkvoices on January 4th, 2013 03:13 am (UTC)
Heh, I have my to-read pile, which is a small-ish pile of fairly recently aquired books that I want to read, and a large pile accumlated over years that I haven't gotten around to and should now that I'm broke and shouldn't be buying anymore, and my dad's books, because I re-introduced him to reading and then he stormed ahead of me in crime fiction lol. Sometimes I read books that I left aside years ago and I love them; sometimes I think I should have left them there a while longer. And I admit, I'm not a fan of Charles Dickens. At all.

I've not heard of that first one, but intriguing title; tell me more when you've read it! Game of Thrones I enjoyed. I read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings as I kid. The first one really is a kid's book. Treat it like Narnia - fun, a bit quaint, a good yarn. (Unlike the film, which merges the book with the histories and myths and other things that were going on in Tolkien's world at the time, but the same sense of humour.) The second I struggled with at points, but I reread it nearly every year after that for a long time, although not recently. It has it's faults, but I like it very much. The Simarilion and the Unfinished Tales etc have high points, but they're very much myths and world-building. If you don't like the first two or struggle with them, I wouldn't bother buying those.
Ni!allie_meril on January 3rd, 2013 03:18 am (UTC)
Do you intend to go further in the Queen's Thief series (Megan Whalen Turner)? I was also sort of "meh" about the first book, but the second and third books are FANTASTIC and I have so much love for them. :)
inkvoices: girl readinginkvoices on January 4th, 2013 03:15 am (UTC)
I wasn't planning to, because, yeah, meh. I think it didn't help that I'd heard a few good things online and it didn't live up to expectations. I wasn't intending to read more and I have other things that I want to rad first, but if you think the others are worth it I'll add them to the to-read list :)
A completely happy writer: Reading - whenever whereverlar_laughs on January 3rd, 2013 03:24 am (UTC)
If you like Scott Westerfeld (and I do!), I highly recommend his Steampunk series! Leviathan, Behemoth, and Goliath!

Man, we just don't talk books enough for me to know your past reads so I'll have to look through the old lists to see what you've read that I can either nab for myself or books I can offer.

I've got tons of new Steampunk novels to read this year, both in print and ebook. I'm going to tackle the second book in Steven King's Dark Tower series. I really need to finish The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest. I'm going to attempt the first del Toro/Hogan book again as it just didn't grab my interest enough last year to finish (but 2013 might be different). I'm going to finally read the Catherinne M. Valente books that I've got piled up and ready to read.

I've also got a few non-fiction books on my Amazon wish list and on my Kindle that I need to absorb. I love history and I just haven't been reading enough of it lately!

I love the wide open new year with all the reading possibilities! It's the best feeling EVER!
inkvoices: girl readinginkvoices on January 4th, 2013 03:21 am (UTC)
I'd heard good things, but Uglies was the first I've read. As soon as I had Christmas money I bought the last two of that series in a discount bookstore where I'd spotted them and I ordered the second on Amazon, so as soon as the second gets here I'm going to plough through all three :) I'll make a note of his others!

I know :( I love books so much, I talk a mile a minute when anyone goes into a bookshop with me, but I don't talk much online about books. I was thinking of doing the 100 Things Challenge and making it 100 blogs about books, but I didn't think I had the time when I first saw it. I know there's no time limit or anything to sign up though, and I could always do something similar without the challenge. I think there needs to be more book talk in my corner of the internets! But yes, there's a lot on my previous lists and I have a Goodreads account.

I think The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest finishes that trilogy off well - it does show that even though he planned 12 novels, he planned them to be four trilogies. And I want to read more Catherinne M. Valente! I hadn't heard of her until sugar_fey mentioned Deathless to me (as part of writing an entry into an Avengers series a bunch of us ended doing) and I really loved it. More required!

I fancy more circus books, in non-fiction, hmm, and maybe some more poetry.

BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS :D
A completely happy writer: Reading - whenever whereverlar_laughs on January 4th, 2013 05:59 am (UTC)
I have a hard time talking about books because a lot of the books I read have the potential to be seen as silly by people who think that all books must 1) make you think and 2) bring about some sort of social change. There are times I just like to be entertained! So I don't talk about books much. I do, however, need to keep up my Goodreads account better. Last year, I did the 12 in 12 challenge and I'm going to do something similar this year, I think.

Can you imagine how many pages 12 novels from Larsson would have been? I can barely carry this third one around with me, which is part of my problem in finishing.

My reading goal this year to is to read MORE of the books on my shelf and in my Kindle and buy FEWER books. I don't need to buy more books but I get the chills when I think of all the books that I won't buy if I don't open up Amazon and then they'll think I don't love them! The books... not Amazon. I don't think Amazon cares one whit about me loving it or not.

inkvoices: girl readinginkvoices on January 4th, 2013 11:06 pm (UTC)
You see, I don't get that. People who distinugish between 'literature' and label things and really? It's all words. And who's to say that silly thingsw won't make you think? And...yeah, grrr.

Am I friends with you on Goodreads? I'm here.

Heehee, I call books like that 'doorstoppers' *grins*. Sometimes you can't beat a good doorstopper, but sometimes they're too intimidating.

I always say that I'm going to read what I've got before I invest in more, but then something catches my interest and I chase off after it. Or I go into a bookshop and they call to me.
A completely happy writer: Reading - whenever whereverlar_laughs on January 5th, 2013 03:15 am (UTC)
I hung out with the WRONG PEOPLE when I was in high school. Instead of letting myself be a geek and doing more than just going out for the chess team (I was on the chess team, yes, but I'm so horrible at the game as I don't naturally see beyond two moves and never played enough to get really good but I can still say I was on the chess team and get all that nerd cred!), I let them convince me I was an "intellectual" when I really wasn't. I just wanted their approval. And I need to stop doing that! I'm me! Get over it!

Actually, my Facebook is an every evolving effort to let people know that I'm a geek and that it's okay and they can be one, too. Or, in some instances, they can let their kids be geeks. No more looking back and moaning about lost chances! I'm only looking forward!

And we're friends there now! Gosh. Goodreads thinks I've read 4 books last year. How sad it must be for me!

Used bookstores get me every time. I want to wrap up all the books and take them home so they'll feel loved. New books... they don't know enough to know about love. They've heard about it but it's only stories to them. Used books are the creatures that have experienced love and then been THROWN AWAY. Okay, not that bad. But I feel so bad for them. I want to take them all home with me.
inkvoices: girl readinginkvoices on January 7th, 2013 12:54 am (UTC)
I don't think we had intellectual type people like that at our high school. Not even in the chess club, which I followed a friend into for a bit, but it bored me and I think I died out pretty fast. I was involved in the music scene a lot - violin and singing - but I never hung out in the music rooms or anything. I remember that I used to take all the books we read in class home with me so that I could read them before the class killed it with bored voices and the teachers made us rip them apart, and I ended up helping out in the school library, because our librarian, a fantastic lady, used to collect oddballs like me and take us under her wing. So I talked to people about books, and made people read books, and never got told what I could and couldn't read.

People kept recommending Dickens to me and I kept turning my nose up, because there's something about the heavy, plodding way he writes that I just can't get through. I've read some so-called classics and I will again, but I used to not read books that were recommended to me, because I wanted to find what was good for myself. I was a stubborn brat lol. One time I flicked through a book of 21st Century Children's classics that an aunt had bought me years before, with extracts from the books you should read kind of thing, and realised that I'd actually read a load of them, and sheepish thought I should maybe try some of the others. But I'm still very I like what I like :)

Apparently I was a geek but did not know this, and now that I know I'm louder about it. My facebook is mostly keeping in touch with and arranging to meet up with friends though *shrugs*. I live more on LJ and dive onto twitter occasionally.

Book friends! *does the secret booklovers handshake*

I just find libraries and bookshops and book places of all kinds really calming. Bad day, feeling stressed, over-excited, whatever, surround myself with books and I'm golden. Weight of all those people and worlds, it's like 'hello old friends and friends I haven't met yet, I've come for a visit'.
A completely happy writer: Reading - whenever whereverlar_laughs on January 7th, 2013 03:42 am (UTC)
I had several friends who were older than me and I helped them write their English papers (in the good "I've got a way with words and can help explain the idea to you" way and not the way that would have gotten me kicked out of school) so I'd also read most of the books early. This one friend of mine did a paper on the significance of colors in The Great Gatsby and I became this HUGE FAN of the book. So much so that I was pressuring my other friends to read it. I think I even got my little sister to read it... and I can't force her to do anything!

For extra credit in a history class, I read The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. Have you ever read that book? DON'T. It turned me off processed meat (and forced labor, mind you) for a good few years.

I've never had much good to say about Dickens. He is very heavy and plodding! I don't even like to watch movies from his books! I'm more of a Jane Austen fan. I like a lot of the war writers from the 20s. I'm a huge CS Lewis and Louisa May Alcott fan. I'm going to attempt more books by people like Henry James and Nathaniel Hawthorne just because I've wanted to for awhile but haven't had them in front of me. I need to FINISH Dracula and read Frankenstein. Really, I'm not a classics girl!

You were so lucky to have a cool librarian! Ours was this old man (even then and he is STILL old) who was weird! In a bad way. In a way that he shouldn't have been around children! Time has proven me more right than I wish I was. I didn't spend as much time in the library as I wish I had. I was more of a hallway girl! Oh! And I took a full year of typing! Just because I have this thing about typewriters (we had a room of half typewriters and half computers) and loved getting to use them. I did yearbook starting when I was junior high and so did that in high school which also put me on the newspaper staff (we were a smallish high school and that staff did both) but I'm NOT a journalist so wrote a bunch of "witty" pieces that were as close to stand-up comedy as I ever got. *grins*

*tries the handshake and ends up getting all twisted around* I'm going to have to practice!

I think books are the most relaxing thing on the planet. They sit there, on the shelf, and never change. Your clothes can not fit or rip and you have to throw them away and get new ones. Your computer is ALWAYS changing with new screens and new places to go. But the books are FOREVER. They say, "Come visit when you can. I'm here whenever you need me. I'll never change. You can always depend on me."

I love books so much!
inkvoices: girl readinginkvoices on January 7th, 2013 06:07 pm (UTC)
I haven't read The Great Gatsby or The Jungle, Dickens, as I said, is not my friend, but I've liked Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott well enough, and CS Lewis was a childhood staple. Over the last few years I've tried to read more...awardy? type books, so The Shipping News, The Color Purple, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, and I've found that they're more my kind of 'classics' :)

Our librarian was an ex-punk rocker, or at least ex as far as fashion went lol, great sense of humour, really encouraging, could be stict, but fantastic lady. We had creepy like that teachers though *sigh*. I've always wanted to play with a typewriter! But I know that I'd get really frustrated without a backspace - I go too fast and editing is my friend *grins*. I was on the yearbook group in sixth form college, but it wasn't anything like the uni yearbooks we got or the kind of thing I think you do in the US. Mostly it was a group of us that were friends hanging out eating m&ms and chasing people for their photographs. Fun times.

I have nothing except BOOKS <3