Top Ten Favorite Books I Read in 2012 (and a Few I Thought Weren’t That Great)

Fridays here at Books, Booze and Baking shall hence forth be called Fiction Fridays. On this glorious day the topic will be well books. To start off this grand 2013, I will go over the top ten books I read in 2012 and add in some I didn’t think were that great.

These are in no particular order.

Code Name Verity – Elizabeth Wein
I really didn’t know much about this book going in but I saw it going through the library, than it popped up here and there around the internet. I set a request for a hold through the library and waited. The second I started the book I was hooked, I craved to know what was next. The story seemed well developed and researched and I found myself forgetting it was just a fiction. This was by far my all time favorite read of 2012, I highly suggest you do not let this gem slip away.

The Happiness Project – Gretchen Ruben
I am not even sure this blog would exist if it wasn’t for this book, to be honest. This was another book that I found mostly because I kept seeing it roll through the library and I was curious. Within twenty pages I was ready to start my own version of the Happiness Project and knew it was going to be a Christmas gift for a few people. I would suggest this for someone who wants to get an idea on what they can do to better themselves and finally feel happy.

Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn
Holy misdirection batman, but that is pretty much all I can say about this novel without giving it completely away. This novel just left me speechless. It was a dark, gritty and will leave you digesting it long after you finish it.

The Perks of Being A Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky
I would not be completely lying if I didn’t tell you it was because the film was being released that I read this book. It had been on my Banned Book Week Too Read list for many years and the movie coming out finally gave me the push to just read it. I really enjoyed following the coming-of-age journey of Charlie. I highly suggest dipping into this read, it won’t be a laugh riot but certainly an adventure.

The Casual Vacancy – J.K. Rowling
I am and always will be a Potterhead until the day I die. Always. So of course I had to get my hands on her newest book, even if it wasn’t going to take me on a journey with Harry Potter. I can tell you that she can write. It may have been a bit slow but once I was finally able to give it the time it needed I had to know how it all worked out. Rowling seems to not leave anything unturned and you will feel like you have always been a member of Pagford.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo – Stiegg Larsson
I was late to this party, but that is kind of how life works sometimes. I am still really trying to digest this book but Larsson seemed like an author plucked before his time. It was dark, probably not suited for everybody but a great read.

The Knife of Never Letting Go – Patrick Ness
This is book is the first in a series by Patrick Ness called Chaos Walking. I saw a reference to somewhere or another and gave it a gander. Holy heck, I am still not even sure what happened but that is what made it so interesting. In a world where woman are practically non-existent and men can hear each and even the animals thoughts you just don’t know what is going to happen. I urge you to take a gander at the description and give a go. It is not one for everybody and seems to be one of those books that you either really like or really hate, but where is the hurt in trying. To be on the safe side, why don’t you borrow it from a friend or a library and see for yourself. 

Cinder – Marissa Meyer
It’s Cinderella retold and this time our Cinderella is a cyborg. It was a bit predictable but the story moves on in a way that keeps you coming back for more. The next book “Scarlet” in the Lunar Chronicles comes out in less than a month and I cannot wait to get my hands it. Seriously chomping at the bit and am very upset the library doesn’t yet seem to have it available. Meyer did a masterful job of adding a sci-fy update to the classic. 

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – Jonathon Safran Foer
In short, it ripped my heart out, replaced it tenderly than yanked it back out. A roller-coaster ride that had my laughing, crying, gasping and every other emotion there is.

Bubbles Unbound – Sarah Strohmeyer
This book made my list because on how surprised I was by it. I decided to give this book a try because it fulfilled a 50 states mystery challenge I had given myself for the state of Pennsylvania. But with a charactor description such as “gum-snapping hairdresser with Barbie-doll curves pinched into hot pants and a tube top” for your main character you just am not sure how it is going to go. I really enjoyed this book, the first, of the series that when I can devote the time I would love to read the rest in the series. Imagine it as a blonder and far more ditsy version of Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum with maybe a bit of a dip of Paretsky’s Warshawski. Its a fun little mystery, perfect for the beach.

Now for those books that I suffered through or just had to let go unfinished:

  • I will read the Stephanie Plum novels until they disappear but I BEG that Evanovich quits going off on these random tangents or just let the series DIE as soon as possible. The last four of five just left me so confused or shaking my head that only because I want to see what trouble Plum is going to get into is the ONLY reason I keep going. I am in line for number Nineteen and I hope that this one isn’t like the others.
  • Mum’s the Word – Kate Collins I couldn’t even get through this book entirely. I didn’t feel for the characters, the mystery seemed a little forced. Just say no, I love a good cozy mystery and one around a flower shop would be great, but this one wasn’t for me.
  • Alice in Zombieland – Gena Showalter This book passed through my hands at the library and it sounded like it had potential. I wish I had NEVER heard of this book. First off it had nothing to do with Alice in Wonderland and it felt like it was written by a Twilight hungry thirteen year old. PASS!
  • Dexter is Delicious – Jeff Lindsay I love Dexter and when I discovered the show was based on some books I had to give them a gander. The first four were good, the fifth one was on a whole other plan. It wasn’t bad but if number six doesn’t give me something I wash my hands of the book series and will stick with the show

There you have it. What else can I say?

Next week expect a few reviews for whatever I have read by then. 

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