Best to “not so best” Books I read in 2012

I had a goal to read a book a month in 2012.  How’d I do?

Okay, yeah, I know everyone else posted this list in January, but hey, I’m different, you know (and maybe I totally forgot) 🙂

But now I can say I’m original. Yay!

I gave myself this goal last year because as a writer, you are supposed to read – and I definitely wasn’t reading. Giving myself a goal forced me to go to bed earlier so I would have time to cuddle up with my book before I went to sleep, and made me feel good about saying “yes” when my husband asked if I wanted to read by the fire (which I love doing).

I’m glad to say that I am finding time to read again.  I can usually polish off a novel in a week or so if it is really good.   In 2012 I had a goal to read at least one book a month.  By the end of the year, I had read well over twenty books!  Yay me! (A few of them were novellas, but the important thing was that I was reading, and I scoped out books in many genres)

Here they are in order.  I kept moving these around for one reason or another.  I basically ranked them with a combination of great writing and general great reading experience.  (Which are two very different things)

My rating system:  Did I close the book and want to reach for another book by that author?  Then I ranked the book higher.  Was the writing fabulous, but something about the plot disturbed me?  Down the list you go.  (I don’t like to be ticked off or feel sick to my stomach after reading something.)

So here is every book I read in 2012 from best to “not so best”, weighing heavily on my emotional reaction to the story as well as all around great writing (and with the exception of maybe two books on this list, all the writing was really engaging.)

Crux, Julie Reece

The Glass Man, Jocelyn Adams

The P.U.R.E., by Claire Gillian

Read-hold up PKO_0016876Throne, Phil Tucker

Oracle, JC Martin

Instinct, JA Belfield

Mended Hearts, Olivia Devereaux

The Circle, Stella Berkley

Again, Diana Murdock

Surrender, by Aimee Laine

Hunger Games (Didn’t finish-watched movie instead)

The Secret Year, Jennifer Hubbard

Call of the Sea, Rebecca Heart

Darkness and Light, JA Belfield

The Sword, Bryan M. Litfin

Talbot’s Ploy, Kastil Evenshade

Soul of the Succubus, Lila Shaw

Fated Encounter, JA Belfield

Into the Unknown (Anthology)

Endless (Anthology)

A Touch of M**** (I feel bad listing someone as the worst, but this is that horrible book that I ananymously throttled for being so bad.  I will continue to keep its anonimity)

There you have it.  What were your favorites from last year?  Any recommendations for this year’s list?



15 responses to “Best to “not so best” Books I read in 2012

  1. Can’t believe you didn’t finish Hunger Games! I was literally sick to my stomach I was so freaked out about what was going to happen to Katniss. I guess dystopian’s not everyone’s cup of tea, though. 🙂 I will say, the romance definitely could have been played up a bit.

  2. I’ll have to check some of these out! I go through reading spurts. One week I could read 3 books (like this week!) and other times I could go weeks without reading a book (like the past month before that). I think my record was in 2012 one week I read 11 books! I guess if you count all the books I read to my class, my list would be A LOT longer! We just got done reading The Book of Elsewhere: The Shadows. I highly recommend it for your kiddos . . . reminded the kids of HP a bit. And you’re right . . . I don’t get writing down when I’m reading either, but sometimes I must take a break and get inspired:-) P.S. One of the books I read this week was your anthology–really nicely done!!!

  3. Around the time I stopped writing my second thriller, I stopped reading as well. I read P.U.R.E as well and liked it. I have to start making time to read again.

  4. I read about a book a week on average. I love your list. There are some great writers on it. 🙂

  5. I loved Gone Girl. Probably my favorite 2012 read. So far this year, my favorite may be The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton. Read it for a book club recently and loved it. Usually I’m all about the thriller, but The Secret Keeper is suspenseful in its own right. Was hard to put down.

  6. Happy and slightly surprised Crux was up top. I enjoyed that too but wouldn’t have expect you to list it as THE best. Gives me more confidence that it can be used as a reference of good work.

  7. A bunch of my favorite reads from last year were from my YA Lit class. There were a number of required and optional reads in that class I hated as well, but I did discover gems including:

    The Watch That Ends the Night, by Allan Wolf, a novel in verse about the Titanic. I honestly never would’ve guessed this was supposed to be YA, since only a handful of the characters are young people.

    Lockdown, by Walter Dean Myers, one the urban/multicultural books, about a young man in juvie. This started out kind of slow for me, and I was already at my wits’ end with so many first-person books in this class (almost none were in third-person, the POV I always use). Then it got really good, and I really grew to like Reese and wanted him to have a happy ending.

    My Family for the War, by Anne C. Voorhoeve. It was originally published in Germany, and I’m sad to say it probably would have a hard time finding an agent as YA in the U.S. It’s an old-fashioned Bildungsroman, taking the protagonist from age 10 to 17.

    The Ausländer, by Paul Dowswell. This was published in England, and seems like such a breath of fresh air next to a lot of the American historical YA I’ve encountered lately. It was obvious copious amounts of research went into writing this, and that it wasn’t just some period piece using history as window-dressing. It’s such a nice change of pace to find a book about German life in WWII, instead of the American or British homefront or the Shoah.

  8. Crux definitely was one of my faves from 2012. There were so many others that were up there, too, that I can’t think of a proper order: The Fault in our Stars (got a 20 star review from me); Cinder, Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instrument series, Divergent, Insurgent, The Glass Man, Darkness & Light, The Lost Prince, Halflings, Dragonswood, The Scorpio Races, The Iron King, Henry Neff’s Tapestry series…too many good ones to name. Funny, I’ve forgotten the bad ones.