Belated Bests: My Reading Life in 2012


January 9, 2013 by Heidi

Hi friends! You did get to see me talk about some of my favorite books from 2012 over at Smugglivus this year, but of course one extensive post isn’t quite enough for me to air out all of my reading thrills and spills from my first year of blogging.  Maybe I’m late to the game since I took a hiatus for the end of the year, but here’s hoping I can wring a few last drops of interest from the crowd looking for some seriously wonderful reads from the past year.

According to Goodreads, my reading year went something like this:

Goodreads 2012 StatsThat’s 218 books read total.  54 books with a 5-star rating (25%!), and 81 4-star (37%).  50 books (23%) made their way onto my 2012 Favorites shelf.  I’m calling that a very successful year!

I read 40 audiobooks (18%), 77 adult books (35%–Who knew?), 104 young adult books (48%), 32 middle grade books (15%–Surprised this is less than half my adult consumption), and 16 books were rereads (7%–Hurrah for Harry Potter and Sandman!).  117 (54%) were published prior to 2012, and 101 (46%) were 2012 releases.  All of this means it’s fairly impossible to choose favorites, but I’ve done my best!

Top 10 of 2012:

Seraphina by Rachel HartmanThis Is Not a Test by Courtney SummersCinder by Marissa MeyerSpendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz book coverThe Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis

#10– Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
#9– This Is Not a Test by Courtney Summers
#8– Cinder by Marissa Meyer
#7– Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz
#6– The Mighty Miss Malonee by Christopher Paul Curtis
#5– The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth
#4– Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
#3– A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge
#2– Vessel by Sarah Beth Durst
#1–The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. DanforthScarlet by A.C. GaughenA Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge book coverVessel by Sarah Beth Durst book coverThe Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan

I know, I know, I still need to review two of my top three books, but I swear I will because I must share my love of them with all of you.  Of these 10, four are debuts, and seven are stand alone novels!

Best of the Rest (AKA my way of squeezing in more than 10 picks):

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth WeinThe Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher HealyUnspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan book coverThe Humming Room by Ellen PotterGrave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Best Historical: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
Best Audio: Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson
Most Fun: The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy
Most Frustrating Ending: Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
Best Retelling: The Humming Room by Ellen Potter
Best Stand Alone: Railsea by China Miéville
Best Romance: Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
Best Cast: The Diviners by Libba Bray
Best SciFi: And All the Stars by Andrea K. Höst
Biggest Jaw-Dropping Twist: Starters by Lissa Price
Best Adventure: The Assassin’s Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke
Most Thrilling: I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga
Most Promising Series Start: The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Best Creepy Crawlies: The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls by Claire Legrand

The Diviners by Libba Bray book coverAnd All the Stars by Andrea K Host book coverThe Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke book coverI Hunt Killers by Barry LygaThe Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls by Claire Legrand book cover

And finally, since more than half of the books I read in 2012 were published prior to 2012, I’ll leave you with a hat tip to the past and some oldies but goodies.  I did not include any rereads, and tried my hardest to limit myself to one book in a series or by author, with the exception of Ilona Andrews (I figured that since I read 13 Ilona Andrews books there could be two on my list):

Top 10 Books I read in 2012 that has nothing to do with 2012:

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens book coverThe Scorpio Races by Maggie StiefvaterMagic Strikes by Ilona AndrewsJellicoe Road by Melina MarchettaBayou Moon by Ilona Andrews book cover

#10– A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickons
#9– The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
#8– Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews
#7– Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
#6– Bayou Moon by Ilona Andrews
#5– The Lost Conspiracy by Frances Hardinge
#4– A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner
#3– Graceling by Kristin Cashore
#2– Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
#1– Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

The Lost Conspiracy by Frances HardingeA Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen TurnerGraceling by Kristin CashoreHowl's Moving Castle by Dianna Wynne Jones Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

How d’ya like them apples?  Feel free to carry me on your shoulders while cheering my awesomeness and good taste, or hiss and boo to your heart’s content.  Please point out what amazing reads I completely missed in 2012 so they can get their chance to make a mark on 2013, and feel free to shamelessly link me your own Best of 2012 posts since I most likely missed them while I was off gallivanting in the sub-zero temperature snow piles of Wyoming!

Once again, happy new year to all!  Next week I’ll be looking toward my most anticipated reads of 2013 as well as setting myself some goals.  After all, one doesn’t get to post face-palming abysmal failure gifs down the road if one doesn’t set oneself up to fall flat on their face early on.  Cheers!


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While the source for each book I review is posted within its review, please assume unless otherwise stated that books reviewed on Bunbury in the Stacks were received free from the author or publisher in exchange for an honest review.