I know that I did the 2012 end of the year survey but I wanted to make this one a little more personal for my favorites of 2012!
Book that reminded me that I love to read: The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy. Any of you who have read my review know how much I adored this book. I hugged it after I finished and I am anxiously awaiting book two.
Favorite BAMF: Silas Dane. Guys I can’t get enough of this man. He is foreboding, a tad evil, yet extremely loyal and smart and he has a pet crow! I would LOVE a pet crow! YUMMY, for sure!
Favorite companion: I really had a soft spot for Fianchu from Heart’s Blood by Juliet Marillier and, as always, Fiacha from her Sevenwaters series and the main character in her novella Twixt Firelight and Water.
Favorite debut author: So many that I loved this year so I’m going to cheat and name a few but first, let me say that every single debut author listed here has been SO incredibly nice and reached out to myself and fellow bloggers to thank us for our reviews. If you are reading this, dear debut author, just know that I personally squeal very loudly and do a happy dance when you read and/or respond to a review or mention! So my favorites in no particular order are: Ruth Frances Long, Anna Banks, A.C. Gaughen, Marissa Burt, Rachel Hartman, and I think this might be cheating because I do believe he has written a children’s book before, Christopher Healy.
BFF: Scarlet from Scarlet by A. C. Gaughen. I loved this book so much that I was petting its pages. Scarlet and I would totally be BFFs, she is hardcore but a softie on the inside (don’t tell anyone, YA HEAR?!)
Most swoonworthy lad: Duval from Grave Mercy, I think. He was just the right amounts of good and bad. All gentlemanly, yet MANLY at the same time…YAY!
Favorite setting: New Orleans, baby! A Beautiful Evil by Kelly Keaton. Despite not loving the book, it has an absolutely beautiful setting, it really made me want to travel there right this minute!
Favorite pick found while perusing: The Wintercraft series by Jenna Burtenshaw. This was a series I had heard nothing about and simply saw it on the shelf at my local library, read the back and immediately checked it out. There are so many things to love about this series. The world building is intricate yet not overwhelming, the plot is unique, the main guy is totes swoonworthy, yet there is no love triangle and very little hinting at any romantic interludes. Though part of me longs for them (I LOVE YOU SILAS!) a larger part is really impressed at Burtenshaw’s level of storytelling that doesn’t fall back on familiar tropes. Go add this to the TBR, friends, you won’t be disappointed!
Fantastical creatures: DRAGONS, FOR THE WIN!! I read so many books about dragons this year, friends! Top of my list for favorite dragon book has to be Seraphina by Rachel Hartman but I also thoroughly enjoyed Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George and Dragonswood by Janet Lee Carey. Both of these titles reminded me of The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede which I absolutely adored while growing up.
That bad boy you shouldn’t love, but…: OH SOPHIE’S CHOICE! Disclaimer: The answer here, hands down, goes to WOLFIE from Scarlet but this book has yet to be published and I have yet to review it so by default I must choose another…I think I am going to go with Silas Dane here AGAIN. Yes he is a BAMF and he is a teeny bit, ya know, evil, but reader, I LOVE HIM!
Favorite male lead: I think Duncan, from The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom takes this one. He makes my heart happy.
Favorite female lead: I would go with Scarlet Benoit from Scarlet by Marissa Meyer here but I am sticking to books already published SO I am going to say Anna from Anna Dressed in Blood and Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake. She is pretty awesome and though she is scarier in book one – until we get to know her, like most villains – she is still pretty amazing in book two!
Best summary in two words: Assassin nuns.
Good thing I didn’t judge by it’s cover: Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I have NO idea why but this cover nearly turned me off to the book! I know that so many people love it and after reading the book I actually understand that, but if Heidi hadn’t ASSURED me that I would love this one I am ashamed to say that I might not have picked it up!
So glad I judged by it’s cover: Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson. I had it on my radar solely because the cover was absolutely gorgeous, then I read some reviews and I was hooked!
Hug the book moment: You’ll just kill me if I choose Hero’s Guide for yet another answer, right? So if I tell you that I physically hugged that book after finishing it you will be bored and just never return to the blog again? Okay, I won’t say it (even though it’s true). Instead, I will leave you with this part in Storybound: “It became Una’s habit, on days that she felt especially invisible, to retire to the basement of the school library. Most students stayed on the main floor, grouped together at sunny tables, giggling over their math problems and English homework. But Una preferred the lower level, where she could sit undisturbed except for the odd student scurrying down to get some reference book needed for a research paper. She would tuck into her favorite desk underneath one of the high basement windows – half daydreaming, half reading – while the minutes flew by and she wondered what it would be like to live a different life.”
Worth the hype: Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I was wary to pick this one up but I devoured it, AND its sequel which I was lucky enough to own, and let me tell you, they both gave me the biggest book hangovers of 2012. Add them to the TBR if you haven’t already.
Newest addiction: All things Neil Gaiman. Especially his audiobooks, yessir!
Scariest villain: Oh my I think Rumplestiltskin from The Book of Lost Things takes the cake for this one, he was one scary guy.
Favorite laugh out loud moment: “Wild card, got it,” Duncan said. “Just like in Crazy Eights. I can be a diamond; I can be a spade. Whatever you need me to be, I’m that thing. That is so me.” – From The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy
Best slow burn romance: Okay, yes, Juliet Marillier again provided us with a lovely slow burn romance between Flint and Neryn in Shadowfell, HOWEVER, I think that Duval and Ismae’s relationship from Grave Mercy got to me a bit more. There is a moment where she is laying in bed and he walks over and grabs her ankle…I literally made a girly “eep” noise out loud as I read it. Oh my.
Biggest ugly cry moment: The ending of Tiger Lily. That letter. Oh my, I can’t even…
Mermaid book worth taking the plunge over: Of Poseidon by Anna Banks. I think my review explains my feelings nicely.
Favorite new to me genre/book: Middle Grade books for SURE! This year I fell in LOVE with middle grade novels thanks to Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George, The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy, The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer, Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver and Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu. I can’t wait to devour SO MANY MG novels in 2013!
Thank you Netgalley!: Amber House by Kelly Moore was a book I randomly found while perusing Netgalley one day. I needed a book to pass the time while at a family party of the beau’s (lovely, I know) and I saw the cover and my interest was immediately caught. The book was beautifully written and creepy at all the right parts, I don’t think enough of you know about it so take my word and add it to the TBR!
Non-bookish THINGS that I loved in 2012:
Doctor Who: That’s right, people! I started watching it on Netflix and now I can. not. stop. I am nearly through season 1 and here are my thoughts..
- The Doctor is yummy.
- I do NOT like it when Rose and The Doctor share any sort of intimate moment. Keep your hand OFF of his cheek, woman!
- I would make a better companion than Rose.
- The question “Are you my mummy?” makes me want to cry in a corner for a bit.
- OH HAI CAPTAIN JACK!!
The Hobbit: Though I enjoyed The Lord of the Rings movies I do not remember loving them as much as The Hobbit. We went to see it on my birthday and I was literally clasping my hands in glee. I especially loved the part with Smigel, “If he guesses wrong….WE EATS HIM WHOOOLE!” Love.
Tin Man: I’m not going to get into too much detail here since I will be reviewing this for you all during Project: Fairy Tale, but just know that it is totally worth watching, Zooey Deschanel is amazing, the Tin Man is yummy and SyFy is sometimes really, really cool.
Book Expo America: It was an amazing experience. I was able to meet authors and bloggers who I really admire and my eyes were opened to many opportunities as a blogger as well as knew titles I had yet to hear anything about. I am really looking forward to what BEA 2013 has in store!
Duval! Hell yeah!!
I LOVED Tiger Lily (which I picked up partially from your review) and I can’t wait to read Cinder!
Oh, and I also can’t wait for BEA 2013 because that means that we get to actually hang out 😀 And I mean that in the least creepy way possible.
LOL! I totally agree 100% about Hero’s Guide. It was one of my favorite books this year. And Duncan . . . like you said, he makes me happy. It makes me want to read the book again.
I actually like the cover for Cinder, although it doesn’t make me want to read it because I generally avoid all things Sci-Fi. I am, however, listening to it via audiobook, and am loving it. Definitely worth all the hype.
I love MG books. I used to read them a lot (I am a children’s librarian) but this year I’ve read mostly YA. I have Dragon Slippers from the library, and think I might read it next. I love Jessica Day George. Have you read anything else by her? My favorite is Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow.
Oh, thank you so much for including AMBER HOUSE in your end-of-year list! Put a huge smile on my face!
Gaiman and his audios!