Top 10 Books Read in 2012 & Year in Review

2012 was a very, very busy year for me. I had a lot going on in my personal life – including changing my college major, some family issues, and working way too many hours – and my blog was sadly neglected. I was lucky to have multiple great books assigned for various classes and was able to find some books for fun and review… as of today I’ve read 108 books this year! For those of you interested in looking through those titles, a link to the list can be found here on Goodreads.

This year was also a year of bookish changes and accomplishments for me:

  1. I read my first graphic novel, Nate Powell’s Swallow Me Whole, and fell madly in love with the sub-genre.
  2.  I took my first Literary Theory class, which was sometimes overwhelming and difficult, but so, so wonderful. It definitely has had an impact on how I read.
  3. I finally decided what I want to be! A Youth Services Librarian! In retrospect, this seems like an obvious career choice for me. It took me way to long to figure it out!
  4. I got a job in a public library. I just started this month, but I LOVE it. I’m still new and the shininess hasn’t even had a chance to wear off, but oh my goodness it is fantastic! I love everything about it… sorting books, the Dewey Decimal System, helping people find books… LOVE IT. 

So, even though I was pretty absent from the blogging world, I’ve been working towards combining my blogging/bookish life and real life. It’s been a long process, but I finally see some progress! 🙂

I wasn’t able to review many of my favorite 2012 reads, but I’d still like to share a quick list of titles and covers, which I painfully narrowed down to 10. I’ve linked each title’s Goodreads page to the image, so click the image to add to your own reading list! Enjoy!

Emily’s Dress and Other Missing Things by Kathryn Burak
Emily Dickinson, a troubled main character, and an off-limits potential love interest? How can you not want to read this book?
Plus, the writing is gorgeous. I didn’t want to finish this book! 

Venom by Fiona Paul
 My favorite aspect of this book is all of the Shakespeare references and parallels. Granted, I read this as I was reading multiple Shakespeare works – and maybe some of these similarities were imagined – but I loved it!

I totally understand why Venom was one of Penguin’s lead 2012 titles!
Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard
A historical, steampunk-ish novel with zombies and battling banter between the heroine and a scowling, attractive guy. 
Heck yes. 
Check out my review here

Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone by Kat Rosenfield
Beautiful writing and a haunting story. I love this MC. I was raised in a small town and constantly dreamt of escape, making her all too easy to relate to.
Check out my review here
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
2011 was a bit rough on my love life, but I lost some of my bitterness in 2012. I like to think Fitzpatrick’s debut contributed somewhat.
An amazing novel of family and real love, My Life Next Door shines! 
Check out my review here
Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama
A mermaid book like no other, Monstrous Beauty features gorgeous writing and weaves multiples stories and setting together. Part mystery, part love story and wholly intense, Monstrous Beauty is not to be missed.
This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers
I can’t imagine writing of a favorite/best of list that didn’t include a novel by Courtney Summers and this year is no exception.
Summers hasn’t disappointed me yet (I know, it’s great) and her newest novel featuring ZOMBIES was no exception. Powerful stuff right here ladies and gentleman. Read this book… and all her other books. Now. 
Check out my review here
Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne
I could not get this books out of my head for weeks after reading it. It still pops up in there unexpectedly, though I read it early in 2012. 
The story of 14 kids trapped in a store (think WalMart) as the world as they know it disappears. Maybe not the newest premise, but definitely my favorite take on it so far!
Check out my review here
Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
I waited forever for this newest offering from Cashore. Picking up years after Graceling (and wayyy after Fire), Bitterblue tells the story of a girl learning to rule a broken kingdom, to believe in herself, and to love.
So good. 
Check out my review here
Sumo by Thien Pham 
Read during my graphic novel phase (not that it’s ended), Sumo blew me away. Deceptively simple, Sumo tells the story of a washed up football played that travels overseas to to become sumo wrestler and finds himself in the process.
What’s interesting about this book is that it reads like a sumo match… the images and ideas seem to circle one another and eventually come together in a climactic clash. 
 _______________________________________
Feel free to share your favorites or own Best of 2012 post in the comments! And, if you loved any of my favorite titles, want to chat about them, or discovered something new, be sure to let me know! 
Happy New Year everyone!  
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