My Top Five Books of 2012

These are my personal favourites that I’ve read in 2012 (in no particular order really):
5)      The End of Your Life Bookclub by Will Scwalbe
The End of Your Life Book Club

I’m usually more of a fiction reader but I could not put this memoir down. The story of Will and his mother who is dying of cancer and the book club they decide to form makes for a interesting read. If you love books and you love reading you should definitely check this book out. Check out my review:

4)      Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walters
Beautiful Ruins
This was a book that I was reluctant to start just on a recommendation after having read so many not very good book. But after much pressure from the people at HarperCollins (especially Cory) I finally decided to pick it up. And I don’t regret it one bit, at it’s heart is a beautiful love story set in a luscious setting in Italy. But it is definitely much more than that. The writing is amazing, and the characters are all well-written. This is a definite must read for everyone.
3)      The Housemaid’s Daughter by Barbara Mutch
The Housemaid's Daughter
I loved Chatelaine Magazine”s November pick for their book club because of its narrator. Ada is a character whom you cannot help rooting for because she remains so innocent despite everything that happens to her. I loved the focus on family and female relationships especially the relationship between Ada and Miss Cathleen. Overall it was a truly enlightening read about what life was like for all women during the apartheid.
2)      Love, Anthony by Lisa Genova
Love Anthony
My first book by Lisa Genova, I had no idea that she had a neuroscience background until I met her at her signing. This book is about two women who are brought together by fate and the autistic son of one of the women in the most unusual way. This book definitely opened my eyes to the challenges of having a child that has autism and it deepened my understanding of autism as a neurodevelopment disorder.
1)      Up and Down by Terry Fallis
Up and Down
Another authour that I met, this time at the Word on the Street Festival. Terry Fallis was extremely nice and approachable in person and even agreed to sign my advanced reader copy of his book. I actually got this book in my Bookstravaganza swag bag and decided to give it a try without reading any reviews or ratings of it ahead of time. Not knowing what to expect really worked in this case as I could not put this book down. This book was a very amusing look at the world of public relations, and I highly recommend it.
– Linh

Most Anticipated Reads of 2013 (Young Adult Novels)

Crash by Lisa McMann (January 8th, 2013)

  • I LOVED McMann’s Wake trilogy and this new series sounds really intriguing.

Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum (January 8th, 2013)

  • ROBOTS. Done.

Shadowlands by Kate Brian (January 8th, 2013)

  • KATE BRIAN!!! I read the first book in the Private series a week before the first day of high school. This book sounds awesome and it’s one of my top 5 can’t-wait-to-read books of 2013.

The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd (January 29th, 2013)

  • I want to read this book so bad that I plan to read the H.G. Wells novel that inspired it. It’s also on the top 5 can’t-wait-to-read books of 2013.

Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter (February 5th, 2013)

  • The heist series is amazing and I can’t wait to read more of Kat and the gang (mostly Hale though J)

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi (February 5th, 2013)

  • Really like Shatter Me. Been waiting months for the sequel. More Kenji!!!

Pulse by Patrick Carman (February 26th, 2013)

  • TELEKINESIS!

Requiem by Lauren Oliver (March 5th, 2013)

  • Oliver left us with a cliff hanger that needs to be resolved. Right now. Sadly, we must wait until March.

Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza (March 12th, 2013)

  • GAHHHHHH. #1 on my top 5 can’t-wait-to-read books of 2013. Described to be like the Bourne series and Resident’s Evil but with robots…COME ON? Who would want to read this? I’ve heard really great reviews from friends. J

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare (March 19th, 2013)

  • I love this series a lot more than the Mortal Instruments and hopefully it’ll resolve the most intriguing love triangles in books today.

17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma (March 21st, 2013)

  • Sounds really good…

Panic by Sharon M. Draper (April 2nd, 2013)

  • About an everyday fear we all hold: being kidnapped or having someone we love kidnapped. Sounds awesome…and scary.

Nameless: A Tale of Beauty and Madness by Lili St. Crow (April 9th, 2013)

  • A fan of St. Crow’s Strange Angels series. This seems interesting.

Icons by Margaret Stohl (May 7th, 2013)

  • One half of the creative duo behind the Beautiful Creatures series. The premise is really cool.

Vortex by S.J. Kincaid (July 2nd, 2013)

  • Loved the first. Hopefully the second is just as funny!

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke (August 20th, 2013)

  • Heard many great things about this book. In books, you can fall in love with EVERYBODY (vampires, zombies, faeries etc) but how about the devil?

A Point So Delicate by Brandy Colbert (Sometime in 2013)

  • Another contemporary novel that has the protagonist confessing the role she played in her childhood friend’s abduction. NICE!

Unbreakable by Kami Garcia (Sometime in 2013)

  • The other half of the Beautiful Creatures team. Very excited.

These are my most anticipated reads of 2013. Here’s more of the 2013 Young Adult releases by month on Liz’s blog. Check them out.

My Most Anticipated 2013 Reads

Ardo asked me, “What books are you most excited for this New Year?” so here are my picks!
5)      The Lake House by Marci Nault
The Lake House
Gorgeous cover. I love books that feature unlikely friendships and the synopsis makes this book seem too good to not out on my 2013 to read list.
4)      The Smart One by Jennifer Close
The Smart One
I really enjoy reading stories about families. Dysfunctional ones? Even better! Based on the synopsis, the mother in this book could just as well easily be my mother who also tends to over worry. This is a definite must-read for me in 2013, so I’m really hoping I could get a copy of it as soon as possible.
3)      Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
Just the title has already caught my attention. Also after reading Ainsley’s (from Random House Canada) review of this book, I am definitely putting it on my to read list.
2)      Falling for You by Lisa Schroeder
Falling For You
Who doesn’t love a good love story once in awhile? The situation that the main character of this book really reminds me of what some of my high school friends were like. So I’m curious to see how this one plays out.
1)      Just One day by Gayle Forman
Just One Day (Just One Day, #1)
I’ve been hearing alot of buzz already about this book even though it’s not yet out. As well the fact that the protagonist is a bit older than most YA protagonists really has me interested.
– Linh

The New Year’s Countdown: Top 5 Reads of 2012

The post you’ve been waiting for! My top reads of 2012. Who will be victorious?

5) Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

WTF? That was my reaction. The good kind and not the kind where you have no clue what’s going on. I haven’t read a lot of adult this year (sigh) but it represented its genre well. I’d love to say more but I don’t want to spoil anything!

Gone Girl

4) Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J Bick

This book really shook me. Feelings were aroused. Some sad, some lustful (for the hot teacher) but mostly satisfied because it was a really great, fulfilling and meaningful read.

Drowning Instinct

3) Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

This entire book was amazing but the ultimate cliff hanger at the end was what cemented this book in the number 3 spot. A twist to an old favourite at the very end? Tsk tsk Lauren Oliver. Now I’m anxious for Requiem that’s coming out this New Year.

Pandemonium (Delirium, #2)

2) Small Damages by Beth Kephart

Every paragraph, sentence and word was important and a story that could’ve been dull was made captivating. Werewolves, vampires, dystopian worlds are fun but sometimes it’s everyday life and everyday problems that’s the most interesting.

Small Damages

1) Blood Red Road by Moira Young

Mmm…so what makes this book my favourite…Does it have a strong female protagonist? Check. Awesome writing style that’s unique? Check. A band of female warriors? Check. Really sinister characters? Check. A hot male character for me to fawn over? Check. A joyride for all ages? Hells yeah! This book has become my favourite this year and it’s taken the spot favourite series ever for now. The Hunger Games used to own that title.

Blood Red Road (Dust Lands, #1)

That, ladies and gents, is my top five reads this year. Tomorrow I’ll post the 2013 releases I look forward to the most and, on January 1st, I’ll post my literary influenced new year’s resolutions.

A. A. Omer

The New Year’s Countdown: Best Writing of 2012

5) What Kills Me by Wynne Channing

This is Channing’s debut novel but her time at the National Post has obviously prepared her for this feat. Her writing is so vivid and she knows how to pace a story. I could SEE these foreign places. Well done.

What Kills Me

4) Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J Bick

I thought I’d see Mr. Anderson as the bad guy because of his relationship with Jenna. I thought I’d know who was bad and who was good but all I saw was grey. The writing is captivating and a flurry of emotions washed over me. Seriously, read this.

Drowning Instinct

3) Blood Red Road by Moira Young

I’ve heard people say that they’ve stopped reading this book a few pages in because of the dialect. Well guess what? Those who work hard get rewarded. Simple as that. The last thing you want to be as a reader is to be a passive reader and Young challenges us by switching things up in HOW we read. You will get used to it. You just need to forget the strict rules of language for a bit. It’s kind of like getting a ballerina to dance Hip Hop. They’ll need to forget their lines and get into the loose groove of things. The writing was a character of its own and THAT’S what makes it great.

Blood Red Road (Dust Lands, #1)

2) Everyday by David Levithan

Only this book can be written by David Levithan. That’s what you’ll say to yourself after reading this. Who would ever think of something like this AND write it in a way where you hang on every word. I love the breakdown of a meaning of a word or the comparisons of a word with another to help us better understand it in its truest form. I don’t know what else to say but to go out and read this book.

Every Day

1) Small Damages by Beth Kephart

The best compliment I can give this book is that I’d buy a copy that I could carry around and mark up all of the passages and lines that I loved. This was literary fiction or at least very close to literary fiction. Phenomenal writing here folks and I think my words won’t do it any justice.

Small Damages

A. A. Omer