Sunday, 13 January 2013

Best reads of 2012

So, in 2012 I challenged myself to read 25 books. It was the first year that I'd kept track of what I'd read (through the ever helpful and I in fact read 30. This year I've upped the ante and have challenged myself to 40 books!

But, here are some of the best books that I read in 2012!

1. The Fault In Our Stars - John Green 

This story really touched me. It was deep, thoughtful, and by no means your typical cancer story. Everything about it was so tangibly human. It also made me weep openly on public transport, something which I have never done before. Every family has been affected by cancer in some way, so I feel like stating this book has some kind of extra special meaning because of how cancer has affected my close family is a bit redundant.
Nevertheless, it is a truly amazing book and he deserves all the praise and recognition he is getting because of it. It's only up from here for John Green, but how do you go up, when you're pretty much at the peak?

2. Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins

I don't read very many contemporary books, but I had seen this one crop up in my feed so much in 2011 that I finally gave in and got it after Christmas 2011. I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It was funny and romantic and just a joy to read.

3. Looking for Alaska - John Green

2012 was the year I properly discovered Mr. John Green and his writing. I'm so glad my friend suggested his books. This was the first one I read and for the first few chapters his style of writing was quite jarring. It was so different from anything else I'd read that it took a while to settle in, but after that I was hooked. Usually when I read books, I feel like writers have a story first, and themes are a by-product of their writing or revising progress. However, with John Green, it's quite apparent that he has certain ideas or points or themes that he wants to get across from the very start. I like that.

4. The Alchemists Secret - Scott Mariani 

This was a suggestion of a friend who has read the entire (to date, they're still going) Ben Hope series. They were very good value on the Kindle so I bought the first one. It was very good. My friend had recommended it with the tagline of 'Dan Brown but better' and I can't think of any other way to describe it. Clever plot lines, lots of action and brilliant characters.

5. Lone Wolf - Jodi Picoult

Jodi Picoult always manages to write really human and stories about moral conflict. This story tackled  the difficult question of life support, and should you turn it off? Handled very sensitively and I liked the wolf parts. I feel like saying much more would ruin it, so that's all you're getting!

Honourable mentions: Divergent - Veronica Roth, Uglies - Scott Westerfield, Before I Go To Sleep - S.J. Watson, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo - Steig Larsson

Booby Prize 2012: (i.e. the worst book I read)

Hush Hush - Becca Fitzpatrick

An annoying protagonist with absolutely no sense of self preservation. I wasn't intrigued by the lore aspect of it either. I was disappointed because of all the hype I'd heard about this book. Don't get me started on her 'anaemia' because as a student of biomedical science the fact that if she didn't take her iron tablets she began to feel 'weak' is absolutely ridiculous. Anaemia is not dependant on one damn iron tablet. It is a long term disease with gradual regression and progression. This really bugged me.

Sorry my blog has been so quiet for the last few months! I was exceptionally busy last semseter in Uni. I'll hopefully be a little more active this year. But I won't promise, because I don't like to make promises when I know it's entirely possibly I will break them.

But hopefully it won't be six months until you hear from me again. I've got to get myself back into the blogasphere... any good blogfests going?

Sarah x

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