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Goats, gripes, and grasping for greatness
Book roundup for 2012 
2nd-Jan-2013 04:52 pm
Today to Read
Before I get too far along in my 2013 reading, I should stop and reflect on the past year's books... As I mentioned back in the Books for 2011 round-up post, my goal with the book blog posts this past year was to not only list what I read, but also to talk about for whom I would recommend a book, and why. I like to think that I did a pretty good job of that. I tried to give more of the flavor of the book and link it to other things like it when I could.

I also made fewer commitments for work reading, and therefore abandoned fewer non-fiction books along the way. To the negative, life got in the way of reading, so my books and book reviews slacked way off for the last third of the year. I also got really bad about posting my reviews to GoodReads or Amazon, so I don't have a lot of the records reflected in both places like I had planned.

I was asked by Geek Speak Magazine to give them my best book/recommended book for 2012. It was a no-brainer: Silence, by Michele Sagara was my hands-down favorite. That's not to say that I didn't enjoy a lot of the other books. This was just the best book published this year that I could pick up and recommend to almost anyone, no series investment (yet) and no requirement for any background. Honorable mentions go to Divergent and Spellcast, both of which were published in 2011. But neither of them has the staying power in my imagination, or re-read draw, that I look for in a true "favorite book."

Total books/comics/stories recorded for this list (and for the Hugos) - 65 (7)
January - 8
February - 3
March - 9
April - 5
May - 7 (2)
June - 4 (5)
July - 6
August - 6
September - 6
October - 1
November - 5
December - 5

And by genre...

Comic books/graphic novels - 10
Dystopia, YA or otherwise - 3
Fantasy and Science Fiction that were not anthologies (this includes "paranormal romance") - 41 (7)
Anthologies and short story collections, both by the same or by collected authors - 7
NOT sci-fi, fantasy, comics, or dystopia - 3 (What Do You Want to Do before You Die?, Last Wool and Testament, Major Pettigrew's Last Stand)
I can't figure out where the math went wrong. I'll try again later...

Books abandoned by genre:
One urban fantasy book (Vamparazzi). I picked up #3 in the series and couldn't get into it.

New-to-me Books for 2012

January
House of the Star by Caitlin Brennan, YA fantasy. 282 pages; hardback; stand-alone. 3/5 stars on Goodreads (3 = "liked it"), 4/5 stars on Amazon (4 = "liked it"); straight into the giveawaybox (eta: gone)
Gwenhwyfar by Mercedes Lackey, Fantasy. 404 pages; hardback; stand-alone. 2/5 stars on Goodreads (2 = "it was OK"), 3/5 stars on Amazon (3 = "it was OK"); straight into the giveawaybox (eta: gone)
Blood Engines by T.A. Pratt, Urban fantasy. 336 pages; paperback; first in the series. 3/5 stars on Goodreads (3 = "liked it"), 4/5 stars on Amazon (4 = "liked it"); going to keep it around and loan it to friends
Hexed edited by uncredited, listed under the first author, Ilona Andrews. Urban Fantasy, 326 pages. Paperback; anthology of four novellas. 3/5 stars on Goodreads, 4/5 stars on Amazon; going to loan it to friends who like Kate Daniels, then likely give it away.
Paranormalcy, by Kiersten White. YA Fantasy, 335 pages. Hardback; first in the series. [3/5 on Goodreads] Giveawaybox. (eta: gone)
Stormwalker, by Allyson James. Urban Fantasy, 330 pages. Paperback; first in the series. [3/5 on Goodreads] Giveawaybox. (eta: gone)
The Girl of Fire and Thorns, by Rae Carson. YA Fantasy, 423 pages. Hardback, stand-alone. [3/5 on Goodreads] Giveawaybox. (eta: gone)
Shadow Ops: Control Point, by Myke Cole. Urban Fantasy... sort of... 382 pages. Paperback, first in the series. [4/5 on Goodreads] Giveawaybox.

February
Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson, fantasy. 672 pages. Paperback; first in the series.[4/5 on Goodreads] Borrowed.
Westward Weird edited by Martin Greenberg and Kerrie Hughes. Hell-if-I-know, 302 pages. Paperback, anthology. [3/5 on Goodreads] Giveawaybox.(eta: gone)
Discount Armageddon, by Seanan McGuire. Urban fantasy, 360 pages. Paperback; first in the series. Keeping it for now.

March
Fair Game, by Patricia Briggs, Urban fantasy. 293 pages; hardback; third in the series. Keeping it.
The Modern Fae's Guide to Surviving Humanity, edited by Joshua Palmatier and Patricia Bray, Urban fantasy. 308 pages; paperback; anthology. Giveawaybox.(eta: gone)
Tempting Danger, by Eileen Wilks. Paranormal romance, 301 pages. Paperback, first in the series. Giveawaybox.(eta: gone)
Too Much Information, by Gene Ambaum and Bill Barnes. Comic book, 127 pages. Paperback. 9th in the series. Keeping it.
Touch of Power, by Maria V. Snyder. Fantasy romance. 390 pages, paperback. First in the series. Giveawaybox.(eta: gone)
Out Whom Shall We Gross?, by Brooke McEldowney. Comic book. 87 pages, paperback. First in the series. Keeping it.
Sonata for Piano and Armpit, by Brooke McEldowney. Comic book. 87 pages, paperback. Second in the series. Keeping it.
Sphinx's Princess, by Esther Friesner. YA Fantasy. 365 pages, paperback. First in the duology. It was a loan. 4/5 on GoodReads.
Sphinx's Queen, by Esther Friesner. YA Fantasy. 347 pages, paperback. Second in the duology. It was a loan. 4/5 on GoodReads.

April
Bone Shop, by T. A. Pratt. Urban Fantasy. Online. Prequel to the Marla Mason series.
Kitemaster and Other Stories, by Jim C. Hines. Fantasy. e-book anthology. 3/5 on GoodReads, 4/5 on Amazon.
How is that Underling Thing Working out for You?, by Scott Adams. 128 pages, paperback. Comic. Keeping it.
Teamwork Means You Can't Pick the Side That's Right by Scott Adams. 128 pages, paperback. Comic. Keeping it.
The Sentinel Mage, by Emily Gee. Fantasy. 509 pages, paperback. First in the trilogy. It was a loan. 4/5 on GoodReads; 4/5 on Amazon.

May
Dragon Ship, by Sharon Lee & Steve Miller. e-ARC. Science Fiction. Fourth in the series; 14th in the Universe.
Grave Mercy, by Robin LaFevers, YA fantasy. 549 pages; hardback; stand-alone. Giveawaybox. 4/5 on GoodReads; 4/5 on Amazon.(eta: gone)
Eon, by Allison Goodman. YA Fantasy. 531 pages, paperback. First in the duology. It was a loan.
Silence, by Michele Sagara. YA Fantasy. 289 pages, hardback. First in the series. Keeping it.
Divergent, by Veronica Roth. YA Dystopia, paperback, 487 pages of story, 72 pages of afterwards. First in the duology.
Princeps, by L. E. Modesitt, Jr. Fantasy. 496 pages; hardback; fifth/second in the series. Keeping it.
Black Blade Blues, by L. A. Pratt. Urban Fantasy. 398 pages; paperback; first in the series. It was a loan.

June
Home from the Sea by Mercedes Lackey, fantasy. 311 pages; hardback; seventh/eighth in the series. Keeping it for now.
Kitty's Greatest Hits by Carrie Vaughn, urban fantasy. 308 pages; paperback; anthology related to the series. Keeping it for now.
Nightshifted by Cassie Alexander, urban fantasy. 331 pages; paperback; first in the series. Giveawaybox.
Hex Appeal edited by P. N. Elrod, urban fantasy. 356 pages; paperback; anthology. Keeping it for now.

July
Spellcast by Barbara Ashford, fiction (urban fantasy). 433 pages; paperback; first in the series. Keeping it for now.
Monster in My Closet by R. L. Naquin. Urban Fantasy. E-ARC. First in the series.
Spellcrossed by Barbara AShford, urban fantasy. 448 pages; paperback; second in the series. Keeping it.
Cyanide & Happiness; Ice Cream & Sadness by Kris, Rob, Matt, and Dave. Comic books. 160 and 176 pages; paperback. Loaners.
Raven's Shadow by Patricia Briggs, fantasy. 334 pages; paperback; first in the duology. Loan.

August
Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews, urban fantasy. 433 pages; paperback; sixth in the series. Keeping it.
Greywalker by Kat Richardson, urban fantasy. 352 pages; paperback; first in the series. giveawaybox.
Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill, urban fantasy. 341 pages, paperback; first in the series. giveawaybox.
Friday Night Bites by Chloe Neill, urban fantasy. 357 pages, paperback; second in the series. giveawaybox.
Charming Blue by Kristine Grayson, urban fantasy/romance, E-arc, stand alone (I think). delete.
7th Sigma by Steven Gould, science fiction / western. 384 pages; paperback; stand-alone (I think). Keeping it for now.

September
Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris, urban fantasy. 325 pages, hardback, 11th in the series. probably giving it away.
Something Red, by Douglas Nichols, e-ARC. Stand-alone.
What Do You Want to Do before You Die? by Jonnie Penn, Dave Lingwood, Duncan Penn, and Ben Nemtin. NonFiction, gigantic paperback, 224 pages. Giving it away to someone who needs it.
Cast in Peril by Michelle Sagara, e-ARC. Book 8 in the Chronicles of Elantra.
Ashes of Honor, by Seanan McGuire. Urban fantasy, paperback, ?? pages. Book 5 in the October Daye series.
Last Wool and Testament, by Molly MacRae. Mystery, 319 pages. Paperback, first in the series.

October
Reason to Believe, by Diana Copland. Paranormal romance. e-ARC. stand-alone.

November
Matched by Ally Condie, YA Dystopia. 369 pages; paperback; first in the series.
Crossed by Ally Condie, YA Dystopia. 367 pages; hardback; second in the series.
"How Beauty Met the Beast" by Jax Garren, Urban Fantasy. E-ARC novella; first in the series.
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson, fiction. 358 pages; hardback; stand-alone.
Velveteen vs. the Super Junior Patriots, by Seanan McGuire. Urban fantasy, anthology. Hardback.

December
Elemental Magic, edited by Mercedes Lackey. Fantasy, paperback, 311 pages. Anthology.
From Whence You Came, by Laura Anne Gilman. Fantasy. E-published novella, stand-alone within the series.
The Day My Puberty DETONATED, by Brooke McEldowney. Comic book. 87 pages, paperback. Third in the series. Keeping it.
Rita Hayworth, the Father of Relativity, by Brooke McEldowney. Comic book. 87 pages, paperback. Fourth in the series. Keeping it.
We'll Always Have Brussels, by Brooke McEldowney. Comic book. 87 pages, paperback. Stand-alone/late in the series. Keeping it.

Books abandoned in 2012:
Vamparazzi, by Laura Resnick. Accidentally picked up book 3; couldn't invest in the characters.

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