I can't actually believe I'm doing a 2013 write up already - how times flies when you're having reading fun. I've had a brilliant reading year and have managed around 150 brilliant reads, so you can imagine my pain in having to narrow them down. I would of loved to have mentioned everything but I had to be tough and get it down to a select 11 - including book of the year. I also couldn't help mentioning a few important books at the end. :)
Have you done a 2013 wrap up? Leave me your links - I would love to check them out.
Book of the year: The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Not only is this my book of the year, it is my favourite book of all time. Enchanting, beautiful and highly imaginative... Gaiman's words washed over me and took me to another place and another time where anything was possible. If you only read one book ever make it this one!
1. Severed Heads, Broken Hearts by Robyn Schneider
Think John Green with that extra little bit of something glitzy! This is my idea of the perfect read, I love a journey of self discovery and Ezra's journey was very beautiful. Written to perfection and tugged on my heart strings...I loved it!
2. Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano
*sigh* Lauren DeStefano's highly imaginative worlds are just what I like to fall into. Her writing is crisp and very beautiful. This fantastic first book had the most intriguing set of characters that I'm very excited to get to know better in book 2.
3. Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones
Queen of snark Charley Davidson came basting back to life in this action packed and emotionally charged fifth instalment. I snivelled, I snorted and I just loved every second of this story. I hate having to wait for the next Jones book, but the next book releases in the UK on my birthday - YAY!
4. Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
I was truly blown away by Anna dressed in Blood, Kendare Blake's vivid descriptors were mind numbing. I sat back and let this visual masterpiece take me for one hell of a ride. Blake is one top class writer and I immediately picked up Girl of Nightmares.
5. Cry of the Wolf by Dianna Hardy
I am a huge fan of Dianna Hardy's work, but something about this particular book took me to places I have only been taken in a J.R. Ward book. It was hot, heady, sexy and one hell of a lusty ride. Dianna's ability to make her male hotties jump out of the page is totally awesome. I see really great things in store for this series!
6. Fearsome Dreamer by Laure Eve
Fearsome Dreamer is something quite special, it mixes an interesting blend of genres, has the most exquisite detailing and is all round just awesome! Laure Eve is a glorious writer and I let her words wrap me up in an awesome little bubble of awesomeness - I just didn't want to leave these characters or world. I'm eagerly anticipating another book...
7. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Holy cow, just when I thought I'd read as much awesome as I could pack into one
year, along comes this little golden nugget of brilliance and bowls me completely over. I think I adored everything about this book; the charters, their journeys, the danger and the whole complexity of the world building. Okay...don't hate me...but...I'm a tad in love with The Darkling!
8. Love and Relativity by Rachael Wade
I don't think anybody captures emotions and real life issues quite like Rachael Wade - she should seriously bottle the stuff. This book in particular moved me a hell of a lot and I felt every minute detail that the characters went through. It was also hot, sexy and a whole lot of fun. My biggest book boy crush of the year is nestled within these pages - I HEART Jackson! ;)
9. Dead Gone by Luca Veste
I think Luca Veste brought a different sort of crime book to the table here and it truly stood out from the crowd. The interesting psychology backdrop had me riveted. It's very intelligently written, has some of the most horrific moments and never fails to shock. I will be keeping a beady eye out for more Veste works in the future.
10. The Never List by Koethi Zan
Blown away, terrified, interested, riveted, excited and always guessing - that sums up my experience of reading The Never List. What I think makes the best crime reads is believability, can you put yourself in that situation? Could this be something that could easily happen to you? The Never List achieves this perfectly. I loved that the story wasn't gruesome or overplayed, also that the 'bad guy' wasn't actually 'in' the story in person but he played and pulled the strings behind the scenes. This is a definite must read book.
Other books of very important note:
Poison, Charm and Beauty by Sarah Pinborough - these lightening quick, dark and very sexy page turners are the most fantastic fairytale re-tellings, they are devilishly moreish and all round MUST reads - go check them out!
Also, The Last Dragon by Dianna Hardy. I was blown away by the glorious detailing and raging action that fuelled this highly memorable read. I loved returning to The Witching Pen world and all of it's intriguing characters had me totally gripped.
Front runner for 2014:
Dead Ends by Erin Lange. I was lucky enough to get a proof copy of this powerful and very daring story.
It's a beauty and I think changed me a little inside...yeah okay I LOVED it! I can't wait for you guys to read it and be moved too. I think Dead Ends will be a hard read to beat and you will probably be seeing it on my list again next year.
That's it folks! I'm having a little time off now, to snuggle up for some extra reading and well...stuff my face! I will be back with a bang in the new year and I have so many awesome books to share with you. I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday, have fun and stay safe! -Carly :)