I read a lot in 2012. 105 books as of 12/30 (And I’m fairly certain I’ll finish The Bloodletter’s Daughter before midnight tomorrow). According to my Goodreads stats, that’s 31,859 pages. Which is the equivalent of 39 copies of Ulysses or reading War and Peace 23 times.
There were many books I loved and recommend, but I’m limiting my list to those published in 2012. They are in no particular order–ranking them is beyond me.
Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple
Smart, funny, set in Seattle. I read it in one sitting.
Kill You Twice by Chelsea Cain
Stellar addition to the Archie Sheridan/Gretchen Lowell series that began with Heartsick. Set in Portland. Serial killers, rain…what else could you ask for?
The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson
A very strange and painful story about living in North Korea. Sort of terrifying and extremely well-written.
The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker
A disaster movie without any SWAT teams, crackpot scientists or emergency meetings with the President. A very personal look into what happens when the world is ending.
Dare Me by Megan Abbott
Deception and death in a high school cheerleading squad. Think Bring it On mixed with Twin Peaks. Is there anything more terrifying than cheerleader queen bees?
Broken Harbor by Tana French
The fourth book of the Dublin Murder Squad series. It may be the best since the first (In the Woods). But they’re all ridiculously good.
Phantom by Jo Nesbo
Oh Harry Hole, you damaged, brilliant man. This one knocked me on my ass. This is ninth in the Harry Hole series.
The Nameless Dead by Brian McGilloway
Fifth book in the Inspector Devlin series. Set at the border between Ireland and Northern Ireleand. The mystery revolves around the excavation of people murdered during The Troubles.
The Hitman’s Guide to Housekeeping by Hallgrimur Helgason
I don’t remember how I discovered this, but I’m so glad I did. Toxic, a Croatian hitman in on the lam in Reykjavík. Hilarity and blood ensue.
Books I loved that weren’t published this year:
- The Devil You Know by Mike Carey (Book 1 of the Felix Castor series)
- Snow Angels by James Thompson (Book 1 of the Inspector Kari Vaara series)
- Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
- The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt
- Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin
- A Small Death in the Great Glen by A.D. Scott (Book 1 of the Joanne Ross series)
Biggest disappointments of 2012:
- Joseph Anton: a memoir by Salman Rushdie
Preachy and vindictive.
- The Receptionist: An Education at the New Yorker by Janet Groth
So totally up its own ass.
Here’s to reading great books in 2013!!