Thursday, January 9, 2014

Reading in 2013 (favorites and non-favorites)

I wanted to do a reading wrap up for 2013 as well as introducing you to the books I like and ones I don't. When I found the Booking Through Thursday meme (hosted here) I thought this would give me the perfect opportunity to tell you what I'm all about when it comes to reading. As I'm a little late to this party, I combined the January 2nd question with the January 9th. So, here we go.

“What were your favorite books last year?”

I belong to Goodreads and kept a list last year of the books I read. Not including re-reads (which I am ignoring for the purpose of this post) three books (out of the fifty that I read) received the coveted five star rating.

The Crown Conspiracy (Riyria Revelations #1) by Michael J. Sullivan

I had been looking into this book for quite a while and, when I finally broke down and bought it, I was so not disappointed. It tells the story (rather, part of the story) of Hadrian Blackwater and Royce Melborn, a mercenary/thief duo noted for taking some of the most impossible jobs and completing some of the most well known heists. Even though few people know who they truly are, their company, Riyria (elvish for 'two'), is one of the most famous in the land. When they take a simple - too simple, some might say - job, they are framed for killing the king. There were several reasons why I was interested in this book: it wasn't six hundred plus pages long, it wasn't about a 'mysterious' sword, it wasn't about the farm-boy-heir to a kingdom, the author was partially inspired by Babylon 5 (my favorite show, ever) and Hadrian and Royce sounded pretty cool.

Nyphron Rising (Riyria Revelations #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

After a followup to the amazing Crown Conspiracy that had some growing pains - and a long chapter that was rather boring - I am pleased to say that book three is back on track. Nyphron Rising is about a puppet emperor and our boys being in the thick of a war all the while trying to help a princess. As an added bonus, more about Hadrian's past starts to come to light. Honestly, this series is shaping up into being one of my favorites of all time.

Timeless (Parasol Protectorate #5) by Gail Carriger

Though I've been reading this series since the start, this fifth and final installment is my favorite. For me (though I know a lot of others do disagree) the series grew and improved in each book. In this one, Alexia travels to Egypt at the summons of a vampire queen with husband, child and an acting troupe in tow. Back in London, things get decidedly hairy as the former-Woolsey-now-London-pack attempts to fit into city life - with varying levels of success - and come-to-terms with living next-door to a vampire.

Now, for the second part of the question.

“What was your LEAST favorite book last year? Most disappointing?”

I don't know about anyone else, but to me that is two different things - so, I shall treat it as two questions. First: What was your LEAST favorite book last year?

Hex Hall (Hex Hall #1) by Rachel Hawkins

Honestly, I should have known better than to even touch this, but it sounded cute and quirky and even I need 'cute' occasionally. This is about a teen girl that, after discovering she's a witch and being unable or unwilling to not use magic in front of mundanes gets sent to a reform school for other 'special' teens that don't have the common sense to behave while in the company of people that don't know what they are. You know, just thinking about this book months after reading it is getting me upset all over again. The only good thing about this book was the humor, but that quickly got grating too because there are some moments in life that humor is not a good emotion to use - something that this book never discovered.

Most disappointing?

Boneshaker (The Clockwork Century #1) by Cherie Priest

Oh, how I wanted to love this book. It shows up on every steampunk recommendation list and is commonly considered one of the best steampunk novels ever. Puh-lease. This story is basically about a teen boy that wants to find out what happened to his father so he enters the zombie infected, town that is surrounded by a huge wall. Once his mother finds out that he left, she chases after him. No, I'm serious. That's the plot. Wouldn't have been so bad, if the characters could have carried it but they were even more insipid than the plot. I guess I wouldn't have been so disappointed if everyone else hadn't loved this book but, not for this girl.

Well, I hope that gives you an idea of my and what I like to read.