Tag Archive: laini taylor


After much deliberation and consideration, I have picked out my top 10 books of 2012.  The five best and the five worst.  It wasn’t as easy as I expected it to be.  Only two or three books jumped out at me as belonging on these lists and the rest were all most equal and needed to be thought over very carefully.  Finally, I reached a consensus.

The Five Best

 

renegade1. Renegade by J.A. Souders.

This book stood out to me by a mile when I considered my best books of the year.  I read it a little over a month ago and I still catch myself thinking about it and pondering over it.  I have recommended it to every person I know and will await the next book with bated breath.  It was a creepy and amazing book that was so much more than I ever expected it to be and created a fan out of me.

daughter of smoke & bone2. Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor.

This is another book that swept me off my feet and enticed me into its world and didn’t want to let me go.  It is a beautifully written book and I expect a lot of great things for the author in the future.  A masterfully woven tale that I couldn’t put down.

nocturnal3. Noturnal by Scott Sigler

While I may not have reviewed this on the blog, it was one of my favorites all the same.  For anyone who doesn’t know, I am a gigantic fan of Scott Sigler.  I can only think of one thing I have read by him that I didn’t absolutely love.  Now this book does have a few moments where even a die-hard junkie like me rolled my eyes, but the overarching story was spectacular.  It was creepy, fun, and interesting for all the right reasons.  Sigler’s horror novels aren’t the kind that will scare you and make you check under the bed, that’s not his style of horror.  His style of horror is the kind that has you wrinkling your nose and thinking, “Oh my God!”

and all the stars4. And All the Stars  by Andrea K Host

This book was a surprise.  I had seen a lot of good reviews for it but wasn’t sure what to expect.  But it was a joy and a pleasure to read.  The characters were real, the story was interesting, and I couldn’t put it down.  Without a doubt one of the best books I picked up this year.

the lost prince5. The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa

Before last year I had never read a Julie Kagawa book.  I had heard a lot of great things and when I got offered the chance to read this beginning of a new series, I jumped at it to see what all the fuss was about.  The fuss was well deserved because this book was fantastic.  The world building was some of the best I have read and the characters were well-developed and rounded.  I will be reading from his author again and hope to be just as pleased.

 

 

The Five Worst

the rook

1. The Rook by Daniel O’Malley

This book earned its place as the worst book of the year.  It was boring and amateurish.  The interest premise it established was squandered at every opportunity with boring nonsense.  I wanted to quit on this book so many times and probably would have if it wasn’t a book club read.  The long swathes of gibberish that had nothing to do with the plot made this the most annoying book I read all year.

the twelve2. The Twelve by Justin Cronin

POVs that switched and swapped every few pages and a convoluted plot that made everything about as clear as mud are the primary reason this book sucked.  Add in religious references being shoved in your face as nauseum and in the most annoying way possible and I wanted it to be over.  560 pages of purple prose later this book succeeded in making me fall asleep repeatedly and made my eyeballs shoot blood spontaneously to prevent any more pain.

ScarletUS.indd3. Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

This book made me angry.  It has such a great story and it just pissed it away with typical boring YA garbage.  The heroine was embarrassing to all young girls on the planet and the heroes should be locked up to protect the women of the world.  I didn’t find a single redeeming quality about this book.

immortal city4. Immortal City by Scott Speer

If ever there was a book that should be destroyed for the protection of humanity, it’s this one.  Yet again, another fascinating premise that they author mutilated and destroyed until it was unrecognizable.  I hated the characters, the plot, the villain, and everything in between.  I sincerely hope Mr. Speer goes back to screenwriting, it’s a certainty that he’s more talented at that than novels.

breed5. Breed by Chase Novak

Ugh, what a waste of a tree.  The characters were so irritating that I really didn’t care if awful things happened to them.  The plot dragged on and on and on but yet we never got anywhere.  There was no point to any of it and no resolution in the end.

 

So that’s it ladies and gents.  These are my favorite and most hated books of 2012.  I’m interested in knowing what yours are.  Add a comment and tell me!

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Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

Published September 27th, 2011 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Synopsis and Cover photo from Goodreads book page

Buy this book at: B&N / Amazon / Book Depository

Synopsis: Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages–not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When one of the strangers–beautiful, haunted Akiva–fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

Rating (out of 5):

Review: I really want to try to review this without sounding like one of those Twihard fans who think they might have spotted Robert Pattinson in a crowd.  Alas, I don’t think I can do that, because I just loved this book so much.  I was entranced by it.  I found myself sitting at the table for a half hour after I finished eating because I just couldn’t stop reading.  When I didn’t have the book in my hands I was thinking about the book, wishing I had brought it with me wherever I was.  I had to force myself to put the book down when I needed to go to sleep.

 
The thing that first attracted me to this book was the cover.  It is spectacular and gorgeous.  I saw this cover from the aisle in the bookstore and it drew me to the book immediately.  Then when I read the blurb I thought to myself, well this sounds interesting and unique.  But I had no idea how unique and entrancing it would be.

 
When I first started the book I wondered if I had made a mistake.  I was having a hard time connecting to the characters and to the writing.  I was interested in the story but the writing was throwing me off and I grew concerned that I may not like the book after all.  But after about 50 pages I was drawn into it and started breezing through the pages at a rapid pace.  Parts of the story were familiar to me, like the hamsa tattoos.  But the way they were used in the story was new and different and very creative.  I really connected with Karou for a lot of reasons.  She was a strong, smart, self sufficient, kick ass heroine (which we don’t see often in YA).  But she also felt like she didn’t fit.  She didn’t completely fit in the world of Brimstone but didn’t completely fit in the normal world as well.  She was stuck in between and didn’t know which way to go.

The romance in this book was refreshing and real.  You could call it insta-love but it doesn’t feel that way.  I mean, let’s face it, they start the book by trying to kill each other.  That’s not really the mark of an insta-love relationship.  Now, once they started exploring their attraction to one another everything moved quickly after that.  But it felt natural to me.  They had real reasons to fall in love!  That was so nice to read.

I am frothing at the mouth for the sequel, it cannot get to my house fast enough so I can devour that one too.  This was by far one of the most creative and unique books I have ever read.  It was one of my favorite books of the year, and I think Ms. Taylor has a hugely successful career ahead of her.