LAURA AND MELANIE’S TOP 10 BOOKS OF 2012

We’ve put together our top ten reads of 2012. As always it’s virtually impossible to choose, between the two of us as we’ve read over one hundred and fifty books! But here are our favourites.

LAURA’S TOP 10

This hasn’t been the best year for reading for me, the last two years I’ve read 65 books, but this year that number is going be more like 55. I guess in my defence this is the first full year that I’ve been a Mum, so my reading time has depleted. I’ve still managed to read some crackers and it’s never easy to pick my top ten each year! Drum roll please …!

(10)

FAIR GAME (Alpha and Omega #3)
by Patricia Briggs

My number ten spot goes to the third book in Briggs’ Alpha and Omega series. To date, these books have not held such a place in my heart as her Mercy Thompson series, but FAIR GAME was a game changer. I loved the pacy plot, and the unusual, but lovely relationship between Anna and Charles.

(9)

13 (Women of the Otherworld #13)
by Kelley Armstrong


13 is the final instalment in the first urban fantasy series I ever read. A bitter sweet end as I didn’t want it to end and I wished I could have some more times with one my favourite characters. But Armstrong delivered an explosive conclusion.

(8)

ROYAL STREET (Sentinels of New Orleans #1)
by Suzanne Johnson

ROYAL STREET was a book Carolyn and I disagreed on (she only gave it 3/5!), we did a joint review of this book April. But I loved it, giving it a 4/5, leaning towards a 4.5/5. I read the whole book in a space of a day, I even bought into the love triangle, after becoming quite resistent to them lately.

(7)

ONCE BURNED (Night Prince #1)
by Jeaniene Frost


I awaited the publication of ONCE BURNED with much anticipation. I adore Cat and Bones, the original series from which this novel sprang from, and I could not wait for history’s very own Vlad to get his own love story. This books was great, although I suspect I may have to wait a couple more books for the love story to finally reach its pinnacle. Bring on book two!

(6)

HEXED (Iron Druid Chronicles #2)
by Kevin Hearne


Kevin Hearne has quickly made it onto my auto-buy list for his witty, laugh-out-loud series, that has the best side-kick in literature history. I want a sausage and poodle obsessed Oberon! An urban fantasy series that weaves celtic lore into the modern world, and Atticus the oldest, living druid who has survived due to his supreme intelligence, as well as sword wielding series. This series is highly recommended!

(5)

CIPHER (Sourthern Arcana series #4)
by Moira Rogers

CIPHER is book number four in Rogers’ Southern Arcana series felt like a long time coming for me, but I finally got to see Kat and Andrew come together. There is nothing like the burn of desperate unrequited love finally coming together! This series borders the cusp between paranormal romance and urban fantasy, making it a gritty and sexy combination.

(4)

MAGIC SLAYS (Kate Daniels #5)
by Ilona Andrews

MAGIC SLAYS, book five in the series and and the Andrews writing team have delivered, is the best so far! I thought the series might lose some of its spark now that Kate and Curran are finally together, and I was do glad to be proven wrong! The pages grip you right until the end with its gripping finale.

(3)

GRACELING (Graceling Realm #1)
by Kristin Cashore

This may be the first time a book has made it on a top books of the year list twice. But GRACELING was also on my favourites on 2010. However, second time around I have significantly improved my rating, going up a whole star point. A superb fantasy, I was a huge fan of Cashore’s world building and rich characters.

(2)

FIFTY SHADES TRILOGY
by E.L. James

    

Yes, this is three books, I’m cheating, pah, so sue me! ;) I resisted reading FIFTY SHADES OF GREY for quite a while, avoiding the hype around the books. But in June, I finally succumbed and delved into the seductive world of Christian Grey. Yes it needs editing, but a few pages in and I just couldn’t put it down!

(1)

BLACK DAGGER BROTHERHOOD (First 5 books)
by J.R. Ward

        

I’m cheating even more now, my number one book is in fact actually 5 … Oops! After very strong recommendations from fellow reviewers Gemma and Vickie, who told me (rather a lot) just how good this series was, I caved and bought the first two to read on my holidays. And I have not looked back since, this series really is amazing! Sexy, edge-of-your seat, awesomeness. I’ve read the first 5 books this year and am steadily making my way through the series. We shall be hosting a rather exciting Black Dagger Brotherhood event in the new year, where I will be reviewing all of the books, so watch this space!

MELANIE’S TOP 10

This was an excellent year for me for books and I had quite a long, short list (get it? a LONG, SHORT list…I am hilarious) so picking only ten books was really difficult for me. I have tried to pick from different (or slightly different) genres just to make things interesting. Here goes!

(10)

FISTFUL OF COLLARS (A Chet and Bernie Mystery)
by Spencer Quinn

OK….I snuck this one this one in there as it’s not really of the fantasy/horror genre but I adore Chet. The Chet and Bernie mysteries are about a PI (Bernie), his dog (Chet) and the mysteries they end up solving. The twist however, is that the story is told from Chet’s POV and they are HILARIOUS with a capital ‘H’. Chet’s inner dialogue is everything you expect a dog to be thinking. If you like mysteries and want a light-hearted read then check out Chet…..you will definitely get hooked like I have.

(9)

THE HERO OF AGES (The Mistborn)
by Brandon Sanderson

I think I read the whole Mistborn series in about two weeks which is pretty good going considering each book is quite hefty at over 600 pages. The final book really wrapped up the various threads over the two previous books in such a shocking/sad/great way. This series is a must-read for fantasy fans.

(8)

RAPTURE (Bel Dame Apocrypha)
Kameron Hurley

This series almost makes your brain hurt they are so hard core, with its mash-up of science fiction and fantasy and RAPTURE is no exception. The heroine Nyx is pretty messed up and makes a lot of mistakes but you still end up cheering her on. Hurley keeps the action and tension high on this third installment of the series.

(7)

ANGEL FALL (Penryn and the End of Days)
by Susan Ee

I am still a bit surprised how much I loved this book. ANGEL FALL pushes the boundaries of YA with some quite horrific scenes and less than perfect heroes. It also takes turns good versus evil on its head with angels that are just as nasty as demons. I gobbled this book down in just over a about a day and can hardly wait until the next book is out.

(6)

RIVERS OF LONDON (Rivers of London #1)
by Ben Aaronovitch

I have loved each of the books of this series but I have picked book 1 because it was the first time in a long time that a book of this genre made me laugh out loud whilst on public transport. RIVERS OF LONDON has so many funny pieces of dialogue, great observations about life in London and a freaky, supernatural murder mystery. It truly has something for everyone.

(5)

HEIR OF NOVRON (The Riyria Revelations series)
by Michael J Sullivan

I  loved the whole Riyria Revelations series and was one of my all time favourite epic fantasy series. This final book of the series wrapped up the various plots and Sullivan had me enthralled from page 1 of book 1 until the final pages of this final installment. One of the lead characters - Hadrian was in my top 10 fictional fantasy boyfriends!

(4)

THE JANUS AFFAIR (The Ministry of by Peculiar Occurrences)
by Philippa Ballantine & Tee Morris

The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series started my love of steampunk and the THE JANUS AFFAIR is a prime example of the best this genre has to offer. I loved both the main characters Books and Braun and coincidentally Books is another one of my top 10 fantasy fictional boyfriends!

(3)

THE WRONG GOODBYE (The Collector series)
by Chris F Holm

This again, is another series and the second installment is a beautifully written book with evocative scene setting and multifaceted characters.  This series  just continues to get better and better and I think I may just explode if book three is better!

(2)

THE ROOK
by Daniel O’Malley

O’Malley delivers some of the funniest lines I have read all year and all wrapped up in a plot that had me guessing until the final pages.

(1)

 THE TROUPE
by Robert Jackson-Bennett

THE TROUPE is one of few truly unique books I have ever read. The plot was gritty, horrific, beautiful and poetic all at the same time. It isn’t an easy read but more than worth it.

That was our top 10 of 2012, now tell us yours!

Melanie

A displaced Canadian living in the UK who when not reading is often found trawling through GoodReads looking for something to read or buying another book on Amazon. [Melanie no longer reviews for the site.]

10 Comments


Gemma December 28, 2012 at 9:36 am

Great list ladies! Though out of all your books (or Series) I’ve only read three!! Hexed, the BDB series and Rivers of London

Reply

Laura December 30, 2012 at 9:17 am

You should definitely read the Kate Daniels series and Cat and Bones by Jeaniene Frost you’d love them :)

Reply

Melanie December 30, 2012 at 9:21 am

I LOVE the Kate Daniels series. Its a must read Gemma. Not fond of Bones but like the other ones in the Frost series

Reply

Gemma December 30, 2012 at 10:19 am

I have read the cat and bones series, but tried the apin offs and didn’t really like them

Reply

Ryan December 28, 2012 at 1:44 pm

I really need to get caught up on the Kelley Armstrong books. Plus, if I ever decided to delve back into YA, I want to read the Iron Druid Chronicles. Great lists overall.

Reply

Laura December 30, 2012 at 9:18 am

The Iron Druid Chronicles aren’t actually YA they’re adult books and they’re really good, so you should definitely give them a go :)

Reply

Veronica December 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Melanie, your top ten list is very intriguing. Nothing wrong with Laura’s list but my tastes just don’t run the paranormal romance route. But I, too, loved the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences book sand the Mistborn trilogy and Rivers of London are currently on my TBR list. It makes me that much more curious to check out the other books on your list.

Reply

Melanie December 28, 2012 at 7:04 pm

Thanks Veronica. It was really hard for me to only pick 10 books and I think I slightly cheated with the number of series I chose from. If you like epic fantasy then be sure to get the Riyria Revelations series on your TBR. It is a fantastic series.

Now what is on your top 10?

Reply

Laura December 30, 2012 at 9:19 am

That’s fair enough Melanie and I seem to have quite different reading tastes, but some of her choices have me intrigued too :-)

Reply

[...] Book Chick City: #1 out of 10 (Melanie’s picks). THE TROUPE is one of few truly unique books I have ever read. The plot was gritty, horrific, beautiful and poetic all at the same time. It isn’t an easy read but more than worth it. [...]

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