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Showing posts from December, 2010

Best of 2010

It's New Year's Eve and so here, without further ado, is my Best Books of 2010 list: Best of 2010 (in order of publication) A Conspiracy of Kingsby Megan Whalen Turner Mistwoodby Leah Cypess Some Girls Areby Courtney Summers The Sky is Everywhereby Jandy Nelson "Stopping Time" by Melissa Marr Silver Borneby Patricia Briggs Embersby Laura Bickle This Gorgeous Gameby Donna Freitas Lingerby Maggie Stiefvater The Demon's Covenantby Sarah Rees Brennan Magic Bleedsby Ilona Andrews Heroes Returnby Moira J. Moore Dark Road to Darjeelingby Deanna Raybourn Janeby April Lindner Mockingjayby Suzanne Collins Anna and the French Kissby Stephanie Perkins The Winter Seaby Susanna Kearsley (review to come!)
FYI, that's 3 fantasies, 4 contemporaries, 5 urban fantasies, 2 historicals, 1 dystopian, 1 retelling, and 1 short story.

Biggest Character Crush of 2010 Alan Ryves
*a moment of silence, please, for the one and only Alan--the most adorable armed compulsive liar I've ever met*
Biggest Author …

Well Versed Love

For Christmas DH gave me this beautiful painting of two love birds atop a row of books. Isn't it just wonderful? It's titled "Well Versed Love" (possibly my favorite part) and I fell in love with it the moment I opened it Christmas morning.  A new Christmas painting from my sweetheart is fast becoming a tradition it seems, as you may remember he gave me this gorgeous one last year. It's currently hanging above the piano in my library and I'm trying to decide which wall I'm going to hang this new one on. Clearly it, too, belongs in the library. I'm pleased as punch with this new tradition, particularly as he has such good taste in art and knows just what I'll love. Apparently he spent hours browsing Etsy leading up to the holiday as a few other lovely items from that wonderful site ended up under my tree as well. That's my boy . . .

FIVE Great YA Bloggers

I thought I'd chime in today on Persnickety Snark's FIVE Challenge for 2010. Today's topic--YA Bloggers. Hm. Now that I look at it, my list is unsurprisingly veeeeery similar to Adele's . . .

The Crooked Shelf
Carla's enthusiasm is infectious and I never fail to smile within five seconds of reading her posts. Plus, she got to meet John Green in person and actually had him sign a copy for me and then sent it all the way across the pond. That's friendship.
Forever Young Adult
These women cover such a broad spectrum of topics in such a hilarious way. Most recently their charmingly nostalgic post on the Most Swoonworthy Scenes in Films About YA. Yay for Some Kind of Wonderful and 10 Things I Hate About You!

Persnickety Snark Obviously. I never like to go without my daily dose of snark, wit, ramble, and honesty. Adele, she comes through for me. She knows when to be blunt and when to squee. She also has markedly excellent taste in contemporary fiction and fictional men a…

Hope's Folly by Linnea Sinclair

It's been too long since I let myself slip into Linnea Sinclair's Dock Five universe. Way too long. I love science fiction. I love space opera. And this series is just one of the best out there. I read the first book--Gabriel's Ghost--a couple of years ago now and I've read several of Sinclair's other non-Dock Five books in between then and now and thoroughly enjoyed each of them. Games of Commandis still my favorite. That Kel-Paten. Gets to me every time. But when I finally picked up Hope's Follythe other night in desperate need of some good action and romance, I wasn't prepared for how quickly the world would suck me in again. This installment follows a side character from the earlier books--Chaz's ex-husband and confirmed lifer Admiral Philip Guthrie. I love getting the real story on what's going on with a character we've previously only seen through other characters' eyes. And I wasn't disappointed with Philip's story.

Having los…

Ruminating on Retellings

My friend and YA blogger superpower Steph Su invited me over to guest blog on my favorite retellings of all time--a topic on which I can wax on indefinitely. I managed to keep it as brief as possible for Steph and I hope you see some of your favorites there and perhaps something new to catch your eye. Be sure to stop on by and tell me what you think!

Holiday Reading & Giving

I love this time of year. I love plotting and planning which books I'm giving to which loved ones as gifts. And I love coming up with tailored recommendations for the friends, family, and co-workers who ask me. I even found a Christmas read this year--which can sometimes be hard. But I had a craving to revisit Lady Julia Grey and Mr. Nicholas Brisbane the other night. And so I did. And after finishing my re-read of Silent in the Grave, I couldn't just stop there. So I blithely continued right on to Silent in the Sanctuaryand it occurred to me that that one is, in fact, a  perfectly lovely Christmas read. Set in a quaint English village in Sussex at Christmastime, it's a festive Victorian confection, complete with a murder mystery, gypsies, Christmas puddings, large quantities of snow, and some rather serious swooning. What more could you ask for?

As far as the books I'm giving away this year, at present count the stack includes a little Juliet Marillier, a little Sharo…

Still Here

Really. I'm just buried under a pile of Cybils reading as we stare down the bullet that is our deadline to turns over the shortlist titles to the round two judging panel. But I have been taking short breaks here and there to pop in here and there around the blogosphere. So I thought I'd share a couple or three things I've enjoyed lately.

First and foremost, Sarah Rees Brennan has posted a Christmas present to all her fans. In two parts, no less. And it is a most delicious present indeed--a short story set during the events of The Demon's Covenantand told from Jamie's point of view. It is just this sort of thing that makes me do my happy dance. So wait no longer, go enjoy Nick and Jamie Go to the Movies right now! Part 1 and Part 2.

Second, I've had loads of fun stopping in for the many and various posts of Smugglivus going on over at The Book Smugglers place this month. So many great bloggers and authors here, there, and everywhere. Even Megan Whalen Turner! It…

When Rose Wakes by Christopher Golden

I've had my eye on this one ever since I heard it was a modern retelling of Sleeping Beauty. I haven't read a Christopher Golden book in quite a long time and I was anxious to see what he was up to lately and how his take on the fairy tale stood up. My favorite retelling of Sleepy Beauty is Robin McKinley's Spindle's End (surprise, surprise) and that one definitely reshapes the tale in new and beautiful ways to allow Rosie to take a much more active role in her own life and with regards to the curse she lives under for so many years. Frankly, I was interested to see how a male writer would envision a modern version of the story and I really was not disappointed in the least.

Rose wakes up in a hospital bed in an unfamiliar place, with the people around her speaking a language she cannot understand. Confused and disoriented, it isn't until her two aunts come into the room that she feels the first quaking reassurances that she is not crazy. For she recognizes her aun…

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

You guys, I think I might be slipping. First it was Justin in Harmonic Feedback, then Nico in Chasing Brooklyn, and now it is just so very much √Čtienne St. Clair in Anna and the French Kiss. I am falling under the spell of the nice guys and I really have very little to say for myself except this: I am charmed. Utterly charmed. You know my feelings on the fictional boys and the many flavors they come in. When a love triangle is involved, I can generally be found over in the bad boy camp. But these books I've read recently are just beautifully free of triangles and feature the genuine article as far as the boys go, allowing me to freely admire their charms. Which I have been doing. And believe you me, this latest one will waltz away with your heart. I've been looking forward to reading Anna and the French Kissfor quite some time now, ever since the spectacular reviews started churning out and I got that little knowing feeling in my gut. You know the one. It whispers of good thin…

Chasing Brooklyn by Lisa Schroeder

I love this cover. And I love the title. And I just really love this book. I'm so glad some thoughtful reader nominated it for a Cybils award this year, because I honestly don't think I would have picked it up otherwise. And I have no good reason for that except I think I somehow got the mistaken impression it was just another problem novel and I wasn't in the mood. Shame on me for making my ignorant assumptions and not giving this lovely novel a try before now. Chasing Brooklynis Lisa Schroeder's third novel for young adults but the first that I've read. I'm happy to say it will definitely not be the last! Interestingly, it's billed as a companion novel to Schroeder's earlier I Heart You, You Haunt Me.I believe it features a couple of side characters from that book, but I found no trouble at all falling into this story without having read the first. It stands very strongly on its own two feet. I haven't read a really good novel in verse in quite aw…