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Top 5 reads of 2012

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Initial post: 2 Jan 2013, 15:04:48 GMT
Last edited by the author on 2 Jan 2013, 16:27:20 GMT
I saw this post on the Thiller forum and thought it was a good thread, so I am commandeering the idea for this forum!

What are your top 5 read of 2012? I'm going to cheat slightly and say (in no particular order):

1)The Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness - I couldn't pick one out of the 3 books, they were all utterly gripping and I read them in quick succession
2) The Song of The Quarkbeast - Jasper Fforde
3) The Big Over Easy - Jasper Fforde
4) Whispers Underground - Ben Aaronovitch
5) The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry - Rachel Joyce

I also loved One Fine Day In The Middle Of The Night by Christopher Brookmyre, he is my favourite 'new' discovered author of 2012.

And the book I was most disappointed not to be able to finish was The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling. I am a HP obsessive, so I was really looking forward to reading anything she wrote in any genre but I just couldn't get into it. I think that having it in hardback was part of the reason, as I don't seem to as get much time to read in the house as I used to and do a lot of reading on my kindle on the way to work. I will try it again this year though.

Posted on 2 Jan 2013, 15:59:47 GMT
Interesting idea! When I thought about this I thought there would be loads but looking back over my reviews I've realised that it's been quite a disappointing year for me!

Anyway, my top 5 would be:

A Merry Little Christmas by Julia Williams - my favourite Christmas read this year.
Oh Dear Silva by Dawn French - drew me in from the first page. Great story.
Three Little Words by Jessica Thompson - read this for vine. Wow. Just wow.
No Child of Mine by Susan Lewis - difficult but compulsive reading.
The Report by Jessica Kane - has stayed with me for a very long time. Really well written.

Disappointments have been:
Peaches for Monsieur Le Cure by Joanne Harris - my favourite author but this did not live up to her previous books.
You Had Me At Hello by Mhari McFarlane - the most anticipated book of the year and such a let down. Dull characters, dull plot, dull book.
Little Sister by Lucy Dawson - could have been brilliant. As it is, just average. Try Sister by Rosamund Lupton instead.
Madame Doubtfire by Anne Fine - love the film. Couldn't get into this.

@Karen Stewart - I still have the casual vacancy to read as I to am a massive HP fan. Not looking forward to it now!

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jan 2013, 16:26:46 GMT
I think I was not in the right frame of mind for the JK book, but please don't let me put you off. Quite a few others on here have finished and enjoyed.

I am sad you did not enjoy Peaches For Monsieur le Cure, I am waiting for it to come out in paperback - I love Joanne Harris' books. I will still read it though. And as for Anne Fine - I tried to read both Madame Doubtfire and Goggle Eyes when I was a kid and didn't like them then, in spite of loving the film / tv adaptations of the books.

Posted on 2 Jan 2013, 16:38:22 GMT
I Readalot says:
Hard one for me, read so many great books this year.

Angelmaker - Nick Harkaway
Prisoner of Heaven - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Blue Hour - Alonso Cueto
The Scent of Lemon Leaves - Clara Sanchez
The Twelve - Justin Cronin

I can think of at least another 5 that I enjoyed as much though.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jan 2013, 16:42:37 GMT
I have a feeling that The Twelve and Prisoner of Heaven will be on my 2013 list!

Also have Angelmaker to read on your recommendation, will hopefully give it a go this year. The Scent Of Lemon Leaves was in a Kindle sale a while back and I nearly bought it, but I didn't. I'll have another look at it I think.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jan 2013, 19:09:22 GMT
I Readalot says:
Scent of Lemon Leaves is published by Alma, a small Indie press, hence their books don't get as much media coverage as the big boys. Angelmaker is on my read again list which is getting almost as long as my to read list now.

Posted on 3 Jan 2013, 13:00:35 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Jan 2013, 13:03:13 GMT
Fiona Hurley says:
None of these are "new" books but they were new to me last year:

Mystic River by Dennis Lehane. I enjoyed his Kenzie/Gennaro series and Shutter Island, but this must be Lehane's masterpiece. His two historicals are high on my to-read list for 2013.
Stone's Fall by Iain Pears. Another intricate historical mystery from the author of An Instance of the Fingerpost.
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. Must read more Gaiman.
Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome. An oldie but still fresh.
Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in Space by Mary Roach. Non-fiction at its best: informative and entertaining.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey. I really wanted to like this one, but I just couldn't.
Various Pets Alive and Dead by Marina Lewycka. Not a patch on her earlier work.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jan 2013, 13:28:03 GMT
Anita says:
Fiona - if you enjoyed Packing for Mars, I'd very much suggest to try Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by the same author :)

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jan 2013, 18:32:25 GMT
Marand says:
The only one of these that I have read is 'The Scent of Lemon Leaves' which I loved.

Posted on 4 Jan 2013, 00:03:12 GMT
Jen Errik says:
@Fiona Hurley - you might want to look at Connie Willis' 'To Say Nothing of The Dog' - it's a very light-hearted book - time-travellers working to rebuild Coventry Cathedral - entirely silly but a nice accompaniment to the original. (Also, if you have a kindle, Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow can be downloaded for free - and worth reading, if only for the passage where Jerome K. Jerome describes his frustrations with his umbrella: they're just timeless.)

Posted on 4 Jan 2013, 01:03:04 GMT
In no order... And as others have said - some not 'new' but are new to me:

1. Jojo Moyes "Me before you"
2. Rachel Joyce "The unlikely pilgrimage of Harold Fry"
3. Jane Lovering "Please don't stop the music"
4. Joan Thomas "Curiosity"
5. Alex Marwood "The wicked girls"

Biggest disappointments?
1. Sue Townsend "The woman who went to..."
2. Iain Banks "The wasp factory"
3. Anna Stothard "The pink hotel"

I'd be interested to hear of others views on all of the above and any recommended reads along similar veins... Thanks!

Posted on 4 Jan 2013, 14:11:46 GMT
@soggymoggy - I, too, loved 'Me Before You'. Best book I have ever read but it was back in November 2011 as I got a proof copy through Vine. Have you read 'The Last Letter from Her Lover' by Jojo Moyes? If not, I really recommend it.
I have, today, bought a copy of 'The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.' I had looked at it a number of times and thought it was perhaps a little 'high brow' for me! As it's now out in paperback I will give it a whirl!

@Karen Stewart - I will still give the JK Rowling a go. I think she has a lot to live up to!
You might like 'Peaches'. I was expecting a LOT as I loved Chocolat and Lollipop Shoes. It just lacked something for me. I still read/buy anything Joanne Harris writes though.
The only Anne Fine I have ever read is Flour Babies and I really liked it. It was back in school though. Just couldn't get on with Madame Doubtfire. Nothing like the film.

Posted on 4 Jan 2013, 19:52:03 GMT
S Riaz says:
Great thread.

My Fiction top 5:
Bring Up the Bodies
The Watch That Ends the Night: Voices from the Titanic
After Such Kindness
The Lifeboat
The Thoughts & Happenings of Wilfred Price, Purveyor of Superior Funerals

My Non Fiction top 5:
These Wonderful Rumours!: A Young Schoolteacher's Wartime Diaries
An English Affair
Rasputin: The Untold Story
Joseph Anton
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Discussion in:  fiction discussion forum
Participants:  9
Total posts:  13
Initial post:  2 Jan 2013
Latest post:  4 Jan 2013

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