Canaries, it is that wonderful time of year. Lights are twinkling in trees, your favorite series are coming out in brand new box sets in time for the present-giving season, and a top ten list of 2012 is being compiled for everything from best fashion to the best new characters on fall TV. And most importantly for us, the round-up for the best of 2012 books is just beginning. And you have a chance to take part in the festivities by voting in the Goodreads Choice Awards 2012.
What started as a behemoth list of every book published this year has become 10 books in each of the 20 different categories, from fiction to cookbooks. One neat facet of this year’s layout is that a small right-hand navigation bar tells you if any of the books on your Goodreads shelves appear in the lists – making it easy for you to pop in and vote for your favorites.
For Canary readers, a few categories stand out. The lists follow — and any title underlined has been reviewed by The Canaries if you want a little extra help for deciding your vote! You have until December 3rd to cast your vote; winners will be revealed on the 4th.
- The First Confessor by Terry Goodkind
- The Blinding Knife by Brent Weeks
- City of Dragons by Robin Hobb
- The Woman Who Died a Lot by Jasper Fforde
- The Traitor Queen by Trudi Canavan
- King of Thorns by Mark Lawerence
- Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce
- The Wind Through the Keyhole by Stephen King
- The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin
- Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson
Some old and new favorites here for our perusal. Robin Hobb adds another book to the Rain Wild Chronicles this year, and Jasper Fforde brings back Thursday Next, a character from his historic-fantasy-meta-awesome series, with this seventh installment. And there’s Stephen King – after growing up with his horror and suspense, it is still occasionally startling me to see his name in the fantasy genre!
- Timeless by Gail Carriger
- Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews
- Fair Game by Patricia Briggs
- Wicked Business by Janet Evanovich
- The Rook by Daniel O’Malley
- Shadow Heir by Richelle Mead
- Thirteen by Kelley Armstrong
- A Perfect Blood by Kim Harrison
- Third Grave Dead Ahead by Darynda Jones
- Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness
Here we have a pretty good range of writing by established ladies of the genre – and one gentleman. Most of the books listed here are additions to a series, from Darynda Jones’ third book about a young and spunky grim reaper to Fair Game, the latest PNR/UF addition to Brigg’s world of werewolves. Trouble comes loaded down with threes in Kelley Armstrong’s latest Women of the Otherworld book, Thirteen – the thirteenth of the series, in fact. And then Kim Harrison’s tenth book, A Perfect Blood, breaks the streak of threes.
New readers to the genre might find it hard to catch up before Dec 3rd if they want to vote this year, but not impossible. Who needs sleep?
YA Fantasy and SciFi
- Cinder by Marissa Meyer
- City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare
- Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
- The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead
- Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
- Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
- Insurgent by Veronica Roth
- The Rise of Nine by Pittacus Lore
- Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout
- The Selection by Kiera Cass
Canaries, I have to know: Have any of you read The Selection? The premise (basically The Bachelor meets the Hunger Games) has had me hesitating. Surely it’s full to the brim with angst — something I simply cannot stand. But it all seems so ridiculous, so I think I will give in eventually, so I simply need to know what to prepare myself for.
As for the other titles, I am delighted to see Cinder among the mix. Marissa Meyer’s debut novel is full of lively characters and a wonderful cyborg spin on the classic Cinderella tale. Insurgent was also a good read, though not as strong as the first book in the series, Divergent. And yet, I can’t help but think there are some titles missing from this list…
- The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer
- Diary of Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel by Jeff Kinney
- The False Prince by Jennifer A. Bielsen
- Wonder by RJ Palacio
- Artemis Fowl: The Last Guardian by Eoin Colfer
- The Heroes of Olympus: The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
- Chomp by Carl Hiaasen
- The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict by Trenton Lee Stewart
- The Kane Chronicles: The Serpent’s Shadow by Rick Riordan
- The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
And suddenly all those YA titles I’d been missing appear! I find it strange that both the Riordan novels are considered middle reader. The youngest character in Mark of Athena is somewhere about 15, way above the target demographic. Regardless, I’m happy to see so many of my favorite books this year make the list, and I am definitely pulling for The Serpent’s Shadow, the tense and swift finale to the Kane Chronicle series.
Are there any titles you think Goodreads voters missed? Which books are your favorite for the year? And it looks like we missed a lot of fan favorites this year. Which books from this list would you like to see us review before the year is out?