Wednesday, December 26, 2012

What I Read in 2012

Goodreads is a great way to track what you read throughout the year, but I thought I would also try a post to list and rate the books I read this year, if only to give myself a better idea of how much reading I'm managing to get through.

So, here they are in roughly the order in which I read them, along with my star ranking from one to five with five being a book I thought was great and would read again. Four stars is a book I really enjoyed but might not want to read again. Three stars is a book I liked but wouldn't read over again, and anything less means it had issues for me.

1. Chasm City by Alistair Reynolds *****  I've read a few by Mr. Reynolds so far, but this is the best. He brings to life an amazing city on a distant planet in a way I haven't seen done so well by any other author.
2. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson ****
3. The Once and Future King by T.H. White ***
4. The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson ****
5. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy *** and a half
6. A Circle in the Woods by Winston Emerson ***
7. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson ****
8. To Green Angel Tower part 2 by Tad Williams ****
9. Acting in Film by Michael Caine ****
10. The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss ***** Amazing. Rothfuss may challenge George Martin as the best living fantasy writer.
11. Acting for the Camera by Tony Barr ***
12. The 25th Hour by David Benioff **** and a half
13. City of Thieves by David Benioff ***** Everyone should read this brilliant little story
14. The Skystone by Jack Whyte ****
15. The Singing Sword by Jack Whyte *** and a half
16. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood ***
17. Duma Key by Stephen King ****
18. The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson ****
19. Chronicles of the Black Company by Glen Cook ***** Just my type of fantasy! Vivid sword and sorcery blended with military fantasy that reminds me of the hellhounds from the Thieves World novels. Not quite as brilliant as Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser, but still right up there.

Note that there are several books that I began and haven't finished. Two of them were just dreary and irritating for me, these being Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke and Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. Others are ones that I haven't yet completed, though they will get decent or even great ratings, such as the one I just began--The Passage by Justin Cronin. The others I am still currently reading are Rose Madder by Stephen King and Auditioning: An Actor-friendly Guide by Joanna Merlin.


  1. I'd have to go back and look at my Goodreads list. Half the time, I forget to mark them.

  2. I'm reading Brent Weeks "Night angel" trilogy as it was on sale. It's meh (I'm used to George R.R. Martin). And it kind of turned me off that he so quickly established that the most repugnant character was a homosexual.

  3. Yeah, there are a lot of so-so books out there. I'm happy to have discovered another good one with the Black Company books. I'm so tempted to write a sword and sorcery story now, and to re-read the Fritz Lieber book and the Thieves World books. If only I had all the time in the world!

  4. I tried to double my usual number of books I read in a year, but I failed horribly. I did surpas my usual, so there's that. I always say I want to read more, but it's always around the same. But next year, next year I will read more. ;-)

  5. Hannah, I tried that, too, but War and Peace dragged me down! It took me three months to get through that one.

    1. I hear that. I have some HUGE books on my to-read list for 2013. I doubt I'm going to get through as many as I usually do!

  6. What a great reading list! Congratulations. I "had to" read War and Peace in college, and thus got through it. Otherwise I might not have. But actually, over time, the story and characters have resonated, and I can see why it's a masterpiece. And it did spur me on to read Anna Karenina, as well as other Russian writers. I also had a hard time with Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norell and only plugged on because it had gotten some good reviews (none of which I could agree with by the time I finished). You've roused my interest in City of Thieves.

  7. I've got Rothfuss at home, and really need to get around to it. Nice to see your mentions of Benioff and Cook. I'll have to check them out.