Monday, December 30, 2013

13 Books of 2013

Hey guys!  I haven't done the What I'm Reading Wednesday posts very much this year.  Part of that is that I've written a lot more this year instead of reading, so I haven't read nearly the number of books I did last year.

That being said, here are my top 13 books of 2013.  These are books that I read in 2013, not that were necessarily published this year.

Honorable Mention:
First Test by Tamora Pierce
I read this book at the start of the year.  I thought it was really enjoyable and I went on to read the rest of the series.  Most of all, I loved the main character and the character interactions.  As much as I would love for this to be on my actual list, I have a really hard time supporting this author.  I feel like the first books in her series are relatively clean and lighthearted, only to get trashier with each book.  As a reader who likes the clean aspect, I always feel betrayed by her books, which is why I tend to not read them as often or let myself like them as much.  Either way, I did really like this book and would recommend it.

13. Waiting by Carol Lynch Williams
I'm not sure if this book is Christian Fiction, but i really enjoyed it.  This book is a contemporary something-or-other.  I would maybe call it a coming of age or
a romance, but it's not really either of those.  Either way, I really enjoyed it and think you might want to check it out.

12. The Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare (The Infernal Devices bk 3)
This book was a great conclusion to a great story.  I love the story of Will, Tessa, and Jem.  I'm firmly on Team Will, but I think that might be because I'm always for the bad boy.  That might not be such a good thing.  Anyway, Clockwork Princess is a great book wrapping up a great story.  I just love Clare's perfect yet shattered heroes.  Give me a Will or a Jace any day.

11. What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang (The Hybrid Chronicles bk 1)
Bonus points, the author of this book is a teen writer.  I really liked the idea of this story and it was generally a great book.  Seriously, this is just the kind of sci-fi I love to read.  It's really great, fresh and clean.  And I think we teen authors need to stick together.  I would highly recommend this book!

10. Go Teen Writers: How to Turn Your First Draft into a Published Book by Stephanie Morrill and Jill Williamson
This isn't a novel, but a writing craft book.  I found the section on writing useful, but not world shattering.  The section on publishing, on the other hand, is wonderful!  This is a book I would highly recommend to any writer, teen or otherwise.

9. Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter (Heist Society bk 3)
The Heist Society books are my favorite running series.  Perfect Scoundrels came out this year and it was even better than Uncommon Criminals.  I really liked this book and though it went even deeper into the characters, especially Hale, who is possibly my favorite.  (Although I'm a big Nick fan too.  *see previous comment on bad boys.)

8. The Program by Suzanne Young (The Program bk 1)
I actually got to read this book as an ARC that I won from my library.  It was so good and I was really sad to see the book Slated come out first.  They both operate on the concept of the government wiping teens brains.  In my opinion, Slated isn't as good as The Program and I'm so glad it came out!  I think you should defiantly take a look at this book, if you can.  Plus, don't you love that cover? I can't wait for book 2!

7.Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith (Crown Duel bk 1)
I started this book a few years ago and couldn't get through it.  I think it's a book for a little bit of an older YA audience.  Not that it has mature content, but that it's a little bit of a slower, more thoughtful book, if such a thing can be said of high fantasy.  I'm really glad I read it this year and I am a new Sherwood Smith fan.

6. The Runaway King by Jennifer Nielsen (The Ascendance Trilogy bk 2)
The False Prince, the first book in this trilogy, was my top pick last year, but I think first books in series tend to be the easiest to fall in love with.  While Runaway King was amazing and fully satisfying, I felt like it was a little more ridiculous, to the point where it was hard for me to suspend my disbelief.  In my opinion, this book cemented the fact that this series is a Middle Grade book, not a YA book.  I would have liked to see it grow older for it's readers, not younger, but that's okay.  I still can't wait to read book 3, but I know I'll be sad to see the series go.

5. Glass Girl bu Laura Anderson Kurk
I got to read this book for free and absolutely loved it.  I talked about how much I love broken boys that are still beautiful earlier.  As much as I do love that, I really loved the broken heroin in this book.  Again, this book isn't my typical fantasy read, but I really enjoyed it a lot!  I would highly recommend it to any high-school girl.

4. The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet by Stephanie Morrill (Ellie Sweet bk 1)
Who, that reads this blog, wouldn't love a book about a teen writer?  This book was really great!  One thing I especially loved was how the author used names of actual teen writers that are part of the teen writer community she started in her book.  Any time she needed filler names, she used teen writers.  Who knows, if you read the second book, The Unlikely Debut of Ellie Sweet, you might even spot the name of yours truly.  

3. Hourglass by Myra McEntire (Hourglass bk 1)
I read this book in the beginning of the year.  I don't remember a lot about it except that I loved it.  Seriously, it's really good.  It's kind of a classic romance meets time travel.  That might not sound great to you, but trust me, it is!  Or actually, don't trust me.  Read it for yourself and decided what you think.

2. The Spy Princess by Sherwood Smith
The last two books have everything I love in a book, magic, princesses, and a good, old fashioned revolution.  I really enjoyed The Spy Princess, even though it's geared toward a 9-12 year audience.  (Don't judge.  We all read JV books now and then.)  I love that this story was a little bit fun, a little bit serious, a little bit far fetched and a lot bit magical.

1. The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson (Fire and Thorns bk 1)
Finally, my number one pick of the year.  I only read this book in November, but it's SO good.  It's clean and interesting.  It also taught me some things about writing, which I always value in a book.  The characters are real, not some perfect human that never makes mistakes, which I really appreciated.  The plot wasn't exactly fresh, but I'll always fall for the classic rebellion meets magic type of books, which this certainly is.  I liked that this was a book I had no problem recommending to my mom.  I think it convinced her that not all YA books are scandalous.  (The last two series she read were Hunger Games and Graceling.)  All in all, this book is a really well rounded book that's just up my ally.

I'm really looking forward to reading The Shadow Throne this year, as well as the new Heist Society book, though that might not come out until 2015.  I'm also hoping Hilari Bell, Cinda Williams Chima, and Cassandra Clare all publish something new this year.  That'd be great.

What about you?  What are some of the best books you read this year?  Either leave their titles in the comments or write your own post and leave the link.  I love hearing from you guys!

Thanks for reading!


  1. One of the best books I read this year is The Apothecary's Daughter. One of my all time favs! ;D

    1. I've heard really good things about that book. I'll have to give it a look.

  2. Wow, this is a great list. I got the Glass Girl paperback for Christmas and can't wait to read it. I loved both the Ellie Sweet books (my name is in the 2nd one, too!) and the GTW book.

    Happy New Year!

    1. I saw your name! Glass Girl is great; you should be really excited for it!

  3. I think the best book I read this year was probably The Lady of Bolton Hill by Elizabeth Camden. I fell in love with a minor character and was really sad that I didn't know how his story ended, but her next book was about him. Lol. Can't wait to read it! :)

    1. I've heard really good things about that book!

  4. I've heard a boatload of good things about The Girl of Fire and Thorns, but I don't really feel drawn to it... I don't know. To me it sounds like every other fantasy book out there. But I might have to give it a try, since you seemed to like it so much.

    Great list. :)


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