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Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Favorites

2010 was definitely a turning point for me as I shifted from being a paranormal/fantasy fan to eyeing every contemporary book out in the market. My top books of 2010 reflect that, in no particular order. All images link to Amazon.

The Rise of Renegade XThe Rise of Renegade X by Chelsea M. Campbell
The Rise of Renegade X is a novel of wicked humor that gives its own unique spin of heroes vs. villains through an unexpected crass narrative. This ain’t your average Marvel Comics kids.
Recommended for people: looking for a fun laugh; something different with action; fans of superheroes; who likes spandex. Ages 14+

Harmonic FeedbackHarmonic Feedback by Tara Kelly
Thank God I bought this book. Harmonic Feedback was exactly what I was craving for at that moment. It filled my need for a sweet romance yet did not overdo it that would have left me gagging. Harmonic Feedback had a nice balance of intense drama and warm fuzzy feelings accompanying the blooming relationship.
Recommended for people: looking for a nice guy; a well-balanced romance; an underdog to come out on top; interested in autism; interested in music. Ages 14+

Forbidden (Definitions)Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma
Brilliantly told in alternating point of views Tabitha Suzuma will have William Shakespeare run for his money in this modern-day adaption of forbidden love. The novel will leave its reader exhausted from the constant heart thumping, panic attacks, and shaky smiles. It is a riveting tale of struggle: against your own emotions, against your family and peers, against the world filled with people who do not know you, but will not hesitate to judge you. I thank Suzuma and gleefully applaud her for an intense 5 hour read.
Recommended for people: looking to step out of the box; wanting intense and forbidden love; to have their heart ripped out; in search of a novel that I can't stop talking about. Ages 16+

Mostly Good GirlsMostly Good Girls by Leila Sales
Mostly Good Girls requires every exclamation point! for a freaking hilarious! fun! sassy! entertaining! (did I mention hilarious!?) read!
Recommended for people: looking for friendship; a good-humored laugh. Ages 10+

A Match Made in High SchoolA Match Made in High School by Kristin Walker
This book was hi-freaking-larious! The traded insults, the clever pranks, the laugh out loud rants! I spent the majority of the time actually laughing rather than reading, but of course I did love the words, plotlines, as well. But what made me fall in love with this book was the author behind it. When we put Kristin under the spotlight with questions about her living in a nudist camp [April's fools joke] she rolled with the punches.
Recommended for people: an unpredictable story; a laugh; a head-strong female lead. Ages 10+

The Sky Is EverywhereThe Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
Jandy Nelson enveloped me in warm fuzzy feelings, grief, and recognition. Her writing was stunning, her prose was moving, and her characterization on point. The Sky is Everywhere is an intensely rich novel that leaves this reader extremely pleased for this debut author!
Recommend for people: looking for a nice guy; for everything that is amazing in a contemporary romance novel; who wants something angst-filled and happy all rolled into one; interested in poetry; dealing with grief. Ages 15+

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: Book I: The Mysterious HowlingThe Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood
The Mysterious Howling was wickedly funny, whimsically amusing, and delightfully charming....the illustration accompanying the novel was just splendid! If you like the artistic style of the cover then you’ll love the illustrations. It fits quite well with the quirkiness of the novel....“a delightful wack-job”
Recommended for people: wanting to try middle grade novels; who enjoy narrations like Lemony Snicket; like Mary Poppins; who wants to try the product if Mary Poppins and A Series of Unfortunate Events had a baby; interested in humor. Ages 8+

A Little Wanting SongA Little Wanting Song by Cath Crowley
A Little Wanting Song leaves the reader wanting a little more after finishing. It was only when I finished the novel and got up to leave did I realize that Charlie, Rose, and the rest of the gang got up and followed me as well. A Little Wanting Song is a haunting song because it describes every person.
Recommended for people: interested in music; subtle romance; getting out of a small town; dealing with grief; exploring life. Ages 12+

Jellicoe RoadJellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
I put Jellicoe Road down and purposely drowned it underneath my other books to diminish my guilt for not reading it. I read three to four other books between the interval on when I stopped and when I decided to unearth the book again. And Oh.My.God. I should have never stopped. I fell in love with the characters and felt a deep connection as if they were my own family. I grieved, I cried, I rejoiced, and I loved (—every freaking minute of it even the first few chapters that I had trouble with).
Recommended for people: lost in their thoughts; dealing with grief; looking for hope; finding love; finding family. Ages 15+

Almost PerfectAlmost Perfect by Brian Katcher [not one of the best graded books but it's unforgettable in the most interesting of ways]
"Sage finally discloses her big secret: she’s actually a boy. Enraged, frightened, and feeling betrayed, Logan lashes out at Sage and disowns her. But once Logan comes to terms with what happened, he reaches out to Sage in an attempt to understand her situation. But Logan has no idea how rocky the road back to friendship will be."

Almost Perfect was just that, almost perfect. 
Recommended for people: dealing with gender issues; stepping out of the box; love and friendship; getting out of a small town; looking for acceptance. Ages 15+

Brightly WovenBrightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken
I am prepared to go all fangirlish on you but I’m refraining (even though it’s quite hard). Action—check; romance—check; pacing—check, characters—check; plotline—check; ending—ehhh; Overall—is ubercheck an option because it should be!
Recommended for people: trying out fantasy for the first time; who liked Diana Wynne Jones’s Howl's Moving Castle; interested in action, adventure, and romance. Ages 12+


    1. This is the first list of favorites (aside from my own) that includes Renegade X! :D LOVED that book.

    2. Love your highlight of books for the year!