Today the folks at The Broke and the Bookish have given us a freebie Top Ten Tuesday and it is totally taxing my poor brain. But then! Eureka! An idea! You know how you have your absolute favorite authors and you know that whatever they give you will be brilliant and perfect and pure bliss? I love that. But not every author can be that author. So as a reader, you have to take some risks. Try new things. Be open-minded. And sometimes things work out in the end and you discover a new favorite. That has happened to me a lot this year. Here are ten books that surprised me with their awesomeness. Not that I thought they would be bad. More like I was surprised by just how good they were. Make sense?
1. Mothership by Martin Leicht. Hilarious. Totally off-the-wall goofy. I loved it.
2. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick. I will admit, I tried to nit-pick this debut romance. I don’t know why. But really, do you know any teenaged Nans? I don’t know what my problem is, but thankfully I had someone to talk me down from the ledge and convince me to just ignore all the little things I wanted to pick at. Thank you, my friend. This book was wonderful. It is sweet and charming and I read it in a day.
3. 11/22/63 by Stephen King. This is not your typical Stephen King horror story. This book is a masterpiece. I listened to the audio in my car. This bad boy was over 30 hours long and when it ended I wanted more.
4. Okay For Now by Gary D. Schmidt. This book was an emotional roller coaster. I only picked it up because of all the Newbery Award hubbub, not because I wanted to read a book about the new kid in town discovering the drawings of Audubon at the local library. Turns out that I love Doug Swieteck.
5. Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly. This one came recommended by a coworker. Despite not really knowing much/being interested in The French Revolution, I gave it a go. Huzzah! Awesomeness. A welcome addition to my ever-expanding historical fiction list. You guys, I think I like HFIC!
6. Ashes by Ilsa Bick. I picked this up expecting just another crazy teen dystopian story. It is so much more! My fingers are all twitchy waiting my turn for Shadows.
7. Sorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick. Here’s the deal with this one. It was on the chopping block, destined to be weeded from the library’s shelves, but I felt guilty just tossing it without knowing anything about it, so I took it home. I really loved it, in all it’s feel-good glory. Amber Appleton is totally rock-star and we should all be more like her.
8. Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King. You guys, John Green is not the only one who can do teen angst. This one is totally Printz Award worthy. Moving and suspenseful. Heartbreaking and heartwarming. Loved every minute of it.
9. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. Ok, so everyone else knew that this one was amazing, but I was skeptical. In fact, I took it home, started it and abandoned it. I am so happy that I gave it a second chance on audio.
10. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. I had very strong and very negative feelings about a certain werewolf trilogy, so I was not even sure that I was going to read this one. Well, I am
easily swayed by peer pressure very reasonable and willing to give people a second chance. Thank god. Man, this book is great!
So there you have it, my year of pleasant surprises.