I just wanted to summarize the 2010 reading year with a summary of my favorites over the course of the year. While this year I did not set a goal of a book a week like I did last year, but I’m pretty sure I’ve well exceeded that goal. This has been a good year for books in my opinion, and I’m sure they will continue to keep rolling in for 2011. I just want to point out a few of my favorites.
My favorite book of this year was actually a difficult decision. Not only was there the dramatic conclusion to the Hunger Games Trilogy - Mocking Jay by Suzanne Collins to consider, but there is also the 2nd book to the Wolves of Mercy Falls by Maggie Stiefvater, Linger, as well. Both of these books were wonderful reads and would be the other two books on my top three books of 2010.
Cassandra Clare is an author that I do not (well, DID not) heavily follow. I wasn’t watching for anything new from her. I had read The Immortal Instruments series and had really enjoyed it, but I had no idea Clockwork Angel was even in the works, let alone releasing. I just happened to see something about it on Audible.com and decided to use one of my credits on it. I’m very thankful I did. I love the characters of this book, but even more the world that Cassandra Clare created [had already established in her TMI series]. Rather than the story taking place in current time, Clockwork Angel takes you back in time a bit, probably 18th or early 19th century. It was very gothic. I continued to imagine the setting of the Sherlock Holmes movie while reading the book. Will and Jem are great assets to the story as well, the two are as opposite in their looks as a ying-yang symbol, and combined with Tessa – the wit pouring out of this book has you laughing out loud all the way through. That is why I must say that Clockwork Angel is my favorite book this year!
Favorite Completed Series – The Hunger Games
I actually hate that I couldn’t say that Mockingjay was my favorite book this year, especially since Hunger Games would have been my favorite in 2008 if not for the Breaking Dawn release, and Catching Fire was by far my favorite of 2009. But I cannot say that the book wasn’t excellent. It was wall-to-wall action, of course. Katniss and Peeta and even Gale played extremely important roles. In fact, it might have been Gale who ruined this book for #1. In both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, I really liked Gale. So much so, that while I loved Peeta, I was actually on Team Gale right from the get-go. Then Gale jumped on the “war-boat” so to speak, and was willing to make sacrifices that seemed drastic and heartless. It started to seem like he cared more about the drama and winning than anything else. The book was also a little depressing. I’m not knocking it at all – how else would a war end? I feel that Suzanne Collins did a wonderful job telling a futuristic story and keeping it real. All of the things that happened in the book are things that really could happen. It would not have made sense if all the good guys came out unscathed, and everything was perfect. This entire series was absolutely wonderful, and while some of the other books I’ve read and completely love I would recommend only to people who maybe like that particular genre, this is a series that I would recommend to anyone.
I hear that this series is being made into a movie. I have mixed feelings about this. I have been rather disappointed with the Twilight movies so far. Not because they are bad really, but just because some of the magic has been lost, and I'm not quite as interested in the books, movies, characters like I was once before. I don't really want this to happen again with The Hunger Games. I will say that I enjoy The Harry Potter movies, and you would think that would be encouraging.
Yes, I still love vampires. I can’t help it! And what vampire lover can resist J.R. Ward’s vampire world? I have been a huge John Matthew fan from the moment he was introduced, so I really enjoyed reading his book. One of the things I enjoy about this series is that, while there are individual stories, the main story is an ongoing one. I think this is true for many series, (I.E. Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books are similar). I’m looking forward to the next book, Lover Unleashed. I haven’t really been big into Pain’s character, but I’m still curious to find out what she does.
Runner-up for this spot would have to be The Search by Nora Roberts. The book was very entertaining, but her books are becoming very predictable and very formula driven. While the characters, places and scenarios change, the basic outline of her books remains the same.
Favorite Heroine: Katniss Everdeen
I have said it before, and I’ll say it again. I love a butt-kicking female. Every time I read a Hunger Games novel I want to go out and learn to fight, or use a bow and arrow, or something that would give me an edge in case zombies try to attack. Katniss is everything I would like to be. She’s not wrapped up in herself, she cares for others and their well being. She’s not really wrapped up in boys, even though she sort of waivers between two – but you know how it is – times of stress, there’s got to be a bit of a tension reliever somehow. She wants what’s best for everyone, and she has some serious skills. While not unbeatable, she would defiantly offer up a challenge to anyone who would cross her.
I have no opinion as to who should play Katniss should a movie actually exist. But I do like this image of Anna Popplewell.
Favorite Hero: Will Herondale
Of course I’m going to pick the dark haired/blue eyed troubled teenager. His secrets covered up by wit and false pretenses make him one of the more interesting characters of the year. I cannot wait for the next two books of this series and learn more about him and his deep dark secrets!
In my original Clockwork Angel blog, I said that I thought Ian Somerhalder would make a very good Will, but I think I've come up with a good (more age appropriate) fit. How about Logan Lerman? NOT that they are making this into a movie or anything.
This is a bit off topic I suppose. But this was such a great movie; the characters (and actors), the colors, the story. It was all just so perfect. I love Tim Burton movies anyway, but I think this one is one of my favorites.
Although, I will say that I love the movie How to Train Your Dragon. It's my favorite animated movie thus far.
What about 2011??
There are a lot of books coming out in 2011, and many I'm really looking forward to reading. So I'm just going to list my top 3 anticipated books:
1. Clockwork Prince - (this should be obvious I guess)
2. Forever - I am sooo looking forward to more poetic words from Maggie Stiefvater. I'm also looking forward to finding out more about her "secret novel."
3. Across the Universe - I got to read the first chapter of this book, and I'm hooked. I've been chomping at the bit for this book to come out. Thankfully I just have another week or so to wait!
Movies for 2011
1. Red Riding Hood - I saw a preview for this before Harry Potter - The Deathly Hallows I. I'm hooked, I have to see this movie like NOW!
2. The Three Muskeeters - This is going to be awesome, I just know it.
3. Harry Potter - The Deathly Hallows II, and Breaking Dawn I. I can't decide when one I want to see more, so I'm listing them both. Sorry for cheating! :)