Other interesting facts. Of these books:
- 53 were written by women, and only 11 by men
- 7 were written by New Zealanders (this number was, I imagine, larger in 2009, when I went on an Emily Perkins, Margaret Mahy, Maurice Gee binge)
- 36 were Young Adult or Children novels
- 9 were Georgette Heyer novels
Of these books, I found these particularly notable and interesting:
1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
I don't have anything to say that others haven't already said, but I do know that I couldn't stop reading it and then had to go and buy the sequel that day because I couldn't bear not knowing what happened next.
2. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
One of only a few pre-twentieth century novels on my list. I love Margaret Hale: she is fierce.
3. Ash by Malinda Lo
Wherein Cinderella is less than enamoured with the handsome prince because she's madly in love with his huntress. Lovely, lyrical writing.
4. The Year of the Shanghai Shark by Mo Zhi Hong
Clear, functional writing, fascinating characters and an interesting perspective on a place about which I know very little. One of the few books I read written by a man.
5. A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore
My crush on Lorrie Moore continues apace. And it's about university and babysitting. I so rarely find books set during a time I have inhabited for five years.
6. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan
Tiny Cooper! Tiny Cooper is the best character in the universe! Enjoyed John Green's parts a lot more - mostly because he uses capital letters.
7. 8th Grade Super Zero by Olugbenusola Rhuday Perkovich
Karen Healey says it best.
8. Possession by AS Byatt
Mostly notable because this book has been making me feel like a failure since I was fifteen-years-old and my English teacher recommended it to me ("I wouldn't normally recommend Byatt to a year eleven, but you willingly read Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung. I think you can handle it." I didn't like to say that the Wagner was solely because I was told there Lord of the Rings moments and I was a massive nerd). But yes. Very much enjoyed the unraveling mystery and I liked Roland a lot.
I may have skipped all the awful awful Victorian poetry. I have my limits.
9. Demon's Covenant by Sarah Rees Brennan
Demons and romance and fighting evil and sword fights and literary allusions and kick-ass ladies!
10. Twelfth Night by Shakespeare
I have seen it performed but never read it and then I had to teach it to my year nines and I fell in love with Viola and Olivia and laughed a lot at Orsino (why are Shakespeare's males always less dreamy than his females?)
11. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
Dickensian cons and harsh lifestyles and brutal situations and nightmare fuel (oh god, the asylum). But then also, the wonderful, true love of Maud and Sue.
12. The Crossing by Mandy Hagar
New Zealand dystopian literature that explores race and gender and religion, but in a Pasifika setting. Also, Mary was fierce as hell and I was impressed with how Hagar made me go from wanting one character to fall off a boat, to wanting him and Mary to start a grand romance in the sequel.
So there you have it. I completed my first book on 2011 an hour ago (One Day by David Nicholls) and plan to read more this year than I did last year.
What's the best book you read last year?
Tags: books: 8th grade super zero, books: as byatt, books: ash, books: david levithan, books: elizabeth gaskell, books: georgette heyer, books: john green, books: lorrie moore, books: mandy hagar, books: sarah rees brennan, books: sarah waters, books: the hunger games, books: year of the shanghai shark, shakespeare
Current Mood: bored
Current Music: "Rehab" - Amy Winehouse