Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 Favorites

At the half-year mark I linked to a file with all the books I'd read so far. Here we are at the end of the year and so I'm back to link to the final list of books read in 2010 and to share a more extensive list of my reading year.

sgwordy's Read in 2010 list (ordered by star rating)

Favorite fiction: The Power of the Dog by Don Winslow

Favorite non-fiction: Comeback America by David Walker

Favorite mystery/thriller: I can't decide between a couple Crais titles so this one will be a mystery. (hee)

Favorite historical fiction: Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez

Favorite fantasy: A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner

Favorite Sci-fi: Tie!
Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold
The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin

Favorite Romance: Tie!
Lessons in French by Laura Kinsale
The Spymaster's Lady by Joanna Bourne

Surprise hit: Tie!
The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death by Charlie Huston
The Lion's Daughter by Loretta Chase

Surprise blunder: Beatrice and Virgil by Yann Martel

Favorite author discovered in 2010: Tie!
Robert Crais
Georgette Heyer

Most re-read book first read in 2010: Lessons in French by Laura Kinsale

Most recommended and recommendation actually taken: White Cat by Holly Black

Most recommended books I wish people would have read but usually didn't:
Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez
The Power of the Dog by Don Winslow
The Blue Orchard by Jackson Taylor
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin

And since I do occasionally do something other than read...

Favorite - Black Swan
Surprise hit - Killers
Surprise blunder - Iron Man 2

Video games:
Favorite - Assassin's Creed 2 (b/c Ubisoft still owns me)
Surprise hit - Dante's Inferno
Surprise blunder - Resident Evil: 5


  1. Wow! Books, movies, and video games year end summary. Very cool. Well, you know I'm going to second your selections of THE POWER OF THE DOG by Don Winslow and THE MYSTIC ARTS OF ERASING ALL SIGNS OF DEATH by Charlie Huston. I may take you up on WENCH (it is in audiobook) and the KILLERS film (I avoid it when it came out, but I'll give it a go because you recommended it). Fine and fun review, Rachel. Thanks.

  2. And you know I'm going to thank YOU for turning me on to BOTH titles! You were very influential in my 2010 reading year and my reading was the richer for it. Thanks! Your tutelage in the mystery/thriller genre helped out tremendously.

    Re Killers, remember that it fails big time as a spy movie but is awesome as a couple comedy.

  3. Maybe I should have wandered over here first before asking for bookclub recs via email.

    Added a few to my TBR that I hadn't even heard of (*redfaced*).

    I adored 'Lessons in French' & 'Spymaster's Lady' (which I've mentally retitled 'Lady Spymaster', more accurate and less sexist) but never quite got into 'Lion's Daughter' which was perplexing because it had so much going for it (Albania! So awesome a setting, and one which has never yet been repeated in my reading history).

    'White Cat' was ambivalent for me because I liked (not loved) it as a reader/writer, but could never quite take my concerned parent hat off (it being YA).

    And speaking of mystery: have you ever read Alan Bradley or Lindsey Davis? Two of my favorite mysterians. If you haven't, I'll "trade" you reading one of their titles for a Crais, who is unknown to me.

  4. Hey Maya - There are too many books for us to have heard of them all. I just hope you enjoy the ones you now know of. :)

    Lady Spymaster! Excellent and so much more accurate, I agree. Oh! I shed a tear that you didn't finish the Lion's Daughter. If you ever feel like it you might try to go further with it. It starts slower than it finishes and, I think, it one of those books that's even better on a second read. Keep me posted if you ever go back to it.

    Do tell re White Cat. As a non-parent I rarely think of such things when reading. Also, as an avid reader my whole life I read what some might consider really inappropriate books for my age range as a kid but I turned out alright. :)

    I don't know Bradley or Davis. Let's swap titles as I'm totally up for a reading "trade." Awesome good fun!

    Re Crais - I'm new to his works in 2010 but the series involving the Cole/Pike characters has the "early" books and the "later" books. L.A. REQUIEM is the book that starts the "later." It is the one I started with and I quite enjoyed it. It's probably my fave of the "laters" and my fave of the "earlies" is STALKING THE ANGEL. The Pike character now has three books of his own but I recommend starting with the books that are the combo of the characters. The series is really Elvis Cole books with Pike as the supporting protag but Pike's role greatly increases in the latter books. If any Crais fans pop by feel free to add your own suggestions...

  5. Re: Robert Crais, the first five in the series are somewhat straight P.I.-type story lines (though you can still see RC's trademark humor and unique characters in play). And Rachel is correct about StA.


    The next two begin Crais' playing with the genre somewhat and begin to reveal what makes Cole and Pike tick (and I'd recommend either):


    L.A. Requiem, though, breaks all the molds with structure, timeline, and what it reveals with the characters (especially the mysterious Joe Pike to that point). HTH

  6. Thanks for posting this, Michael!