With the Academy Awards assailing us soon, I got to thinking not just about all the incredible movies I saw in 2012 (most of which were not nominated for awards…what does that say about my taste?), but about all of the amazing books I read.
And there are many.
So here, in a very informal and subjective fashion, I want to acknowledge some of my favorite books from 2012. (Not necessarily books published in 2012, simply books I read.) I’ve come up with several categories, and each day this week, I’ll reveal two more categories. Then, on Friday, I’ll announce the absolute BEST BOOK I READ IN 2012!
Exciting, right? (So exciting that I just know you’ll plan your entire week around that single blog post and will nibble your fingernails to a nub in anticipation.)
Today, with a great deal of fanfare (imagine trumpets bellowing and drums rolling and me opening a linen envelope with the name of the winners), I announce the best Children and Young Adult books I read in 2012.
Best Children’s Book: Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
Yes, I realize this book has been out for a while. (As in a century.) But isn’t its timeless appeal a testament to the captivating world of Avonlea, P.E.I.? Lucy Maud Montgomery created a vibrant, vivacious heroine and placed her in a relatable world. Who doesn’t love Anne with an e? Or Gilbert, Diana, and Matthew? Even Rachel Lynde feels like a member of the family.
Moreover, the Anne series is so darn lyrical. Can such poetic descriptions even be classified as children’s literature? I appreciate the series more as an adult than when I was a child dressing up in a floral jumper and reenacting the infamous “Raspberry Cordial” incident with my mom. She was Anne and I was Diana, simply because I wanted to stumble through the backyard pretending to be drunk. (I was an odd child who grew into an even stranger adult.)
When I revisited the Anne series, I fell head over heels all over again. And couldn’t resist the urge to read it aloud to myself, complete with dramatic flourishes and pauses.
Best Young Adult Book: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
My dear friend Jackie lent me this book for my Ireland trip last March. I lay in my hotel bed in Shannon, alternately laughing hysterically and weeping silently as I devoured this book. Witty and raw, this is not just another “cancer story”—it is an excerpt of time in the lives of Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters. Their lives are poignant and resonant and full. You will look at your life differently after reading this book. (And I guarantee Augustus will be added to your Literary Boyfriends list.)
Postscript: Which books would you nominate for these categories? Also, check back tomorrow for more Best Books of 2012!