I loved this event the last couple of years, so of course I had to participate again.
This event is hosted by Rachel @ Fiktshun, Jaime @ Two Chicks on Books & Mindy @ Magical Urban Fantasy Reads.
For more detailed info about this event & to join (you still have time to join), check out the post HERE.
Today's theme is Best Books I've Read in 2013.
I had trouble with this theme the previous 2 years, but nothing like this year. Why? Because this year I've been catching up & finishing all of those amazing series, so you can imagine how tough it is now, with all of those amazing books I've read this year, that they all deserve the recognition for their awesomeness, so even though I kept to only 10 in both 2011 & 2012, even without any honorable mentions, this year I'm totally cheating, and there will probably be more than a few honorable mentions, although of course even then, I won't mention all the books that I should.
Best Books I've Read in 2013:
#1 - The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima
The Crimson Crown is the last book in one of the most amazing YA epic fantasy series Seven Realms, and it was the perfect finale to the series, and definitely one of the best series ending books, as well as one of the best books I've read! If you still haven't tried the Seven Realms series, you must, I can't recommend them enough!
#2 - The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud
Every once in a while, there's this hidden gem that you got approved on NetGalley & you almost would have missed it, because you didn't have the time to read it, and that's what almost happened to me with The Screaming Staircase, the first book in Jonathan Stroud's Lockwood & Co. series. But, I read it at the final moment before it expired, and I was totally blown away. When it comes to MG books, I expect them to be fun & to be set in an interesting world, and this book was all that, but it was also so much more. The characters were lovable, it was eerie & creepy, the story was absolutely amazing, and I was absolutely blown away by this book, and I can't wait for the next!
#3 - The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
If you know me, you're probably not surprised by seeing this book on my list ;) After all, it's Neil Gaiman. But, The Ocean at the End of the Lane definitely deserves the place on this top 10 as one of the best books I've read this year, because it was so lovely & amazing & brilliant & sad, even a little bit scary, and it's one of those books that stays with you long after you've read them.
#4 - The Creeps by John Connolly
The Creeps is the final book in the Samuel Johnson Tales/Samuel Johnson vs. the Devil trilogy. I adored the previous 2 books in the trilogy, but the last one The Creeps was absolutely the best one. It was amazing & hilarious & horrific, and John Connolly totally broke my heart, too, but in the end it was the perfect ending for my favorite characters, and I loved every second of it, and I can't recommend it enough!
#5 - Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
I actually read Cinder this year, too, and although I loved it, the book that got me totally hooked on the series was Scarlet. I loved all the characters, the story, the world, the writing style, I just loved everything about it, and it was definitely one of the best books I read this year!
#6 - Hot Blooded by Amanda Carlson
Even though I read the prequel novella Blooded, as well as the 3 following books Full Blooded, Hot Blooded & Cold Blooded this year, and I loved them all, the book that's my most fav in the Jessica McClain series & that just had to make it on my list is the 2nd one Hot Blooded. It was like the perfect mix of urban fantasy & epic fantasy, and it was full of twists & turns, it was action-packed, entertaining, kick-ass, intriguing, fast-paced, adventurous, suspenseful, just full of awesomeness, and I can't recommend the series enough!
#7 - John Cleaver trilogy by Dan Wells
I'm totally cheating on this one, but if you've read this trilogy, you'll know why I can't choose only one book. I adore John Cleaver as a character, he's definitely one of my favs & always will be, and everything he went through in I Am Not A Serial Killer, Mr. Monster & I Don't Want to Kill You, I see it as one story, his story, and I loved every second of it, and I can't recommend it enough. These books will always be on my alltime favs list, and I can't believe I've waited so long to read them!
#8 - The Darkest Seduction by Gena Showalter
If someone told me that I'll love this book so much, and that I would be blown away by it, I wouldn't have believed it. I mean, I love the Lords of the Underworld series, and I love Gena Showalter's books, she's my #1 fav author when it comes to paranormal romance, but still this book was a pleasant & mind-blowing surprise, and I loved every second of it. Paris & Sienna got the perfect story, they're perfect for each other, and I also loved where Gena took the overall storyline, I definitely wasn't expecting that, and it's one of the reasons why this book made it on my Top 10 list, and it's definitely the best LotU book so far, and I can't wait to read more :)
#9 - The Storyteller by Antonia Michaelis
I finally read The Storyteller, and it was everything that everyone said it was & more. I've said this before, and I'll say it again, even though this book is contemporary, it's also quite magical. Antonia Michaelis's writing style was absolutely amazing, and she has woven a tale that will captivate you, but it will also break you heart, and it's one of those books that will stay with you long after you've finished them.
#10 - Vicious by V. E. Schwab
Vicious is the last addition to my top 10 list. I actually planned to put another book on this list, but while I was reading this one, I knew it will get replaced by this one, and it totally did. First of all, I have to mention, that I love Victoria Schwab's writing style & imagination. I love that all of her books so far are so different, yet amazingly imaginative, and her writing style is so beautiful, and she totally blew me away with Vicious. I'd say something I never did before, she reminds me of Neil Gaiman's writing style & imagination. Just like his stories, her stories so far are brilliant & so imaginative, yet so unique & different, and yet you know they're written by her, that's why I love her books so much, and I hope she'll decide to write a sequel to this book, because I definitely want more!
- The School for Good & Evil by Soman Chainani - beautiful & brilliant world-building, lovable characters, magical, surprising, funny, entertaining & heartbreaking, a book that every fantasy & fairy-tale-like fan would love.- The Storm (The Fury #2) by Alexander Gordon Smith - awesome, suspenseful, amazing, thrilling, terrifying, horrifying, brilliant & heartbreaking, one freaktastic mind-blowing book! By the way, originally planned as duology, this year it was re-published as only The Fury, so if you have the 2013 new cover edition, that's the complete book, containing both The Fury & The Storm. I own the 2012 edition of The Fury with the different cover, so I had to get the kindle ebook of the sequel The Storm to see how it will end, but everything I said about The Storm, it pertains to The Fury, too. I technically started The Fury at the end of 2012 & finished it at the beginning of 2013, so it doesn't count for this list, but The Storm it totally does, definitely one of the best books I've read, so I can't recommend it enough.- The Enchanter Heir (The Heir Chronicles #4) by Cinda Williams Chima - an intriguing tale of magic, mystery, music, action, suspense, heartbreak & romance, filled with amazing characters & set in an amazing world. It seems that the sequel The Sorcerer Heir is postponed to 2015, and the waiting is killing me, but I know that in the end it will be worth it, because I know that Cinda Williams Chima will do again what she did with her Seven Realms series, and give us the perfect conclusion to the series :)- Midnight Blue-Light Special (InCryptid #2) by Seanan McGuire - Midnight Blue-Light Special was the perfect sequel to Discount Armageddon, and the perfect wrap up to Verity Price's story for now. I adore the series, and this amazing book made me fall in love with it even more! The next 2 books will feature Verity's brother Alex, and I can't wait! The world in these books is fantastic, I adore all the characters (main & secondary), and I know I'll never get enough of them all, so I can't recommend it enough!
- The Blood (Morpheus Road #3) by D. J. MacHale - quite an adventure-filled journey, full of action, thrills, twists & turns, fun & heartbreak, and one amazing & perfect conclusion to the trilogy, so I had to mention it.- Timeless (Parasol Protectorate #5) by Gail Carriger - another last book in the series honorable mention. Timeless is the best book in the series, and I loved every second of it, and it was the perfect conclusion to the series, too. Highly entertaining, full of twists & turns, (at one point I was both crying & laughing - something I wouldn't have thought it's possible, and I don't meant I was crying from happiness or laughing), so yeah, both heartbreaking & laugh-out-loud funny, and I can't wait for the spin-off series :)- A Witch Alone (Winter Trilogy #3) by Ruth Warburton - and the last final-book-in-a-series honorable mention, the finale of the Winter Trilogy - A Witch Alone. It was fast-paced, exciting, with lots of twists & turns, action, mystery, thrills, danger, magic, romance & heartbreak, and you should be ready for one emotional & heartbreaking roller coaster ride. I highly recommend this lovely trilogy of magic, love, friendship & sacrifice.
Ok, so that's it. I can definitely go on & on, I have a lot of other amazing books I'd love to mention, but I'll stop myself now.