Saturday, 18 December 2010

Best Books of 2010 - YA

2010 has been an awesome year for books! I’ve discovered a lot of new authors to love and said goodbye to some characters I adore. Choosing my 5 top YA reads of the year is damn near impossible as there are many, many deserving candidates and I've really liked or loved probably 90% of what I've read this year. But after much thought and umm-ing and ah-ing I have come up with my 5 favourites. And to be more fair, I’ve excluded all 2011 releases I’ve already read that I consider some of the best I’ve read this year. Instead I’ll highlight those in my 2011 Most Wanted post, which will go up later in the week.

Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Sub-genre(s)/Subject(s): ghosts, romance
Why? It’s a hauntingly beautiful tale of grief, a brilliant ghost story and has a very sexy Scottish guy by the name of Zachary who I fell seriously in love with! The writing is fantastic, it’s a heartbreaking emotional read (many tears were shed) and left me craving book 2, Shift, in a serious way!!

Matched by Ally Condie
Sub-genre(s)/Subject(s): dystopia, romance
Why? I loved how everything got so carefully revealed. Layer after layer peeled back and unveiling more depth, more secrets, and more awesome story. I loved the characters, the pacing was superb and I loved the almost poetic quality to it.

Spirit Bound and Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead [Vampire Academy #5 & #6]
Sub-genre/Subject(s): urban fantasy (vampires)
Why? I’ve adored the Vampire Academy series from the start. Spirit Bound was a hard read for me first time around, but completely awesome. Last Sacrifice...well, honestly LS is probably the weakest book of the series plot and writing wise, and could have done with being darker like the rest, but the parts of it I loved, I really loved! And it is in many ways still a great conclusion to my favourite YA paranormal series, so for me it still manages to hit this list. If you’ve not yet tried this series, what’s keeping you?!
Reviews for the series: #1 Vampire Academy, #2 Frostbite, #3 Shadow Kiss, #4 Blood Promise, #5 Spirit Bound, #6 Last Sacrifice.

My Soul To Keep by Rachel Vincent [Soul Screamers #3]
Sub-genre(s)/Subject(s): urban fantasy (banshees), romance
Why? Rachel is a master at creating flawed characters who screw up massively and then cleaning it up with real strength. Characters who’s reactions are very real and who you can believe really exist. Not to mention making the creepy stuff really creepy! MSTKeep is an awesome continuation to the Soul Screamers series, though you really need to start at the beginning if you’ve not yet read any of them.
Reviews for the series: My Soul To Lose (ebook prequel novella), Reaper (ebook novella set pre-series), #1 My Soul To Take, #2 My Soul To Save, #3 My Soul To Keep, #4 My Soul To Steal (out Jan 1st 2011).

Boys Don’t Cry by Malorie Blackman
Sub-genre(s)/Subject(s): contemporary
Why? Heartfelt story of a 17 year old boy who suddenly discovers he has a kid, and that kid is dumped on him. Powerful writing covering how not all teen dads are bad! And how they are so often looked down on. As well as the truth about the difficulties involved with raising a kid.

It goes without saying that all these books were un-put-downable! Choosing just 5 was really hard because there were so many to choose from! Check out my post of my favourite reads from the first half of 2010 for some other favourites, and my Read in 2010 page for highlighted favourites as well because these titles are hardly the only ones deserving of mention!

Thing is, as well as there being my favourite reads, there's also my favourite couples...many, many swoon worthy moments to be had in many reads this year. So here's another quick top 5, my top 5 couples in YA's this year! And surprisingly, not all of them come from the above books!

Meghan and Prince Ash - The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa (I so adore the broken Prince! Also TID missed out on top 5 status simply because I wanted a contemp up there as well)
Ren and Calla - Nightshade by Andrea Cremer (I didn't love the book, found it disappointing, but Ren and Calla are seriously hot together!)
Carlos and Kiara - Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles (*fans self* 'nuff said)
Rose and Dimitri - Spirit Bound/Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead (I'm NOT saying that's how it ends, for those who've not read it, but they are couple I've adored from book 1, and still think are perfect for each other)
Aura and Zachary - Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready (they don't have too many moments really, but when they do? *swoon*)


The Slowest Bookworm said...

You've picked some great books there. I only discovered YA this year and my reading interest has grown so much since. Ya for YA!

CarlyB said...

Yay great post! I loved Boys Don't Cry a LOT.x

Avery said...

This is a great post! I have got to get my hands on a copy of "Matched" and "Shade"...

Larissa {Larissa's Bookish Life} said...

Great choices!! I Love Rachel Vincent's and Julie Kagawa's YA series!

I have yet to read Shade, Nightshade and Matchd, but Im looking forward to them! =D

Kelly said...

I have no idea how you managed to narrow your lists down to five books. I'm planning on doing a post similar to this, but with my top ten, and then I realized I'd need to break it down by category because there are so many books I read and loved this year. This could easily get out of control.

Great picks! I can't wait to read Matched!

Nayuleska said...

Good idea to split the best into genres! I'd still end up with too many! Nice selection here - some I haven't read and look awesome!

Clover said...

YAY> I love this post, and most of the books you've included! Shade! Matched! Soul Screamers! Boys Don't Cry!

I can't wait to read Nightshade and the Julie Kagawa books and of course Rules of Attraction.

Sarah said...

I've been thinking about trying to create a favorite books of the year post but I just can't seem to narrow it down! I've read so many fab books this year but I have to say that a few of the books you've mentioned would be near the top of my list too :o)