Favorite Books of 2012

I did not read as much as I wanted to this year. I was so busy with finishing school that I became really picky about what books I would read in my free time. But this also meant that every book I did read this year I really enjoyed. Some standouts were:


Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
I love fantasy novels. There is something wonderful about discovering a new world and I especially enjoyed this one where Celaena–an assassin–has to survive a competition that puts her up against other excellent fighters. It had the action and the romance. My heart was happy.


The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
I loved the atmosphere and subtle romance created in this novel. It was simply magical. Plus, this book dealt quite a bit with sibling relationships and I’m a sucker for sibling stories.


Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
This was my favorite book of the year. I remember exactly when I read it. I was going through some tough things concerning my health and I remember being so scared. The girl of this story stole my heart. She taught me that the key part in being brave is the ability to endure even when you think you’ve reached your limit.

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Nutella Wontons

So easy. So delicious. I wish I still had some but I made them the night before and they were gone by morning. My family liked them that much. But I will be making them in the near future. Like I said, they’re easy. You can see just how easy from the recipe below.

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Wonton wraps
Nutella
Water
Oil for frying
3/4 cup of sugar mixed with 2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon

Pour a couple inches of oil into a pot on medium heat. While the oil is heating, add a teaspoon of Nutella to each wonton wrap and fold according to the package’s directions and use water to seal the edges. Fry for a couple minutes on each side. Make sure to watch them since they fry fast. When finished frying, dust with sugar and cinnamon mixture. Enjoy!

Crewel by Gennifer Albin

Adelice can embroider the very fabric of life and because of this talent she is forced to work as a Spinster for Manipulation Services, which separates Adelice from her family. Adelice loses her freedom as she must work the looms that dictate how people live their lives. She discovers secrets and that her world is built on lies. She sets out to find truths that could get her killed, along with the boy she falls for.

This dystopian novel has a similar plot to most other dystopian stories. There is an oppressive world, a girl with a special talent, a revolution in the making, and a love triangle. What makes this story stand out from others is the world created by the author. There is a lot of depth to how the world functions, however I would have preferred more depth in the character development. I wish Adelice was more unique and the plot more unpredictable. However, the novel ends with a promise of more twists to come which will keep readers intrigued.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Blue is destined to cause the death of her true love, and on St. Mark’s Eve, she sees the spirit of a boy named Gansey who will die within the year. As a non-seer, the only reason she would see a spirit is because Gansey is her true love or she will kill him. This leaves the reader questioning which one is Blue’s fate. And even though she is warned to stay away from Gansey, she can’t help but get swept up in his adventure to find the sleeping Glendower, who will grant a favor to whoever wakes him. But this is not what the story is about. It’s about the characters. It’s about Blue forming relationships with a group of Aglionby boys with Gansey as their leader. Blue wants to see magic so joins their quest to discover Glendower, and the closer she gets to the boys, the more difficult it gets for her to accept her entwining fate with Gansey.

This story is full of subtle promises. The story starts out slow and the search for Glendower is only just beginning as the book ends, but what the novel does well is make you care about the characters. Stiefvater’s writing makes you feel invested in what happens to these boys and what happens to Blue. When the novel is finished, readers will be wanting the next book of the series, wondering how the characters get to their prophesied fates.