The Snobbery’s Naughty and Nice List 2013 Edition

Woo. Another year over and time for another list of things that didn’t suck and some that did. This year Heather will be contributing, so I’ll do my best to keep my own comments short.

Mrs Claus with the Naughty List

This will never get old. Ever.

sj’s List

  • NicecomicsImage almost totally swept my favourite comics of the year. Two brand new titles (Sheltered and Sex Criminals), and two that were new-to-me (Revival and Saga). I’m following all of these monthly now, no trade waiting for me. The Unwritten is my lone Vertigo title, I read all of the trades in a matter of days, then started buying them as they came out. I’m still waiting to read the last arc, though, cos it was a Fables crossover and I fucking hate Fables. I know, I know.
  • Naughtybad YA2013 was apparently the year for lackluster finales to YA trilogies. UNBELIEVABLY, I was not the only one who felt this way. Veronica Roth’s Allegiant and Lauren DeStefano’s Sever all garnered many, many poor reviews. I was shocked. I may have disliked them for different reasons than everyone else, but for once, I was not in the minority. Hm.
  • Nicegallagher girlsProbably my biggest surprise of the year, Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls was hands down my favourite new-to-me YA series that I read in 2013. I read the first five in a matter of days, then spent months with the agonizing wait for the finale. Take note, other authors: this is how you end a damn series. Highly recommended to just about anyone.
  • Honourable Mentions: Peter Stenson’s Fiend, Steve Weddle’s Country Hardball, Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep, Justin Jordan/Tradd Moore’s The Strange Talent of/Legend of Luther Strode

Heather says: When sj asked me to contribute to Santa’s naughty and nice list, I could name five books in a nanosecond. But sj has rules, and she would only count one book per author. So instead of naming my favorite books, my list, with the exception of a single entry, consists of my top favorite authors of 2013.

Heather’s List

  • Niceheather niceI discovered the brilliance of Jasper Fforde early in 2013 with the book Shades of Grey. It was a recommendation from sj, and she usually doesn’t steer me wrong. Grumpy Grandpa Librarian raised his one eyebrow in silent judgment when I checked it out. Methinks he should read more. I loved Fforde’s work so much that I bought his books in paper copies.

    I’m a sneaky-peeper on Goodreads, back when Goodreads had something to peep at. I hated the Goodreads recommendations.

    “You liked Lord of the Rings? You might also like Lord of the Flies. They both start with the letter ‘L’ and are not actually about the Lord.”

    I had to find ways to get recommendations on my own, so I perused friends’ lists to see what they were loving, and Rainbow Rowell‘s work kept appearing. I read Fan Girl and Eleanor & Park. Rowell really gets what it’s like to be awkward. She gets it. I have an allergy to romance, but Rainbow’s work doesn’t trigger the gag reflex. None of her characters are perfect. They’re people. They do smart things, and they do stupid things, and they suffer consequences. I love characters I can root for. I also like Rainbow herself. She is funny and adorable on Twitter. Follow her now, thank me later.

    Ender’s Game. One of these things is not like the other. I loved this book. I found it in the free bin at my local used bookstore a few months ago, and I read it in a day. I cried, I cheered, I hurt deeply for this poor, poor child. But the author is not a kind soul, and that bothers me. Ender was my first five-star book of this year, but I still feel conflicted about putting him on my list.

  • Naughtyheather naughtyI’m pretty forgiving and forgetful, and I hesitate to condemn any author’s work to the pits of the Naughty List, but here you go.

    I, Saul was definitely not the book the blurb told me I was getting. It was boring and ridiculous. Like I said, I can forgive lots of things. The inexcusable bit was receiving an invitation from the publisher to join a blog tour promoting the stupid thing weeks after I had read, reviewed and passed the review on via NetGalley. If they aren’t going bother to read the feedback, why did I read the book?

    The only other name on my naughty list isn’t a book. It’s Goodreads. Don’t look at me like that, Goodreads! You know what you’ve done!

SUPER BEST BOOKS OF 2013

Heather and I don’t always agree on what we read, but this year we agreed on two books that were our very best reads.

They were…

best of

Chris Holm’s The Big Reap and Justin Robinson’s City of Devils! We both reviewed each of these titles and they totally blew us away. You can read our reviews for The Big Reap here and here, and for City of Devils here and here.

In fact, we loved them so much and want you to love them too that we are giving away a copy of each! Thanks to Kate at Candlemark and Gleam and Vicky at Angry Robot, we have a paperback of each book to give away to YOU! All you have to do to enter is comment below and tell us what your best books of the year were. On January 3rd, I’ll put all the names into the Hat and draw two lucky winners. Super easy, right?

Really Truly Best YA Ever Polls: ROUND TWO!!!

Greetings, Snobberians! Snobberites? Snobberlanders? Hi everyone! :-D

This is Nerija, from Postcards from La-La Land.  Sj has been super busy these past few weeks with moving and other stressful endeavors, so I offered to take over Round Two of The Best YA Ever contest.

A few administrative notes:

  • This round will go until December 19th.  As before, you can vote once per day.
  • There is a total of 30 polls this time, divided into three pages.
  • Yes, we are aware that we’ve included a book that lost in Round One.  Here is the reason:  in the few cases where two books ended in a 50/50 tie, sj and I decided to let both titles advance.  However, this resulted in an odd number of titles (59, to be exact).  So we decided to advance one more – the book that had lost by the slimmest margin. This turned out to be The Invention of Hugo Cabret, which was just 3.44% behind The Fault in Our Stars.  And so, rejoice, all those who voted for Hugo!  He’s been given a second chance!

And now, to the polls!

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ChrestomancivsGirlInterrupted

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TheTimeQuintetvsLittleWomen

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TheTrueConfessionsofCharlotteDoylevsChroniclesofNarnia (series)

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WheretheRedFernGrowsvsTheCuriousIncident

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H2G2 (series)vsUglies (series)

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PercyJacksonvsFireandThorns (series)

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TheThiefofAlwaysvsTheBookofLostThings

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TheInventionofHugoCabretvsTheLastDragonslayer (series)

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JohnnyMaxwell (series)vsThePhantomTollbooth

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TillermanCycle (series)vsTheDeathofBees

Really Truly Best YA Ever Polls (NOW WITH VOTING!) – Part IV

Last set of entries for the initial round!  You have until Nov. 26 at 10 pm EST to vote in Part I and Part II and until Nov. 27 at 10 pm EST to vote for Part III and Part IV.

Remember, it’s set up so that you can vote once per day, so don’t lose faith if your favourites seem to be behind at the start.  Keep coming back and encourage your fellow readers to vote as well (while I enjoy the views, I’m more interested in having as large a base as possible).

Let’s get started!

A Resurrection of Magic vs

The Changeling vs

Blackbird Pond vs

Fire and Thorns vs

Artemis Fowl vs

Alice Series vs

Temeraire vs

Really Truly Best YA Ever Polls (NOW WITH VOTING!) – Part III

Lots and lots of votes cast already in the first two entry thingies.  I don’t even know the proper terminology, but who cares cos voting is FUN, amirite? In case you’re behind, here’s the post where I explain what’s going on.  Here’re the first 14 pairings, and here’re the second 14 pairings. You ready to get your vote on?   Yeah, you are. Annals of the Western Shore vs

Ender's Game vs
Sevenwaters vs
aristotle and dante vs
How I Live Now vs
13th reality vs
Feeling Sorry vs

Really Truly Best YA Ever Polls (NOW WITH VOTING!) – Part II

Less talky, more votey, yes?

Introduction

Part I of voting

Part II begins NOW!

Percy Jackson vs

last dragonslayer vs

OH, come ON!

OH, come ON!

Borderland vs

Pendragon vs

Neverending Story vs

Geek Love vs

More on Page Two!