Here is a list of the best books I read this year. Not all of these books were new in 2012, but this just happened to be the year I read them.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher – I found this book on Dannielle LaPaglia’s 2011 book list and absolutely loved it. It covers a lot of deep topics like bullying and teen suicide, but the way it unfolds pulls the reader along, even if with a sense of dread. I’m pretty sure I read this book in about 2 or 3 days, which in itself is a form of praise.


Life of Pi by Jay Asher – I was hooked on this book from the moment I saw the word Pondicherry in the opening. It was not at all what I expected it to be, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. After all, what could be more intriguing than a teenage boy in a lifeboat with a tiger – not to mention the zebra, hyena and baboon. It had a few lulls but nothing enough to stop me from continuing. And I won’t give any details, so you’ll have to trust me when I say the ending is fantastic.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins – This is another book I found on Danni’s list from last year. (So maybe you should go read her list instead of mine.) 🙂 I must say this book is not my normal type of book, but I read it mainly because Danni recommended it and I was planning a trip to Paris at the time. I ended up reading the book in a few days and totally loving it. I don’t know how Stephanie did it, but she perfectly captures the feeling falling in love with this story.


White Pickup by Larry Kollar – What if people were disappearing in mysterious white pickup trucks and no one knew what was happening? What if our economy and civilization collapsed because of the sudden disappearance of so many people? If that intrigues you, then check out Larry Kollar’s book White Pickups which was released this year. Larry does a great job of creating characters that you will care about and then throwing them into tense situations. It’s great book and I can’t wait to read the next in the series. (If you don’t follow Larry on Twitter, you should.)

Living in the Land of Enough by Courtney Carver – I enjoy reading a fair amount of non-fiction and this was one of my favorites this year. At first I was disappointed because the book came across as a list of suggestions, but as I read through I began to enjoy the thoughts being passed along. It’s not the type of book that you follow everything it says, and I don’t think it was intended to be that. It’s the type of book that challenges you to think about stuff and the role it plays in your everyday life. And that was well worth the short read.


The Story Book by David Baboulene – As a writer I enjoy reading books about the craft. I found this book by David Baboulene to be full of useful wisdom about what makes stories work. He uses Back to the Future as a running example throughout the book and sprinkles in other examples along the way. I think my favorite parts of the book were the discussions on knowledge gaps and ideas for story creation. It’s a longer read, but worth the effort if you enjoy reading about writing. (And it’s only $2.99.)
So that’s my list.

What’s were your favorite reads of 2012? For more best reads find the #BestReads2012 carnival here: http://johnwiswell.blogspot.com/2012/12/bestreads2012.html

Disclaimer: The links to the books are unashamedly affiliate links. 🙂

7 thoughts on “My Best Reads of 2012”
  1. I didn’t get to as many books as you this year, but I did get to a few. Some of which aren’t published yet that I’ve been honored to help edit. A couple of classics that I got to this year are The Old Man and the Sea by Hemmingway and The Pursuit of God by Tozer.

    I read a couple of books by Hank Hanagraaff, one fiction, The Last Disciple and the eschatological non fiction it was based upon, the non fiction The Apocalypse Code. Very interesting reading, it’s been several months since I’ve finished it and I’m still trying to digest it.

    1. Hi Floyd, I may have to check out the Hanagraaff books. How did you like The Old Man and the Sea? I ask because, for some reason, I just could not get into that book.

      1. I’m more of a Steinbeck fan than I am a Hemingway fan. I thought the struggle by himself at sea was grueling for him and for me as a reader! The ending made me feel like I got set up. All that to shock me by a tourist not even knowing it was a fish and not a shark tied to his boat after his life struggle? It felt a little cheap to me.

    1. I would love to chat about Life of Pi. Admittedly, I may be reading more into the ending than the author intended. But, then again, I enjoy art that lets the participant interpret it different ways based on their experiences.

    1. I always hesitate to recommend craft books because what is new info to me may be common knowledge to someone else, but I think you’ll like it. And at the price you almost can’t lose. If you check it out, let me know what you think of it.

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