December’s Reading Wrap-Up and Books of the Month

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Happy New Year’s Eve! December was a super-busy month, what with the holidays and the Class of 2011: YA Superlatives Blogfest and all, so I didn’t get as much reading done as I’d hoped. Still, there were a few books I managed to get through that definitely deserve mentioning:

Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne Truss – A humorous craft book on grammar and why it’s essential. This one was a fast read and it had me smiling more than once. If you’re someone who rolls her eyes at the misuse of its and it’s or the ever-tricky apostrophe, you’ll appreciate this book.

The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler – This was such a fun book! Read more about why I liked it in my Bookanista recommendation.

The Liar Society by Lisa & Laura Roecker – This one came highly recommended by several Bookanistas and Agent Vickie, and now I know why! Kate was a fantastically funny narrator, though the pain she felt at losing her best friend was also palpable. And the suspense in this one was masterfully built. Recommend!

And my favorite books of December: Crossed by Ally Condie

From Goodreads: In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky – taken by the Society to his certain death – only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake. Cassia’s quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander – who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia’s heart – change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.

This follow-up to last year’s Matched seems to be getting mixed reviews, but I kind of loved it. Yes, it was slowly paced and the ending wasn’t exactly satisfying, but this was the middle book of a trilogy. Not all can be resolved! I was mesmerized by Matched’s setting, its ever-evolving and unpredictable characters, and Ally Condie’s quiet, elegant writing. I’ll definitely be reading the conclusion to this trilogy!

And, Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma

[Imaginary Girls cover]

From Goodreads: Chloe’s older sister, Ruby, is the girl everyone looks to and longs for, who can’t be captured or caged. When a night with Ruby’s friends goes horribly wrong and Chloe discovers the dead body of her classmate London Hayes left floating in the reservoir, Chloe is sent away from town and away from Ruby. But Ruby will do anything to get her sister back, and when Chloe returns to town two years later, deadly surprises await. As Chloe flirts with the truth that Ruby has hidden deeply away, the fragile line between life and death is redrawn by the complex bonds of sisterhood.

This book was bizarre in the very best sense of the word. The writing is stunning, one of those where I found myself rereading sentences in hopes of fully absorbing their awesomeness. And the characters… Ruby. Yikes! I hated her fully, but then I was absolutely smitten with her too, very much the way Chloe seemed to feel about her. The premise of this novel is unique, one I hesitate to talk too much about because the unknowing is quite creepy. I will say that it is guaranteed to keep you guessing with every turn of the page!

What’s the best book you read in December?

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9 responses to “December’s Reading Wrap-Up and Books of the Month

  1. I also read Imaginary Girls in December and I loved it…It really got me to pause and think and then I had to talk about it (to my hubby who deals with my randomness)…It´s the type of book who just kept me guessing and I loved to hate Ruby and I hated loving her at the same time 🙂
    I have to put The Future of Us on my TBR and The Liar Society as well…
    Happy New Year´s Eve to you and your family!

  2. I love Eats, Shoots and Leaves and bought it right after I read it a couple of years ago. It is essential to any writer’s/author’s collection, more so than Stephen King’s On Writing (which is fantastic in its own right).

    My fave book that I read in December 2011 would have to be Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini. Absolutely haunting and Helen’s (mc) bff, Claire, is nothing short of amazing. I was really impressed by this novel. And while it’s about furies and demigods, it is nothing like the Percy Jackson series.

  3. I love Eats, Shoots and Leaves! I bought that for my dad once upon a time because I got my persnickety attitude about grammar from him. 🙂 Crossed is next up on my TBR pile as soon as I finish Clockwork Prince. Can’t wait!

    • I thought EATS, SHOOTS and LEAVES was so fun and clever. A super-fast read too, which is always a nice break. I hope you enjoy CROSSED. I know I’m looking forward to the final book of that trilogy!

  4. The best YA book I read this month was SPEAK by Laurie Halse Anderson. It was very real and very powerful – the kind of book that makes a difference. I’ll be sure to check out the Liar Society. Thanks for the recommendations.

  5. I just got The Liar Society from the library, so knowing that it’s a book of the month for you reassures me- I’m so excited to read it! Also, Katy, read Speak ASAP! It’s amazing and heartbreaking and just plain brilliant.

    Happy new year!