2014 Look-Back: Raves

In the last post, I talked about the worst books I read this year.  This post is dedicated to all of my favorites!  These books all received either a four- or five-star rating from me.  Here is why.

Sorcerer's Feud
via Goodreads
Sorcerer's Feud by Katharine Kerr was one of my favorite books of the year.  I got to read it in beta a couple of times, which was exciting enough.  When I finally read the finished product, it was awesome to see how the book had progressed to the completed point.

Granted, this is book two in the series, so I highly recommend reading the first book, Sorcerer's Luck, before you start this one.  The series itself is interesting because it deals with Norse mythology in modern-day San Francisco, and a relationship that begins incredibly quickly but is grounded in past lives.  I loved the exploration of the main characters' past lives, how they connect with what happens to them in their current life, and how they affect the relationships they form with others.

Hollow City
via Goodreads
Hollow City by Ransom Riggs continues the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series wonderfully.  My only problem, and it was completely my own, was that it had been so long since I read the first book I was a little lost in the beginning.  But once I got further into the story and the adventure, I felt like I was in their world running along with them.  The danger was constant, the worry and fear always there in the back of my mind.  I was afraid for all of the children, but also had a lot of faith in their ability to overcome everything thrown at them.  They truly are peculiar children, but they are also remarkable.

This book was nominated for a Goodreads Choice award this year, and I was surprised it didn't win.  At least it came in second!

Three Souls
via Goodreads
Three Souls by Janie Chang was by far the best book I ever received in the Goodreads First Reads program.  It was beautifully written, a wonderful story and one of the best I read this year.  Since I like my own review so much (har har) I'm just going to quote one of the reasons I loved it so much:

I adored the main character, through all her faults and inability to understand she was dealing with things that were much too adult for her. Her character in death was beautifully contemplative and I loved how she was able to see, along with the reader, the impulse of youth contrasted with the reflection of consequences. We all forget, as teenagers, that our actions have repercussions. Even in our adult life it's hard to picture what will happen if we make this decision or that one. In death we are able to see exactly how everything Leiyin did in her youth contributed to the events around her, even without her knowledge or comprehension.

Poison Study
via Goodreads
Poison Study by Maria Snyder only got four stars from me, but that's not to say I didn't adore it.  I took issue with the relationship between the main characters, and the ending.  Both of these issues are expanded on in my review, but I don't want to post spoilers here.  I loved the writing and the story, something I had never read before.  Maybe someone else has written something similar in the past, but to me it was wholly original.

I recommend this book to all fantasy lovers who also like YA fiction.  There is some brutality involved, but I felt it was well-done and inherently relevant to the story.  The continuation in book two was also a great read, and I'm looking forward to finishing the series this year.

I read some pretty awesome books this year, not all included in this retrospective.  I hope that you will enjoy them as much as I did!  And don't forget to set your goals for 2015.  I look forward to seeing how everyone completes their journeys in reading next year!


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