Thursday, January 5, 2012

The End of Cannonball 3: Lists and lists and more lists

Cripes. Well, so much for keeping up with reviews this time. I kinda suck at that.

BUT! I did finish 55 books this year. I squeaked out the 56th at noon on January 1st, so I'm not counting it. I'm still pretty damn proud of myself, because reading 55 books in one year, while working all kinds of hours and trying to keep the house from becoming too chaotic can be pretty damn hard sometimes. But I made myself read at least half an hour before going to sleep and another half hour when I wake up, and it worked out pretty well. The one thing that saved me towards the latter half of the year was getting a Barnes and Noble "Nook" e-reader, which is an incredibly beautiful thing. I never knew just how amazing it was until late one night when I had finished Catching Fire (the 2nd book in the Hunger Games Trilogy) and I was itching to read the next I just went to the B&N store on the Nook and bought the next one. Right there. From bed. At 2 in the morning. Five minutes at the most. TECHNOLOGY! HOLY SHIT!

So, anyway. I still want to try and finish the reviews I have left. I'm pretty sure I'll join the Cannonball again for its 4th iteration, but I want to get #3 done and over with before I do.

Here's some quick End-of-the-Cannonball Lists!

Best Books of 2011:

1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
2. World War Z by Max Brooks
3. Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Friend by Christopher Moore
4. The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
5. A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin

Lessons Learned: I love series. And damn, there's some good Young Adult reading out there (both my #1 and #4 are so qualified). I also like zombies and funny books.

Best Series of 2001, Because Damn, I Read a Lot of Series This Year:

1. A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin
2. The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
3. The Southern Vampire Series by Charlaine Harris
4. The D'Artagnan Romances by Alexandre Dumas
5. Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Lessons Learned: Second verse, same as the first. I also like how this shows that my tastes in reading are pretty damn eclectic.
Worst Books of 2011:

1. The Constant Princess by Phillipa Gregory (GAWRGH)
2. Misfortune by William Stace
3. Dead of Night by Randy Wayne White
4. Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl by Tracy Quan
5. The Ministry of Special Cases by Nathan Englander

Lessons learned: I hate bad historical fiction, and I hate being bored by books. Also: there's a lot of bad writing out there and I'm glad I avoided most of it.

Tear-jerkiest Books of 2011, AKA: Books That Feel Like a Punch to the Gut:

1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
2. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
3. The Pianist by Wladyslaw Szpilman
4. Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
5. The Man in the Iron Mask by Alexandre Dumas

Lessons learned: Good lord, woman, stop reading books about the Holocaust. Also: Keep a box of tissues by the bed.

Biggest Disappointments of 2011:

1. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
2. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

Lessons learned: Not everything Neil Gaiman does is gold.

Biggest "Wait...Did I Read That? I Totally Forgot:

1. Misfortune by William Stace
2. Lisey's Story by Stephen King
3. Fool by Christopher Moore

Lessons Learned: Zzzzzzz.....

Best "Damn! White Suburbanites Have it Tough, Yo" Books of 2011:

1. Little Children by Tom Pirrotta
2. Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
3. Needful Things by Stephen King
4. One Day by Dave Nicholls
5. The Amityville Horror by Jay Anson

Lessons Learned: The problems of suburbanites can make for really awesome books.

Favorite Heroines of 2011:
1. Katniss Everdeen, The Hunger Games Trilogy
2. Sookie Stackhouse, The Southern Vampire Series
3. Elizabeth I, The Life of Elizabeth I
4. Arya Stark , A Song of Ice and Fire
5. Liesel Meminger, The Book Thief

Lessons Learned: Chicks are awesome, man. Modern literature really is creating some badass females, and I love it. Also, Elizabeth I kicked all kinds of ass.

Favorite Heroes

1. Tyrion Lannister, A Song of Ice and Fire
2. Biff, Lamb
3. Oskar Schindler, Schindler's List
4. That One Yonkers Dude from World War Z
5. Athos, Porthos, Aramis and D'Artagnan: The Three Musketeers

Lessons Learned: Duuuuuudes. Dudes are cool.

Favorite Villains of 2011:

1. The Zombies, World War Z
2. Everything, Catch-22
3. Leland Gaunt, Needful Things
4. The Capitol, The Hunger Games Trilogy
5. Lord Voldemort, The Harry Potter Series

Best Comic Book, Not That I Read A Lot of Them, But This One Is Still Awesome:

1. Hark! A Vagrant! by Kate Beaton-- you can read her comic on her website. Do it!

Lessons learned: Kate Beaton is amazing.

Best People on the Internet for Recommending Books:


Lessons learned: Listen to Pajibans when it comes to books.


Damn, I love making lists.

Anyway, here's to some good books in 2012!

1 comment:

Jen K said...

That's a really good top five books of the year - regarding YA, I picked up The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking Trilogy) - the first one was very good, and overall, it was a good series, but I don't think the two follow ups quite lived up to the first one. It's worth checking out.