Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Best Books of 2009 Lists!

Yesterday, the first business day in November, both Amazon.com and Publishers Weekly published their annual Best Books lists. Now, I really like lists. I'm not exactly sure I can explain why, but I like making my own "Best of..." or "Recommended if you like..." lists, and looking at others and seeing where we agree or disagree. (Oh, I can't be the only person who feels this way. Raise your hand if you can agree with me!)

The BEST and MOST EXCITING news is that Beautiful Creatures (Litle, Brown / Dec. 1, 2009) by the wonderful Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl is #1 on Amazon's Best Books for Teens, and #5 on Amazon's Best Books Overall for 2009!!!!! This is incredible news. I'm reading Beautiful Creatures right now, and Amazon is right in describing BC as possibly the next super-sensation in the YA market. It's suspenseful and interesting from the first page, as compulsively and easily readable as Stephenie Meyer's books, and has the subtle romantic development of Maggie Stiefvater's. Oh, wait... I should stop using all the good quotes now, and save them for my review! Hehe.

I'm also incredibly happy about this because it's always fantastic to see a YA novel being so recognized in a literary world where an overwhelming number of people still disregard YA as "real" literature. Take that, nay-sayers! Guess who has the #5 position on the Best Books of 2009 list? In other, related BC-news, Beautiful Creatures is now in stock at Amazon and rumored to also be so at Barnes & Noble, so if you can't wait until December, go and order it now! And congrats to Kami and Margie for this well-deserved recognition!

I've retyped the rest of the Best Books for Teens 2009 list below, with my commentary next to them. How many have you read and how many do you want to read/have on your TBR mountain?

2. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater (Scholastic / Aug. 1, 2009) - If you don't know what this one is about, I don't know which rock you've been living under for the past several months. I wasn't such a fan of Shiver as others seem to be, but I still love Maggie's luscious writing, and still recommend this as a worthy follow-up to Twilight.

3. Going Bovine by Libba Bray (Delacorte / Sept. 22, 2009) - I haven't read this yet, but it's Libba Bray. You can't go wrong. The end.

4. Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld (Simon Pulse / Oct. 6, 2009) - Not only can you not go wrong with any book Scott writes, Leviathan is also appropriately groundbreaking and amazing. You shouldn't miss this one!

5. Claudette Colvine: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip M. Hoose (Farrar, Strous and Giroux / Jan. 20, 2009) - I haven't heard of this one, but it's about the civil rights movements in the 1950s. I'll pick it up!

6. Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork (Arthur A. Levine / March 1, 2009) - I've been wanting to read this story about an autistic MC since I heard about it this past spring.

7. Fire by Kristin Cashore (Dial / Oct. 5, 2009) - Rightfully on this list. This book is amazing and definitely one of the best fantasy books I have ever read. Adults will also highly enjoy this one as well.

8. Chaos Walking, Book 2: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness (Candlewick / Sept. 8, 2009) - I have heard nothing but good things about this series and am determined to read the first book (which I have) over winter break, at which point I can promptly rush out and buy this one!

9. The Hunger Games, Book 2: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic / Sept. 1, 2009) - Well, this is another one that doesn't need an introduction. I didn't think it was quite as good as the first book, but it's still a worthy sequel, and I'm still hooked on this series, desperate to find out how the third book goes.

10. If I Stay by Gayle Forman (Dutton / April 2, 2009) - Aw, YAY! This was one of my favorite books this year as well. In fact, I think I'll reread it soon. I could use a book that makes me cry...

You should also check out the middle-grade list, where the number one spot is rightfully claimed by When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (#21 on the Overall Best Books list) and also features Dani Noir by the lovely Nova Ren Suma! And here's the Best Books of 2009 main page. Go crazy from there. I know I have.

Publishers Weekly's Best Children's Books of 2009 list is also up, and features a lot of the same titles, plus a few others that very much deserve the attention. Be sure to check it out so you can be convinced to pick them up and add them to your TBR mountain! From that list, I look forward to reading Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson, Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor, and The Uninvited by Tim Wynne-Jones.

And here's Publishers Weekly's Best Books of 2009, featuring many adult titles that I have on my TBR shelf. The books on that list that I'm determined to get through during winter break include: The Lost City of Z by David Grann, Dark Places by Gillian Flynn, The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters, Boneshaker by Cherie Priest, Soulless by Gail Carriger, Columbine by Dave Cullen, and a Jon Krakauer book.

So what books on those lists are you looking forward to reading? What books would you also put on those Best Books list? I'm going to do a feature with my lists obsession in December, so you can watch out for that in a month or so!


  1. I am actually aggregating the "best of 2009" book lists on my blog like I did last year:

    list of "Best of 2009" book lists

    I love all these lists. Even though I read a lot, I find so many books I have missed through the year-end lists.

  2. I love lists too! That's great news about BC, YA books definitely deserve recognition!

  3. Hmmmmmm...well I'm a little skeptical of this list as I couldn't even finish numbers 2, 3, and (sadly) 7. At least they had the sense to not put Hush on this list. *phew*

  4. Hmmm, I have to respectfully disagree with Beautiful Creatures. I received an ARC and tried numerous times to read it (it suonds like something perfect for me) but I can't get past page 40 or so. Nothing has happened. Nothing. It might get better later, but unfortunately I have not been able to get that far.

    The others on the list I did enjoy, and believe that they belong. Beautiful Creatures I wouldn't have included in the top ten, let alone at number one. But we all know books are subjective, so it might just be me.

    (I also agree with the commenter who was happy to see that HushHush did not make the cut. That book was nice, but not top ten worthy either)

  5. My top ten would be *completely* different, but I'm fascinated by other people's lists, and tastes in books! Thank you for this great post.

  6. I really enjoyed Catching Fire, and I am more excited than ever for book 3 !!!



  7. Love the list! I'm going to add Beautiful Creatures on to my wishlist!!!

  8. Thanks for the shout-out on my book, COLUMBINE. I hope you like it.

    And thanks for aggregating the lists, largeheartedboy. I'm still working on my songs list for you.

  9. I have got to read all of this! Especially Beautiful Creatures :)

  10. That is an amazing list--I love most of the books on there :)

  11. You will seriously enjoy Soulless and Boneshaker - both awesome steampunk, and amazingly original and funny. Happy reading!

    p.s. yes, of COURSE...we all make lists. :)

  12. Thanks for the shout out, Steph!


    OMG Dave Cullen just posted on your blog... *passes out*

  13. haha. thanks mstohl.

    i'm also hoping to read The Lost City of Z, btw. but i read really slowly and never have enough time to do it, and i'm working my way through Light In August, which is extraordinary. I'm savoring every line. I got to Faulkner late in life, but not too late

  14. I love your list!!!! BC is amazing, obviously I would say that! I've read most of these books and they are amazing. FOr the ones I haven't read I will definitely pick them up. Thanks!

  15. Thank you for capturing this in this fashion, with your thoughts alongside each title.

  16. Thanks a ton for the list and doing all my legwork for me ;)

  17. Fascinating book list. I've read several and will be putting several others on my TBR list. Always looking for another great book. Currently, I'm reading an interesting book called "Sea Clearwater" by author Selene Cardenas. It was written by a teenager and it's an action filled adventure/fantasy with romance, intrigue, and surprises. I can't seem to put it down.

  18. I love lists! I could make a list of why I love lists, but I won't waste space here.
    I really want to read Souless, Beautiful Creatures, Lips Touch, Fire (and Graceling) and Leviathan. and of course Going Bovine. I don't really love Shiver, but it has been recommended to me so I may try it out.
    Marcelo in the Real World, YES, YES, YES! Defintely one of my top 10 favorite books (it's probably my 2nd favorite). I really liked the book about Claduette Colvin as well since her story doesn't get told very often and it's a good story.

  19. I'm embarrassed to say I haven't read any on the list, though I'm definitely going to check out SHIVER! (:

  20. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  21. I did not at all enjoy the first Chaos Walking book. I seem to be a minority of 1 though, so I suppose it's just subjective.

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