I found this best (teen scifi/fantasy) books list, via @sarahreesbrenna on twitter. I have read 6 out of 10 of those books, and I agree, they’re great, and I definitely want to get on reading the others. (I wish I knew what the last book was!)

I tried REALLY hard to track all the books I read this year, and here follows my top five, in no particular order:

Ash by Malinda Lo: The book I lovingly refer to as “The lesbian Cinderella”. It’s brilliant and moving and enthralling. Lo creates these amazing characters, about whom I really cared. She does not force the lesbianism down your throat, instead it kind of creeps up on you, very subtly, playing with the traditional roles and ideas of the Cinderella story. I especially love her treatment of the fairy godmother; the faeries are dark and scary and dangerous.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan: Hundreds of years after the zombie apocalypse, humans live in sheltered communities surrounded by fences to keep the monsters out. This book is super creepy and beautiful. Ryan is very descriptive, without using tons of dialogue, which might be my favorite thing about it. The ending is unexpected, which has been the biggest complaint I’ve heard (from the 2 people I know who have read it), but I love the end.

Fables (vols. 10-12) by Bill Willingham: I have loved this series since the very beginning, but the last three volumes BROUGHT IT. Volume 10 (The Good Prince): The Frog Prince remembers his tragic history, accepts what happened, grows and is AWESOME. Volume 11 (War and Pieces): This book takes us where the entire series so far has been leading. It has a great resolution and bittersweet ending. This book could very well have been the series finale, but I’m glad it wasn’t. Volume 12 (The Dark Ages): The war the Fables have been waging is finally over, and we meet a new villain, who might just be more scary and evil than the Emperor. He starts to tear apart the lives and peace they’ve fought for so long.

Looking for Alaska by John Green: This book blew me away. It’s about a boy who is sent to boarding school and the friendships he creates there. It’s hysterically funny and unbearably sad and so real. John Green does a fantastic job describing the trials and tribulations of high school.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak: This is a lovely Holocaust story of a young German girl whose family ends up sheltering a young Jewish man. The narrator is Death, who becomes fascinated by Liesel and follows her life. I felt like this was a really fresh perspective on the Holocaust, and Zusak does a good job of showing the easy way the German population was caught up in the fervor of the Fuhrer. From my Goodreads review: “So good. Beautiful. Haunting. Devastating. Heartbreaking. Wonderful.”

What were your favorite books?