Mogsy: Best of 2016 and the Year in Review
It’s once again that time of the year where I look back at the last twelve months and round up my favorite reads! As always, my methods are going to be rather haphazard, but as you know I read a TON of books and having to narrow it down to just “Top 10” or even “Top 20” is a difficult (if not impossible) task. That’s why I’ve opted not to do a traditional list, and instead I’m going to be breaking this post down into different genres/categories to highlight all the books that 1) were my favorites of the year, 2) I thought were most memorable, or 3) I think should be getting more love and attention. The one thing they have in common is that I loved them all.
You can see my reviews and more information about the books by clicking on the images and following the links.
Starting off with Fantasy, the biggest category, this is mostly a year of epic sequels and conclusions. Incredible trilogies like Jeff Salyards’ Bloodsounder’s Arc, Mark Lawrence’s The Red Queen’s War, Erin Lindsey’s Bloodbound, and Juliet Marillier’s Blackthron & Grim all ended with a bang. The Mirror’s Truth, Saint’s Blood, In the Labyrinth of Drakes, and City of Blades were also impressive continuations of their respective series. Edit: And of course Wall of Storms, which I first missed putting up…an oversight for sure!
I also discovered new favorites by authors I’ve read before, like Sam Sykes with his surprisingly funny, highly entertaining new novel in the Pathfinder Tales sequence. Anthologies aren’t usually my bag but I also really enjoyed Brandon Sanderson’s Cosmere Collection. Finally I discovered a favorite new-to-me author in Jennifer Fallon with The Lyre Thief, an awesome opener to a new series.
2016 was an excellent year for Science Fiction as well. Some highlights include more great titles in the new Star Wars canon (Bloodline and Dark Disciple, which I finally got to read this year), and another new-to-me author who is now among my favorites, Blake Crouch. Allen Steele also impressed me with his new book Arkwright but Emma Newman probably deserves the big prize for blowing me away with After Atlas. I’ve read a lot of books by her, but this was the best.
By the way, this year The BiblioSanctum also participated again in the month-long Sci-Fi November event, so if you’re interested in seeing a more detailed list of all my favorite sci-fi reads this year, be sure to check out the Top Ten post I put together for the wrap up!
2016 was also a huge year for me when it comes to the Horror genre, both for new books and with exploring the backlist. It was tough choosing my favorites, but I knew without a doubt that The Last Days of Jack Sparks was going to be among them, and The Family Plot and Hex were also clear standouts. I was also glad that I got to go back and read A Head Full of Ghosts and The Damned. Finally, The City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong is technically more of a Mystery/Thriller, but I decided to include it in this category anyway because arguably it does contain some elements of psychological horror, not to mention it was just plain awesome.
Urban Fantasy and Paranormal – an assorted genre for sure, and so it’s no surprise that my favorites are also varied. The Valducan horror UF series gets its most amazing sequel yet in Ibenus, while No Good Dragon Goes Unpunished is another self-published winner by Rachel Aaron, and the long-awaited Stiletto finally came out and delighted fans of The Checquy Files. One of my favorite authors Kristi Charish also kicked off a new series with the fantastic Voodoo Killings and The Immortals by debut author Jordanna Max Brodsky was absolutely stunning.
Children’s and Young Adult
I didn’t read as many Young Adult books this year, so the ones that stood out were truly memorable. There were the excellent debuts: The Star-Touched Queen, Iron Cast, and The Reader. Gemina was a highly anticipated sequel which I enjoyed even more than the first book. After many years, I also finally got to read the Alcatraz series by Brandon Sanderson – and I loved it.
Overview: Books Read in 2016
On My Shelves…
By a Male Author: 51.9%
By a Female Author: 46.8%
Unknown/Male & Female Co-Authored: 1.3%
For Review: 88.0%
Genres (some crossover):
Science Fiction: 27.3%
Urban Fantasy and Paranormal: 16.0%
Children’s and Young Adult: 18.2%