2012 in books

When the world didn’t come to an end (12/12/12, remember?), I made a promise to you guys to show you my favourite reads of the past year.

And, quick look on the calendar – EEK! It’s February already and I still haven’t shared my favourite books with you. That’s shoking!

So without any further a-do, here they are: my five favourite reads of 2012.

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I read soooo many good books in 2012, so naturally, picking the five best books wasn’t an easy choice. Also, if I had to decide on  THE best, I wouldn’t be able to tell you which one it was. They were all really good, each in it’s very unique way, all 3475 of them. (Just kidding, I made that one up. Honestly, I didn’t count, but there was always something good to read…)

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This one, “Traumsplitter” is actually written by a German author, Tanja Heitmann, and unfortunately I’m not sure if translations into English or other languages actually exist, but if you speak German, I can strongly recommend this one to you. It’s the story of a young woman who has lived in Australia most of her life. When she turns 23 she decides to go back to the little village in North Germany, where the family originated from. She wants to refurbish her auntie’s mansion and gets help from a rather good-looking guy she is immediately attracted to. What she doesn’t know is that he has the ability to infiltrate her dreams. He walks right into her dreams at night – and this is when the story developes into a fast-paced mystery thriller.

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“Tote Paten küssen besser” or “Don of the Dead” by Casey Daniels is another book that plays with mysterious, paranormal elements, when Pepper Martin – an ex-rich girl with no work experience whatsoever – is forced to take on a job as a tour guide on the local cementery where she bumps into the ghost of a mafia boss who died thirty-odd years ago. Get ready for a turbulent, funny and surprising story.

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“Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares” – in German “Dash & Lilys Winterwunder” (which translates into “Dash & Lily’s winter wonder” which is also quite suitable, actually) – is my all-time favourite Christmas book. I never enjoyed seasonal-themed books much because I usually want to read the storys all year round and then get annoyed when lying at the pool, reading about snow and ice in December. But this book by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan changed everything. It’s about a girl (Lily) who leaves a notebook with instructions to the finder at her favourite bookstore. A boy (Dash) finds the book, follows the instructions and decided to start a game, writing down his instructions to Lily. The book goes back and forth between the two of them and every time the book changes it location, the main characters explore another part of New York City at Christmas time. Amazing. Simply amazing.

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This might as well be one of the very best books I have read in a while. Top of the range. The icing on the cake, the cherry on top of the cupcake, the edible gold glitter on top of the torte. “Nachricht von dir” (original: “L‘appel de l‘ange”; englisch: “Call by an angel”) by French author Guillaume Musso is the best deal you can get, so to speak. It has everything. An intriguing start when two people (who don’t seem to like each other when they first meet) accidentally swap their cellphones when bumping into each other at a busy airport. Madeline is back in Paris, France, Jonathan at home in San Francisco, US, when they realise what happened. And this is when the story quickly turns from what could be a really cheesy love story into a breath-taking, suspense-packed criminal novel. Think about this: what if a stranger gains insight into your best-kept secrets? What if he/she gains access to your best-hidden documents? One word: brilliant.

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This little beauty – a signed copy of “Cut & Run” – is one I manage to get my hands on at the Frankfurt Book Fair in autumn last year. Alix Bosco is actually the pseudonym of Kiwi writer Greg McGee – just in case you wondered about the two autographs. This is another great criminal novel (you know, I just love thrilling reads). To be honest, even if it were a shitty book I’d probably love it, simply for the fact that the story is set in New Zealand. Luckily, it has not only a beautiful setting, but also a brilliant story line, so if you’re looking for another extraordinary novel, this could be it.

Well, I guess those were my five favourite reads of 2012 and I hope you enjoyed the brief over-view I tried to give you. I realise these were no proper reviews but writing reviews wasn’t what I had planned anyway because reviews only make sense to me if you’re talking about a brand-new book. Anway, I always look for new reading material and I would love to read about some of your favourite books (of the last year, the last month, the last weekend…) below!

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