This is my Best of the Year 2013 Top 10 Books. Not everybody will agree with it, of course reading is such a personal experience: writing, genre, characters and plot will appeal differently to different kinds of people. World building, characterization and character interaction sells me more than anything.
Omens (Cainsville #1) by Kelley Armstrong
Published August 20th 2013 by Sphere
Omens is not an Urban Fantasy, as many reviewers already indicated, but a well-crafted mystery thriller with a touch of urban fantasy elements. I really enjoyed the use of references to real life historic events (The FBI mind control programs) and literature references (Arthur Conan Doyle). It adds to the story and its creep factor making it more substantial.
Archangel’s Legion (Guild Hunter #6) by Nalini Singh
Published October 29th 2013 by Jove
I am a big fan of Nalini Singh and her Guild Hunter Series is my favorite Urban Fantasy of all times. I truly admire how each book is better than the last, how she develops characters and relationships.
World After (Penryn & the End of Days #2) by Susan Ee
Published November 19th 2013 by Skyscape
I’ve been routing for this series since Susan Ee self-published Angelfall back in 2011. I simply can’t understand why plenty of horrible books are being signed by the big publishing houses, while wonderful stories like this one have to be self-published. The main character, the world, the story … I have no words. This series is my favorite Young Adult, post-apocalyptic, angels and demons book EVER. Just think about angels attacking Earth and bringing forth the apocalypse, a snarky heroine, a crazy mother and hilarious second characters.
Written in Red (The Others #1) by Anne Bishop
Published March 4th 2014 by Roc
No one creates worlds like Anne Bishop. The Others is a thrilling new fantasy series, with shape-shifters that will eat you, smoky vampires that can draw blood from a simple handshake and elementals that will freeze or burn you to death in the blink of an eye … do I really have to say more?
Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay
Published July 23rd 2013 by Delacorte Press
I fucking love this story, the writing, the character development, the world … everything. Of Beast and Beauty is a dark fantasy/science-fiction/dystopian retelling of Beauty and the Beast.
If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch
Published March 26th 2013 by St. Martin’s Griffin
This is not an easy read; it is one of those rare books that capture the pain in such a palpable way. If you find me is a stunning portrait of shattered souls, of trying to hold on to love and find confidence again through the members of your family even though this trust has been abused by the one who should have given comfort in the first place.
Cracked (Soul Eater #1) by Eliza Crewe
Published November 5th 2013 by Strange Chemistry
The dialogue and 1st person narration are absolutely terrific. I seldom encountered a MC wittier, snarkier or more shrewish than Meda. She’s a truly fascinating and multi-layered main character. She’s smart, witty, and determined to figure out who and what she really is. Eliza Crewe writes terrific! I loved so much about it: from the characters to the dialogue and the world. If you are looking for a fun read with a sarcastic heroine Cracked is the right book for you.
Avery (The Chronicles of Kaya #1) by Charlotte McConaghy
Published July 1st 2013 by Random House Australia Pty Ltd
This book is so sad and so full of hope at the same time, terrifyingly beautiful and bittersweet. Avery has it all: dark magic, villains, heroes, flying horses, a dramatic plot with turns and twists, characters that you adore and villains to hate and last but not least a hauntingly beautiful romance. It’s a magical and dangerous world.
King Hall (Forever Evermore #1) by Scarlett Dawn
Published August 1st 2013 by Escape Publishing
King Hall was so good that I’ve been anxiously waiting to read the sequel King Cave. I totally adore how Scarlett Dawn is writing, how she composes the world and builds up her characters. You simply have to love Lily, Ezra, Pearl and Jack. Those four together have some serious mojo that kept me reading and reading and reading and … reading.
Blood Song (Raven’s Shadow #1) by Anthony Ryan
Published July 2nd 2013 by Ace Hardcover
This debut novel was self-published 2011 and I am so happy for the author that he got contracted by Ace. This is awesome high fantasy. Anthony Ryan is a destined to make his mark on the genre. Blood Song certainly has it all: great coming of age tale, compelling character, and a fast-paced plot in a fantasy style not unlike Rothfuss or Sanderson.
Genesis by Bernard Beckett
Published December 31st 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Genesis is one of those beautiful treasures you find by chance: Original, unusual, unpredictable. Beckett’s story is a very short novel of philosophical ideas and neuroscience executed like one of Plato’s dialogues wrapped in a dystopian/post-apocalyptic world.