Friday, December 14, 2012

My 2012 Book Picks

I am still four books shy of my 100 book goal for 2012, and I'm seeing already that many sites and bloggers have posted their top picks for the year. Reading-wise, I was all over the map - I typically am, I'll read pretty much anything - and as I checked my Goodreads widget I was surprised to see how many books I read that were actually published this year. Owning a digital reader has helped me stay current, and my Books That Rock Us blog features mainly recently published works, so I feel good for staying on top of some things where publishing is concerned. Therefore, I feel confident I can produce a Top Picks list. It will be all over the place, too, but feel free to check out the following:

Who I Am by Pete Townshend - (my review) I found writing my review a challenge, probably because I truly enjoyed this book. It seems easier to review an underwhelming work - perhaps because we are all critical by nature. While Townshend may be perceived as flawed (and who isn't?), I enjoyed his style and his story. I don't think you have to be a fan of his music or The Who to appreciate it.

Coming Together: Arm in Arm in Arm - from my Goodreads review: Coming Together typically turns out quality anthologies, and this collection is no exception. Bear in mind, it is not for the faint of heart. Nobilis Reed brought together an eclectic crew of authors for this work. If I had to choose a favorite, it would be Teresa Noelle Roberts' piece toward the end.

Cyndi Lauper: a Memoir by Cyndi Lauper - (my review) I've always like Cyndi, and after reading this book I admire her all the more. This could well serve as a cautionary tale for anybody interested in the music industry.

Redshirts by John Scalzi - This was just a plain fun story to read. TV and reality collide with hilarious results; this was probably the most fun I had reading all year.

Taft 2012 by Jason Heller - from my Goodreads review: I am torn on the mashups, but technically this is not one - though it's published by Quirk. I liked Taft 2012, it was an interesting premise with moments of humor and a message.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer - from my Goodreads review: Interesting twist on the Cinderella tale, though only a few elements are used in the story. It's obviously set up to lead into another book, and I do look forward to reading more.

Enemies: a Love Story - The Oral History of Siskel and Ebert by Josh SchollmeyerAs I child I used to love watching Sneak Previews, then Siskel and Ebert's other show. Sometimes the discussion went a bit over my head, but at the time these shows were the only resources for previewing movies - we didn't have YouTube and trailer websites. One could say S&E truly pioneered the enthusiasm for wanting to see a particular movie. That said, I thought this was a nice, albeit brief history of their professional relationship.

The Wrecking Crew: The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Best-Kept Secret by Kent Hartman - (my review) If you've wondered why much of the music of the 60s-70s sounds smooth, it's because the Wrecking Crew probably handled it. A great history about the industry's unsung (heh) heroes.

My Seinfeld Year by Fred Stoller - from my Goodreads review: What I found most interesting about this Kindle single is that it provides an fascinating perspective on how sitcom writing works - at least for one particular show. It is actually more competitive than I had realized, and even if you manage to get a script accepted there's no guarantee your work will survive massive rewrites. I wish this story could have been a bit longer, it left me wanting more to read.

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