1. Shatter Me
To be honest, I debated whether or not to include this book on the list. Because the first time I read it, yeah, I loved it. So, so, so much. Obsessed. And I still really love Juliette and Adam, their relationship, their characters. I love the writing. But the second time I went to read the book I was disturbed by how truly dark it was and now I'm on the fence, torn between how great most of the book is and how dark the rest of it is. But since I normally rank books at the end of the year by my first reading, this one stays on the list.
Nina LaCour's writing doesn't disappoint and this is the road-trip book to beat all road-trip books, full of friendship, unrequited love, music, and serendipity.
A Million Suns not only defeats middle-book syndrome but rises up to be even better than Across the Universe was. Definitely one of the best sci-fi books I've ever read, this is solid sci-fi that also manages to be solid YA. Winning all around, and I can't wait for the conclusion of the series.
4. The List
This book takes on labels and how they affect us ("us" being girls, mostly) in a straightforward, fearless way. I consider it a must-read for girls, whether teenage or older.
If you're asking yourself "hey, what really is contemporary YA?" then this is the book you should read. It's got just the right amount of everything that makes contemporary YA -- friendship, family, boys, and a flawed main character you can root for.
The idea of sci-fi inspired by a Jane Austen novel (Persuasion) is a total contradiction, but this book makes it work seamlessly. It's both exactly what you'd expect and also better than you could have imagined. Plus, I love that it's not a series.
This one's a younger YA book, but I loved it so much. Super-cute and more fully-developed than I was expecting.
Martin Leicht and Isla Neal
It really doesn't get better than a YA sci-fi comedy with a main character I'd love to be besties with. Read this book!!
9. Tiger Lily
Jodi Lynn Anderson
This book is like its fiery main character: desperate, beautiful, crazy, and sometimes a little tragic. It's one of the best reimaginings of a classic work that I've come across. Definitely an all-time favorite (as is the next book on this list).
10. Jellicoe Road
SORRY I TOOK SO LONG TO GET MY BUTT IN GEAR AND FINALLY READ THIS BECAUSE EVERYONE WHO TOLD ME TO READ IT WAS RIGHT. This book is practically perfect. It's exactly my type of book and I love it.
What were your favorite YA (or other genre) books of 2012?