Okay, time to “wrap up” my end-of-the-year “wrap up”. Last week I posted my annual Movie Board articles featuring the best and worst movies of 2010. I’ve been doing those lists since 2007. Starting last year, I added The Book Report reviewing all the best books I read throughout the year. Today is the 2010 Book Report.
During the year, I keep a Google Spreadsheet logging all the books I read. Here’s a screenshot and link to the spreadsheet.
Google Spreadsheet containing my book log.
The spreadsheet tells me I read 62 books this past year. That’s about 10 more books than the year before. I read a lot more graphic novels this year as opposed to last year which accounts for the increase in books. Those graphic novels can be read in an afternoon, so it pumps up my book totals. Plus I read several Young Adult books that took only a few days to read.
I also did a lot of re-reads this past year. I re-read 6 or 7 Star Wars novels I hadn’t read since the 90s. I also re-read the final Harry Potter book. Every once in a while I get in a kick of re-reading books I loved but haven’t read in years. After two or three years, you’d be surprised how much you forget about the story. It’s like reading the books again for the first time. But I will not include any books I re-read in this list. Only books I read in 2010 for the first time will be included.
Anyway, on to the list. Here’s the best books I read in 2010 in no particular order.
Jack West, Jr series by Matthew Reilly – I found the second book, Six Sacred Stones, in a box of books my buddy Dr Mike was getting rid of a year or two ago. I read the back and it sounded good, so I took it. Mike mentioned he thought there may be a book before it because he felt he was missing some of the story when he read it. I searched Paperbackswap.com and found out he was right. So I ordered the first book, Seven Deadly Wonders and read both books back to back. And I loved them. The story is very much part Indiana Jones, part Da Vinci Code and part National Treasure. The action is very fast paced. I had read two other Reilly books, Area 7 and The Contest, before this and they were equally as awesome. Reilly really can write fun action books. The story centers around Jack West Jr, an Australian military solider and his international and eclectic team who discover that a supernatural event will soon cause the end of the world and set out across the globe, uncovering clues to find out how to stop it. That’s a really high level explanation, but you get the idea. The third book in this series, Five Greatest Warriors, was just released in paperback on Dec 28. I read it last week. Unbelievable. I love each one of these books. The first one, Seven Deadly Wonders, is the best, followed closely by Six Sacred Stones and Five Greatest Warriors which are tied. Such good reads. I am concerned though. The final page in FGW actually says THE END. I don’t know why you’d start a series counting down from 7 and then not finish it because the story in Book 3 ends with no cliff hanger. However, Reilly has stated he has other ideas and if he continues Jack West’s story, it’ll count down to 1. I’m glad, because I adore these books and want more. I may have to continue Reilly’s other book series about a special forces soldier code named Scarecrow while I wait.
Demonata series by Darren Shan – I was recommended this series by my brother-in-law’s brother-in-law (brother-in-law once removed?) Anyway, he knew I liked Darren Shan’s Cirque Du Freak series so he told me to give this series a try. And I did. And it’s awesome. Very dark and sinister, Shan is building up a very interesting world of magic and demons. The story is kind of in depth and builds over the entire series so it’s tough to nail down a synopsis for you without ruining anything. But the world is dark and the demons are horrific. Know that so far I’ve read books 1 – 3 in this series and I plan on reading more. So far the series sits at 10 books.