Thoughtful Thursday: Best book you read in May 2012

It’s the first Thursday of the month, so it’s time to let us know: Readers' Favorite Books

What is the best book you read in May 2012 and why did you love it? It doesn’t have to be a newly published book, or even SFF. We just want to share some great reading material. Feel free to post a full review of the book here, or a link to the review on your blog, or just write a few sentences about why you thought it was awesome.

(And don’t forget that we always have plenty more reading recommendations on our Fanlit Faves page and our 5-Star SFF page.)

As always, one commenter will choose a book from our stacks.

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JUSTIN BLAZIER (on FanLit's staff September 2009 – September 2012) Like many fantasy enthusiasts, Justin cut his teeth on Tolkien. Due to lack of space, his small public library would often give him their donated SFF books. Justin lives in a small home near the river with his wife, their baby daughter, and Norman, a mildly smelly dog. He doesn't have much time for reviewing anymore, but he still shows up here occasionally to let us know how he feels about stuff.

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  1. Misti /

    Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. I had seen a lot of great reviews about this one and I really think it lived up to it. I loved it. As an added bonus it made me think about what women did during WWII and I ended up getting a couple books on the subject from the library. I love history and learning new things just because I can.

  2. Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson. Even though I enjoyed the Mistborn trilogy, I was not particularly excited about a steampunk sequel, but in the end it was very enjoyable and one of the best books I’ve read in awhile.

  3. This is a tough one, it’s a toss up between Jack Vance’s Dying Earth and Stephen King’s The Long Walk. Really loved both.

  4. I’d have to say Bring up the Bodies, by Hilary Mantel, even though it’s not genre. This is the sequel to Wolf Hall, following the fortunes of Thomas Cromwell, advisor to Henry VIII, and, in this book, the rapidly declining forture of Queen Anny Boleyn. (Spoiler alert; she dies.)

  5. Melanie Goldmund /

    Probably Goliath, by Scott Westerfeld. Fun steampunk adventure, what more can I say?

  6. @Michael: I thought Alloy of Law was great, too!

    @Bryce: You know I love you for that.

    @Marion: OMG! She dies????

    @Melanie: My son is reading Behemoth. Had to make a special trip to B&N because he couldn’t wait. We need to purchase Goliath.

  7. @Kat–I’m sorry! forget I mentioned it!
    @Melanie, I really enjoyed that whole trilogy. Did you get the edition with the illustrations?

  8. George R.R. Martin’s Storm of Swords absolutely blew me away. I’ve always loved fantasy epics, but Martin’s work has quickly become iconic literature for me. Like many people, I was introduced to his work through HBO. I’ve adored this series, but Storm of Swords has been my favorite by far. The level of detail, the way he threads plotlines and characters together, his writing style that creates such an immersive experience–it’s masterful. The twists and turns in this book had me shocked in one chapter after the next. As much as I wanted to savor every sentence (being a writer myself and always wanting to dissect good books!), I found myself racing through this epic tome. Best read of the month for me!

  9. I would have to say Crashing Eden by Michael Sussman. I’m actually giving copies away on my blog right now too! It was pretty amazing for not even being something I would normally read. :D

    Mandee @ compelled by words

  10. Kirstin /

    The best book I’ve read recently was “The Raven Ring” by Patricia Wrede. It’s one of my favorites, so it was more of a favorite “re-read” than anything else. At its heart, the story is a very basic fantasy tale. Wrede’s writing, however, elevates it above almost any other story I have read. The characters are complex, the details are rich, and the ending is spot on. “The Raven Ring” is my definition of high fantasy.

  11. CTGT /

    I read four good books in May, “Bitter Seeds”, “Monster Hunter International”, “Soulless” and ” Sheepfarmer’s Daughter”. I have to go with “Sheepfarmer’s Daughter”. I’m not sure how I missed this back in the day. I am almost finished with “Oath of Gold” and have loved the whole series.

  12. It’s a toss up between Heir of Night by Helen Lowe and All the Paths of Shadow by Frank Tuttle. Two great stories featuring interesting characters. Heir of Night reminded me of the wonder and excitement I felt the first time I read The Blue Sword. Paths of Shadow was lighter with wonderful characters, witty dialogue and a fun story. Both have great female leads.

  13. Jennifer Allis Provost /

    War for the Oaks by Emma Bull. I finished it in two days, then immediately flipped to the beginning and read it again.

  14. The Cold Commands (Land Fit for Heroes; book 2) by Richard K Morgan. Morgan never disappoints me with his anti-social, dark heroes and stories with sub-themes which takes shots at modern society. I can always find myself relating to the main character. This doesn’t sound like that big a deal accept for Gil, from this series, is a homo sexual -nothing wrong with that, its just that I totally love women, maybe too much. Despite his sexuality, I totally get him and would hang with the guy.
    Morgan must be as POed as I am. :)

  15. The months are kind of running together here. I think it was probably The Broken Bell by Frank Tuttle. Had a very slow patch here for a while until the last two books I just finished; they were both good, but they were both June books!

  16. @Jennifer –I remember reading War for the Oaks before the name “urban fantasy” had been coined, and enjoyed it thoroughly.

  17. Tizz /

    Sorry, I’m a bit late to the party!

    My May reading was mainly in the SF field, roaming the Liaden universe created by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller. Some of these books were re-reads, and I’ve been following the chronological sequence given on Sharon Lee’s website (she provides very detailed information on writing order, stand-alones and books best read after certain other books).

    In May, I covered Balance of Trade, Local Custom, Scout’s Progress, Conflict of Honors and Agent of Change; at the moment, I’ve stalled on Carpe Diem for the silliest of reasons. It’s the final novel in a great, heavy volume that is a real pain to hold open (all the others were on the super-convenient Kindle). I’ve also temporarily left out Mouse and Dragon because I’m a softie and I know it has a tragic ending…!

    @Jennifer & Marion — War for the Oaks was a recent read for me, and I agree it’s very enjoyable. Reminds me of the best of Charles de Lint.

  18. Mandee Wyrick, if you live in the USA, you win a book of your choice from our stacks. Please contact me (Tim) with your choice and a US address.

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