Rose’s 2012 Top Five Book List

The year 2012 is drawing to an end. It’s been a good year for me (hey, my first novel was published this year!), but I’m definitely looking forward to the new energy of 2013. Of course, many of us look back at the year as the new one dawns, and I thought it would be fun to look at my list of books I’ve read over the last 12 months to pick my five favorites for 2012. So here they are, counting down from 5 to my most favorite at number 1. Please note: these are the favorites I READ in 2012–they weren’t necessarily PUBLISHED in 2012!

5.  UNSAFE HAVEN by Char Chaffin.

Unsafe HavenI loved this romance novel by my Soul Mate sister, the divine Char Chaffin. It features two wonderful characters, resilient Kendall and handsome police chief Denn, warming each other’s lives (and assorted body parts!) in the wilds of Alaska. The sparks between Kendall and Denn are sizzling, smart, and funny, and the love scenes are hot enough to melt even the most cynical heart. If you love romance, don’t miss out on this one. Char is a terrific writer, and I know you’ll enjoy the journey in this book.

4. 20th CENTURY GHOSTS by Joe Hill.


Joe Hill writes amazing, frightening, gripping tales. (Well, he does have good writing genes, I suppose, since his dad’s on my list, too. See #3 below.) This book of short stories, originally released in 2005 in the U.K. and in 2007 in the U.S., is chock-full of inventive and harrowing reads. From the first story, the titular tale, to the last, I couldn’t put it down. I have read all of Joe’s work and can’t wait to see where he goes in his next book.

3.  11.22.63 by Stephen King.


Stephen King is a best-selling author for a reason. His books suck you in, compel you to keep reading, and keep you tangled in their web until the very last page. And in this one, Uncle Stevie does what he does best: creates unforgettable characters in realistically impossible situations that have you biting your nails as they reel through the maze he’s laid out. Of course, he scares the pants off you, too. But the thing I liked most about 11.22.63 was the beautiful love story and human heart at its center. Take the plunge into this time-warped novel and see why King is still, well, king.

2.  PRINCE OF THORNS by Mark Lawrence.

Prince of Thorns

This novel left me breathless, irritated, angry, and completely in love with a character I absolutely hated. How in the hell did writer Mark Lawrence do that? I am still asking myself that very question. This book is not for anyone with a faint heart or a stationary moral compass. The anti-hero at the center of this story is a 13-year-old murderer with no conscience to speak of. And yet, still, he somehow manages to make an indelible impression that you will remember long after the book is over. Lawrence’s second in this series, KING OF THORNS, is on my Kindle now, and I know I will re-read PRINCE OF THORNS before delving into the second part of the story. These thorns are real, they hurt, and they will twist in your head for a long, long time–but in a very good way.

And finally:

1.  THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morgenstern.

The Night Circus

This book enchanted me from the moment I started reading. I fell in love immediately with the two main characters as well as with the wondrous setting of the circus that only appears at night. I couldn’t read fast enough–I literally devoured this book in the course of a couple of evenings. And as soon as the story was over, I wanted to read it again. That, to me, is the mark of a magical book. I’m so glad I bought this book for my Kindle so that I can enjoy it again and again and again.

So there are my picks for the best reads of 2012. How about you? Please feel free to tell me about your favorites in the COMMENTS below. I’m always looking for something wonderful to read.

(And, just for the record: I’m currently reading GONE GIRL by Gillian Flynn and LOVING it. Wonder if it will make my Top 5 for 2013?) 🙂

About revrosevan

Rose Vanden Eynden has always believed in magic, which probably explains how she is able to be a writer as well as a wife, mother, medium, massage therapist, minister, and instructor. She resides in a suburb of Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband, twin sons, and retired racing greyhound named Oliver. In her spare (!) time, she enjoys performing in live theatre, watching films, reading, and walking in the woods. An avid believer in a balanced life, she meditates and eats chocolate daily.
This entry was posted in Books, Inspiration, Publishing, Ramblings From Rose!, Readers, Stories, Writing and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Rose’s 2012 Top Five Book List

  1. LeeAllenHoward says:

    These aren’t organized, but my most memorable read of 2012 was John Harwood’s THE GHOST WRITER. I enjoyed Ron Butlin’s THE SOUND OF MY VOICE. And Karl Edward Wagner’s “Sticks” was one of the most effective stories I’ve ever read. MERLYN’S RAVEN was pretty good, too, Rose!

    • revrosevan says:

      Thanks, Lee! I am writing all of these down and putting them on my to-read list. And I so appreciate you mentioning my book–it’s a blessing that you enjoyed it!! 🙂

      • LeeAllenHoward says:

        I’m in the middle of Joe Hill’s HORNS, which I’m really enjoying, Rose. And although I didn’t read it this year, I think you’d like THE SAD TALE OF THE BROTHERS GROSSBART by Jesse Bullington.

  2. Gone Girl is in my top, so read on and love! And I can’t wait to dig into The Night Circus. Room is emotionally difficult, but gorgeously written. Numero Uno for me, though, is Cutting for Stone. I wept, I loved it so. I’m now, strangely, reading a book my niece just passed on to me, entitled So You Want To Be A Medium. Heard of it? 🙂 No professional aspirations here, but am enjoying the personal expanse that comes along with the well-structured, accessible info, and I dig your style. That novel of yours is on the 2013 list…

    • revrosevan says:

      Angela, thanks so much for stopping by and replying. I have had ROOM on my list for a while but haven’t gotten to it yet. I am writing down your other faces so I can dig into those sometime in 2013. I am enjoying (if that’s the right word) GONE GIRL and have almost finished it. And thank you for mentioning SO YOU WANT TO BE A MEDIUM! I hope it will inspire you to keep those spirit connections of your alive and well. Sending you blessings and love!

  3. I just started reading THE CASUAL VACANCY (J.K. Rowling’s new novel). It’s a far cry from Harry Potter, can’t say yet if I like it or not as I only just started it, will have to let you know.

    • revrosevan says:

      Gerri, I would love to hear what you think of THE CASUAL VACANCY. I have seen many mixed reviews. Thanks for stopping by and commenting! 🙂

  4. Great list! I knew there was one from Stephen King I haven’t read yet.

  5. Sandra says:

    Hi Rose, that’s a great list and food for thought! I do wish I could read more- I’m just finishing off my degree and have to read the books I’m SUPPOSED to read and not the ones I’d like to! I am half-way through the Stephen King one though, and really enjoying it. Prince of Thorns sounds intriguing- it’s always good to see how other writers develop their characters, Sandra xx
    PS Merlyn’s Raven is on my kindle, waiting for me to finish Stephen King!!

    • revrosevan says:

      Hi Sandra. Thanks for your comment. I know how hard it can be to make time to read when you have so many other obligations on your plate. I hope you enjoy MERLYN’S RAVEN when you get to it. Please let me know what you think. 🙂

  6. clarkeadrienne says:

    I love reading year end lists to discover new books. It also reminds me how subjective literature is. I was so excited to read Prince of Thorns, but I disliked it so much I had to put it down after three chapters. As much as I enjoy a good anti-hero I found his violence towards women unforgivable.

    • revrosevan says:

      I completely understand that reaction, Adrienne. As I mentioned, PRINCE OF THORNS is not for anyone with a faint heart for exactly those reasons. I nearly stopped as well, but something compelled me to keep reading–and I’m glad I did, as Jorg became more human and I became much more invested in his story.

      Thanks so much for your comment! 🙂

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