RT Editors' Best of 2012: Elissa's Picks

This blog post is part of a series that the RT Editors will be taking part in during the month of December. Please check back all month long for each editor's installment!


With 2012 winding down, the RT editors thought December would be a good time to reflect on what each of us read this year and which books stuck with us long after we finished them. While this year's RT Awards winners won't be announced until our convention in May, we've decided to share our personal favorites of 2012, in no particular order. Today RT's YA editor Elissa Petruzzi brings us her year in books:


A lot of really awesome books came out in 2012. I seemed to go on binges of amazingness where I ignored my family and twittered nonstop, HAVE YOU READ THIS? (I have a penchant for all caps.) The YA editor for RT, I kept my picks to the younger end of the fiction spectrum. So if you need some books to wile away your holiday hours and want to try some YA, here are some suggestions:


Favorite 2012 Novel About Growing Up


The Secret Tree
by Natalie Standiford

Standiford is one of my favorite authors, and this middle-grade story, which follows Minty and her increasingly distant best friend Paz through the summer before middle school, is just lovely. Standiford has a melancholy voice that echoes perfectly through this tale about growing up. 



Favorite 2012 Novel that could be an Alien Action Hero Movie


by Elizabeth Norris

I picked up Unraveling on a whim, expecting your run-of-the-mill paranormal romance. What I got instead was a twisty alien adventure that kept me on my toes until the very last page. Exciting and different. What more could you ask for?



Favorite 2012 Novel that’s Old-School Christopher Pike 


Ghost Flower
by Michele Jaffe

I will basically read anything Michele Jaffe writes, from her historicals to her adult mysteries to her YAs. This mystery of double identity starring rich kids and set in Tuscon is a real treat that will have you guessing until the end.



Favorite 2012 Novel that Proves YA Vampire Books Can Still Surprise


Team Human
by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan

This is a fun and different take on vampire romance, no easy task in 2012. But the writing duo of Larbalestier and Brennan manage to put together a delightful and surprising tale. If you’re sucked dry on vampire romance, give this one a taste. 



Favorite 2012 Novel that Made Me Sweaty and Suspicious 


Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone
by Kat Rosenfield

This book basically defines ‘atmospheric’ for me. Rosenfield’s descriptions of suffocating small-town life during Becca’s last summer before college will haunt you. A dead body has the town folk suspicious, and Becca is soon embroiled in the madness. I read this book months ago, and I still think of some of the perfect passages. 



Favorite 2012 Novel that Made Me Want to Go to a Frat Party 

by Tammara Webber

Webber has been heralded as the lead author for the new genre of New Adult, which stars protagonists ages 18 to 25. Skeptical? Just read Easy, the story of college sophomore Jacqueline and the mysterious and sexy Lucas.



Favorite 2012 Novel that Made Me Want to Drive to the Author’s House to Ask for the Sequel 

The Raven Boys
by Maggie Stiefvater

Steifvater is already a rock star of the YA world, and The Raven Boys continues her streak of increasing awesomeness. If you’ve ever wanted to try YA but weren’t sure, this is the book for you. The novel has a literary fiction feel, as if it just happens to be YA because the characters just happen to be in high school. With a kooky psychic family, prep school high jinks, prophesied death and more, this is a winner. My only regret is that the ending is totally unsatisfying, and I am salivating for the next book. If you read it now, as opposed to when I did, early this summer, you have that many fewer months to wait for the sequel. 


See Liz's Picks >>

See Regina's Picks >>

See Audrey's Picks >>

See Elisa's Picks >>

See Mala's Picks >>

Do you and Elissa share some favorite YA books of the year? Which reads did you love in 2012? Let us know in the comments, and check back this week for more editors' picks!