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Staff Picks Staffers Pick Their Favorite Books of 2012

Before ringing in the new year, we at The Book Report Network reflect on some of our favorite books published for the first time in 2012. Though it was difficult to narrow down, each staff member chose up to five books that he or she enjoyed the most this year. Take a look and see if any of our selections match yours --- and which titles you may want to consider reading in the future.


Tom Donadio, Editorial Director

  • DEAR MARCUS: A Letter to the Man Who Shot Me, by Jerry McGill
  • LOVE IS THE CURE: On Life, Loss, and the End of AIDS, by Elton John
  • TOP OF THE ROCK: Inside the Rise and Fall of Must See TV, by Warren Littlefield with T. R. Pearson


Greg Fitzgerald, Advertising/Promotion Associate

  • A MAN AND HIS SHIP: America's Greatest Naval Architect and His Quest to Build the S.S. United States, by Steven Ujifusa. The story of the SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built, and William Francis Gibbs, the man behind it. Even if you’re not a maritime enthusiast, this book will enthrall you.
  • TRUST YOUR EYES by Linwood Barclay. Hands-down one of the best thrillers of the year, and quite possibly that I’ve ever read.
  • NEW YORK NEON by Thomas E. Rinaldi. A great, amazingly-researched volume on a subtle, but vital, part of the New York City landscape.
  • MURDER AT THE LANTERNE ROUGE: An Aimee Leduc Investigation by Cara Black. I fell in love with the Aimee Leduc series this year with this book.


Vicky Kariolic, Producer

    This is the seventh book in the Japanese light novel series about the adventures of Haruhi and her SOS Brigade. This long-form adventure includes time travel, a treasure hunt, missions from the future, and some tiny peeks at the future Mikuru is from. Haruhi is up to something --- she has been way too quiet for Kyon's comfort. After knowing her for 10 months already, he knows he really isn't going to like it when she comes up with a new plan; though he has accepted his role in his group of companions, he still is a bit nervous. What intrigues are unfolding? If you have watched the animated series and seen the movie The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, you can easily pick up this book and not gain spoilers from previous books that you may not have read yet.
  • COLD DAYS: Dresden Files #14 by Jim Butcher (audiobook read by James Marsters)
    Harry Dresden is not dead. He is alive and the Knight of the Winter Court. After recovering, the Queen of Winter sets her Knight on his first mission…and it makes no sense to him. She sends him out into the world, and he begins doing things his way, trying to be discrete but finding his friends waiting for him at various corners. This is another fantastic story from Jim Butcher. Again I could not put the book down until I finished the story. The overarching story for the series gets a bit more complex and perplexing.
  • OTOMEN, Vol. 13 by Aya Kanno
    This series follows a young man in Japan who enjoys girlie things like sewing, cleaning, cooking, baking and manga written for girls. Asuka may like girlie things, but he doesn't want to be a girl as his mother fears. The entire series has so far been devoted to Asuka being a "Man among Men" for his mother and the general public, while being able to relieve his stresses with his closest friends who also enjoy "girlie" things. In this volume, Asuka's girlfriend, Ryo, accidentally disables a senior Judo student at another school soon before the big Judo competition. As an attempt to compensate, she volunteers to train his junior students while he is out. One problem: they are in a boys' school and no girls are allowed. Ryo dresses as a boy and introduces herself to the sceptical Judo club. Can they learn their skills before the match without their Senior student? Ryo will try her best.
  • ILLUSIONOLOGY: The Secret Science of Magic
    As with all 'Ology books I have encountered, this book is filled with fun: the history of illusionists, how the mentalists' tricks work to fool the mind, and dozens of other tidbits of knowledge, along with the usual fictional carrying story. It has a couple of unique magic tricks to learn and is packed with history. This 'Ology book will be a fantastic addition to any aspiring young illusionist's collection.


Liz Kossnar, Content Coordinator for and


Anne Staszalek, Marketing Associate

  • STEEL'S EDGE by Ilona Andrews
  • CASKET OF SOULS by Lynn Flewelling
  • FATHER NIGHT: A McClure/Carson Novel by Eric Van Lustbader
  • RABID: A Cultural History of the World's Most Diabolical Virus by Bill Wasik and Monica Murphy