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Ten Books I Missed from 2012 (With a Poll!)

by Kim on December 31, 2012 · 22 comments

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Not to worry, I didn’t forget about my last book list of 2012: the books that got away. These are books that either came out in 2012 that I wish I had gotten to read or books that I bought in 2012 that have languished on my shelves unread. This list isn’t exclusive to books published in 2012, but includes several books that have come out in the last couple of years. There’s also a poll at the end of this post to help me pick which of the books I bought I should make a priority to read first.

Lifespan of a Fact by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal – In this book, journalist John D’Agata and fact-checker Jim Fingal document their back-and-forth negotiations over the fact-checking in one of D’Agata’s magazine pieces. This book was nearly tailor-written for me… but I haven’t read it yet.

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed – I loved Cheryl Strayed’s memoir Wild so much that I bought Tiny Beautiful Things, a collection of Strayed’s “Dear Sugar” advice columns, as soon as it came out. But I waited so long for the hype to die down that I never read the book.

Breasts by Florence Williams — In this book, science reporter Florence Williams explores the latest scientific research about, well, breasts. I’ve read many great reviews of this one, but am waiting until the paperback comes out so I can buy a copy myself. May 6, 2013 can’t come soon enough!

The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver – Despite all of my political reading late in 2012, I never got around to statistician extraordinaire Nate Silver’s book about the world of prediction… a massive oversight on my part.

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg — This is another book I can’t believe I missed reading. In the book, Charles Duhigg looks at the science of habits and what science can tell us about how to change our own habits. I am trying to read this one right now so I can participate in Joy’s (Joy’s Book Blog) January read-a-long.

Destiny of the Republic by Candace Millard — The subtitle of this book — “A Tale of Madness, Medicine, and the Murder of a President” — should tell you exactly why I want to read this one. I bought it when it came out in paperback, but it hasn’t made the leap from shelf to reading pile just yet.

The Murder of the Century by Paul Collins — Here’s another book with a subtitle that explains it all: “The Gilded Age Crime That Scandalized a City & Sparked the Tabloid Wars.” How have I not read this one?

Children of God by Mary Doria Russell – This is an older book that I bought immediately after reading The Sparrow, one of the most amazing books I’ve ever read (Children of God is the sequel). But then I couldn’t bring myself to read it without some distance from The Sparrow, so on the shelf it sits.

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn – After reading and loving Gone Girl, the buzzy book of the summer, I wanted to read more from Gillian Flynn. I bought Sharp Objects as a Black Friday gift to myself, but haven’t read it yet. Shame!

Arcadia by Lauren Groff — I loved Lauren Groff’s first book, The Monsters of Templeton, and patiently waited to buy Arcadia until it came out in paperback. And then I didn’t read it. But I’m cheating a little, since I signed up to read this one as part of a big reading project with Book Riot and should have it done by the end of the week. Success!

What books did you miss reading in 2012? Any books I missed reading and missed mentioning here? And, take my poll below to help me decide which of these sadly neglected books I should make sure to read this month!

Edited to Add: Not all of the books I listed above are in the poll — just the nonfiction I bought in 2012 but haven’t read yet. So, no options for Arcadia, Children of God, or Sharp Objects and the nonfiction I don’t own yet. Sorry for the confusion!

Which book that I bought and missed reading in 2012 should I read next?

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Photo Credit: albertogp123 via Flickr

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy December 31, 2012 at 9:00 am

I can’t take your poll because you didn’t put my first choice in it. :-) I vote for Arcadia, which is one of my fave reads from 2012, with the Gillian Flynn in second place. I haven’t read that Flynn–yet–but am just about done with Dark Places, which is also excellent. Maybe not quite as good as Gone Girl, but darn close.

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:52 pm

I didn’t put that one in because I knew I’d be reading it — I finished it today, actually :) I’m excited about Sharp Objects, and then Dark Places, since Gone Girl was just so much fun.

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Laurie C December 31, 2012 at 10:02 am

Maybe because it’s the only one on the list that I’ve read, I was going to vote for Children of God, but didn’t see it on the list. (Only the first five books show up, maybe by accident?)

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:53 pm

No, I only put a few of them in the poll. I think 2013 might be ‘The Year of Reading Second Books by New Favorite Authors’ which would be fun.

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Vasilly December 31, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Having a list like this was a great idea! I didn’t get to Arcadia or Tiny Beautiful Things either. House of Stone, Far From the Tree (Solomon), and the latest Philip Pullman. I’m reading The Power of Habit right now and it’s a pretty good read. Happy New Year!

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:54 pm

Oh yes, Far From the Tree! That got on my radar late, but it’s on my TBR list for when it comes out in paperback. The latest Philip Pullman? Which one was that? I haven’t read him in forever, but I loved His Dark Materials.

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bermudaonion (Kathy) December 31, 2012 at 4:22 pm

I don’t want to think about all the books I missed this year!

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Joy Weese Moll December 31, 2012 at 5:58 pm

I voted for The Power of Habit (of course)! Hope you can join us for the group read!

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:55 pm

Yes, I am going to do it! I don’t know if I will do every discussion post, but I am looking forward to leaving/reading comments and writing about it at the end of the month :)

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Jennifer January 1, 2013 at 8:54 am

Arcadia would be my choice for your next read. I haven’t read Breasts yet either though I really, really want to!

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:55 pm

I finished Arcadia today! It was wonderful :)

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Suzanne January 1, 2013 at 1:52 pm

I am reading the Power of Habit right now and it is fascinating! Thanks for the tip about the read along.

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Kim January 1, 2013 at 6:56 pm

Sure! I’m looking forward to seeing what other readers have to say about that one. I finished the first section yesterday and thought it was fascinating.

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Nikki Steele January 2, 2013 at 10:13 am

I voted for The Power of Habit, just since it seems so much up your alley, but also highly recommend The Lifespan of a Fact. There’s just always so many books, so little time! I think one of my last hold-outs of the year was Gone Girl, which I didn’t read until November.

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Kim January 2, 2013 at 6:40 pm

I started that one over the weekend and yeah, it’s right in my wheelhouse. I’m excited to get back to it. And I can’t wait for Lifespan of a Fact… it seems like such an obvious book for me to have read!

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Ellie January 2, 2013 at 10:22 am

I didn’t get to Arcadia, Gone Girl or BOOBS, as I keep thinking of the Florence Williams. Or most of the other ‘must-read’ titles of 2012, in fact. I have no idea why I’ve missed SO MANY GREAT BOOKS in the past year, other than that I have been a very flighty reader and have tended to gravitate towards slightly rubbish fluffy books instead. Which I am now regretting and determined to remedy, obviously. In 2013 I hearby solemnly swear to metaphorically get OFF MY LAZY ASS and read some proper books! :)

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Kim January 2, 2013 at 6:42 pm

Oh believe me, there are like a million more books that came out last year that I missed. I think I read a little more backlist this year, which was nice.

I love that resolution!

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softdrink January 3, 2013 at 8:11 pm

I seem to have missed most of those, too. Except for Arcadia (love! (except for maybe that ending)) and Sharp Objects. So I can’t help you with that poll. But I’m glad you bought a Geye!!!

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Kim January 5, 2013 at 5:26 pm

Yay, Geye! It is supposed to be here on Tuesday (hooray!).

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Christy January 6, 2013 at 8:31 pm

I voted for The Power of Habit as it is a book that has popped up on my radar a few times but haven’t read yet.

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Andi (@estellasrevenge) January 20, 2013 at 10:32 pm

I bought Tiny Beautiful Things several months ago when I needed something shortist (like essays) to read in bits and that would be somewhat cathartic. This one fit the bill perfectly. I haven’t finished it all yet, but I love what I’ve read.

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Kim February 3, 2013 at 8:40 am

Good recommendation! I should get that one off my shelf and near my reading chair to pick up in little bits.

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