Smugglivus Smugglivus Guest Blogger

Smugglivus 2012 Guest Blogger: April of Good Books and Good Wine

Welcome to Smugglivus 2012! Throughout this month, we will have daily guests – authors and bloggers alike – looking back at their favorite reads of 2012, and looking forward to events and upcoming books in 2013.

Who: April of Good Books and Good Wine, an educator and an avid book reviewer who shares our passion for MG, YA and Fantasy novels.

April is our Smugglivus guest for a third time and it’s a delight to welcome her back!

I think the very best thing about guest blogging for Smugglivus is that I’ve been handed a HUGE platform for one day to wax poetic about books that I absolutely loved and perhaps need a tiny bit more attention. With this great power obviously comes responsibilities and with that I will try to steer you correct with these wonderful under the radar books from 2012.

Five Wonderful Under The Radar 2012 Books You May Have Missed:

The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle

When I heard the summary for The Hallowed Ones, I figured it is either going to be really stupid or really awesome. Luckily, The Hallowed Ones veers on the side of awesome. This book is about an Amish girl who questions her faith. Oh yeah and there are vampires — the scary eat your face off kind. So this book? Totally legit and it needs MUCH more attention.

Cross My Heart by Sasha Gould

Only 18 of my excessively numbered goodreads friends have written reviews for or rated Cross My Heart and that is kind of a tragedy. You see, this is another of those YA historical fiction books about Renaissance era Venice, only it’s both sinister and sexy. Basically, it opens up with the murder of Laura Della Scalla’s sister which completely changes Laura’s life because she’s in a convent beforehand. Anyways there are secret societies run by women. There is backstabbing. Also, lest I forget — plenty of swoons!

The Miseducation Of Cameron Post by Emily Danforth

Honestly, I love when books take me by surprise and when I feel the need to savor the book instead of tearing through it. The Miseducation Of Cameron Post is the sort of literary book that I would have loved back when I used to be a pretentious teenager. It’s filled with pages I wanted to dog ear and highlight and re-read. It is about a girl named Cameron Post who is sent to one of those de-gaying centers and so, so much more.

The Silence Of Our Friends by Mark Long and Jim Demonakos illustrated by Nate Powell

And The Silence Of Our Friends only has three ratings from my goodreads friends. This graphic novel is complex and provides an interesting commentary on racially issues without being long and drawn out. It’s set in 1968 in a suburb of Houston and is about two men and their families — one man is white, the other man is black. And it doesn’t turn into being one of those books about race where the white guy saves everyone and learns a lesson, and that is really what I loved about The Silence Of Our Friends.

Since You Left Me by Allen Zadoff

You know those authors where you pretty much know that you are going to find yourself enjoying ever single book they write and you find yourself recommending them to other people but it really seems like you are the only one shouting their praises from the rooftops? Well, Allen Zadoff is one of those others for me. It seems like he’s very under the radar but his books always leave me in stitches. I always pick them up intending to read just one chapter before heading out to do something but end up putting off leaving until I finish the book. Since You Left Me is one of those books. It explores faith and family and the repercussions of a snowballing lie through the dry voice of sarcastic main character Sanskrit.

I don’t even think I’ve reached the tip of the iceberg with 2012’s under the radar books. Have I missed any that you would recommend?

Ana and Thea — keep on rocking and thanks so much for letting me talk on and on about some underrated reads. Fellow fans of The Book Smugglers, I hope you have the best Smugglivus EVER and get in plenty of reading over the holidays.

Thank you, April!

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  • Cecelia
    December 6, 2012 at 7:25 am

    I’ve only heard buzz about one of these books, and all the rest are new to me… very interesting/diverse picks! I’ll have to check them out. Thanks for sharing, April!

  • Allison (Allure of Books)
    December 6, 2012 at 9:13 am

    I, of course, am in complete agreement about The Hallowed Ones and Cross My Heart – both of them are two of my favorite 2012 reads.

    You also have me wanting to read The Miseducation of Cameron Post pretty much RIGHT NOW.

  • Jamie
    December 6, 2012 at 9:16 am

    I seriously NEED to read The Miseducation of Cameron Post! Everyone luuuurves it. The Hallowed Ones description definitely turned me off but maybe I’ll give it a try!

  • Liz
    December 6, 2012 at 9:42 am

    I’ve heard some pretty good things about The Hallowed Ones. And I have been meaning to read The Miseducation of Cameron Post, I just haven’t gotten there yet. Great list!

  • Heidi
    December 6, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    Fantastic picks April, and the fact that 2/5 of these I’m not sure I’d even heard of means you did a great job of choosing under the radar books. I LOVED Cameron Post, it’s definitely one of my Top 10 for the year, which is huge since it’s not even a genre I often go in for.

  • Lisa is Busy Nerding
    December 7, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    APRIL! And yay for shout outs to books that aren’t getting the buzz they deserve.

  • Angie
    December 11, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    So glad you went with Under the Radar books, April. Looks like I need to get my hands on THE HALLOWED ONES and CROSS MY HEART. Yum.

  • Allison
    December 11, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    I’m pretty sure you’ve tried to push all these books on me at one point or another this year. Don’t worry, eventually I’ll get to all of them. πŸ˜‰

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