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What the Goodreads Choice Awards Can Teach Us About 2012 Trends

The Goodreads Choice Awards were announced this week, and for me there were was only one real surprise. With these “people’s choice” type things, it’s always more interesting to see what the preferences of a mass group of people are.

Goodreads Choice Awards & 2012 Trends

First: Please forgive me for being painfully obvious, but young adult fiction DOMINATED.

Naturally the Young Adult and Young Fantasy & Science Fiction categories were chock full, but so was the top Goodreads Author section.

Not only did Veronica Roth win best Goodreads author, but Cassandra Claire, Richelle Mead, Marissa Meyer, Lauren Oliver, Jennifer L. Armentrout and Marie Lu topped the list.

The top books in the Young Adult Fantasy and Science Fiction section were:

young adult fantasy and science fiction goodreads choice awards

Insurgent being at the top didn’t surprise me, but the sheer number of votes did: 23,827 with the next highest number of votes at 14,814.

Second: Out of the books in the top 12 (the other top books were Shadow and Bone, The Rise of Nine, Legend and Under the Never Sky):

  • 7 were sequels
  • 5 were debut novels
  • 1 was science fiction
  • 6 I personally read
  • 6 were dystopias

Third: I don’t have any strong objections to these picks.

Out of the 6 I read on the list, I rated 5 books with 5 stars each and 1 book with 4 stars. Good job people!!

My only other comment is that I would like to see more science fiction in YA. I think books like Cinder have reawakened more science fiction lovers, but the trend is still determinedly bent toward dystopia. You’d think people had had enough…

Final: After ALL of the crap people said about J.K. Rowling’s book…it’s still managed to make it’s way to the very top of the best Fiction list. I am so confused.

This is the classic the-critics-hated-it-but-the-people-loved-it scenario.

Do you agree or disagree with the Goodreads Choice Awards results?

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • I did think there were many great books for YA fiction. Some I still have to get to, but great picks. 🙂

  • Ems

    The one that really killed me was the 50 Shades POS winning Best Romance. But way to go, YA!

  • Peebee

    I wonder how many people who voted for “The Casual Vacancy” have actually read it. It was so terrible that I would not have finished it had I not needed it for a challenge I was doing, and was easily among my worst 5 of the year, if not the very worst (of about 325+ books I will read this year) Another Goodreads friend had the theory that either people hadn’t read many of the other top choices, or just voted for JK Rowling because they’d heard of her or the book, not because they actually read it. I understand others liking it more than I did, but can’t imagine that it’s anyone’s favorite book of the year. I read 11 of the 20 nominees, and all the others got 4 or 5 stars, while this got 1 star from me.

  • Oh please… The critics thought it was workmanlike but uninspired, and the fans suffering from Potter-withdrawal voted for it in an inane attempt to validate their obsession. Rowling has learnt the craft of writing as well as every other two-bit hack looking to churn out A Novel, but a good book needs more than mere craftsmanship.

    The domination of YA Fiction is little more than a reflection of the average reading-age of the participants. There’s a lot of good YA fiction out there, but one would like to hope that all these adults reading books for 14-yr-olds *and nothing else* might one day decide to grow up and develop. I’m not holding my breath, however.