2011 in review

It’s that time of year again! This year has seen much awesomeness pretty much across the board, so without further ado I shall leap right in there.

Books

Well, I kinda lagged behind a little this year and never made my target. So far, my read list is sitting at 45 books, a little under one a week. Given that most of these were dirty great long ones (I’m looking at you, Bruce Trilogy) and I wasted the better part of a month struggling through the terminally dull Carrion Comfort, I don’t think I’ve done too badly. I’ve discovered some new things this year (Wheel of Time, The Passage) and rediscovered some old things (The Gap Series) but two things stand out.

My book of the year has to go to The Passage, by Justin Cronin. Fantastically epic and absorbing, it was also the first book I read this year. An honorary mention has to go to The Dark Tower series. I finally reached the end of this journey earlier in the year, and I have to say it was truly magnificent.

Music

Lots and LOTS of music this year. Again, a few new discoveries and some old rediscoveries. Album of the year is easy though – it goes to Stand Up and Fight by Turisas. These guys are going in all kinds of interesting directions right now. They class themselves as ‘viking metal’, but I think they’re selling themselves short. The music is a fantastic juxtapose of light and shade, with growled vocals balancing choirs and soaring violins countering heavy guitars. Awesome stuff.

Movies

There can be only one. Rubber, the story of a sentient, psychic and murderous – erm – tyre easily provided the most entertaining 80 minutes of the year. Yes, there were a lot of ‘bigger’ films and ‘better’ films, but Rubber is the one that showed something new. Not surprising, really.

Games

Dark Souls (Xbox 360). Not one for the casual gamer, Dark Souls is punishing, brutally difficult and plain downright unfair. But never in a way that feels unfair. A masterpiece.

So there we have it, folks.

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