books

End of Year Book and Blogging Survey

Hi there everyone! We’ve had a fantastic year of blogging and interacting with you guys and reading lots of books and learning new things… And hopefully, 2016 will be even better. Shar and I are completing Jamie@PerpetualPageTurner end of year book and blogging survey, which was pretty fun (but be prepared,because it’s also long. I’m a bit short on time right now, so I’m not going to add any links, but I *probably* will later. I’m italics and Shar is normal text. enjoy!

-Shanti

2015-end-of-year-book-survey-1024x984-900x865

Statistics

Number Of Books You Read:

208 at this time, including books I read for school

Um, I don’t know? I don’t use Goodreads because I’m too busy, but I write them all down. However, my list is at home and I’m not. I CAN tell you that about half way through the year, I’d read 50, and in December I’ve read 10 (this is actually good for me)

Number of Re-Reads: 16.

I don’t know. I’d guess around 10.

Genre You Read The Most From: This is pathetic, but I don’t do my goodreads shelves by genre, just some genres. But I read 58 fantasy books. I also have 75 ‘contemporary books’ on my shelf, but this includes non fiction, time travel books and urban fantasy, anything set in the modern day, like Simon Snow. But those are probably the leading genres.

Probably contemporary, let’s be honest here.

Bests

  1. Best Book You Read In 2015?

To make this easier for myself, I’m not going to count rereads, but Their Fractured Light, An Ember in the Ashes, The Scorpio Races and Fever would all be up there.

*forgets every single book*  Let’s see. I recently read Paper Towns (contemporary), which I really liked. Winter was spectacular (dystopia), The Girl Who Circumnavigated FairyLand in a Ship of her Own Making(fantasy), Bone Dry (paranoramal), Wonder & The Dragonfly Pool (MG), Outliers (nonfiction)

  1. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

Black Dove, White Raven, was, frankly, boring, nowhere near Rose Under Fire and Code Name Verity.

The Summer I Turned Pretty wasn’t great, neither was I’ll Meet You There or We All Looked Up (which Shanti would disagree with)

  1. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

I was surprised by how wonderful What We Saw was. It’s one of the most beautiful contemporaries I’ve ever read, and is a simultaneously brutal and gentle examination of rape culture.

The Knife of Never Letting Go. I’d tried reading it a few years ago but didn’t get past the first few pages, but because of *encouragement* from various people, did, and loved it.

  1. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Absolutely the Lunar Chronicles. At last count I’ve convinced  eight people to read these and they have. (you should read them too)

Probably the Lunar Chronicles. The book I had negative discussions about the most with people was TFIOS (because I think it’s overrated) because so many people have read it.

  1. Best series you started in 2015? Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?

Ender: WINTER ALL THE WAY oh my goodness (and runner up: Their Fractured Light)

Start: A Wicked Thing

Sequel: I adored both Burning Kingdoms and Fever.

Start: Bone Dry, followed by Illuminae.

End: WINTER. NO COMPETITION. (runner up: Blood of Olympus, Waaaay back in January)

Sequel: I don’t know *wails despondently* Carry On, maybe? Does that count?

  1. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?

This is also a really tough question, but I’m going to say… Lauren DeStefano writes such beautiful prose and I care so much about her characters.

This is so hard! I haven’t read a lot of new series this year. But I do like Cady Vance.

  1. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I read some really good non-fiction this year– Guns Germs and Steel and the World Without Us were both very interesting. Oh, and I also read the adult book Room.

All the Light We Cannot See was an adult historical fiction, which I thought was quite good. So was Jane Eyre, which was a classic.

  1. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

I was listening to the audiobook of Blue Lily, Lily Blue and I could not stop listening because it was so beautiful (Shoutout to Cait for making me read Maggie Stiefvater)

SO MANY. But let’s see… Graceling was pretty exciting. First and Then kept me attached to the page, partly because I thought it was expiring in 3 days (it turned out to be 6 days, but oh well.)

  1. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

The Wrath and the Dawn… maybe. I love audiobooks, but I struggle to reread them in whatever format, which is bizarre. Any Old Kingdom book fits this category.

I might reread The Lunar Chronicles (I read ALL of them- fairest to Winter, this year, although some were rereads (if you judged by this tag, you’d think i only read the Lunar chronicles and a few others. I’ve read more, I swear!!!), The Knife of Never letting Go and Graceling if I want to continue with the series.

  1. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2015?

This is a sort of impossible choice… I’ll meet you there is very appealing and conveys the book excellently, as does Made You Up and The Secret Life of Bees

*tries to branch out a bit* I only read it this week, but I DO like the cover of Immaculate. I also like The Girl With All the Gifts (obviously it’s hard for me to think beyond last week. I’m such a forgetful munchkin.)

  1. Most memorable character of 2015?

I often find myself thinking about both Beka Cooper and Tink, from the Beka Cooper books and Tiger Lily. Both are courageous characters, underestimated by those around them… and they both have superb narrative voices which are a delight to read.

Finch from All the Bright Places was so hurt yet strong and fabulously crafted.

  1. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?

Illuminae was actually very beautiful in parts, not hindered by the unusual writing. (I’m totally cheating and saying more than one for all of these) Lauren DeSTefano is someone I talk about ALL THE TIME, so apart from her, I loved the writing of The Cure for dreaming.

All the Light We Cannot See was beautiful, but a bit pretentious. I just remembered I read All the Bright Places, as you can see above, and that was gorgeous and heartbreaking as well.

  1. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2015?

I think this survey is to make me feel sad and torn. But my Calculus textbook changed my life for the worse. Okay, that doesn’t count. We All Looked Up made me determined to reach beyond my circle of friends and be a good person and all that, because that was ultimately what the novel was about.

I don’t know… Wonder taught me about courage and understanding and seeing beyond the surface. Extraordinary Means taught me to live in the moment and appreciate what I have and surprising opportunities a ‘bad’ thing can give you. More recently, Nimona, Pretending to Be Erica, and The Girl With all The gifts  made me think about identity, the facades we put up, how we love, and if there really can be a monster inside. (Yes, everything I read in December is getting heavily featured)

  1. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read?

Good Omens was the best–snarky and satirical but also honest. The nice thing about Terry Pratchett is that he has so many books. (the sad thing is that he’s dead)

The Knife of Never Letting Go.

 

  1. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2015?

Like Everything from An Ember in the Ashes if pure gold. But I loved the way it addressed war and violence and the cultures which spawn them

“But it was them or us so it’s hard to feel guilty” , because the idea of guilt is so vital and the them and us delineation is so dangerous, and An Ember in the Ashes managed to express that superbly.

I write down a lot of the quotes I like in my big notebook, which I left at home. But here’s one from Jane Eyre: ‘It is not violence which best overcomes hate- nor violence which most certainly heals injury’

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2015?

Shortest: Importance of Being Earnest at 67 pages (I loved this book A LOT)

Longest: Anathem at 937 pages (I read this for school. It was part confusing and part awesome and part really really long)

Not counting picture books and my sister’s books, I’m guessing The Glass Menagerie, which was 95 with an introduction and essay at the end (besides, it’s a play, so the text is more spaced out), and longest would be Winter, at 800 and something.

 

  1. Book That Shocked You The Most

(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

The Windup Girl because genetically modified food is real.

Considering I had to google this and notice if I’ve read any of the books this year, I think I’ll just draw a blank on this one.

  1. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

Can I just say (almost) ALL OF THEM? Wolflet, Nina +Matthias, Devon + Ezra

Cinder and Kai. All the way.

 

  1. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

(Don’t make this romantic, please , please) Lee and Jefferson from Walk on Earth a Stranger.

SO MANY. I did like Skullduggery and Stephanie from Skullduggery Pleasant.

 

  1. Favorite Book You Read in 2015 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Loooots of them. I loved Carry On, from Rainbow Rowell, Rebel by Amy Tintera and Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods.

A lot for me too! Paper Towns, Carry On, Green Valentine, is what comes immediately to mind. There’s more, but I’ve forgotten.

 

  1. Best Book You Read In 2015 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

The Raven Cycle is SO FABULOUS (thank you Cait!)

The Knife of Never Letting Go.

 

  1. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2015?

Newest? That would have to be Gideon from Their Fractured Light which I finished several days ago.

If it’s newest in that sense, then Jesse from Immaculate and James from Pretending to Be Erica.

 

  1. Best 2015 debut you read?

I read so many debuts this year. Vivian vs. The Apocalypse was a really good and extremely enjoyable+ thought provoking debut.

*proud note* I read Vivian last year, and it’s one of the few books that I read before Shanti. Bone Dry, as I’ve mentioned before, was wonderful.

 

  1. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

Brown Girl in the Ring is a really interesting urban fantasy incorporating Caribbean culture and dialect. I loved it, and the imagery of a disintegrating city controlled by magic and mobs just popped to life through the page. Bonus points to Out of the Easy.

An Ember in the Ashes and All the Light we Cannot See.

 

  1. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

The True Meaning of Smekday. Really, this was a reread but it is seriously one of the best MG books I’ve read even, and is delightfully absurd.

Most of my contemporary reads are pretty fun. E.G:The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak. Also, the Lunar Chronicles are fun when I’m not worried about all my babies (which, let’s face it, is most of the time)

 

  1. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2015?

All the Light We Cannot See was DEVASTATING and the ending and the ending and the ending *weeps* (there are like three endings fyi)

All the Bright Places.

 

  1. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

I haven’t seem much about Green Valentine or Material Girls, and both, though not without their flaws, are really smart YA about the environment.

I’m just gonna agree here since I read (or partly read) both and both were good and I feel like of the 100ish books I’ve read this year I can only think of about 10.

 

  1. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Lips Touch: Three Times is tragic and brutal and sad… but also beautiful and now I just want to cry.

Quite a few, but since I keep waffling about all the bright places, I’m going to say Extraordinary Means instead. Also Paper Towns, but in a nicer way.

 

  1. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?

I read a lot of unique books this year. Runner up is Illuminae for excellent use of an unusual format, but first prize goes to… Ink and Bone for being a historical alternate universe dystopic fantasy boarding school book set in Egypt.  (also, it’s quite excellent)

Illuminae for being written so, so differently.

 

  1. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

I hissed a little bit at Ice Like Fire, when I wasn’t cuddling it ferociously because MY SHIP IS GONE (won’t tell you which one) and BAD things happened to it. (it crossed the point of no return is what I”m saying)

 

Shiver. If you want to know why, read my mini-review from a few weeks ago. One word: meningitis. (Side note: who knew that cold and developed North America had so many meningitis patients?)

Blogging/bookish life

  1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2015?

Chasing Fairytales isn’t a blog I read often, but I love that Mishma is a co South Asian. And of course, Sometimes I’m a Story and the Devil Orders Takeout is amazing.

*agrees firmly*. Also Drizzle and Hurricane books and Deadly Darlings and The Quiet People.

  1. Favorite review that you wrote in 2015?

My review for an Ember in the Ashes and Blue Lily, Lily Blue are both writing I’m quite proud of.

I don’t know… I’ve basically forgotten all my reviews. Maybe my review of The Dragonfly pool or my (slightly disgruntled) review of Just Like Fate (huh. I don’t remember read that this year. Was it really this year?)

  1. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?

I didn’t write enough discussions this year! Discussion: Exotic books. Fun post:Reading While Walking.

Discussions: Mental Illness in YA and reading Classics. Fun: How not to practice flute.

  1. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?

I didn’t really do any actual event this year… but doing Beautiful People/Books was fun. Also, the Cake Book Tag.

Yeah, none that I can think of.

  1. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015?

All the shoutouts I got (particularly Cait’s) made me really happy. Also, I won a giveaway for a signed card from AG Howard which was awesome.

The posts where I got a lot of comments, and shoutouts as well, I guess. ^ I think Shanti liked making a tag too.

  1. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

I did read a whole heap of books… but I’ve felt really stressed about having to review them and sad about not having enough time to read, and that’s going to keep happening. I need a balance, I guess.

Managing to blog regularly, have books to write about, comment on other people’s awesome blogs AND keep up with schoolwork and music and friends all the other things in my life is hard.

  1. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

How to Make a Bookmark in 6 easy steps (I really hope this helped some people, because it may not have been the most clear of posts)

By comments, it is (interestingly) the Unpopular Opinions tag, followed by I don’t like the Deathly Hallows symbol. Maybe we should be controversial more?

  1. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

I always wish my reviews got a bit more attention and I really appreciate comments on my thoughts. I would love if some more people had read my Literary Tropes Post, I guess.

Reviews and also discussions. Discussions are usually the things I think most about.

  1. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

I don’t know… Bookstagram is fabulous, though I don’t have an account right now, but it’s so fun to see other people’s pictures.

I knew about Bloglovin’ before, but I FINALLY got it and it’s fabulous.

  1.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

So my reading goals at the start of this year were

 

  • Read 160 books (yes! 198)
  • Read 10 nonfiction books. (Yes! 16)
  • Read 5 classic books. (Sort of. 4 ones I read for fun. But I also read 1984 and Hedda Gabler for school plus I’m halfway through Twelfth Night)
  • Write 80 book reviews (This was more along the lines of ‘reveiw half the books I read’ and I’m currently at 87 book reviews so almost)
  • Random books (I sort of read books I hadn’t heard of but not really)
  • 7 books by NZ/ Indian authors. (I kind of managed this by extending it to books ABOUT  India or New zealand, I read 5 by Indian/Nz authors plus two about India)
  • 2 books of poetry (Sort of. I did read parts of two poetry books, including the nature of things and by heart, but I didn’t read them cover to cover. I sort of delved into some poetry though, which is good I guess? Plus One is in free verse)
  • Only 20 rereads. (Yes, 16 right now)

My reading goals were:

 

  • Write down everything I read- I did this.
  • Read some classics- Just Jane Eyre, but better than nothing I suppose.
  • Review more books- This was a bit nebulous, but I’d say I did. More than last year for sure. But I’m still mainly reviewing for posts.
  • Read nonfiction- I didn’t read a lot, but enough, I think.
  • Read the newspaper- I did, but mainly when I had nothing else to read.
  • Read in Hindi- Ha. Ha. Ha. NO. I don’t think I picked up a Hindi book. Whoops.

Looking ahead

  1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2015 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2016?

THERE ARE SO MANY. I really want to read the Girl at Midnight, and seeing as I have a copy from the library… Also the Weight of Feathers and The Game of Love and Death, because I own them already.

There are a lot. But I really should read Percy Jackson and the Greek Gods, seeing as we own it and everything.

  1. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2016 (non-debut)?

Passenger by Alex Bracken. Don’t tell my mother (just kidding, she is probably going to read this) but I really want to buy it because COVER. Also it sounds awesome. Also Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor.

I don’t know. I don’t spend a lot of time looking up what’s coming out next year, but whatever comes to me.

 

  1. 2016 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

 I haven’t been keeping good enough track of debuts *goodreads it* Blackhearts and The Square Root of Summer and The Girl From Everywhere seem awesome.

*Goodreads it* These all look so good! Especially  A Study in Charlotte.

  1. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2016?

I really want to read Kingdom of Ashes by Rhiannon Thomas, the Raven King and A Torch Against the Night.

*goodreads it again* Gemina will be interesting. I’m hoping to see more of the characters…
Did you seriously read this entire post? If not, what was your best and worst and most surprising book this year? Which ones do you want to read next year and what was the highs and lows of blogging this year?

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11 thoughts on “End of Year Book and Blogging Survey

  1. All the yes to the Lunar Chronicles! I highly enjoyed them! 😀 I also loved The Importance of Being Earnest, and my dad took me to see it performed. It’s so good. ❤ I thought Extraordinary Means was okay, but not my favorite. 😛 I'm not familiar with most of these books, but I assume that The Wrath and the Dawn is a good thing to read… Have a lot of good reading experiences in 2016!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love the Lunar Chronicles too. I would love to see it performed too. I’m trying to convince one of the drama teachers at school to do it for a play. Lots of these books were really good, if they sound like your thing you should check them out. You too!

      Like

  2. Wolf + Scarlet, though!!! ❤ I ship them harder than any other couple in the Lunar Chronicles (except Winter and Jacin). I'm actually reading Winter right now, and OH MY GOODNESS, THIS BOOK WILL KILL ME IF THINGS DON'T START TO LOOK UP FOR CERTAIN CHARACTERS.

    Alexa
    thessalexa.blogspot.com
    verbositybookreviews.wordpress.com

    Like

  3. I’ve seen quite a few people gushing about Nimona, and it looks so cute and fluffy (I’m judging purely based on the cover rn, I have no idea what the book is actually about XD), so I really want to get to it. ILLUMINAE IS EVERYWHERE. Why have I still not read this?? Carry On was beautiful eep. The Girl Who Circumnavigated FairyLand in a Ship of her Own Making….has by far the LONGEST book name I’ve ever seen. I think I found it a little too whimsy for my fancy, but I loved the idea :d Lovely post, and Happy New Year!! ❤

    Like

  4. Yes, I seriously read the whole post! It’s fun seeing both of you in the same post 😉 I haven’t read much though, it was a busy year. BUT. I did manage to read Winter, which is FANTASTIC (Cinder and Kai. All the way.) Fairest is a powerful read, and I like it quite a lot as well. Throne of Glass kind of let me down, but rereading The Earthsea Cycle made me really happy.
    Gah, I really need to read more Patrick Ness. The Knife of Never Letting Go sounds really interesting. Also I want to read The Martian, The Raven Cycle, The Danish Girl, some Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchet and Brandon Sanderson. So basically I’ll spend the whole 2016 reading. Good luck to me…XD

    Like

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Busyness is the worst (how dare it interrupt reading!) ?YES to Cinder and Kai. I need to read the EarthSea cycle– my mum started reading it and I haven’t yet! So many books, I know *hi fives for reading*

      Like

  5. (Of course I read this entire post! :p) I really need to read The Raven Circle, and The Knife of Never Letting Go. I keep hearing about the first one these last few weeks, and I NEED to read it, so badly. The Knife of Never Letting Go has been on my TBR since I read a Patrick Ness’ book, I hope I can get to it soon, because everyone seems to love it! 😀
    All The Bright Places was really a heart-breaking book.
    I’ve seen the cover for The Square Root of Summer around, and I really liked it, I should check out the synopsis and see what it’s really about! 🙂
    And THANK YOU so much for choosing me as one of your favorite book blogs this year, I’m so flattered and happy, you’re so sweet! ❤ ❤ I love your blog, too!! All the best for 2016!

    Like

    1. You’re welcome, and you deserve cake for finishing that entire post 🙂 Yes, all the Bright Places was SO SO SAD. But it was beautiful too. And you should read all the books recommended because they are (generally) wonderful (obviously, you don’t have to 😛 ) Thanks for reading, you’re awesome! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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