Happy New Year’s Eve!
So much has happened in 2013! I’ve read tons of books (although I didn’t reach my goal of 80), moved to South Carolina, began work at a new school, went to Europe, celebrated our 8 year wedding anniversary (!!), among so many other things! Thank you to all the BookTasty friends out there who helped make 2013 a wonderful year! Since this is a book blog, we’re going to take some time to reminisce on the books I read in 2o13 with the annual End of the Year Book Survey!
Relating to Books!
1. Best Book You Read In 2013? (If you have to cheat — you can break it down by genre if you want or 2013 release vs. backlist)
- Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger
- The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas
- The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
- Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
- Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
I really thought I’d adore The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater so much more than I did. It took me forever to finish it because I just couldn’t get into it. I should have just put it down and not finished it, but I felt so bad because I loved The Raven Boys (book 1).
3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2013?
I had seen Icefall by Matthew Kirby sitting on the shelves in my Media Center for a LONG time. I always looked at it and then put it back down, never thinking it sounded really interesting. Well, I finally read it because it is on the 2013-2014 SC Junior Book Award List and lo and behold I REALLY LIKED IT!
4. Book you read in 2013 that you recommended to people most in 2013?
I definitely recommended The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson to the most people this year!
5. Best series you discovered in 2013?
Hands down Gail Carriger’s Finishing School series! I love fact that it is a mash-up of fantasy, steampunk, and mystery genres! Seriously, these books are so refreshing and fun, they’re my favorite!
6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2013?
I really enjoyed “meeting” three new debut authors this year. Elizabeth Ross (Belle Epoque), Rachel Hartman (Seraphina), and Alex Lidell (The Cadet of Tildor) are all authors whose future work will definitely be on my radar!
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
I don’t know if it was the best “out of my comfort zone” book or if I’m listing it because it was the only one I read that was out of my comfort zone…but I’m listing If I Stay by Gayle Forman. This was a 100% pure CRYING book. I generally do not do crying books. I didn’t love it, but it was out of my comfort zone.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2013?
I seriously could not put down Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys! I was absolutely riveted from the start!
9. Book You Read In 2013 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
Honestly? I don’t know…it’s rare that I re-read books (unless it is Pride & Prejudice which I have read three times).
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2013?
Most definitely the covers for Gail Carriger’s Finishing School series. Aren’t these covers just breathtaking?! I want to wear the gowns!
11. Most memorable character in 2013?
Is it cheating if I choose three? They kind of come together in a pack so I’m including them as one: Ronan, Gansey, and Adam…The Raven Boys! Although I wasn’t a fan of The Dream Thieves, I really liked book one, The Raven Boys. These three boys together are all pretty awesome in their own ways, but they also have magic among them!
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2013?
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys was just so moving I have to give it this title. The subject matter and Sepetys writing wove together to create a haunting story full of beauty, pain and hope.
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2013?
This is a tough question. As much as I hate to say it (ducks from internet wrath about to come at me) Paper Towns by John Green just may have been the book that impacted me the most. Although this story was entertaining, it was not in any way a favorite of mine. I didn’t hate it, but it did leave me thinking a lot about relationships, selfishness, and pain. I think that Margo Roth Spiegelman may be one of my least favorite characters ever written, but she did make me think about things, so she has that going for her.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2013 to finally read?
With the movie releasing this past November, my Husband and I listened to the audiobook of Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card and neither of us could believe that it had taken us that long to actually read it!
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2013?
16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2013?
How I did this: Went to my read books on Goodreads and sorted by page number and just looked for what I knew I read this year that was the shortest and longest.
Longest: Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare with 570 pages
Shortest: The Humming Room by Ellen Potter with 192 pages
17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!
Definitely The Crown of Embers and The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson! I was dying to talk to my friend Mandi about a certain someone and specific scenes, but she hasn’t made it past book one yet! Get reading Mandi!! We have lots to discuss!
18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2013 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).
Okay so we all know romantic is the type of relationship I’m going with here. The smouldering relationship between Iolanthe Seabourne and Prince Titus VII, in The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas, was by far one of my favorites of 2013! I can’t wait for the other books in this trilogy! Another favorite was the romance between Ismae Rienne and Gavriel Duval in Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers! And let’s not forget Elise and Hector from The Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy by Rae Carson!
19. Favorite Book You Read in 2013 From An Author You’ve Read Previously
I used to read a lot of Philippa Gregory novels in college, but hadn’t been excited about any of her recent titles until I saw Changeling, her foray into YA, at my school Book Fair! I bought it and read it in like a week. I had forgotten how quick and enthralling her books are!
20. Best Book You Read In 2013 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
I’m pretty sure Delirium by Lauren Oliver had been recommended to me by about fifteen students in less than a week’s time. I figured it was time to read it! I liked books one and two but was disappointed in book three.
21. Genre You Read The Most From in 2013?
No questions asked, I was completely in love with fantasy in 2013!
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2013?
Okay, definitely Prince Titus VII from The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas! He reminds me a a little of Will Herondale with his cocky swagger!
23. Best 2013 debut you read?
I didn’t read as many debuts as I wanted to this year, but I think my favorites was definitely The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas, The Cadet of Tildor by Alex Lidell, and Belle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross. I can’t pick just one!
24. Most vivid world/imagery in a book you read in 2013?
Oh most definitely the most vivid world was found in Gail Carriger’s Finishing School books, Etiquette & Espionage and Curtsies & Conspiracies. I cannot even begin to tell you how much I want to live in this fantasy steampunk world she has created! I want to play with all the cool gadgets and wear all the pretty Victorian gowns. Also I want a mechanimal named Bumbersnoot!
25. Book That Was The Most Fun To Read in 2013?
Probably Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card because my Husband and I listened to it together and now we have all these hilarious (to us) inside jokes from the book that come up frequently!
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2013?
So this is a short list because I strive to keep my distance from books that want to make me cry. If I Stay by Gayle Forman and Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys were the two I allowed into my reading list this year. This is all we shall ever say of the crying…let’s never speak of this again.
I think Icefall by Matthew Kirby got overlooked whenever it was released. How could have not known about such a gem of a book until now?!
Relating to the Book Blogging Life
1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2013?
Okay, so for sure Jessica B. from Books a True Story! She and I met on Twitter and we decided to create a new monthly meme called Reading Queue! It has been really fun and helpful to organize my reading plans and Jessica has been super friendly and sweet!
2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2013?
Oh I think the books I loved the best get the best reviews…so let’s go with my review for Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger! I was definitely fangirling, but I believe I had a right to be!
3. Best discussion you had on your blog?
I had a lot of fun with my Escapism or Emotion? post over the summer. I loved hearing form people with differing opinions on why they read. It was enlightening to consider a reader’s reasons for reading and remembering that we all have out own preferences when reading.
GUYS! In November I went to YALL Fest in Charleston, SC for the first time ever! AND. IT. WAS. AWESOME.
Seriously, I have been a bad book blogger the past two months, but I will post a highlight post from YALL Fest. I had such a good time mingling with “my people” and showing love to some impressive books and authors!
5. Best moment of book blogging/your book life in 2013?
6. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
My most popular post of 2013 with a whopping 82 views (haha) was my April New Releases post which posted on March 26, 2013.
7. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
Definitely my regular reviews. I know it’s been a while since I posted one, but they just don’t get as much love as weekly memes do, which makes me a little sad.
8. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
Okay, so in regards to my regular Goodreads Reading Goal for 2013, I have failed miserably! haha Seriously, though my goal was to read 80 books this past year and I only made it to 53 books for 2013. Oh well…53 is still a lot of books!
I did do a fab job with my 2013 YA Audiobook Challenge coming in at 35 audiobooks finished in 2013! This was 5 more audiobooks than 2012! WHOOT!
However, I didn’t succeed at my 2013 Debut Author Challenge. I only manged to read 6 of the 12 I had planned on finishing. Oh well! Of the 6 I did read, I discovered some awesome authors who I will definitely be seeking out in the future!
Regarding Looking Ahead to 2014
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell for sure! Also United We Spy by Ally Carter!
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2014 (non-debut)?
Oh Lord! I haven’t even begun to think about my most anticipated releases for 2014.
- Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
- The One by Kiera Cass
- Cress by Marissa Meyer
- Waistcoats & Weaponry by Gail Carriger
I think Alienated by Melissa Landers sounds like it could be a really fun read as does Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood by Varsha Bajaj!
The One by Kiera Cass! I really just love this fun series and can’t wait to see how Cass wraps it all up.
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2014?
I did a really good job with keeping my blogging schedule organized during the first 3/4s of 2013. I want to start 2014 organized and continue it through the end of the year. I already bought my 2014 blog planner, so I’m off to a good start!
May 2014 be filled with love, joy and really good reads!