2017 in Review

2017 IN REVIEW:

I think I echo the sentiments of many when I say this year just hurtled by. Seriously, I think 2017 was in a race to see how quickly it could get to 2018. Which is maybe just as well. 2017 was the kind of year that (continuing the trainwreck of 2016) made you really wonder about the fate of humanity and whether any of us are going to be around much longer.

On that jolly note, here’s what I read this year 😉

Oh, and 2018, I have big plans for you. Be ready.

HOW MANY BOOKS READ IN 2017?

–67 books

FICTION/NON-FICTION?

–  42  Fiction /    25 Non-Fiction

MALE/FEMALE AUTHORS?

–    24  Male /   28 Female

OLDEST BOOK READ?

The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck (1942)

NEWEST BOOK READ?

Tower of Dawn (Throne of Glass #6) by Sarah J. Maas (September 2017)

LONGEST BOOK READ?

Empire of Storms (Throne of Glass #5) by Sarah J Maas – 693 pages

SHORTEST BOOK READ?

Rivet Your Readers With Deep Point of View by Jill Elizabeth Nelson – 63 pages

ANY IN TRANSLATION?

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman – originally published in Swedish

BEST BOOK READ IN 2017?

If 2016 was the year of the good book, 2017 was a year of books that were pretty evenly divided between really good or didn’t like it. I’m having trouble picking my best book of 2017, but I think Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo, King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles, Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, and A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman can share this title.

MOST DISAPPOINTING BOOK IN 2017?

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah….I wanted SO much more from this book. It really did not live up to my expectations in most ways.

Also Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. I really expected to love this one and I didn’t even like it enough to want to continue the series. So sad.

MOST BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN BOOK IN 2017?

Toss-up between Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles, and Jade Dragon Mountain by Elsa Hart.

MOST SURPRISING (IN A GOOD WAY!) BOOK OF 2017?

Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton. I had zero expectations for this book to be any good…but I loved it!

Also Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J. Maas. Up to this point in the series, the books were addicting, but I also cringed multiple times when reading them. This was the moment the series turned a corner for me and now I’m kind of obsessed.

MOST THRILLING, UNPUTDOWNABLE BOOK IN 2017?

I read a lot of thrillers this year, so I have many entries:

The Obsidian Chamber by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

-All the Sarah J. Maas books I read: Crown of Midnight, The Assassin’s Blade, Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows, Empire of Storms, Tower of Dawn

BOOK THAT HAD THE GREATEST IMPACT ON ME IN 2017?

Both of the writing craft books I read this year really helped me out: Rivet Your Readers With Deep Point of View by Jill Elizabeth Nelson and Creating Character Arcs by K.M. Weiland

BOOK THAT HAD A SCENE IN IT THAT HAD ME REELING?

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas. Broke my heart in so many ways.

King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard. Same deal.

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo. Samesies.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. I may have been really disappointed by this book, but I still cried at the end.

BOOK I MOST ANTICIPATED IN 2017?

-King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard

Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

MOST MEMORABLE CHARACTER IN 2017?

-Count Alexander Rostov in A Gentleman in Moscow

-Basically every character in A Man Called Ove

HOW MANY RE-READS IN 2017?

None

BOOK I READ IN 2017 I’D BE MOST LIKELY TO REREAD IN 2018?

Creating Character Arcs by K.M. Weiland

BOOK I RECOMMENDED TO PEOPLE MOST IN 2017?

Red RisingNews of the World, A Man Called Ove, Exit West, Something Missing

FAVORITE NEW AUTHORS I DISCOVERED IN 2017?

Amor Towles, Elsa Hart, Fredrik Backman, Catherine Knutsson

MOST BOOKS READ BY ONE AUTHOR THIS YEAR?

6 novels by Sarah J. Maas

FAVORITE COVER OF A BOOK I READ IN 2017?

FAVORITE PASSAGE/QUOTE FROM A BOOK I READ IN 2017?

“Maybe life is just carrying news. Surviving to carry the news. Maybe we have just one message, and it is delivered to us when we are born and we are never sure what it says; it may have nothing to do with us personally but it must be carried by hand through a life, all the way, and at the end handed over, sealed.” – News of the World by Paulette Jiles

“To love is to enter into the inevitability of one day not being able to protect what is most valuable to you.” – Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

“We are all migrants through time.” –Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

“He had said that our lives are steered by uncertainties, many of which are disruptive or even daunting; but that if we persevere and remain generous of heart, we may be granted a moment of lucidity—a moment in which all that has happened to us suddenly comes into focus as a necessary course of events, even as we find ourselves on the threshold of the life we had been meant to lead all along.” – A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

DID I COMPLETE ANY READING CHALLENGES OR GOALS IN 2017?

Yes! I read 67 books. I believe my original goal was 50 books and I kept bumping it up.

BOOK I CAN’T BELIEVE I WAITED UNTIL 2017 TO FINALLY READ?

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles and A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman…both had been recommended to me many times by people whose opinions I trusted. I loved them both (as expected)!

2016: The Year of the Good Book

2016 IN REVIEW:

2016 was a lot of things to a lot of people, but one thing it was to me personally was The Year of the Good Book. I may have had whiplash from the terrible things, bad news, and even worse luck that rained down on us this year, but at least I had many wonderful books for comfort!

HOW MANY BOOKS READ IN 2016?

– 75 books

FICTION/NON-FICTION?

–   52 Fiction /    24 Non-Fiction

MALE/FEMALE AUTHORS?

–     35 Male /   23 Female

OLDEST BOOK READ?

-The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

NEWEST BOOK READ?

The Honor Was Mine by Elizabeth Heaney

LONGEST BOOK READ?

The Dark Tower by Stephen King

SHORTEST BOOK READ?

The Heart of the 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman

ANY IN TRANSLATION?

In Praise of Darkness by Jose Luis Borges

BEST BOOK READ IN 2016?

This was so hard for me to do in The Year of the Good Book so I’m cheating a little on this answer:

Best Stand-Alone book: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Best Trilogy: Red Rising series by Pierce Brown

Best Series Longer Than 3 Books: The Dark Tower series by Stephen King

MOST DISAPPOINTING BOOK IN 2016?

Winter Street by Elin Hildebrand-Ugh

MOST BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN BOOK IN 2016?

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

MOST SURPRISING (IN A GOOD WAY!) BOOK OF 2016?

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – I had no idea what kind of book I was signing up for, but I thoroughly enjoyed it!

MOST THRILLING, UNPUTDOWNABLE BOOK IN 2016?

Red Queen, Red Rising, The Girl on the Train, Library of Souls, Shatter Me, The Dark Tower series

BOOK THAT HAD THE GREATEST IMPACT ON ME IN 2016?

The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and Rejection Proof by Jia Jiang

BOOK THAT HAD A SCENE IN IT THAT HAD ME REELING?

Every book in The Dark Tower series, Red Queen, Morning StarCity of Mirrors

BOOK I MOST ANTICIPATED IN 2016?

The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin and The Last Star by Rick Yancey

MOST MEMORABLE CHARACTER IN 2016?

All the main characters from The Dark Tower series: Roland, Susannah, Eddie, Jake, and Oy

HOW MANY RE-READS IN 2016?

One, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

BOOK I READ IN 2016 I’D BE MOST LIKELY TO REREAD IN 2017?

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard – King’s Cage comes out in 2017!

BOOK I RECOMMENDED TO PEOPLE MOST IN 2016?

The Success Principles, The 5th Wave, All the Light We Cannot See, The Martian, Red Rising, Red Queen, The Passage, The Dark Tower

FAVORITE NEW AUTHORS I DISCOVERED IN 2016?

Pierce Brown, Victoria Aveyard, Leigh Bardugo, Stephen King

MOST BOOKS READ BY ONE AUTHOR THIS YEAR?

Stephen King, with 8

FAVORITE COVER OF A BOOK I READ IN 2016?

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Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

FAVORITE PASSAGE/QUOTE FROM A BOOK I READ IN 2016?

“There’s nothing fated in our stars. No meant-to-be in any of it. We are accidental people occupying an accidental planet in an accidental universe. And that’s okay. These seven billion billion atoms are good with that.”-Rick Yancey, The Last Star

“The road and the tale have both been long, would you not say so? The trip has been long and the cost has been high… but no great thing was ever attained easily. A long tale, like a tall Tower, must be built a stone at a time.” -Stephen King, The Dark Tower

“All his life he had wanted to be known by just one person. That’s what love was, he decided. Love was being known.”-Justin Cronin, The City of Mirrors

“Justice isn’t about fixing the past, it’s about fixing the future. We’re not fighting for the dead. We’re fighting for the living. And for those who aren’t yet born.”-Pierce Brown, Morning Star

“Survival is insufficient.”-Emily St. John Mandel, Station Eleven

DID I COMPLETE ANY READING CHALLENGES OR GOALS IN 2016?

Yes! I read 75 books, up from my original goal of 50 books for 2016.

BOOK I CAN’T BELIEVE I WAITED UNTIL 2016 TO FINALLY READ?

Many-Red Queen, Red Rising, Station Eleven, The Girl on the Train, Six of Crows, The Dark Tower series

2015: A Year in Books

2015 IN REVIEW:

HOW MANY BOOKS READ IN 2015?

– 46 books

FICTION/NON-FICTION?

–   37 Fiction /   9 Non-Fiction

MALE/FEMALE AUTHORS?

–    21  Male /  14 Female

 

OLDEST BOOK READ?

– The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling (1894)

 

NEWEST BOOK READ?

– Crimson Shore by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (Nov. 2015)

 

LONGEST BOOK READ?

– A Dance With Dragons by George R.R. Martin (1,152 pages)

 

SHORTEST BOOK READ?

Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson (96 pages)

 

ANY IN TRANSLATION?

–Not this year

 

BEST BOOK READ IN 2015?

The Success Principles by Jack Canfield

Truly life-changing!

 

MOST DISAPPOINTING BOOK IN 2015?

Gone Girl, I didn’t even finish it

 

Most beautifully written book read in 2015?

All the Light We Cannot See

Hands down! Though I suppose if you take over ten years to write a book, it better be damn good!

 

MOST SURPRISING (IN A GOOD WAY!) BOOK OF 2015?

The Success Principles

I thought it was going to be hokey..it was not. AT. ALL.

 

MOST THRILLING, UNPUTDOWNABLE BOOK IN 2015?

–Tie between The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey and Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

 

BOOK THAT HAD THE GREATEST IMPACT ON ME IN 2015?

The Success Principles….completely changed my life!

 

BOOK THAT HAD A SCENE IN IT THAT HAD ME REELING?

– All the Light We Cannot See….so many! Buckets of tears over here.

 

BOOK I MOST ANTICIPATED IN 2015?

– The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

 

MOST MEMORABLE CHARACTER IN 2015?

-Bernadette from Where’d You Go Bernadette?

 

HOW MANY RE-READS IN 2015?

Two.

The Little Prince and I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, both for one of my Book Clubs

 

BOOK I READ IN 2015 I’D BE MOST LIKELY TO REREAD IN 2016?

The Success Principles

 

BOOK I RECOMMENDED TO PEOPLE MOST IN 2015?

The Success Principles, The 5th Wave, All the Light We Cannot See, The Martian

 

FAVORITE NEW AUTHORS I DISCOVERED IN 2015?

-Jessica Khoury, Rick Yancey, Jeff VanderMeer, Garth Stein

 

MOST BOOKS READ BY ONE AUTHOR THIS YEAR?

-3 each for:

Jessica Khoury

Jeff VanderMeer

James Dashner

Lincoln Child (2 co-authored with Douglas Preston)

Douglas Preston (2 co-authored with Lincoln Child)

FAVORITE COVER OF A BOOK I READ IN 2015?

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FAVORITE PASSAGE/QUOTE FROM A BOOK I READ IN 2015?

– “All you have to do is DECIDE what you want. BELIEVE you DESERVE IT, and PRACTICE the success PRINCIPLES.” – Jack Canfield, The Success Principles

– “How do you rid the Earth of humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.”

“Because we will die, but at least we will die unbroken.”

“I thought I knew what loneliness was before he found me, but I had no clue. You don’t know what real loneliness is until you’ve known the opposite.”

“But if I’m it, the last of my kind, the last page of human history, like hell I’m going to let the story end this way. I may be the last one, but I am the one still standing. I am the one turning to face the faceless hunter in the woods on an abandoned highway. I am the one not running but facing. Because if I am the last one, then I am humanity. And if this is humanity’s last war, then I am the battlefield.”

“The minute we decide that one person doesn’t matter anymore, they’ve won.” – Rick Yancey, The 5th Wave

-“Open your eyes and see what you can with them before they close forever.”

“It’s embarrassingly plain how inadequate language is.” – Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See

 

Did I complete any reading challenges or goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the year?

Yes!!! I finally broke up streak. I set a goal to read 35 books in 2015 and then I when I passed that, I set a new goal of 40, which I met and exceeded!

 

BOOK I CAN’T BELIEVE I WAITED UNTIL 2015 TO FINALLY READ?

The 5th Wave

2014 In Review

2014: A Year in Books

View my lists for 2011,  2012, and 2013

2014 in Review:

How many books read in 2014?

-34

Fiction/Non-Fiction?

–   30 Fiction /  3 Non-Fiction

Male/Female authors?

–    22 Male /   7 Female

Oldest book read?

Aristotle’s Poetics (300ish B.C.E.)

Newest book read?

Lullabies (September 16th, 2014)

Longest book read?

The Best American Non-Required Reading 2011 (528 pages)

Shortest book read?

One Writer’s Beginnings

Any in translation?

A Novel Bookstore

Best book read in 2014?

-I didn’t read that much in 2014, but it sure is hard to pick just one favorite!

Chasers of the Light by Tyler Knott Gregson

The Gods of Second Chances by Dan Berne

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby

Most disappointing book in 2014?

Up in the Air, I didn’t even finish it

Most beautifully written book read in 2014?

The Book Thief

Highly recommended if you’ve never read it!

Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2014?

The Gods of Second Chances

Very pleasantly surprised by what a great book I was given!

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2014?

Light by Michael Grant

Book that had the greatest impact on me in 2014?

A Novel Bookstore….really makes you think!

-Also Against Their Will…how could you not be thinking some very deep thoughts after this one?

Book that had a scene in it that had me reeling?

Allegiant….everyone who read this book knows EXACTLY what I’m talking about

Book I most anticipated in 2014?

The Graveyard Book

Most memorable character in 2014?

-Any of the characters from the last Samuel Johnson book, The Creeps

How many re-reads in 2014?

None

Book I read in 2014 I’d be most likely to reread in 2014?

A Long Way Down

Book I recommended to people most in 2014?

The Gods of Second Chances, A Novel Bookstore, The Book Thief, A Long Way Down

Favorite new authors I discovered in 2014?

-Nick Hornby, Dan Berne, Markus Zusak

Most books read by one author this year?

-2 each for:

Veronica Roth

Lang Leav

Eudora Welty

Neil Gaiman

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

Favorite cover of a book I read in 2014?

Favorite passage/quote from a book I read in 2014?

“When two souls fall in love, there is nothing else but the yearning to be close to the other. The presence that is felt through a hand held, a voice heard, or a smile seen.
Souls do not have calendars or clocks, nor do they understand the notion of time or distance. They only know it feels right to be with one another.
This is the reason why you miss someone so much when they are not there—even if they are only in the very next room. Your soul only feels their absence—it doesn’t realize the separation is temporary.” -Lang Leav, Love & Misadventure

Did I complete any reading challenges or goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the year?

-No 😦 <–this was my answer from 2013 as well, oops….

Book I can’t believe I waited until 2014 to finally read?

The Book Thief

2013: A Year in Books

View my lists for 2011 and 2012

2013 in Review:

How many books read in 2013?

– 35

Fiction/Non-Fiction?

–  33 Fiction /  2 Non-Fiction

Male/Female authors?

–   15 Male /  13 Female

Oldest book read?

On the Road by Jack Kerouac (1957)

Newest book read?

Shadowlands by Kate Brian (Jan. 2013)

Longest book read?

A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin (1060 pages)

Shortest book read?

Bodies by Osmond Arnesto (54 pages)

Any in translation?

A Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

The Club Dumas by Arturo Perez Rivera

Best book read in 2013?

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

Most disappointing book in 2013?

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

-I really wanted to like this better. It just seemed messy and annoying.

Most beautifully written book read in 2013?

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston

Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2013?

Evolution, Me, and Other Freaks of Nature by Robin Brande

-I really wasn’t sure what to expect with this one. I thought it would be a cheesy, silly YA novel and it ended up just kind of blowing me away!

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2013?

Fear by Michael Grant

Book that had the greatest impact on me in 2013?

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. Really just an incredible book.

Book that had a scene in it that had me reeling?

-Basically all of Fear by Micheal Grant. I can’t wait to read the final book in this series in 2014!

Book I most anticipated in 2013?

Reached by Allie Condie

Most memorable character in 2013?

Tiny from Will Grayson, Will Grayson. Very original character who really just stole the whole book from the two title characters.

How many re-reads in 2013?

None

Book I read in 2013 I’d be most likely to reread in 2014?

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

Book I recommended to people most in 2013?

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons (the whole series)

Favorite new authors I discovered in 2013?

-Julianna Baggott, Will Adams, Lauren Oliver, Nicole Krauss, Jeannette Walls

Most books read by one author this year?

-Kate Brian (6 books)

Favorite cover of a book I read in 2013?

Favorite passage/quote from a book I read in 2013?

In Delirium, the poem “I Carry Your Heart” by E.E. Cummings is quoted and I just loved it.

“here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)”

Did I complete any reading challenges or goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the year?

-No 😦

Book I can’t believe I waited until 2013 to finally read?

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

2012: A Year in Books

View my list for 2011

2012 in Review:

How many books read in 2012?

-104

Fiction/Non-Fiction?

– 93 Fiction / 11 Non-Fiction

Male/Female authors?

–  44 Male / 32 Female

Oldest book read?

-Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll (1865)

Newest book read?

Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me by Ellen Forney (November 6th, 2012)

Longest book read?

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin (1128 pages)

Shortest book read?

On Dreams by Sigmund Freud (80 pages)

Any in translation?

-Too many to list here truthfully.

Best book read in 2012?

Tie!

The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Most disappointing book in 2012?

-Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll (1865)

I really expected this book to be more fun and whimsical than it was. It was just plain weird and I still prefer the various movies, though they are equally weird. At least they pulled some sort of plot out of this jumble.

Most beautifully written book read in 2012?

So many this year!

Plainsong by Kent Haruf

The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan

Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?

The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling

-It wasn’t what I expected at all, but I still enjoyed it immensely. After everything I’d been hearing, I was prepared for the worst, but I really did like it.

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?

The Twelve by Justin Cronin (for obvious reasons)

Book that had the greatest impact on me in 2012?

The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

This is the first book I’ve read that really spoke to me at the age I’m at. It also inspired me to work on my own novel, about young 20-somethings.

Book that had a scene in it that had me reeling?

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Oh my god THAT ending.

Book I most anticipated in 2012?

The Twelve

Most memorable character in 2012?

-Tyrion Lannister from A Game of Thrones series by George R.R. Martin (same as last year)

How many re-reads in 2012?

-None

Book I read in 2012 I’d be most likely to reread in 2013?

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Book I recommended to people most in 2012?

-The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

Favorite new authors I discovered in 2012?

-John Green

Most books read by one author this year?

Tie

-Sara Shepherd (5)

-Neil Gaiman (5)

Favorite cover of a book I read in 2012?

Favorite passage/quote from a book I read in 2012?

-“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.” (The Fault in Our Stars by John Green)

-“Trying to write about love is ultimately like trying to have a dictionary represent life. No matter how many words there are, there will never be enough.” (The Lover’s Dictionary by John Green)

-“Definitions belong to the definers, not the defined.” (Beloved by Toni Morrison)

Did I complete any reading challenges or goals that I set for myself at the beginning of the year?

-My Goodreads challenge of 100 books!

Book I can’t believe I waited until 2012 to finally read?

American Gods by Neil Gaiman