Friday, January 10, 2014

2013 Wrap Up Survey

I had planned to do an end-of-year survey but my holiday got in the way of doing it any earlier.


But now that I'm home I am ready to share my reflections and recommendations from 2013. Most of my answers are probably pretty obvious if you've paid even the smallest amount of attention to this blog over the year, but maybe a couple of answers will surprise you (or they won't, but it's fun to read these things!)

Number of books read in 2013: 73, thanks largely to the crap-ton of books I read on my holiday.

Best Book You Read In 2013? I read so many good books and so many new authors who I am now obsessed with (Rainbow Rowsell anyone?) but I think my absolute favourite would have to be Horns by Joe Hill. It was just SO good, I read it addictively and got that wonderful-terrible book hangover afterwards.

Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn't? Hmmmm, probably Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Maybe if I'd never heard of it and discovered it on my own I'd have enjoyed it more, but I didn't feel like it lived up to its reputation at all and was actually pretty badly written at certain points.

Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2013? The Circle by Dave Eggers. I was able to get a free copy off Netgalley otherwise I probably would have skipped over it. It was a fascinating and tense techno-drama and definitely in my top 5 reads of the year.

Book you read in 2013 that you recommended to people most in 2013? In the blog world it was probably Horns. If you read that book in 2013 I'm taking credit, even if you read it first. In the non-blog world it was probably Ready Player One by Earnest Cline. It was a good book to introduce to my pop-culture and game loving friends who don't read a whole lot.

Best series you discovered in 2013? I'm almost surprised to say this considering how long it took me to get into it but it'd definitely be the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde. If you've read the first book in this series and finished it feeling on the fence about whether to continue, try to hang in their until the third book. If you still don't like it by the end of book 3, you probably won't change your mind.

Favorite new author you discovered in 2013? I read a lot of new-to-me authors this year but my favourite would absolutely have to be Rainbow Rowell. She is the most wonderful of wonderful things.

Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you? Ooooh tough one. It wasn't really outside of my comfort zone, but I enjoyed Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion far more than I expected. Whoulda thunk a romantic YA about zombies would be anything other than terrible?!

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2013? Horns, Attachments, The Circle, Ready Player One...I can't pick just one!

Book You Read In 2013 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year? Any of Rainbow Rowell's books, but probably Attachments. I miss that book, I need it in my life again.

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2013? Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple. It's so bright and poppy and just inseparable from the story.

Most memorable character in 2013? Eleanor and Park from Eleanor and Park. They are both the most wonderful and complicated and vibrant characters, if I can summon the strength I'm definitely going to revisit them soon.

Most beautifully written book read in 2013? I think that'd probably be The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, both in terms of writing style and the content of the story. That book made my heart swell.

Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2013 to finally read? It's ridiculous that it took me so long to continue into Stephen King's Dark Tower series with The Drawing of the Three. I don't really do New Year resolutions but I plan to get much further into this series this year.

Shortest and Longest Book You Read In 2013? According to Goodreads (I didn't count graphic novels fyi);
Shortest: In The Tall Grass by Joe Hill and Stephen King
Longest: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows by JK Rowling

Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? SO MANY. But the one that comes to mind first is Where'd You Go, Bernadette. I was so conflicted with the character reveals and developments I had to know how everyone else felt about them too.

Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2013 (be it romantic, friendship, etc). So many good relationships this year, Eleanor and Park, Cath and Reagan (Fangirl), Art3mis and Parzival (Ready Player One) but none were as amazing as the friendship between Beth and Jennifer in Attachments. I could read their email correspondence for the rest of my life and I would be the happiest for it.

Favorite Book You Read in 2013 From An Author You've Read Previously. Does reading Allie Brosch's blog count as an author I've read before? Who cares, I'm answering Hyperbole and a Half anyway.

Best Book You Read In 2013 That You Read Based SOLELY on a Recommendation From Somebody Else. There were so many books I read this year that were completely off everyone's recommendation, but I'm going to answer Tipping the Velvet by Sarah Waters since I am sure I wouldn't have read it if it wasn't for Alice's big list of LGBT lit.

Genre You Read The Most From in 2013? I don't organise my reading by genre, but a quick look over the year's reads shows a lot of dark fantasy, stuff that's not quite horror and a little more realism based than straight fantasy.

Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2013? Hmmmm, maybe Lincoln from Attachments or Levi from Fangirl? Rainbow Rowell writes the best fellas.

Best debut book you read? For sure Ready Player One.

Most vivid world/imagery in a book you read in 2013? Harry Potter, the answer for this will always be Harry Potter.

Book That Was the Most Fun To Read in 2013? I read a lot of fun books in 2013, but the two readalongs (HP and The Corrections) were my favourite reads of the year. Even if the quality of reads in one readalong was infinitely better than the other, the company for both was first class.

Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2013? If it's possible to die from too-much-cryingitis then I came close when I read Eleanor and Park. That book tore my heart out of my chest and made me feel things, for reals guys.

Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year/Bookish Events on your blog in 2013? I didn't have any goal-goals, but I completely the one challenge I signed up for (eclectic reader -12 books from 12 genres) and took part and in 3 readalongs and 3 readathons.

One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2013 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2014? Tell the Wolves You're Home by Carol Rifka Brunt is at the top of my list. I borrowed it from the library late last year but I didn't manage to get to it before heading on my holiday.

Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2014 (non-debut)? I'm never really on top of new releases but I'll be first in line for Rainbow Rowell's new book when it comes out.

One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2014? This year is going to be crazy busy what with writing out my PhD and all, so my main plan is to keep keep working on this blog as a way to release some stress and not let it fall out of focus.


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