The Grand Grand Finale: 2016 Wrap-up

For the first Wrap-up Wednesday of the year, I’m going to do a whole year wrap-up! I found this awesome year end survey made by Jamie at The Perpetual Page Turner. so let’s see how this goes. Some of these questions are extremely hard (because there are so many options!), so I’ll just answer with what first comes to mind. Basically, even if there are several books that fit the question, only the one or two that jump out immediately will count. Books listed are NOT in order of preference. Ok, enough rambling. Let’s go, my pandas!

2016 Reading Stats

Number of Books You Read

Officially, according to the Goodreads goal I met, 150. However, I didn’t officially start using Goodreads until May 2016, so I may have forgotten some other books.

Number of Re-Reads

Unknown, but maybe 75? In any case, waaaaayyyyy tooooo much!

Genre You Read the Most From

I don’t have an exact number but I’d say probably science fiction/fantasy since that’s the genre I tend to read the most from.

Best in Books

Best Book You Read in 2016

WHAT KIND OF QUESTION IS THIS? Even breaking it down by genre won’t help because THEY ARE ALL FANTASY!!! AHHHH!!!! Ok, for now, I’m just going to go with Crooked Kingdom because that’s the first book I thought of. But still.

Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going to Love More But Didn’t

The Perks of Being a Wallflower. While it was okay, based on the hype I thought I would LOVE it a lot more.

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

Carry On I guess? While I’d read Rainbow Rowell’s books before and liked them, I hadn’t LOVED them. Carry On though? Amazing and on my all-time favorites list.

Book you “pushed” the most people to read (and they did)

I think I’ve pushed Illuminae and Gemina as well as Six of Crows duology the most. I’ve successfully pushed one person for each book, but I don’t know if anyone else has read it because of me? I hope so.

Best series you started in 2016? Best Sequel of 2016? Best Series Ender of 2016?

HAHAHA WELL. The amount of series I started in 2016 is A LOT, almost all hyped books, all amazing. For simplicity, I’m going to go with series starters only, not what I started, and so on so forth. For series starter, I’m going to go with Lady Midnight and The Star-Touched Queen. Best sequel goes to Gemina and A Torch Against the Night. Finally, best series ender goes to Crooked Kingdom, The Rose and the Dagger, and The Raven King.

Favorite new author you discovered in 2016?

Again, this would take forever, so I’m only going to do debuts. Evelyn Skye, Roshani Chokshi, Heidi Heilig, Audrey Coulthurst, Kerri Maniscalo, Kathleen Glasgow, Brittany Cavallaro, Jessica Khoury, for starters. Ok that wasn’t brief, but one good thing about 2016 was the number of amazing debut authors!!!

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

I guess I don’t normally read historical fiction? For my favorite books in this genre, I’m going to go with Stalking Jack the Ripper, My Lady Jane, and Code Name Verity. I would add The Girl from Everywhere, but I don’t know if that counts as historical fiction…

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

Again? ANOTHER IMPOSSIBLE QUESTION? WHY?!?!?! Fine, I’ll try to choose. Let’s go with Crooked Kingdom, Morning Star, and Gemina.

Book You Read in 2016 that You Are Most Likely to Re-read Next Year?

Ok, I’m not even going to try. Given my habit of rereads, I’d say more than 80% of them. Oops?

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2016?

Only doing books published in 2016. Lady Midnight, The Star-Touched Queen, Of Fire and Stars, Heartless, Passenger, The Problem with Forever, Rebel of the Sands, The Raven King, and Furthermore.

Most memorable character of 2016?

NO. NOT GOING TO DO IT. ALL OF THEM. ALL MY BABIES!!!

Most beautifully written book read in 2016?

Oldie but beauty: The Song of Achilles and The Night Circus. Something old, something new: The Six of Crows Duology and The Wrath and the Dawn Duology. Newbie but goodie: The Star-Touched Queen and The Midnight Star.

Most thought-provoking/life-changing book of 2016?

I’m going to interpret this as eye-opening, so: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, More Happy Than Not, and Girl in Pieces. The first had a lot of really thought-provoking quotes, and really made me think even deeper about a lot of issues that I still took for granted. The latter two were both gritty and real #ownvoices novels, and extremely necessary.

Book you can’t believe you waited until 2016 to finally read?

ALL OF THEM!!!!

Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2016?

SO MANY! The one I have on my phone case right now is from Crooked Kingdom, and it says, “When you can’t beat the odds, change the game.”

Shortest & longest book you read in 2016?

Shortest YA novel: The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Longest YA novel: Lady Midnight.

Book that shocked you the most?

Taken twists and turns wise? SIX OF CROWS DUOLOGY ALL THE WAY!!! The Red Rising trilogy! Oh and also ILLUMINAE AND GEMINA!!! Btw, I’m listening to the Gemina audiobook right now, and the lollipop song and just everything in it is amazing.

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

IT’S CUTE THAT YOU THINK I COULD PICK. Wesper, Kaz/Inej, Matthias/Nina from the Six of Crows duology;  Adelina/Magiano from the Young Elites Trilogy; Simon/Blue from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda; Maya/Amar from The Star-Touched Queen; Khalid/Shazi from the Wrath and the Dawn duology; Patrochilles from The Song of Achilles; Snowbaz from Carry On; and Bluesey, Pynch from The Raven Cycle.

Favorite non-romantic relationship of the year:

Maddie/Queenie from Code Name Verity, Ninej from the Six of Crows duology and the Gangsey from The Raven Cycle.

Favorite book you read in 2016 from an author you’ve read previously

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu, Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Best book you read in 2016 that you read based SOLELY on a recommendation from somebody else/peer pressure

Like everything this year basically? I mean almost all the books I read this year were popular books that I had never read…

Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?

NOPE. NEXT. DON’T MAKE ME PICK.

Best 2016 debut you read?

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi is AMAZING!!!!

Best worldbuilding/most vivid setting you read this year?

The Red Rising trilogy, the Six of Crows duology, the Grisha trilogy, Heartless, The Star-Touched Queen, the Young Elites trilogy, The Night Circus, Furthermore, and the Wrath and the Dawn duology.

Book that put a smile on your face/was the most FUN to read?

My Lady Jane and The Hammer of Thor were both so charming and hilarious!!!

Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2016?

CAPS MEANS EVEN MORE TEARS: Morning Star, THE MIDNIGHT STAR, Crooked Kingdom, CODE NAME VERITY, The Raven King, THE SONG OF ACHILLES, THE ROSE AND THE DAGGER, ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES.

Hidden gem of the year?

The Melody of You and Me by M. Hollis is a novella, but a super sweet and diverse story!

Book that crushed your soul?

SEE BOOKS THAT MADE ME CRY!!!

Most unique book you read in 2016?

The Sun is Also a Star with its different POVs, Code Name Verity for reliability spoiler reasons, and the Illuminae files with all the different formats

Book that made you the most mad?

Idk. An Abundance of Katherines? That didn’t make me MAD though, just bored and annoyed.

Your Blogging/Bookish Life

New favorite book blog you discovered in 2016?

ALL OF THEM!!! (including mine) 😛

Favorite review that you wrote in 2016?

Because of the length, fangirling, heartbreak, and time that went into them: How to Rip My Heart into A Million Pieces: The Song of Achilles and What’s the Name of the Game?: Crooked Kingdom.

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

A Very Merry, Very Diverse Holiday Season to You: Top Ten Diverse Books to Give This Season because of the diverse reads I’ve put on here, although I’ve read even more diverse books after that. Dear America: The 2016 U.S. Election because it was a source of venting and emotions after the election. What’s in a Name?: Top Ten Characters I’d Name a Panda After because it was really fun to come up with these names! Maybe I’ll use them soon…

Best event that you participated in?

The Lady Midnight Cassie Clare signing, Yallwest, and the Sabaa Tahir Torch Against the Night signing. That is all I went to so… but still!

Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2016?

Starting blogging, I guess? I mean, that’s just a small kind of thing though…

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

Trying to learn how to manage my blog, manage my time, and manage my reading all at once!

Most popular post this year on your blog?

Read All the Diverse Books: Diversity December Bingo and the DA Readathon TBR Lists It’s kind of random, although sign up posts do usually do the best.

Post you wished got a little more love?

All of them? But especially my favorites mentioned above, from my Song of Achilles and Crooked Kingdom reviews to my 2016 election open letter.

Best bookish discover?

Bookish blogging and preordering! Can you believe I didn’t know about this stuff before 2016?

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

My Goodreads challenge of 150 books and the Diversity Dec Bingo of one line!

Looking Ahead

One book you didn’t get to in 2016 but will be your number 1 priority in 2017?

Well, the first book I read and finished was A Darker Shade of Magic which was amazing!!!

Book you are most anticipating for 2017 (non-debut)?

SOOO MANY!!! Including but not limited to Flame in the Mist, History is All You Left Me, Wonder Woman, The Upside of Unrequited, Iron Gold, and Roseblood.

2017 debut you are most anticipating?

Stephanie Garber’s Caraval and Sierra Abram’s The Color Project!!!

Series ending/a sequel you are most anticipating in 2017?

A Conjuring of Light, The Crown’s Fate, A Crown of Wishes, Illuminae 3, and Lord of Shadows.

One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging life in 2017?

Grow my blog, meet even more wonderful people, and complete my reading goal of 365 books!

A 2017 release you’ve already read & recommend to everyone?

Unfortunately, I have not yet been granted access to ARCs and have not been able to buy any of yesterday’s releases, so I’ll have to pass.

If you stuck all the way down here, give me a high five! You deserve a cookie! Actually, as an experiment, if you’re reading this, type the code word: cookie and answer this question: What is the shortest YA novel I read this year? I may just pick one person to send a little something to…

P.S. If I do end up doing the above, U.S. only and no guarantees that I’ll actually do it. I’m broke!

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Things that Go Bump: Creatures of the Night Book Tag

Since tonight is the night before Halloween and I have a (relatively) special post already planned for tomorrow, I thought I’d do another book tag. This tag is a Creatures of the Night Book Tag, and basically your supposed to pick your favorite book that contains each creature. This might be a bit hard since I don’t really read horror, but I’ll try! Thank you to The Sassy Book Geek for tagging me. Also, please please please recommend more non-scary books with these creatures in them!

Vampire

Image result for carry on book Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

I’m not going to say who, but if you’ve read the books you know who the vampire is! I haven’t read very many vampire books to be honest. I think I’ve actually only read this, Harry Potter (although there’s only like one vampire) and Cassandra Clare’s books, although I am hoping to read Julie Kagawa’s Blood of Eden series soon.

 

Werewolf

Image result for the mortal instrumentsThe Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

Again, I don’t think I’ve read very many werewolf books either. I think I’ve only read Harry Potter and this series. While I love both to death, I do think it’s kind of pathetic. I definitely need to read more paranormal books!

 

 

Zombies

Image result for magisterium seriesThe Magisterium Series by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black

Again, I don’t read horror. Like ever. Which means that I don’t think I’ve ever read a book with legit zombies in it. (I mean the brain eating kind.) One of the closest that I could come up with was the Chaos Ridden in this series. They won’t eat your brains (I don’t think they will at least), but they are undead and basically mindless.

 

Ghost

Image result for harry potter books imagesHarry Potter by J.K. Rowling

It is notoriously hard to find books with ghosts in them. I wasn’t even sure what exactly constitued a ghost. Sure, I’ve read lots of books with spirits in it, but with the actual word ghost? This is one of the very few books that actually outright mentions that there are ghosts, rather than spirits.

 

Witch/Warlock/Spellcaster

Image result for the night circusThe Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Finally a category where I know a lot of books! This book first popped into my mind because the spellcasters are at the very center of it. I simply adore so many things about this book, but more than half of it would not have been possible without the magic nor the spellcasters.

 

 

Fairy/Fae

Image result for iron fey seriesThe Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa

Again, there are so many options for this! I feel like I’ve read tons of books with fairies or fae in it, but I’ve decided to go with this one for now. I am desperately in love with this series, not least of all because of Ash…I will say though that I loved how modern it was. Many series revolving around fae take place in a high fantasy setting, but this incorporates modern-day technology right into Faerie.

 

 

Demon

Image result for kane chroniclesThe Kane Chronicles by Rick Riordan

Again, I wasn’t really sure what to classify as a demon? Are monsters considered demons? Because if so, there are no shortage of those. Regardless, there are literal demons in this series, and you probably know by now how much I love Rick Riordan’s writing, so here you go!

Angel

Image result for unearthly cynthia handThe Unearthly Series by Cynthia Hand

I read this series a long time ago, so I don’t remember much of the details. I remember enjoying these books and that there are legitamite angels on earth, but I should probably reread soon.

Aliens

Image result for ender's gameEnder’s Game by Orson Scott Card

I never realized how vastly underrepresented aliens are in the YA community. I mean, yes, I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, but you almost never hear about aliens in the bookish community. Food for thought…Anyway, I also read this book a long time ago, but I do remember mentions of buggers, or aliens.

Superpowered Human

Image result for the young elites trilogyThe Young Elites Trilogy by Marie Lu

A.K.A the books that most recently broke my heart. I mean, I was kind of expecting it, but still. Anyway, more on that in my upcoming review. I think superpowered humans are becoming more and more common, and I’m really happy about that because magic!!!

So there you go! There’s my pre-Halloween post. I hope you’ll be seeing more book tags in the future, especially since I’ve been slacking. If you have a blog and are reading this, I tag you! You are obviously under no obligation to complete it, but I would love to read your responses.

Sweet Sixteen: The Birthday Book Tag

Image result for birthday pandaI have attempted to set this to post at exactly on October 26 at 1:26 a.m. Given that WordPress is a bit funky with scheduling posts, I don’t know if that will happen, but I am hoping that it will post at that time since that is the exact moment of my birth. Fun fact: for years my dad thought my birthday was on the 25th because I was due on that day. However, I was a stubborn little child and didn’t come out until the 26th in the early morning. Anyway, I’ve seen this floating around the blogosphere and decided to do it in celebration!

Count your birthday along your bookshelf and then subtract your birth month.

Image result for happily ever after bookHappily Ever After by Kiera Cass

It’s actually kind of interesting because due to the instructions, this book is sixteenth on my shelf and I’m sixteen and…Sorry don’t mind me, I look for lucky signs in everything. I’m a very superstitious person. For example, I think that this book means I’m destined for a happy ending! This is a collection of stories meant to wrap up the story of America Singer, and reading it made me really happy. It not only includes America’s prologues but novellas from the other characters’ points of view!

If you could spend your birthday with any fictional character who would it be and why?

Image result for six of crowsSix of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

This question is really hard and I really don’t appreciate having to do such hard work so close to my birthday. (I hope you know I was kidding. But seriously, this question was tough.) There are so many fabulous people I would want to spend my birthday with, but at this very moment, I’m going to say Nina Zenik. She seems to have such a good connection with Inej and they definitely seem to have a lot of fun together! I think Nina would definitely know how to throw a great party, although I’d definitely be game for just a plate of waffles!

Find a book that takes place in the season you were born in.

Image result for city of fallen angels coversCity of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

I’m sure there are lots of books that take place in the fall, but this book was on my mind since I just reread the entire series this weekend (for like the fifth time this year). Also, this book explicitly states that it takes place in October, so even the months match! I also want to state for the record that I actually much prefer the new covers, like the one with Isabelle on the cover of this one for example. However, the colors and vibe of this one seemed to match the darker, more fallish tone, so here you are!

Find a book that is the color of your birthstone.

I would like to pass this one because I honestly don’t really know what to pick. First of all, I actually have two birthstones: opal and tourmaline. I associate more strongly with opal. Okay, that sounded kind of weird, but I just mean that for some reason I’ve always liked opal better. Anyway, opal has no particular color and its name actually stems from this fact. On the other hand, there are so many different types of tourmaline, all with different colors. So really, any book is the color of my birthstone.

Pick a book set in a time period, world, or country you would have liked to have been born in.

Image result for harry potter booksHarry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Again, what’s up with the hard questions? It was really hard for me to choose, but I decided on Harry Potter’s world. I mean, magic! I think one of the best things about the Harry Potter brand of magic is that you’re not limited to a certain affinity or power. Anyone can do any type of magic if they have the knowledge and are capable enough, which I think is not so common with most magic. Also, I know that Harry doesn’t really go to London much in comparison to the rest of the story, but I went to London and fell in love with it over the summer, so that’s an added bonus for me!

 

I’m not going to tag anyone in particular, but if your birthday is coming up, I do invite you to complete this book tag!

Spell Books: The Harry Potter Tag

I know The Sassy Book Geek tagged me almost a month ago, but time got away from me. However, with the release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child yesterday, I thought this was an appropriate time to finally write this. Enjoy!

Flagrate: Writing Charm (A book where you found the theme interesting, but you’d like to rewrite it.)

I’m going to be honest with you here. I did think the idea for this book, especially the kids’ special powers, was very interesting. This idea and the certain characters prompted me to give this a higher rating that I would have. I don’t want to steal thunder from my reviews, but the book itself just had way too many cliches. To be honest, it kind of felt like a combination of a lot of different books and tropes rather than a whole new story with different concepts and ideas.

 

Alohomora: Unlocking Charm (The first book in a series that got you hooked.)

I honestly cannot tell you how much I love this series!!! From the first book I was hooked: by the characters, the vibrant world, the plot, and even the writing itself! Plus, I’m a sucker for most things Wonderland, even though I didn’t like the original Alice in Wonderland very much…

 

Accio: Summoning Charm (A book you wish you could have right now.)

There are way too many to put pictures of all of them here, but let me just list a few: Harry Pottter and the Cursed Child, A Torch Against the Night, The Bronze Key, Empire of Storms, Crooked Kingdom, Holding Up the Universe, The Hammer of Thor, The Midnight Star, Heartless, Roseblood, ACOTAR 3, Lord of Shadows, and Chain of Thorns.

 

Avada Kedavra: Killing Curse (A killer book. Both senses. Take it as you like.)

All three senses actually: it was a killer (wonderful) book, there was a lot of killing, and the book itself killed me (more like ripped my heart and soul into a thousand pieces.) It’s beautifully written: it almost flows like a song, and the story itself was so moving. Ok, there was not a lot of killing, but it felt like it because I love the people who died so much!!!!! Which leads to my last point: I was sobbing by the end of this book. Full-on sobbing, book-slump-inducing sobbing. But I don’t regret it at all.

 

Confundo: Confusing Charm (A book you found really confusing.)

This book just flat-out confusing for me. There’s really no other way for me to describe it. It just left me feeling really confused. I know a lot of people liked it, so maybe I’ll try it again.

Expecto Patronum: Patronus Charm (Your spirit animal book.)

Yes, it’s a children’s book, but it’s all about a lonely but mischieveous panda named Beckett. I can be childish too, especially when it’s late at night or I’ve had a lot of sugar. I obviously love pandas, and I can be quite lonely sometimes. Also, I have been known to cause trouble sometimes…

Sectumsempra: Dark Charm (A dark, twisted book.)

This was just full of so many twists and turns. There seemed to be murder every other chapter, and it was full of lots of schemes and betrayal.

Aparecium: Revealing Charm (A book that surprised you in a great way, reveals to be more than it is.)

I’ve never been a steampunk lover, and I knew these books were set in the Victorian Era, which I hadn’t really read a lot of. Even when I started I had a hard time reading it. I persevered though, and by the middle of Clockwork Prince I started to really like it. Lo and behold, six months later, I’m rereading the whole series. Last night in fact, at 2:30 in the morning, I was sobbing every few pages. In fact by the fateful last few pages, my eyes were so blurred that I couldn’t even see the screen.  I even sent two texts to my friends last night, “I have concluded that reading The Infernal Devices late at night is not good for my emotional health,” as well as “DAMN THIS BOOK IT IS 2:30 IN THE MORNING I SHOULD NOT BE BAWLING MY EYES OUT!!!” As you can tell, I’m now very attached to these characters and love these books so much.

If you haven’t done this yet and have a blog, you’re tagged. Have fun!!!

 

So Many Books, So Little Time: The TBR Book Tag

Thank you to Heather from The Sassy Book Geek for this tag! This is my first tag, so I’m super excited, especially since I have a huge TBR list!

How do you keep track of your TBR pile?

Confession time: I don’t really have a set TBR list? I know, I probably should have one, but it’s basically a combination of books in my head and the 50 books on hold at the library and the stack of print books sitting at home. I probably should get this stuff together though. I had a spreadsheet, but it got a bit overwhelming, so I think I’m going to go back to the paper and pen method. Continue reading