Hello everyone! Can you believe that it's that time of year again? Christmas will soon be here and 2015 is nearly over so before I take my blogging break until the new year I wanted to take part in Jamie's annual end of year book survey to break down my year in reading and blogging for you guys. I hope you enjoy reading about my bookish highs and lows of 2015!
Number of Re-Reads: 0 – with so many review books I don’t really have time for re-reads these days sadly.
Genre You Read The Most From: Looking at Goodreads, 2015 seems to be the year of Fantasy and Thrillers for me.
So my unofficial best book of 2015 (because there’s still time for another book to come along don’t you know) is Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Admittedly, it’s going to take something pretty special to knock it off the top spot over the remaining days of December.
2. Book You Were Excited About and Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
It’s no secret that my most anticipated book for 2015 was A Court of Thorns and Roses but I actually ended up not finishing it for personal reasons which you can read more about here.
3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
When I started listening to audiobooks this year I was looking for recommendations on what I should check out and my friend Sophie recommended The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller to me which is not something I’d ever normally pick up but I fell for it hard and it’s now become a new all-time favourite of mine.
4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
I think the book that I pushed on to people the hardest this year is Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne. It’s such an important book to me and I’m so happy with how many people I got to read it that fell in love with it too.
5. Best series you started in 2015? Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?
Okay, so for best series I have two that I’ve been sitting trying to decide between and I can’t so I’m just going to say both and they are the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson and the Murder Most Unladylike series by Robin Stevens they could not be more different but are equally fantastic.
For best sequel I’m going to go with The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon which just blew me away even more than The Bone Season did.
Best series ender has to go to Winter by Marissa Meyer. Hats off to that lady for wrapping up four stories in one book and making an 800 page book totally engrossing and un-put-down-able.
6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?
This is too hard. I’ve discovered so many amazing new-to-me authors this year whose books I will be auto-buying forever more. The shortlist would have to be Brandon Sanderson and Susan Dennard whose writing makes my toes curl it’s so good.
7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
2015 was the year where I really branched out of my comfort zone and discovered some fantastic new books for it. I think for this one I’ll go with The Song of Achilles (again) because it was probably the book that was the furthest out of my comfort zone that I loved.
8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
Oh, most definitely Six of Crows. Hands down.
9. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
I’m going to go with Truthwitch by Susan Dennard because I read an ARC of this in 2015 and would love to read the finished version when it’s released next year.
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2015?
It has to be Queen of Shadows. Those covers just get more and more beautiful with each book.
11. Most memorable character of 2015?
I’ve got to say that all six characters from Six of Crows really stuck with me this year. I love how diverse they are showing that you don’t have to be able-bodied, skinny, white, straight etc to be the hero of the story and be an absolute badass.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?
Lorali by Laura Dockrill is the first book that comes to mind. Laura’s writing is so unique and like nothing else I’ve ever read. It is individual and beautiful.
13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2015?
This was definitely Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne. I had such a deep and personal connection with it that it felt like it was written especially for me.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read?
I’m so grateful for the Mistborn readalong this year. I’ve wanted to read the Mistborn series for years but have always been intimidated by the size of each book. I’m so happy that I signed up and finally got to read The Final Empire and the rest of the books because they’re now one of my all-time favourites and I’m desperate to read more by Brandon Sanderson.
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2015?
I’m one of those people who has a notebook full of quotes that I love from books and so it’s hard to pick just one but if I were to choose one that feels very personal to me it would be this one from All the Bright places about mental health.
“It's my experience that people are a lot more sympathetic if they can see you hurting, and for the millionth time in my life I wish for measles or smallpox or some other easily understood disease just to make it easier on me and also on them.” ― Jennifer Niven, All the Bright Places
16.Shortest and Longest Book You Read In 2015?
According to Goodreads my longest book was Winter at 827 pages and my shortest is Rat Queens at 128 pages. I loved both of these books so it just goes to show that size really doesn’t matter!
17. Book That Shocked You The Most?
I’ve read so many good thrillers this year that have completely surprised me! The plot twists in How I Lost You by Jenny Blackhurst, The Secret by the Lake by Louise Douglas and The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson were particularly shocking!
18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
This is so hard! I have so many! Okay, I’ve whittled it down from eight to my top three that YOU CAN NOT make me choose between. In no particular order…
Simon and Blue from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Simon and Baz from Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Patroclus and Achilles from The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
They are all my babies!
19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
I’m big on female friendships and so my favourite non-romantic relationship of the year has to go to Threadsisters Safiya and Iseult from Truthwitch by Susan Dennard.
20. Favorite Book You Read in 2015 From An Author You’ve Read Previously
Six of Crows, Six of Crows, Six of Crows! If you’re a reader of this blog then you’ll know that I love the Grisha trilogy dearly and so I was totally blown away when Leigh managed to surpass that with Six of Crows. In my review I described it as “Like the hotter, maturer, dangerous older brother of the Grisha trilogy” and I still stand by that.
21. Best Book You Read In 2015 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:
I’m starting to sound like a broken record but The Song of Achilles which I’d never have tried if Sophie hadn’t recommended it to me.
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2015?
The first one that comes to mind is Jack from Night Owls by Jenn Bennett who I think is my latest but I have developed so many over 2015!
23. Best 2015 debut you read?
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli, I can’t wait to see what she writes next!
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
I think this has to go to the Mistborn series. Brandon Sanderson’s worldbuilding and magic systems are so developed that it feels like you’re really there.
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
Oh my God! Definitely the first volume of Rat Queens the graphic novel. That book is HILARIOUS! I swear that the rat queens are my spirit animals.
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2015?
I’m such a crier and it doesn’t take much to start me off but the books that made me sob my heart out ugly cry this year are as follows:
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
One by Sarah Crossan
The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson
After You by Jojo Moyes
Read them with a box of tissues at hand!
27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
I think that my best hidden gem this year would have to be The Secret by the Lake by Louise Douglas which I received unsolicited for review. I knew nothing about it but was intrigued by the synopsis so I decided to give it a go and I absolutely loved it! Don’t you love when that happens?
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
The whole Mistborn series really made me re-evaluate my levels of masochism.
29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?
I think that The Accident Season by Moira Fowley-Doyle brought something very unique and different to the YA table this year.
30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?
All the Rage by Courtney Summers as the title suggests this book really does make you angry but in a good “what can we do about this?” sort of way.
I discovered my lovely friend Chelle’s blog early in January when I won a giveaway from her. I’m so glad that I discovered her blog because it was through winning this giveaway that we found out that we lived really close to each other. Chelle has been an amazing friend to me this year and I can’t wait to have more Chinese takeaway nights at hers in the New Year!
2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2015?
There are three that I’m really proud of and they were for Six of Crows, One and Am I Normal Yet? Which are all some of my favourite books of this year. It’s true what they say that the more you love a book the harder the review is to write but at the same time, as a blogger, it really pushes you to deliver a review worthy of the book and so they end up being some of your best.
3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?
I love that 2015 has been the year where I’ve hosted more discussions on the blog and I’ve really enjoyed writing them. As for best, I think that’s up to the readers but my personal favourites have to be What Kind of Book Buyer Are You? And Is it book bloggers' job to sell books?
4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
I think that as long as I am able to go each year the answer to this question will always be YALC!
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015?
A moment that has been really special for me this year is when I helped my friend Kate receive book donations for her pupils. We ended up with over 300 books and Kate hosted such a special event to gift them to her students. The event made it into local papers and it’s something that I feel so proud and happy to have been a part of this year. You can read more about the event here.
6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?
I think that it was trying to balance blogging with real life responsibilities. It's hard to do both sometimes!
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
My YALC Anxiety post. I had so many messages from people who were going who felt the same way and said that this helped them which made me so happy to feel like I’d helped people.
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
It’d always be nice to get more comments on reviews. They seem to be the one style of blog post that although gets the views doesn’t get the same interaction from readers in the comments.
9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
A few months ago I discovered the Etsy store Happy Hello. I’ve since been collecting their bookmarks which I’m just obsessed with!
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
The only goal I set myself this year was to read 100 books which I surpassed. I’m not really one for setting myself reading goals or challenges. I like to try and keep reading as pressure free and fun as possible and goals just stress me out.
I really wanted to read Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy this year but just didn’t get around to it! Luckily it’s being released in the UK in 2016 so I will be getting around to it then!
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2016 (non-debut)?
With Six of Crows being my best book of 2015 Crooked Kingdom is naturally my most anticipated book of 2016!
3. 2016 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?
I’m really looking forward to Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton all of my blogger friends who have read it have loved it so far!
4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2016?
I can’t think of a series ending that I’m anticipating in 2016 but a sequel that I am desperate for is Throne of Glass book 5!
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2016?
My goal is to post more reviews next year. With trying to vary my blog content and post more discussions I fell behind with my book reviews this year so I would really like to post at least one a week in 2016.
6. A 2016 Release You’ve Already Read and Recommend To Everyone
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard! It’s out in January and I’m so excited for the rest of the world to discover it!
That's all from me for another year! Thank you so much for all of your continued support it means the world to me and I hope you have a very happy Christmas if you celebrate it. See you all for more bookish adventures in 2016!