2016/2017 Book Survey


Hey, young bloods! To kick off 2017 on this blog, I'm going to be participating in a survey about books + blogging that looks back over what happened in 2016 and forward to what I'm excited about in 2017. (There are quite a lot of questions, however, so I'm going to try to keep this post at a decent length by only answering the ones I have good answers to.) So, without further ado, here we go!

Books

The number of books I read in 2016 is 73 - not a lot compared to many people, but my book intake increased exponentially when I got a Goodreads in the middle of the year, so I expect 2017 will be a better reading year in terms of quantity. I didn't do any re-reads this year (because WHY WOULD YOU RE-READ BOOKS IF THERE ARE NEW BOOKS TO TACKLE), and fantasy was definitely the genre I read the most from.

1. Best book you read in 2016?
MERRICK. BY. ANNE. RICE. I read it almost completely in one sitting, and never have I read a novel so beautifully haunting yet compelling at the same time.

2. Book you were excited about and thought you were going to love more but didn't?
I was pretty disappointed in Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Now, don't get me wrong, I still enjoyed it, but I was also pretty underwhelmed. I think it was because of the hype; I expected it to be the best thing since sliced bread and it just....wasn't. There were a few aspects I liked, but I really didn't connect to any of the characters except Kaz or Wylan. Plus, I found the writing itself to be pretty meh.

3. Best series you started in 2016? Best sequel of 2016? Best series ender of 2016?
Best series I started: The Blackthorn Key by Kevin Sands
Best sequel: Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld
Best series ender: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

4. Favorite new author you discovered in 2016?
Oooh. This is tough, but I'm going to have to go with Rupi Kaur!

5. Best book from a genre you don't typically read?
I rarely read historical fiction, but The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller blew me away.

6. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2016?
This one is also pretty hard, but I'm going to go with Made You Up by Francesca Zappia.

7. Most memorable character of 2016?
I'm going to have to say Tyrannus Basilton "Baz" Grimm-Pitch from Carry On by Rainbow Rowell.
Runners-up include:

  • David Talbot + Louis de Pointe du Lac + Claudia - Merrick by Anne Rice
  • Kaz Brekker + Wylan Van Eck - Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
  • Ciel Phantomhive + Sebastian Michaelis - Black Butler by Yana Toboso

8. Most beautifully-written book read in 2016?
The most beautifully-written novel I read was The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma, but if poetry collections count for this question I'm going to say milk and honey by Rupi Kaur.

9. Book you can't believe you waited until 2016 to finally read?
The Leviathan trilogy by Scott Westerfeld. It'd been on the bottom of my TBR pile for quite a few years, and I'm so glad I finally got around to it!

10. Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2016?
Again, I'm going to have to give a favorite and then a few runners-up. This quote, from milk and honey by Rupi Kaur, is probably my favorite:

"i am a museum full of art
but you had your eyes shut"

Runners-up: From The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic

"It sounded like a dream; it tasted like damnation."

"'This is my reassured face,' Neil said, pointing up at his blank expression."

Runners-up: From Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Mathew Quick

"People should be nice to you, Leonard. You're a human being. You should expect people to be nice."

"You have no idea how many interesting people you'll meet after high school's over. Your life partner, your best friend, the most wonderful person you'll ever know is sitting in some high school right now waiting to graduate and walk into your life - maybe even feeling all the same things you are, maybe even wondering about you, hoping you'll be strong enough to make it to the future where you'll meet."

Runner-up: From Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

"No mourners, no funerals."

11. Shortest + longest books you read?
Shortest: (probably) Paper Crowns by Mirriam Neal
Longest: Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman 

12. Book that shocked you the most (because of a character death, plot twist, etc.)?
The first one that comes to mind is Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo.

13. OTP OF THE YEAR.
My all-time OTP will forever be Erestor + Glorfindel from The Lord of the Rings. However, I did not read that series this year, so runners-up that come from books I read this year are:

  • Jesper + Wylan - Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
  • Lan + Nynaeve - Winter's Heart by Robert Jordan
  • Baz + Simon - Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • Hal + Azrael - Paper Crowns by Mirriam Neal

14. Favorite book you read in 2016 from an author you've read previously? 
Merrick by Anne Rice.

15. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?
LIST TIME.

  • Theodore Finch - All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
  • Penelope Bunce - Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • Prince Aleksander - Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
  • Lmao you thought I was straight
  • You have been #panbushed
  • (Ayyyyy see what I did there?)
  • (I'm way too proud of myself for that. I'll stop now and cut my losses.)

16. Best worldbuilding/most vivid setting you read this year?
I think Truthwitch by Susan Dennard will forever rank among my favorite novels in terms of worldbuilding. However, I also found the settings in Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, Blackwood Farm by Anne Rice, and The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith to be very beautifully written.

17. Book that put a smile on your face/was the most fun to read?
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli was such a sweet read; I had a faint smile on my face pretty much the whole time.

18. Book that made you cry or nearly cry?
Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli made me cry, and All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven and Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck had me tearing up.

19. Hidden gem of the year?
Transit by Anna Seghers is a gorgeously-written novel that was one of my top ten of this year - but you really have to like archaic, poetic writing to fall for it. WATER by Jennifer Wilson is another obscure one I liked, although you really have to have a certain sense of humor and an interest in horticulture or environmental science to enjoy it as I did.

20. Book that crushed your soul?
THE. SONG. OF. ACHILLES.
If you read that book and it didn't crush your soul, you just don't have one.

21. Most unique book you read in 2016?
Looking back, I see I didn't read too many unique books this year? That's kind of sad. But of the few unique ones I did read, my favorites would have to be The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig, Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin, and Made You Up by Francesca Zappia.

Blogging

1. New favorite book blog I discovered in 2016?
MMMM BUT THERE ARE SO MANY. I'm going to have to go with Quite the Novel Idea, however - I just recently stumbled upon it, and it's quickly become one of my favorite blogs!

2. Favorite discussion post of 2016?
I did a couple discussion posts I'm pretty proud of this year (and I'm planning to do even more next year!), but my favorite has to be Let's Discuss Mental Illness Representation in YA.

3. Most popular post on my blog this year?
I was absolutely blown away by the response to 25 Beautiful and Unique Fantasy Names. 2.7k views? Thank you all so much!

4. Post I wish got a little more love?
The first that comes to mind is my poem November is the World's Last Stand. My writing usually doesn't get a lot of attention, which I've come to accept, but the response for this was more underwhelming than usual and I'd been really looking forward to posting it.

2017

1. One book you didn't get to in 2016 but will be your #1 priority in 2017?
Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis by Anne Rice. I preordered it back in September, but it appears to have gotten lost in the mail (FIGHT ME, AMAZON). I finally got it as a last-minute Christmas present, and I'm very excited to delve into it.
(It's going to kill me, as all Vampire Chronicles books do, I can already tell.)

2. Non-debut book you are most anticipating in 2017?
Ooooh, that's a tough one! I think this one is a tie between The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner by Terry Pratchett and Windwitch by Susan Dennard.

3. 2017 debut you are most anticipating?
THE LOVE INTEREST BY CALE DIETRICH. I JUST. I WANT THAT BOOK NOW.

Personal Jazz

2016:
  • Chemistry swallowed me alive, chewed me thoroughly, and spat me back out substantially the worse for wear.
    • There's no indication the same thing won't happen next semester, so wish me luck.
  • I got more IRL friends! This is a thing that so rarely happens!
  • I made substantial progress on my novella Heaven Bleeds Fire, and I almost finished draft #1 of my novel Karissa Goldlock's Guide to (Almost) Utterly Everything (formerly titled Song of Magic and Machines, but I think this new title captures the spirit of the story much better)
  • I've started falling down the deep dark hole that is anime. Current favorites:
    • Black Butler/Kuroshitsuji
    • Durarara!!
    • Yuri on Ice
    • Ghost Hunt
    • Current to-watch: 
      • Kiznaivers
      • Ouran High School Host Club
  • I Began bullet journaling in earnest
  • Some favorite music:
    • "My Shot" by Lin-Manual Miranda
    • "Wild Horses" by Bishop Briggs
    • "Monochrome No Kiss" by SID
    • "Message Man" by Twenty One Pilots
    • "Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown on a Bad Bet" by Fall Out Boy
2017:
  • SO MANY AMAZING FILMS ARE COMING OUT. SO. MANY.
    • Black Butler: Book of the Atlantic
    • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
    • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
  • I hope to read at least 100 books, finish Karissa Goldlock's Guide to (Almost) Utterly Everything, and make substantial progress on either Heaven Bleeds Fire or the Death of the Skies series.
  • I also hope to write 400 words every day, continuing a habit I developed this year.

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Let's chat! Any New Year's resolutions? What were your (or least favorite) books of 2016, and what books are you looking forward to this year? Bookish OTP? And how did 2016 go for you? Comment below, and remember that you are all very beautiful pickles. <3

Namarië,
Ellie

14 comments:

  1. MY FAVORITE NOVEL IS IN THAT PHOTO. sorry I just got way too excited about that. Its Kind Of A Funny Story <3

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    Replies
    1. I FEEL THAT THOUGH THAT'S A VERY VALID REASON TO GET EXCITED.

      - Ellie

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  2. I NEED YOUR BOOKS IN MY INBOX, ELLIE. Because EPICNESS (I love your titles, btw. They're just so...titley [wow aren't I articulate])

    But it appears that had a pretty decent year, reading wise, so HOORAY.

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    Replies
    1. Ahhhh, thank you!! I hope to draw Karissa to a close by the end of January. With the title change came a total overhaul of the format, though, which is a surprising a lot of work. (Also, I axed one of the main characters.) I'm so very sorry for not getting it to you in December!

      - Ellie

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  3. Ouran High School Host Club is so good! I really don't watch anime, but my cousin got me to watch Ouran, and I was hooked! I read Leviathan quite a while back and really need to get caught up on the sequels. Happy reading and blogging in 2017! :D

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    Replies
    1. Ahhhh I'm quite excited to watch it! The sequels are sooo good - Behemoth was my third-favorite book of 2016. Thank you!

      - Ellie

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  4. I can totally understand how SIX OF CROWS could've been disappointing. I found the sequel to be so.

    Also, I'm SO EXCITED to read MADE YOU UP. Like ... I'm psyched. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Crooked Kingdom was the larger disappointment for me as well. I was expecting it to be an epic finale that would redeem Six of Crows, and it just.....wasn't.

      I hope you enjoy it!

      - Ellie

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  5. It's been years since I read Blackwood Farm, but I remember loving it. I've read every Vampire Chronicles book and spin off but I'm not sure about the new one, so I'm looking forward to your review if you do one :)

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    Replies
    1. I'm just finishing it up now! Yeah, the blurb gives zero indication as to what it's about - basically, it's the origin story of Amel. I've enjoyed it a ton so far, and I'll almost certainly do at least a Goodreads review!

      - Ellie

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  6. Panbushed is the best thing I've ever heard! It's been years since I've read Anne Rice, she's quite the talk on Facebook in the last few years for her strong opinions. The Song of Achilles is one book that I'm desperate to read this year too, I feel like it's been on my TBR forever. 73 is an amazing amount of books to read, here's to a bigger and better 2017 full of brilliant books! <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ahhh thank you!

      TSOA IS AMAZING; I HOPE YOU LOVE IT.

      Thank you, and cheers!

      - Ellie

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  7. OH MY GOD, THANK YOU FOR THE SHOUTOUT! *blushes* You're way too sweet. Favourite of the year? You've made me day. <3

    Of Mice and Men made me blubber like a baby too! Man, that ending is brutal... And Truthwitch was phenomenal. I am dying for Windwitch's release. Four days to go!

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    Replies
    1. Thank YOU for the awesome blog!

      IKR?! I was so shocked! AND YESSS WINDWITCH. The cover is so gorgeous <3

      - Ellie

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