Happy New Year, friends. I hope you were able to spend the last few days of 2012 relaxing and spending time with family and friends, and that the first few days of 2013 have been good ones.
I know many of you are back to the daily grind, but I don’t go back to school for a few days yet, so I thought that I would do a little recap of the #LR2012 readathon and my reading in general in 2012. As it turns out, Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner does an end of year reading survey each year, and I thought that since I’ve shared a lot about what I want to read, but not so much what I’ve actually read, I might as well participate. So here’s a little about what I read in 2012:
1. Best Book You Read In 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)
I’m sorry, I just can’t pick just one; I read far too many great books this year, so I’m going to give you a top 5 (in no particular order):
-Take a Bow, by Elizabeth Eulberg
-The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green
-The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, by E. Lockhart
-Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline
-The Crown of Embers, by Rae Carson
(Believe it or not, I could probably include 5 more on this list. I read a LOT of great books this year.)
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
Burn for Burn, by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian
I kind of hate to say this, because I truly LOVE both of these authors. I didn’t think there was anything wrong with the book, and I don’t actively dislike it, but I was SUPER excited to read it, and I just didn’t think it was AS great as some of their individual books.
3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?
The Name of the Star, by Maureen Johnson, and The Mediator series, by Meg Cabot
I’m not generally a huge fan of ghosts, but I really liked ALL of these books.
4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green.
I recommend this book to pretty much everyone, regardless of age or reading preferences. It’s just one of those books everyone should read.
5. Best series you discovered in 2012?
The Matched trilogy, by Ally Condie
runner-up: The Books of Bayern series, by Shannon Hale
I was lucky to discover both of these in 2012, so I could move on to the next books right away, without waiting for them to be published (except for Reached, but I only had to wait a few months for it). Ally Condie’s writing is just beautiful, and Shannon Hale is an amazing storyteller. If you haven’t read these series, I highly recommend them.
6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
John Green-I seriously jumped on the John Green bandwagon this year. After randomly picking up Looking for Alaska on trip to a used bookstore, I read it and all of his other books in quick succession. I just think of his writing as very intelligent, which is something I appreciate.
Elizabeth Eulberg-When I pick up one of her books, I can’t put it down until it’s finished. I find her characters compelling and relatable, and the stories are great.
Stephanie Perkins-I’m a little annoyed at myself for avoiding Stephanie Perkins for so long. I LOVED Lola and the Boy Next Door, and can’t wait to read more Stephanie Perkins!
Shannon Hale-I’m just really glad I finally picked up The Goose Girl. I loved visiting the world she created, and I fell in love with her characters.
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
Between Shades of Gray, by Ruta Sepetys
I don’t love historical fiction; given the choice, I’d rather read something set in the present or the future (or a completely different world). But I do love Russia/Eastern Europe/the former Soviet Union, and Stalin’s reign of terror is something in which I am very interested. So I gave this book a chance, and it was amazing-heartbreaking and uplifting and horrible and very well-researched.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline
9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green
(do I sound like a broken record yet?)
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?
So I don’t seem to have the same passion for covers that many others who write about books possess, but I do like the covers of the books in the Beautiful Creatures series.
11. Most memorable character in 2012?
Ok, I’m cheating on this one too. I CAN’T choose just one!
-Frankie, from The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks
-Elisa, from The Crown of Embers
-Elliot, from For Darkness Shows the Stars
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green
(You’re shocked, I know. but the Matched series gets a very close 2nd place.)
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?
Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
While The Fault in Our Stars is my favorite book by John Green, Looking for Alaska introduced me to his amazing writing and was the catalyst for my reading all the rest of his books, finding the vlogbrothers, etc. Not to mention, it’s a pretty amazing book in its own right.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?
ALL of John Green’s books. The Goose Girl. Graceling. Several others, but since I keep repeating myself, I’m just going to stop.
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012?
“There are infinite numbers between 0 and 1. There’s .1 and .12 and .112 and an infinite collection of others. Of course, there is a bigger infinite set of numbers between 0 and 2, or between 0 and a million. Some infinities are bigger than other infinities. A writer we used to like taught us that. There are days, many of them, when I resent the size of my unbounded set. I want more numbers than I’m likely to get, and God, I want more numbers for Augustus Waters than he got. But, Gus, my love, I cannot tell you how thankful I am for our little infinity. I wouldn’t trade it for the world. You gave me a forever within the numbered days, and I’m grateful.”
-The Fault in Our Stars
16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012?
I didn’t really keep track of page numbers. I’m just going to say that Something Like Normal was pretty short, and I read The Mortal Instruments series; those books are pretty long.
17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!
Uh, Pandemonium, by Lauren Oliver. And Crewel, by Gennifer Albin. Crazy endings!
18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc)?
Well, obviously, my favorite romance was Hazel and Augustus, from The Fault in Our Stars.
But I also loved the friendship between Emme, Ethan, Jack, and Ben in Take a Bow.
19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously?
The List, by Siobhan Vivian
I’ve read other books by Siobhan Vivian, but this is by far my favorite.
20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else?
Well, I get most of my recommendations from book blogs rather than people I know in real life (as they tend to read actual grown-up books and stuff). That being said, I wouldn’t have picked up The False Princess at all if I hadn’t seen it reviewed on several blogs, and it was a great book.
Ok, I know this is getting pretty long, but I also wanted to just do a quick (and belated) recap of the Last Reads of 2012 readathon.
You might remember that I set a goal of reading 10 books during the readathon, to get to a total of 156 books for 2012. I also hoped to participate in a number of the challenges that other bloggers were hosting. Well, I kind of slacked off in the challenge department (though I did complete a few), but I actually read 11 books, for a total of 157 for the year. The books I ended up reading during the readathon were:
1. Lola and the Boy Next Door, by Stephanie Perkins
2. Long May She Reign, by Ellen Emerson White
3. A World Away, by Nancy Grossman
4. Beautiful Chaos, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
5. Bittersweet, by Sarah Ockler
6. The Lonely Hearts Club, by Elizabeth Eulberg
7. Let It Snow, by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
8. The Name of the Star, by Maureen Johnson
9. Getting Lost With Boys, by Hailey Abbott
10. Nothing Special, by Geoff Herbach
11. Love and Other Perishable Items, by Laura Buzo
So there you have it: a somewhat arbitrary summary of my 2012 reading. In an effort to be more organized in 2013, I’ve already set up a nice little spreadsheet for recording the books I read this year, so that I’m not scrambling in December to remember all those great books I read at the beginning of the year. I also set a reading goal on Goodreads, so if you’re interested in what I’m reading, feel free to check that out.
Once classes start up, I will probably start blogging about library school stuff again in addition to reading stuff. Until then, I hope you’re enjoying these first days of the new year, and staying warm!