End of year book survey!

Friday, January 1, 2016

CAN YOU BELIEVE 2015 IS OVER? I sure as hell can't. This year has flown by and now I'm struggling to stay calm as I realize, shit, its 2016. Er well, almost 2016. This was the year of books for me; I started my blog in January, along with all my social media related to it, and started stuffing books down my throat and taking pictures of them and carrying them everywhere with me and always adding more to my TBR pile and thinking "shit, that would look really good in a picture with my book." I've hit a whole new level of love with my books. Plus, I realized what I finally wanted to do with my life (work in a publishing house... who's actually surprised??), and I can probably thank the entire book community for that. Diving into the book world has made me realize that there are SO many jobs in publishing houses, and it's not just editing and marketing. 
ANYWAYS, let's get onto this delicious survey. Jamie from Perpetual Page-Turner has created this ahhhhhhh-mazing end of the year survey for books and I thought, damn, how easy is this? I was struggling to figure out how to format my 2015 post, and it's like Jamie handed me the mother-of-all belated christmas gifts. THANK YOU! And since this is a decent size survey, let's get onto it!

Number of books you read: 113
Number of re-reads: 3 (so I actually read 116 books, GOODREADS YOU KNOW THAT COUNTS!)
Genre you read the most from: fantasy/high fantasy

1. Best book you read in 2015?
Even with all the things I didn't like about Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas, it takes the cake for best book. My heart and soul are invested so deeply in this series and the characters that theres no way it'll never not be a favorite of mine, even if SJM screwed up the character dynamics and everyone was acting super weird and NOT LIKE THEMSELVES. The things I had been eagerly awaiting to happen since reading HoF occurred beautifully in this fourth installment and jesus christ, THE TEARS WERE REAL, PEOPLE. I can't even tell you how hard I cried once I finished it. Ask my mom. I laid on the couch next to her in total silence for an hour straight, staring at the ceiling and hugging QoS to my chest. I almost wish she had taken a picture of it so I could have shown my future children what I had liked to do during my wild teenage years. 

2. Book you were excited about & thought you were going to love more but didn't?
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir- this has all the makings of a fantastic book that a fantasy lover like myself would enjoy. And I'm not saying I didn't! But I gave it 3 stars. It was the kind of book where half of it was great, and the other half just fell completely flat. Major disappointment there.
Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma- ha ha ha hA WHERE DO I BEGIN WITH THIS BOOK? I don't even know. Our main characters acted like two years old half the time, they literally screamed at each other on every other page, and well... not to be a sappy, I-always-want-a-happy-ending kind of person here, but god damn it, that ending was completely depressing. Like, so completely unrealistic and horrendous that I couldn't even finish it. I had to skim the last quarter. 
The Selection by Kiera Cass- LMFAO America Singer. That's all I can say. Thank the lord Eadlyn is the polar opposite of her mother or else I would have possibly burned this series in my fireplace. A little harsh but seriously, you guys *eye twitches*

3. Most surprising (in a good or a bad way) book you read?
Hunting Lila by Sarah Alderson- I did not expect to love this book as much as I did. It took me completely by surprise because I thought it would be one of those "eh, it was good" 3 star books, but NOPE. 4 fantastic stars for me and a lot of swoon worthy moments with the love interest, Alex. HUBBA HUBBA *heart eyes*
Romeo Redeemed by Stacey Jay- I've never been a Romeo fan or understood what was so romantic about those two kids. Ever. But I'll forever and wholeheartedly be a fan of the Romeo Stacey Jay created in this gorgeous duology. Seriously. 5 BEAUTIFUL AND HEART SLAUGHTERING STARS BECAUSE WHERE ART THOU, MY KIND, SEXY, AND ENDLESSLY AMUSING ROMEO? 

4. Book you "pushed" people to read (and they did?)
Ehhhhh, this is a tough question. I don't have any bookish friends who seriously read my recommendations in real life. And even online, when I push books (which could span from The Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo to Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson) I never know if they actually do or not? And I'm not the only person pushing it. So. *shrugs*

5. Best series you started in 2015? Best sequel? Best series ender?
The best series I started would have to be The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. SO MUCH LOVE FOR THAT GLORIOUS BOOK. If you like multiple narrations, a witty and smart princess ascending her rightful place on the throne in an insanely badass scene that had me internally screaming with glee, an inside look at politics in a futuristic world where society has actually regressed, and literally the smallest romance in the history of romances? This book is for you!
Best sequel is The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater. I just... I love those characters so much and I can NOT accept the final book coming out this year. I need about 10 million more books about them, thank you very much.
Best series ender had to be Winter by Marissa Meyer. She slaughtered that damn book, along with my heart. The pacing was perfect, the plot rich and interesting, and it ended on the perfect note.

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?
SARA RAASCH! Her debut novel, Snow Like Ashes, was so glorious that I was immediately in love with her. The second installment just came out and it was almost as glorious! And she's also super sweet, I've talked to her a few times on social media and I've gotten nothing but kind and good vibes from her. If you ever read this, Sara, just know I'm still expecting the picture you promised me at Yallwest! Is it creepy that I took a picture of our conversation just so I had proof?? Probably.

7. Best book from a genre you don't typically read/was out of your comfort zone? 
This year was the year of New Adult for me. I had read one in 2014 (without even realizing it) and that was Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. I wasn't overly thrilled with it, but that didn't stop me from hunting down other books in that genre because I was intrigued. And that's when I found Colleen Hoover. If only I knew then what I knew now... GUARD YOUR HEART, MARIAH. COHO WILL RIP IT TO SHREDS. YOU ARENT READY FOR IT. HIDE! RUN! Loosing Hope and Maybe Someday absolutely destroyed me.

8. Most action-packed/thrillng/unputdownable book of the year? 
Honestly, it's a tie between Winter by Marissa Meyer and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Both of those took of sprinting from page 1 and I was head-over-heels hooked. Winter was just a bloody masterpiece, especially in the "let's overthrow the crazy lunar queen" department, while Six of Crows was the kind of book I'd look back on when trying to break into a prison or something. Let's not even talk about the characters, GOOD LORD. *clutches my heart and falls to the floor*

9. Book you read in 2015 that you are most likely to re-read next year?
SIX OF CROWS ALL THE WAY! Mostly because I always reread the whole duology/trilogy/series before the final book comes out (who told Bardugo it was a smart idea to make this a duology????). Also Snow Like Ashes and Ice Like Fire, These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner, The Queen of the Tearling, The Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater... I think you get the point.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read?
11. Most memorable character of 2015?
Scarlet from Scarlet by Marissa Meyer. That girl was absolutely fearless and took zero crap from anyone and I absolutely adored her. 

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?
Loosing Hope by Colleen Hoover- Like I said earlier, this absolutely crushed my soul. I don't understand how Coho is able to adequately tap into the feelings of these characters and make it so real. They're in these situations that I'm assuming she hasn't been through (I could be wrong) and every word is spot on. It's alarming. 
Did I Mention I Love You? by Estelle Maskame- From an outsiders point of view, this book is not the greatest in terms of writing. Hell, I caught some grammatical errors a couple of times. I also had an issue with the main character for a portion of the book. But maybe it's because of the way the author, who's 18-years-old, was able to portray these teenager in such a complicated yet beautifully simplistic situation that I fell completely in love with it. At random parts in the story my breath would catch at how inspiring and relatable her words were. 

13. Most thought-provoking/life changing book of 2015?
The Color of our Sky by Amita Trasi- This is a story about two girls living in India, one, Mukta, an orphan who was born into temple prostitution, another, Tara, living an easy life, and how they are thrown together when Tara's father adopts Mukta, yet tragically ripped apart years later when Mukta is suddenly kidnapped in the middle of the night. This story was so incredible, diving into the tender subject of prostituion and creating a story that was both heartbreaking and inspiring. 

14. Book you can't believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read?
The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer- I remember the day Cinder came out and thinking "meh, that sounds okay", and turning away from the screen and promptly forgetting about it. IDIOT, YOU SHOULD HAVE PICKED IT UP! YOU COULD HAVE BEEN AN OG FANGIRL. *shakes fist angrily at my younger self* 
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater- I'm literally so embarrassed of this one. Steifvaters writing is PHENOMENAL and I'm so so so SO sad there's only one more book in this series. I much prefer a torturous wait between books than devouring them all at once. I strive to be the OG of fangirls. IT'S MY GOAL IN LIFE, ALRIGHT? 
The Shatter Me trilogy by Tahereh Mafi- Ignite Me gave me life. I was simply a girl, floating along, not realizing that Warnette was MY ONLY SOURCE OF OXYGEN. 

15. Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2015?
"Behind them, across the hall, the dancers shattered their roses on the floor, and Aedion grinned at his queen as the entire world went to hell." - Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas (insta goosebumps right there)

"Words, I think, are such unpredictable creatures.
No gun, no sword, no army or king will ever be more powerful than a sentence. Swords may cut and kill, but words will stab and stay, burying themselves in our bones to become corpses we carry into the future, all the time digging and failing to rip their skeletons from our flesh." - Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

"She wraps her arms around my neck, pulling me in tight, and I swear I feel my soul brush against hers. I expand beyond the boundaries of Dylan's body, out until I am the waves crashing on the beach, the sun shining in her hair, the wind that sweeps over our skin. I am everything and nothing and exist only because this girl presses her heart to mine." ROMEO, O ROMEO, WHERE ART THOU DAMN IT??? 

16. Shortest and longest book you've read in 2015?
Just One Night by Gayle Forman was the shortest, 40 pages and Winter by Marisa Meyer was the longest, coming in at a whopping 824 pages.

17. Book that shocked you the most
These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner- *shudders* good GOD WAS THERE A GNARLY PLOT TWIST IN HERE. I remember gasping to so loudly that my mom heard it in the other room.

If you really expect me to pick just one than YOU ARE A CRUEL, CRUEL HUMAN
Warnette from Shatter Me- like I said, LIFE. OXYGEN. MY HEART BEATS TO THE TUNE OF THEIR SHIP NAME. 
Kady and Ezra- oh man. Not only was this book fucking amazing, but these two characters were SO BADASS AND SWEET AND SASSY TOGETHER.
Mather and Meira- I was unsure of this in Snow Like Ashes. I really didn't ship Meira with anyone, but then Ice Like Fire happened. And Mather's chapters happened. And that ending happened  And my heart exploded. 

19. Favorite non-romantic relationship of the year
This is my shit, especially platonic relationship between a boy and girl. It's so rare in books these days, so when it happens I SCREAM.
Juliette and Kenji- MY CHILDREN!!!!!! I can't even deal with these two together, I seriously can't. Kenji had me in stitches the entire time I read Ignite Me. I'll keep wishing for a spin-off series from his POV for the rest of my life. 
Cinder and Thorne- so much greatness. SO. MUCH.
Ben and Glenn from November 9 by CoHo- I was wheezing when I read the scene between these two at the bar. It was such a perfect brotp moment I had to put the book down and wipe a tear away. 
The Raven Boys and Blue- this crew, man. They're digging themselves into my soul. IT HURTS.
I had final brotp pair on here, a boy and a girl, but certain things happened in a certain fourth installment in a certain series that I may or may not have said was my heart and soul. *smiles nervously*

20. Favorite book you read in 2015 from an author you've read previously
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo- her debut trilogy, Shadow and Bone, is another one of my heart and soul stories. Mostly because of a certain privateer and a certain villian. I had a similar reaction with the final book, Ruin and Rising, that I did with Queen of Shadows. I remember that moment vividly. It was thundering outside. I flipped the last page of the book, my heart pounding. I stared into space for about 5 seconds. And then proceeded to wail over the injustices that occurred in there and how my sweet cinnamon roll didn't get his happy ending. This is the one time where I didn't get my happy ending (aka, the main character didnt end up with the guy(s) I wanted her to end up with) yet I'm still head over heels in love with the story. 
Okay, back to the actual topic: SIX OF CROWS! I don't read many heist books, which is absolutely absurd because I love them,  and this is YA queen of heist books. Throw in a quirky group of people who sometimes can barely stand each other and YOU GET THIS GLORIOUS AND MAGICAL BOOK THAT WILL PUNCH YOUR SOUL.

21. Best book you read in 2015 you read based SOLELY on a recommendation from somebody else/peer pressure
Nothing honestly comes to mind. Of the few that I've read soley based on someone else recommendation, I either didn't like it or it was only a 3 star read. 

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2015?
Tyler from Did I Mention I Love You?- so, so in love with this emotionally tortured boy. And his amazing sense of fashion. Gotta respect a man who knows how to dress. And speaking of male fashionistas...
Warner- this beautiful boy has, I believe, a color coordinated closet the size of my house. *raises hand* Hi, yes, I'll take that one, please. 
Kaz Brekker- oh, my deadly and handsome clean freak. If I ever need someone to rip out someones eye, I know who to call. 
Ronan Lynch- I know this wouldn't work out but I can't help but love him. He's so tortured and angry and buff and sarcastic and attractive and rude. That combination apparently turns me on. 

23. Best 2015 debut you've read?
The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall- oh MY GOD, YOU GUYS I'M SO IN LOVE WITH THIS BEAUTIFUL BOOK. Not only was the writing super vivid and engaging, making me feel like I was standing next to Avery in the story, but the plot, characters, and dialogue was spot on. This book gave me a serious case of wanderlust.

24. Best world building/most vivid setting you read this year?
Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima- this world was absolute insanity. You could tell how much effort Chima put into this world from how detailed everything was and how easy it was to picture. It obviously helped to have a map, but seriously. I probably could have drawn the damn map myself, it was that vivid.

25. Book that put a smile on your face/was the most FUN to read?
Again, The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall. Read my review, the first thing I said was that it was super fun. I was absolutely hooked!

26. Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2015?
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
Maybe Someday and Loosing Hope by Colleen Hoover
These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner
Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jar Kristoff
The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima

27. Hidden gem of the year?
Did I Mention I Love You?  by Estelle Maskame- if you're a fan of new beginnings, family drama, a very slighty angsty relationship, and seeing what it's really like to party in LA, then PLEASE PICK THIS ONE UP! Or really just anyone who likes contemporaries verging on new adult :)
Dead Ringer by Jessie Rosen - this book was pure insanity. The writing was a little stilted at points, but the plotline was so freakin crazy and mysterious that it hooked me in. You'll NEVER see the ending coming. Or if you do (like I kind of did) you'll still really enjoy it and be dying to get your hands on book two. The ending is wicked good!

28. Book that crushed your soul?
Queen of Shadows by SJM
Loosing Hope by Colleen Hoover
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Romeo Redeemed by Stacey Jay
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

29. Most unique book you read in 2015?
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff- told through medical documents, IM messages, files, schematics, interviews, and more, this was definitely the coolest book I've ever read. You would think that it would be hard to connect to the characters because of that, but SERIOUSLY I CARED ABOUT EVER. SINGLE. PERSON. Anytime a person would die on the ship it was like my heart tore into pieces. I don't know how I lived through it. I really don't.

30. Book that made you the most mad (doesn't necessarily mean you didn't like it)?
Did I Mention I Love you? by Estelle Maskame- OH MAN. It really takes a lot for me to get angry at a character. But Eden... this fucking main character. I couldn't deal with her in the beginning of this book. She was so judgmental and pushy, which are two things that I think are completely unattractive in a person. I don't want to get into it, since I'll most likely get heated (seriously, ask my mom, the poor woman had to suffer through my 30 minute rant), so read my review here if you're interested! If not that's totally cool. It's scary.
Queen of Shadows by SJM- I'm really tempted to rewrite my review of this book because I'm a horrendous hot mess in it. I'm all over the place. I blab about each character and don't even properly explain my feelings on the whole everyone-isn't-acting-like-themselves situation since I didn't even understand it then. You know what? I think I am! But anyways, I STILL get heated over the issues with QoS. DONT EVEN TALK TO ME ABOUT THEM UNLESS YOU HAVE A PLACE TO SIT AND FOOD TO EAT. 


1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2015?
Cait from Paper Fury, Natasha from Book Baristas, Abby from Crime By The Book, Alyssa from Swept Away By Books, Lillie from Little Lillie Reads, Rachel at Beauty and the Bookshelf, Krystianna from Downright Dystopian, Brittany from Brittany's Books Rambles, and Teisha from Girl Writes Reviews!

2. Favorite review you wrote in 2015?
My Night Film by Marisha Pessl review! It was so simplistic, yet detailed enough, where I got all my feelings out without spoiling things. Plus I used a lot of words I don't normally use (shoutout to Thesaurus, you the real MVP), and I sound kind of like a genius, if I do say so myself.

3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?
Anything related to the Top Ten Tuesday meme I do. The lovely ladies at The Broke and the Bookish have a once-a-week post where they ask a question, like your top ten favorite contemporaries, and you have to list them off. I'm a huge fan of lists. So I adore doing these and always get so hyped up!

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc)?
I went to my first book festival last April, Yallwest, which was SOOO much fun! I met so many amazing authors and had all my books signed and won so much awesome book swag and arc copies that I could have wept. And I met the Booksplosion crew, aka Christine, Jesse, and Kat from booktube, and it. was. so. nerve. wracking. but. amazing. *sighs dreamily* I ALSO GOT A SURFBOARD!
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015?
Getting my first request from an author! I can't even describe how excited and amazed I was that somebody actually wanted me to read their book. I was absolutely over the moon! 

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life in 2015?
Realizing that I didnt need to post something every day, or even ever other day. It was my blog and I could post when I wanted. I compared myself to a lot of blogs in the beginning, trying to mimic their techniques, but quickly realized that it wasnt my thing. It was turning into a chore, trying to come up with authentic posts every day. So now I post when I want and what I want. 

7. Most popular post this year on your blog?
My top ten characters who are fellow booknerds post!

8. Post you wished got a little more love? 
Ehhh, I don't really have one!

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc?)
Book Outlet was the best and worst thing to enter my life. My TBR would be half the size if not for that damn site. MY MIND IS TELLING ME NO, BUT MY BODY... MY BODY IS TELLING ME YESSSSSSS! Also, I discovered the bookstagram community this year and it has wholeheartedly changed my life. My TBR would also not be as big. Finally, the book swag websites, sweet baby jesus. My favorites are Bookworm Boutique and Evie Seo, their stuff gets me all choked up with the feels.

10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of the year? 
Yes! I completed my Goodreads reading challenge goal, which was 100 books. I read 116 this year!

1. One book you didn't get to in 2015 but will be your number one priority in 2016?
A Dream of Gods and Monsters by Laini Tayler- this is the kind of situation that confuses me as a bookworm. I absolutely adored the first two books in this trilogy. I finished book two and almost died at how incredible it was, and remember thinking how far away book three was with a sadness that only us bookish people understand. Yet, over time, I forgot how incredible it was, so when A Dream of Gods and Monsters finally came out, it didn't really pick up on my radar. And even when I bought it, newer books seemed more exciting! BUT, I am making it a personal goal of mine this year to read all the final books I have on my TBR shelf, this book included. 

2. Book you are most anticipating for 2016? (non-debut)
Uh *coughs* Throne of Glass 5  *smiles nervously*
The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater
Crooked Kingdoms by Leigh Bardugo

3. 2016 debut you are most anticipating?
The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry
Enter Title Here by Rahul Kanakia
These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker and Kelly Zekas
The Crowns Game by Evelyn Skye

4. Series ending/a sequel you are most anticipating in 2016?
Enders: The Last Star by Rick Yancey, The Fate of the Tearling by Erika Johansen, The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater, and Frost Like Night by Sara Raasch.
Sequels: Map of Fates by Maggie Hall, A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab, and Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard.

5. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging life in 2016?
That's a good question! I haven really thought of that yet. I spent 2015 creating my blog and finding my style of review. This year I hope to start forming more relationships with publishing houses and other bloggers and book readers. I'm praying to all the gods out there that I can go to BEA, since it's in my hometown of Chicago for just this year, and I hope I find my blogging friends there and can talk to them face-to-face! 

6. A 2016 release you've already read and recommend to everyone?
I havent gotten the opportunity yet to read a 2016 release! Harper sent me an arc of The Mirror King, book two in the The Orphan Queen trilogy, so I'll let you guys know how that is as soon as a I read it.

Seriously, this has been a crazy amazing year! I can't thank you guys enough for being so sweet and generous and reading my (sometimes crazy) posts. Cheers to 2016, my lovely friends!!<3 Also if you read this entire thing pat yourself on the back because this biotch was long


  1. I plan on reading Losing Hope this year!! Very excited for it. Those covers are gorgeous, especially The Wrong Side of Right. New Adult genre is great!! Which is why you need to read The Deal by Elle Kennedy :D
    When I started blogging last year and even this year I felt like I needed to post every single day. I would go to sleep at 3 or 4AM because I HAD to post something and that would drain me so hard. It's best to post when we have time and have the inspiration.
    Omg yes to The Love that Split the World! I so want to read that one and Crooked Kingdoms!
    I hope this year is great for you in blogging, books and life :)
    My survey :)

    1. Ahhh, I hope you love Loosing Hope! I'll definitely need to check out The Deal. Thank you!<33

  2. Great post. This survey takes so much time to do every year, I feel we should all be awarded a medal for completing it. QoS is a book that had me torn. I really enjoyed it in some ways and there was a lot I loved, but also so much that annoyed me. I definitely agree about the characters, they were not acting at all like themselves. I also wasn't a fan of the romance in QoS as it felt forced and I preferred that relationship when it was a friendship. I keep seeing so many people who were disappointed with An Ember in the Ashes, it's making me nervous to read it.

    Great answers! I hope you have a great reading year in 2016! :) Here's my survey if you want to check it out.

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