Greetings and salutations! I realised the other day I hadn’t yet completed this annual survey (which just isn’t on since I have completed it every single year since starting a blog back in 2013). This survey which was created and still hosted by the lovely Jamie @ The Perpetual Page-Turner (more details here).
end of year survey: 2019 reading stats
number of books you read: 112
number of re-reads: 14
genre you read the most from: contemporary
For the first time (ever!) I ended up reading more contemporary than fantasy novels! Honestly, that has never happened before as fantasy is usually my go-to genre but I seemed to be on a bit of a contemporary kick this year and I easily read double the amount of contemporaries that I did fantasies. I’m actually quite amazed by the turnaround this year! I also didn’t re-read quite as many books this year as compared to other years.
best in books
1. Best Book You Read In 2019?
I’m going to have to give it to Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell (but it was very close between this and Queen of Nothing by Holly Black). It wasn’t quite the sequel I was expecting (and was way more angsty than I thought it would be but since I like angst that really wasn’t a problem) but the more I think about this book the more I get out of it. Plus, this book has Baz which no other book can claim. 😉
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer. This may seem like a funny choice (because hey, I rated it five stars!) but I was severely disappointed that Grey wasn’t the main character’s love interest. I found him so much more swoon-worthy than Rhen. So even though I loved the book, loved the main character and loved Brigid Kemmerer’s storytelling… I did end up a little bit disappointed. Still, the sequel is out soon and it’s Grey’s turn to shine so it’s all good!
3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
That honour would have to go to Kill Switch by Penelope Douglas. I did not expect to connect with Damon Torrance (I pretty much low-key hated him while still finding him a super-intriguing character) but colour me surprised; I ended up loving the tits off him (or, err something like that…) He totally redeemed himself in my eyes and ended up being my favourite male character in the series (though, Will could potentially knock him off the top spot – he hasn’t had his book yet…)
4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne: I loved this book and sang its praises absolutely everywhere! I encouraged my friends to check it out and they ended loving it almost as much as I did. I cannot wait for the movie!
5. Best series you started in 2019? Best Sequel of 2019? Best Series Ender of 2019?
Best series started in 2019: the Hazard and Somerset series by Gregory Ashe – this series is just indescribably good! I rattled through all six books in the space of about a week or so. I’m so happy the author is continuing with these characters in a follow-up series – they are just too amazing to let go just yet!
Best sequel of 2019: Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell of course! I have been in absolute hell waiting for this book to come out (even before I knew the sequel was going to be a thing!) Yes, I was a tad disappointed by the ending (or non-ending) but I knew another book was inevitable and it was soon announced so its all good!
Best series ender of 2019: It has to be Queen of Nothing by Holly Black… I would still say that the first book is my favourite in this trilogy but this was a pretty amazing conclusion to a series that I will always love.
6. Favourite new author you discovered in 2019?
I was really swept away by Mariana Zapata’s books this year (definitely an author to check out if you love slow-burn romances!) I still have two of her books I haven’t read yet (I’m saving them until 2020!)
7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
I don’t tend to read a lot of horror these days so I would have to say that The Twisted Tree by Rachel Burge definitely fits the bill. This spooky tale gave me shivers and was the perfect winter read.
8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
I would have to say The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis. This book was a total roller coaster of a ride… so much happens yet it had such a powerful message that really packed a punch at the same time. Definitely a contender for one of my favourites of the year.
9. Book You Read In 2019 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
That would definitely be Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. This book deserves all the hype and rewards – it was so damn good I couldn’t hardly believe it was the author’s debut! Honestly, such a fantastic read that I know I am going to return to time and time again.
10. Favourite cover of a book you read in 2019?
Ziggy, Stardust and Me by James Brandon – holy smokes but that is one gorgeous-looking cover! I might not even have read this book except for the fact that the cover drew me in right away (and the title too, I guess). I am so glad that I came across this book because it was amazingly fantastic and the setting was awesome.
11. Most memorable character of 2019?
Damon Torrance from Penelope Douglas’ Devil’s Night series, of course! I have read so many books with great characters but Damon definitely ended up being the most memorable overall.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2019?
Heartsong by T.J. Klune – I love this series and have been a fan since the very first book but I think Heartsong is my favourite. Robbie and Kelly stole my heart so even though I love Ox and Joe, Gordo and Mark (and I’m sure I will love Carter and Gavin in the next book) Robbie and Kelly’s story captured my heart and was just such a beautiful love story.
13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2019?
Goodbye Paradise by Sarina Bowen was for sure the most gut-wrenching book I read this year. Cults are so scary and I really felt for both Josh and Caleb (even though I wanted to strangle Caleb at a certain part of the book). These two damaged boys had a lot to overcome but they did it and were all the stronger for it.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2019 to finally read?
This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab – I’ve had this book since it was released way back in 2016. I finally read it earlier this year and can’t believe I sat on it for so long… this is amazing book, an amazing duology and I am so ready for anything Schwab releases next!
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2019?
Simon Snow, it hurts to look at you when you’re this happy.
And it hurts to look at you when you’re depressed.
There’s no safe time for me to see you, nothing about you that doesn’t tear my heart from my chest and leave it breakable outside my body.
This passage is from Wayward Son and it’s so raw that it hurts to read (but I like my angst so I can’t complain too much!) This book killed me but in the best possible way and I am so there for Simon and Baz finding their way back to each other in the next book.
16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2019?
Shortest: A Quiet Place by Peter D. Burchard – I’m not counting novellas (that would be cheating!) but this is my shortest full-length novel coming in at 94 pages (though the font is super-small, so…)
Longest: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata – at a whopping 673 pages this was definitely my longest read of the year (not including anthologies).
17. Book That Shocked You The Most
Our Dark Duet by V.E. Schwab definitely had a plot twist I never saw coming (and I’m usually good at guessing plot twists and turns). I’m not going to state here exactly what the twist was but it is pretty shocking.
18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
Simon and Baz. Always and forever. I will never ship a pair of characters more – they are my OTP of all-time not just this year.
19. Favourite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
Robbie and Gordo in Heartsong – their friendship/mentorship is just so sweet! Gruff Gordo with Robbie (original recipe Robbie and Robbie 2.0 – you’ll know what I mean when you read the book!) I love them both and platonically ship them so hard!
20. Favourite Book You Read in 2019 From An Author You’ve Read Previously
I would have to go with Master of Restless Shadows by Ginn Hale (I was so super-happy to get an ARC for this book). It’s no secret I will read anything Ginn Hale writes – I think she is a masterful storyteller and her characters are second to none. This book was everything I wanted and more and I absolutely cannot wait for the follow-up!
21. Best Book You Read In 2019 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.
The Flat Share by Beth O’Leary – I probably wouldn’t have heard of this book if not for social media so I’m glad I came across bloggers singing its praises on social media because it is a darling read.
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2019?
Damon Torrance, for sure (although Will… is pretty tempting too!) I love a bad boy but Damon might just be too much bad boy for me (except, not so much when you get his backstory…) Such a great character – you cannot help but be drawn to him.
23. Best 2019 debut you read?
Best debut would have to be Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. Words alone cannot convey how much I loved this book. It is definitely one that is deserving of all praise.
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
I love the world-building in the Cadeleonian Series by Ginn Hale. It is so vivid and detailed – you feel like you are actually in the world with the characters.
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
I don’t tend to read a lot of ‘fun’ books haha! However, I would say that Spellbound by Allie Therin was a truly lovely read (though not entirely angst-free!)
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2019?
I don’t tend to cry at books these days but The Place on Dalhousie by Melina Marchetta came pretty close. I love Jimmy Hailler so much and it was great to see the gang from Saving Francesca and The Piper’s Son back together again.
27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
Tempt by Natalia Jaster is definitely a book that needs more love. The whole series is woefully under-appreciated to be honest, but this one in particular I would love to see get more recognition. It’s just so good…
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
Wayward Son all the way! I always hurt when my Baz (and Simon too!) hurts. I just can’t seem to help it. And boy, did they hurt for the majority of this novel. It was realistic given the events of the previous book but still. It was a sore one.
29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2019?
I would have to go with Landline by Rainbow Rowell. It was a neat concept and I couldn’t always work out what the genre was supposed to be but it was definitely a book that captured my interest in a big way (and was laugh-out-loud funny in places!)
30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?
Ziggy, Stardust and Me by James Brandon – the treatment that Jonathan gets for his orientation is awful and even though realistic for the time (the book is set in the 1970s) it still made me feel spitting mad.
your blogging/bookish life
1. New favourite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2019?
Read With Cindy is a BookTube channel I discovered this year and I absolutely love Cindy’s videos! She is hysterically funny for a start and I enjoy her criticisms of books – even the ones I personally love.
2. Favourite post you wrote in 2019?
It felt like I wrote a fracking dissertation on Wayward Son when I reviewed it earlier this year! It was fun to write though (even though it is probably my longest post ever!)
3. Favourite bookish related photo you took in 2019?
This is probably my favourite photo that I took this past year. I like the simplicity of it and the DC Bombshell girls really add a bit of cheekiness, I think. 😉
4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, etc.)?
I haven’t really participated in any events this year really, though I have really loved being part of the ARC team for Natalia Jaster!
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2019?
I would have to say I have been pretty low-key this year. It has been good getting back into the swing of blogging more regularly again even though I do occasionally still take breaks now and again… especially when The Untamed is calling!
6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?
My anxiety has been pretty high this year which has kinda made it hard for me to respond to comments or comment or other blogs – I definitely need to do better next year.
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
An old post of mine Famous People on Book Covers got a crazy number of views this year for some reason! Not sure where they all came from haha!
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
My book reviews get very little views which sucks because they often take the most time. I spent ages on my Wayward Son review but it didn’t get very many views at all.
9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
I discovered Reader’s First this year which has been a bit of a godsend for physical ARC’s! Honestly, it’s very rare to find UK-based resources so this one has definitely been fantastic for me personally.
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
Err, not yet but there’s still time, right? Haha – hopefully I will at least get my Goodreads challenge completed because I only have two more books to go!
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2019 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2020?
The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern is definitely the one I most want to get to toot-sweet in 2020!
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2020 (non-debut)?
Brothersong by T.J. Klune cannot come out soon enough (especially since it was originally slated for release this month – goddamn Dreamspinner Press for being so fracking awful to its authors).
3. 2020 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?
All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace – did you say pirates? Hell yeah – sign me up right now!
4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2020?
Brothersong by T.J. Klune again, I’m afraid. This series has consumed me this year. I absolutely cannot wait for Carter’s story – it is going to be immense!
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2020?
I really want to be able to be more consistent next year. Have a reading schedule even so that I get to my review copies earlier and actually get the reviews out on time!
6. A 2020 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):
The Electric Heir by Victoria Lee is incredible. The first book The Fever King was good but this one was on a whole other level. I cannot recommend it enough and I will be buying it immediately when it comes out in March 2020!