It’s so hard to believe that the end of 2016 is upon us, fading soon into 2017. It’s just unbelievable to me how quickly time seems to pass as we get older…
Without further ado, I present my 2016 bookish survey! 😀
2016 Reading Stats
I read ↓
Being the silly person I am, I ended up deleting my Goodreads account about a month ago, thus losing my reviews and bookish stats for the year.
After regretting my decision to erase my account, I opened a new one and tried my best to remember my reads of 2016.
My final count is 25 books, which is awesome, considering how long I’ve been in the slumpiest of reading slumps!
I reread ↓
Zero. Zilch. Nada.
I’ve actually never reread a book, save for Beowulf, which I was required to read hundreds of years ago in both high school and college.
FANTASTICAL FANTASY is apparently my favorite genre; I especially love MG fantasy, like Rick Riordan’s books.
I also enjoy YA fantasy, naturally.
Best in Books
The award for my best read of 2016 goes to ↓
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier! This book is the perfect mix of confused romance and gothic elements! [my review]
The books I thought I’d love ↓
I wanted to adore Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake SO BAD; alas, I did not at all. It takes a lot to give me the creeps and I just wasn’t freaked out by the plot enough for my liking. [my review]
The most surprisingly good book ↓
I absolutely loved Insanity by Cameron Jace! I dove into this book without having any knowledge of what it’s about and was very pleasantly surprised to learn it’s an Alice in Wonderland retelling.
Being someone who judges books by their covers, I was prepared to dislike Insanity, as I’m not too fond of its cover. Since I kept being drawn to the book and was seemingly haunted by it, I gave it a shot and I’m so glad I did. [my review]
My ultimate recommendation ↓
I can’t recommend Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy enough! While I didn’t read it again in 2016 (it’s been a few years), the book struck such a chord with me that it’s the number one recommendation you’ll get from me.
Of course, I initially decided to read Anna Karenina due to its gorgeous cover, the one for Oprah’s Book Club, which I have posted here.
My favorite new series ↓
The Grisha by Leigh Bardugo is the series I read in its entirety in 2016.
Bardugo’s trilogy sucked me in from the very beginning and didn’t release me until the final page of Ruin and Rising.
I also finally started The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. I loved Cinder, bought the rest of the books in the series, and can’t wait to devour them.
Cassandra Clare is another author whose series, The Infernal Devices, I sampled in 2016. I really enjoyed the steampunk elements in Clockwork Angel.
The best sequel of the year ↓
Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
The best series ender ↓
Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
My favorite newly discovered author ↓
Jane Austen is an author whose work I had never delved into prior to 2016. I can’t believe I never had to study Austen in school; she was a brilliant writer and storyteller.
The best book from a genre I don’t normally read ↓
Unless you count Nancy Drew books, I don’t usually read cozy mysteries. I’m so thrilled to have been introduced to Meet Your Baker, the first in the Bakeshop Mystery series by Ellie Alexander!
I had a blast while reading Alexander’s tale, which is the perfect mix of mysteriousness, hilarity, and adorableness!
Gifted to me through a Christmas blog swap in 2015, Meet Your Baker was a true delight and I look forward to reading the rest of the series to which it belongs!
The most un-put-down-able book of the year ↓
In the memoir, Malala draws on the experiences she and her family had with the Taliban, which had invaded her homeland. [my review]
The book I might reread in 2017 ↓
Confession – I’ve never reread a book! I’d like to revisit Anna Karenina soon.
The best cover award goes to ↓
Slade House by David Mitchell has the most attractive cover of the year, with its bright yellow and a cutout featuring a creep show maze-y image.
The cover is what prompted me to read Slade House! As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a sucker for a pretty cover!
The most memorable character ↓
Mrs. Bennett from Pride and Prejudice entertained me more than any other character this year. Her snarky attitude and histrionics are simply hilarious!
The most beautifully written book ↓
I adore the way classics read in general and also love the writing in Austen’s Northanger Abbey, which I also read this year.
I can’t get over the fact that Austen only wrote six novels! So, I’m looking forward to reading the remaining four!
The most thought-provoking book award goes to ↓
I Am Malala, a firsthand account of terror in the Middle East, definitely made me think the most. Just imagining living in Malala’s world is almost overwhelming.
Thinking of life in Malala’s shoes and seeing my homeland ravaged by war and then being forced to flee to a foreign land is really scary…
The book I can’t believe I waited until 2016 to read ↓
I finally read Pride and Prejudice early in the year. This being my first foray into Jane Austen’s works, I am shocked that I never gave her books a second thought before.
I love classics, so it’s odd that I’d put off Austen for such a long time. Better late than never!
My favorite passage of the year ↓
“You can’t save people from the world. There’s nowhere else to take them.”
from The Girl with All the Gifts
The shortest book I read ↓
Coming in at 174 pages, my shortest read of the year was a trip down memory lane → R.L. Stine’s The Best Friend.
The longest book I read ↓
My longest read was Rick Riordan’s The Red Pyramid, with 514 pages.
The book that really shocked me ↓
Hmmm…I’d say that The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco surprised me. Reading it certainly made me intensely interested in learning more about Asian folklore; talk about creepy, which is right up my alley!
OTP of the year ↓
Tessa and Will just seem to be made for each other. If I were in Tessa’s shoes, I’d definitely be flirting my heart out with Will, probably the first fictional character I have seriously fallen for!
Favorite non-romantic OTP ↓
Their antics and banter in Cinder cracked me up and I hope Iko continues to make appearances throughout the remaining three books of the series.
Honestly, I don’t know why Iko would just disappear from the books, but, hey, I don’t know yet! 😀
Favorite book by a previously read-by-me author ↓
The Red Pyramid was such a terrific, exciting read. The first book I read by its author, Rick Riordan, was the fabulous Sword of Summer, the opener of the saga of Magnus Chase, in 2015.
I’m beyond excited to read ALL of Riordan’s books!
The best hyped book of the year ↓
I suppose this one has to be The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi. I didn’t get into, or get around to, reading much hype this year.
My newest fictional crush ↓
Since I was introduced to Will Herondale at last via Clockwork Angel, I am nursing a major fictional crush!
The best 2016 debut ↓
Chokshi’s debut is by far the best ARC I’ve had the privilege of reading and I can’t wait to get hold of the sequel, A Crown of Wishes, in March!
The most vivid setting ↓
The entire Grisha trilogy had my imagination flowing as I pictured each landmark and scene with ease.
From The Fold to the White Cathedral, Bardugo certainly created an amazing backdrop for her wonderful novels.
Reading and grinning ↓
Meet Your Baker by Ellie Alexander had me grinning ear to ear from cover to cover! It was such a fun find and I’m so glad to have given it a chance.
The most tear-inducing read ↓
Hmmm…none of my reads of 2016 brought tears to my eyes…
The hidden gem ↓
Meet Your Baker wins again! This was such a fun read and it makes me want to read a bunch more cozy mysteries!
The one that crushed my soul ↓
This is a boring answer → I didn’t have my soul split in half as a result of reading this year.
The most unique read ↓
My most unique read of the year was Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige. Among the first retellings I’ve read, I love Paige’s take on Oz and how she twists Dorothy into a wicked, spoiled brat.
The most anger-inducing read ↓
I don’t feel that I read anything controversial this year. But, I suppose of the books I did read, I Am Malala did make me angry because of the plight of Malala’s people at the hands of terrorists.
I really empathize with Malala and am outraged regarding the violence in the Middle East. It’s so sad that so many people have been, and are still being, forced from their beloved home countries by jerks.
My Bookish Blogging Life
My new favorite book blog ↓
THE BOOKKEEPER’S SECRETS 😀
My most amazing book review ↓
It has to be my Insanity review, which was the first I wrote for The Bookkeeper’s Secrets. It’s received the most attention of the whopping two reviews I’ve published so far.
Personally, I like my review of Margaret Atwood’s Hag-Seed. [my review]
My most amazing non-review post ↓
On my former blog, I wrote a personal piece about my struggle with depending on the computer/internet too much. I remember the post receiving a few comments from other bloggers who identified with my feelings.
My favorite bookish event ↓
I really enjoyed the bookish Twitter chats I participated in this year!
The best moment of my blogging life ↓
This year my favorite blogging-related moment came when Lila, the founder of this blog, extended an invitation to become one of her co-bloggers after I experienced some drama (see my next answer).
Lila’s and Claire’s kindness has blown me away, especially since we have different views regarding an array of topics. Both girls are so easy to communicate with and I’m already so proud of how well we work together.
Fun tidbit – all three of us are Sagittarius! I just think that’s cool, random, and wild!
I am honestly honored to be a co-curator of The Bookkeeper’s Secrets and to have found Lila and Claire! YOU LADIES ROCK! 😀
The most challenging moment of my blogging life ↓
This one’s easy – I felt blacklisted after the presidential election. I simply stated my opinion, just like everyone else, on Twitter and was immediately attacked, harassed, and interrogated by people I don’t even know IRL. I was also blocked by probably 100 people.
At the time, this BS seriously crushed my feelings. Now, I realize how ridiculous the whole thing was. I ended up unfollowing all of my former followers, so as not to accidentally strike up a conversation with someone who is no longer interested in being my buddy, all because of my personal ideals.
Sadly, I deleted my beloved blog, The Novel Orange, as I figured no one would visit again. Hell, I’d been ostracized on Twitter, why wouldn’t my blog be boycotted?
I was (and still am) completely disillusioned by the bookish blogging community, which I adore and was so very proud to be a part of. I assumed the group I’d discovered was universally accepting and kind.
While I am truly disappointed in the true colors shown to me by many, I have received heartfelt messages from others who feel the way I do and who sympathize with my situation.
To all of you who have been so supportive – I thank you from the bottom of my heart. ♥ ♥ ♥
My most popular blog post ↓
Since I no longer have The Novel Orange, which I erased in November, I can’t say with absolute certainty what my most popular post of 2016 was.
However, I started the first annual Year-Long Giveaway on my now defunct blog and I’d say it was most likely the most visited post. I remember there being at least 2000 entries in the contest at the time I called it quits.
The post I wish had gotten a little more ♥ ↓
Also at The Novel Orange, I wrote a piece in which I basically dissected the reasons I have a tough time writing negative book reviews. I was hoping for feedback from readers, alas, it wasn’t meant to be so.
Perhaps I’ll write another, similar post…
The best bookish discovery ↓
GIVEAWAYS and blog hops!
Challenge update ↓
I sucked at reading challenges this year!
Goodreads claims I’ve met my reading goal for 2016, which I changed from 50 books to 20 after deleting my original account and opening a fresh one. I was at least 15 books behind my original goal and cheated a bit when I started over on the site.
Along with ditching all of the year-long challenges for which I registered, I failed miserably at the short challenges held throughout the year. I think this was primarily because I, being overambitious, thought I could do every single challenge I came across.
I did better with blogging challenges, though. I had fun with doing a few Bloggiesta rounds and a discussion challenge, which prompted me to get a little more personal on my blog.
In 2017, I’m planning to quite obviously compete with myself in the Goodreads challenge as well as one other year-long challenge. I know I’ll join in on a read-a-thon here and there as well.
My priority read for 2017 ↓
I really want to finally conquer Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell!
My most anticipated read ↓
The 2017 debut I’m most excited about ↓
I’m so itching to get my hands on Gilded Cage by Vic James!
My most anticipated sequel ↓
The sequel I’m most excited about is definitely A Crown of Wishes.
Reading and blogging goals for 2017 ↓
– To relocate my niche in the bookish blogging community
– To avoid putting pressure on myself by going overboard joining challenges
– To read one book per week
This 2017 release comes highly recommended by moi ↓
Drum roll please…it’s A Crown of Wishes! 😀