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2017 End of Year Book Survey

Created & Hosted by Jamie from Perpetual Page-Turner
I always look forward to these end of year recap posts because there's something I love about reflection. It's nice to stop, think back over what's happened this year and gather my thoughts before starting the new year! I intended to finish this poster sooner, but alas... life happens. Hope you'll indulge me as I chat once more about 2017!

1. Number of Books You Read: 151 books
2. Number of Re-Reads: 15 re-reads
3. Genre You Read the Most From: Contemporary

1. Best book you read in 2017?
I CAN'T CHOOSE JUST ONE, but if I have to narrow it down to one book per genre:


CONTEMPORARY | The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson

FANTASY | A Court of Wings & Ruin (and Tower of Dawn) by Sarah J. Maas

SCI FI | Illuminae and Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

HISTORICAL | The Alice Network by Kate Quinn


MYSTERY | Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil by Melina Marchetta

ROMANCE | The Winter Bride by Anne Gracie

NEW ADULT | No Limits by Ellie Marney

NON-FICTION | Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
Honestly, there are so many I could have mentioned! Check out my top twenty of the year. But just keep reading...

A Note: I challenged myself not to repeat any books in the answers below so that I could highlight a great variety of books. It was difficult, but it helped me avoid using my twenty favorite books for every question!


2. Book you were excited about & thought you were going to love more but didn't?
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I couldn't wait for more from this favorite author, and then I just didn't click with the characters in this one. Everyone was so unlikeable, and nothing about it felt like a TJR to me.

3. Most surprising (in a good or bad way) book of 2017?

IN A GOOD WAY | The Mothers by Brit Bennett. I hated the cover and wasn't intrigued by the summary, but Cassie convinced me to try it. I ended up loving it, which took me by surprise. I'm so glad I tried it!

IN A BAD WAY | I didn't hate it by any means, but I was surprised by how meh I was on Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce. Maybe I had too high of expectations based on the hype + didn't have the nostalgia factor?

4. Book you "pushed" the most people to read in 2017?
I don't know how many people have actually read it, but I've tried my best to push The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson on everyone I know. I adored this book on so many levels, and I think it's so relevant right now.


5. Best series you started in 2017? Best sequel of 2017? Best series ender of 2017? Best series overall in 2017?

STARTED | I started so many excellent series in 2017, but I've got to go with Illuminae and Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I didn't these would work for me, but I'm obsessed! They're so creative and compelling.

SEQUEL | I've got to hand it to Someone to Wed by Mary Balogh, the third book in the Westcott series. I wasn't sold on the series after the first book, but I found myself more interested in the second. Then, the third just swept me away!

ENDER | There were a lot of wonderful series enders in 2017, but I'd say Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han. I didn't think the second book was necessary, but now I'm glad it became a trilogy. This one was excellent!

OVERALL | With so many series binges to choose from (and keeping in mind that I'm trying not to duplicate books), I think my favorite overall was the Blue Heron series by Kristan Higgins. I read all five in a weekend!

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2017?
Without a doubt, it's Kristan Higgins. I read my first book by her in June, and by December I'd finished 15 titles from her backlist. I'm obsessed! Here's the rest of my list of favorite new-to-me authors I read in 2017.


7. Best book from a genre you don't typically read?
I haven't read many parenting books yet, though I'm sure I'll get there by the true toddler years, and I definitely reach for psychology books. That's what makes it so surprising that I read (and loved!) Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood by Lisa Damour. And I don't even have a daughter!

8. Most action-packed, thrilling, unputdownable book in 2017?
After obsessing over the first book, I had high hopes for Corruption by Jessica Shirvington. Thankfully, it didn't disappoint! I couldn't put it down once I'd started it, and I loved the way Shirvington brought everything to a close.

9. Book you read in 2017 that you are most likely to re-read next year?
Aside from books in a series that I might re-read prior to the next release, I'm leaning towards The Winter Bride by Anne Gracie. This is the book that really sold me on her historical romances, and I'm already dying to revisit this couple!

10. Most memorable character in 2017?
I've got to highlight Yael from Wolf by Wolf and Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin. She's a survivor driven by her need for justice and revenge against the people who've taken everything from her. Her story was unforgettable!


11. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2017?
Here are four of my favorites: Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley, The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan, When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon and The City Baker's Guide to Country Living by Louise Miller.


12. Most beautifully written book read in 2017?
I don't think it's necessarily the most beautifully written, but this seemed like the best place to talk about Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil by Melina Marchetta. No matter what she's writing - mystery, contemporary, fantasy - and whether it's for adults or teenagers, the writing always stands out. It's so intelligent and intentional!

13. Most thought-provoking book in 2017?
It's been almost a year since I finished it, and I still think about Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. A book about our justice system wouldn't normally be on my radar, but I'm so glad I read -- even thought it absolutely broke my heart.

14. Book you can't believe you waited UNTIL 2017 to finally read?
I bought The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon around the time it came out -- August 2013 -- and there it sat on my shelves until this year. I'm so glad I finally picked it up in time to attend Samantha Shannon's signing in Atlanta!

15. Book that shocked you the most?
There were definitely some twists and turns in Along the Infinite Sea by Beatriz Williams that I didn't see coming. I loved that it was shocking but still somehow felt so right. You'll see what I mean if you read it!

16. Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2017?
I only chose passages from books that aren't otherwise mentioned in this post:

“Science has taught me that everything is more complicated than we first assume, and that being able to derive happiness from discovery is a recipe for a beautiful life.” -- Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

“I might have my own ideas on what I think is the best way to help other people, but until I know who other people are, I also have the potential of disempowering them or recklessly hurting them in the process. And that takes time, time spent together and time spent building a solid relationship. That takes forgetting the goal of becoming a helper to the helped and focusing on a deeper compassion that is found in mutual friendship.” -- Here Goes Nothing by Kendra Broekhuis

“That is the motto women should constantly repeat [...] -- Good for her! Not for me.” -- Yes Please by Amy Poehler

17. Shortest & longest book you read in 2017?
The shortest was Lift by Kelly Corrigan at 96 pages, and the longest was A Court of Wings and Roses by Sarah J. Maas at 706 pages. And that's what I would have guessed before I checked Goodreads, too!


18. OTP of the year?
OBVIOUSLY, it's in A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas. The only reason I didn't use this book for a million other answers was because it belonged here -- just like Feyre and Rhysand belong together.

19. Favorite non-romantic relationship of the year?

CO-WORKERS | A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn featured a feisty heroine, Veronica Speedwell, and her crotchety sidekick, Stoker. There's enough banter and tension to signal a future romance, but it's not there yet.

FRIENDSHIP | Emery Lord excels at writing strong friend groups, and that was certainly true in The Names They Gave Us. And I enjoyed the fact that it featured friendships formed at summer camp rather than at school!

SIBLINGS | Oh man, the siblings in Far from the Tree by Robin Benway just brought me to tears. I loved this story about finding your roots, and it felt like a love letter to families in all their imperfection.


PARENT-CHILD | Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan was a memoir that explored the relationship between a mother and her daughter, and I absolutely loved it and immediately bought a copy for my mama to read.

20. Favorite book you read in 2017 from an author you've read previously?

ADULT | I couldn't wait to get my hands on Close Enough to Touch by Colleen Oakley because I adored her debut! This one was just as wonderfully written, featured such memorable characters and had one of my favorite opening lines (ever).

YOUNG ADULT | What to Say Next by Julie Buxbaum was another fantastic read from one of my all-time favorite authors. I loved her adult fiction and have been so thrilled to see her popularity growing with her YA!

21. Best book you read in 2017 that you read based solely on a recommendation from somebody else?
I read On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins because Estelle recommended it to me on Goodreads, and I'm so thankful she did! I have no idea if I would have ever tried Higgins without that push, and now she's a favorite.


22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2017?
Major Caspian Harrison in Tiny Little Thing by Beatriz Williams was one of my favorite parts of that book. He's a photographer, war veteran and all-around handsome gentleman. What more could you want?!

23. Best 2017 debut you read?
I really loved The Jane Austen Project by Kathleen A. Flynn. It could have easily been gimmicky since it combines Jane Austen and time travel, but I thought it was so well researched and written in such a thoughtful way.

24. Most vivid world/imagery in a book you read in 2017?
I've got to go with Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas here. I wasn't sure what to expect, and Maas just blew me away -- particularly when it came to the world. I loved getting to experience the Southern Continent, and now I want MORE.

25. Book that was the most fun to read in 2017?
Despite the drama and emotional angst, I had the most fun reading Beatriz Williams' entire backlist. They weren't "fun" in the expected sense, but I binged them at the same time as Kelly and that made the experience unforgettable.

26. Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2017?
I can still remembering bawling in bed at 1 a.m. after I finished The Memory Book by Lara Avery. Even though the beginning makes no secret about where the story is headed, it absolutely broke my heart into a thousand pieces.


27. Hidden gem of the year?
I'm shocked that No Limits by Ellie Marney only has 111 ratings on Goodreads. WHAT?! That's such a travesty! I loved Marney's Every series, but I thought this spin-off was even better. I adored everything about it!

28. Book that crushed your soul?
This was a tough one, but I've got to say that The Alice Network by Kate Quinn totally broke me -- but still managed to put me back together by the end. That's was the best kind of soul-crushing read, in my opinion!

29. Most unique book you read in 2017?
It probably isn't that unique when compared to other books in its genre, but Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequest wasn't something that I'd typically read. I loved this food-centric memoir and the recipes that corresponded to each essay.

30. Book that made you the maddest?
It's 100% The Fate of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. I wish it didn't exist, and it made me hate the entire series. I got rid of those books so fast... It didn't help that I re-read the first two, so I feel like I wasted so much time

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2017?
I've really enjoyed The Ardent Biblio, which is run by Rikki and Michaela. From gorgeous photographs to thoughtful posts, there's something for everyone here. And I'm loving with See You in a Porridge, which I'm semi-convinced I've visited before 2017 but can't remember for sure. I get so excited when I see a new post from Kristen!

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2017?
My favorite full-length review that I wrote was for The Jane Austen Project by Kathleen A. Flynn, but I also really loved my Will You Be My Valentine? post where I reviewed seven swoony books for any mood.

3. Best discussion you had on your blog?
That would definitely be my post 5 Ways to Find Time to Read! I got so much great feedback on the post, which I really appreciated because the topic was something I'd been thinking about for months before I sat down to write it.

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
I got to see a number of fabulous authors in 2017. In January, I got to see Deanna Raybourn and Joshilyn Jackson. In February, I met Beatriz Williams and Karen White (and again in July). In March, I saw Colleen Oakley and then Samantha Shannon. But continue to the next question for the event that was at the top of my list!

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2017?
In August, I received an email asking if I wanted to moderate Sarah J. Maas' Tower of Dawn tour event in Atlanta. I read it fifteen million times to make sure it was real! The event took place in September, and I cannot describe how incredible it was to chat with Sarah and get my book signed to commemorate the evening. I'm so grateful for the opportunity!

6. Most challenging thing about your blogging or reading life this year?
Maybe realizing that I can't do it all? I knew it before this year, but 2017 reminded me that doing the hobbies I love requires me to be intentional with my time. And it's always going to involve me figuring what is and isn't a priority! I came to the realization that this space, which I still love, will probably never have the reach that it did when blogging was my focus. I'm not putting in the same amount of work on it now, and that's okay because it's what's right for me.

7. Most popular post this year on your blog?
There were three that definitely stand out from all the rest. The most popular was Five Reasons to Read Beatriz Williams, the first post in my Bestie Beatriz Binge blog event with Kelly. Next up, my review of the Haven Point series by RaeAnne Thayne received a lot of traffic -- which delights me! I hope more people find those adorable books. And finally, the Creating a Capsule Library collaboration that I did with Kelly, Alexa and Rachel was a hit! I absolutely adored how that post turned out. I loved that my three most popular are three of my personal favorites, too!

8. Post you wished got a little more love?
I'd probably wish for more feedback on any of my reviews (that age old book blogging complaint). But to focus on something more specific, I was hoping for a little more love on the 2017 recap series I shared: My Year in Music, Movies & TV, Beauty, Books, Obsessions and Adventures. It's my favorite type of post to read, so I'm always a little sad that it's not more popular. Maybe it's partly because that time of year is so busy for everyone?

9. Best bookish discovery?
I fell in in love with book darts ($9), book sleeves from Story Time Sleeve ($15), this Hunger Games-inspired tee ($18) and the app Hoopla, which allows me to borrow digital items from my library.

10. Did you complete any reading challenge or goals that you set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
Yes, I completed three reading challenges! For my Goodreads Challenge, my goal was to finish 52 books -- and I ended up reading 151 total. For the Picky Pledge Challenge, I read twelve books from my TBR that fit the twelve categories we listed. And finally, I finished the {Reading for Fun} version of the Modern Mrs. Darcy 2017 Reading Challenge.

1. One book you didn't get to in 2017 but will be your number one priority in 2018?
I still can't believe that I haven't read Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor. I even own it in all formats!


2. Non-debut book you are most anticipating for 2018?
I can't pick just one! Here are just a few I can't wait to get my hands on:
But there are so many more, especially in the later half of the year!


3. 2017 debut you are most anticipating?
On the adult side of things, I'm currently most interested in Island of Sweet Pies and Soldiers by Sara Ackerman (our February 13 and set in Hawaii during WWII) and My Oxford Year by Julia Whelan (out April 24 and all about falling in love in Oxford).

As for young adult, I'm definitely curious about Sweet Black Waves by Kristina Peréz (out June 5 and inspired by Tristan and Eseult!) and Always Never Yours by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka (out May 22 and set in the world of high school theater).

4. Series ending you are most anticipating in 2018?
Without a doubt, the final Throne of Glass book by Sarah J. Maas.

5. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging in 2018?
Honestly, I really just want to blog more consistently! It's not always my priority, but there are definitely ways I could find more time do it. I'll never post five days a week like before, but I'd love to aim two posts per week on average.

6. A 2018 release you've already read and recommend to everyone?
At the end of 2017, I'd only finished one 2018 release - The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory. But, thankfully, I truly enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it to fans of contemporary romance!

WHEW! If you completed the survey, leave a link below.
I'd love to see what made your list for 2017!

4 comments

  1. Great year! You blew your Goodreads goal out of the water :)

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  2. It made me sad that you were sad about the lack on comments on your Music, Movies, TV... post! Those are actually my favorite posts to read since I'm always open to suggestions for new entertainment. I'm just really crappy at commenting. I tend to forget who suggested what, or by the time I get to the book I picked up because of you, I've completely forgotten where I got the suggestion in the first place. But please know that I love your posts and reviews! I've got 8 other tabs open just from this post alone. Hopefully I'll be making a list of books to look for at the library. Thank you for all you do for your posts - even though I rarely comment, I definitely read and appreciate it!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for such a thoughtful comment, Aryn! I completely agree -- I'm crappy at commenting & then forget where I saw something recommended by the time I get around to reading/trying/watching it. I appreciate that you took the time to be so encouraging! And I'm so thrilled to hear that you've enjoyed many of the posts that I've loved writing. I hope you love some of the books that I've mentioned in this post! xo

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