Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014 End of Year Book Survey

Thursday, January 1, 2015 with 4 comments


Every year, Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner hosts this end of year book survey to highlight the awesome books we've read throughout the year -- and, of course, to add a million more to our TBRs as we discover them on others' surveys. ;0) I've never participated before, but April has, and she had so much fun with it that we decided to do it together this year.

We read so many great books this year...this task is going to be difficult! Also, it's likely that you'll see the same books repeated over and over. =)

reading-stats-2014

Number Of Books You Read:


Jen: 222
April: 101, but I'm hoping to at least be at 102 by the new year. :) 

Number of Re-Reads:


Jen: 39
April: 1

Genre You Read The Most From:


Jen: I don't even have to look at my shelves on Goodreads to know that's fantasy and probably always will be. :)
April: I'm going to have to go with Contemporary. Close follow up would be Dystopian-ish books.

 best-YA-books-2014

1. Best Book You Read In 2014?

(If you have to cheat — you can break it down by genre if you want or 2013 release vs. backlist)
Jen:
Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe, #1)
Definitely this Beauty and the Beast retelling. It's no coincidence that my favorite book from the beginning and the end of this year were both based on this fairy tale. It's one of my very most favorites.

April:
I had to go with Second Chance Summer, just for the setting alone. It was so much fun to read a book that takes place right here in my hometown. 
Second Chance Summer


2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?


Jen:
In a Handful of Dust (Not a Drop to Drink, #2)
I loved Not a Drop to Drink despite the bleak premise and setting, but the follow-up to that novel just fell flat for me. Even though some of the characters from the first book were in this "sequel", I never connected with them the way I did in NaDtD.

April:
my life Next door
 I liked it.. but I didn't love it as much as I had hoped. I think that hype was the killer for me here. 

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read in 2014? 


Jen:
Something Real
I despise reality television, so I had some reservations about reading a story with characters who were on a reality show about their family. This book was not at all what I expected, and it actually ended up being one of the better contemporaries I've read because it focused on family and friends and fitting in rather than the actual reality show.

April:
Cinder
 I avoided this book forever. I just didn't think I would like it, but it really surprised me. Loved it so much. 

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did) In 2014?


Jen:
The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1)
I've given so many copies of this book away and forced so many friends and family members to give it a try. I still have extra copies on my shelf just so I can find new people to push the book on.

April:
Red Rising
  I'm so in love with this book, and I'm in love with it's sequel too. I have talked so many of my friends into reading it. Now if I could just talk Jen into it. Although, I have yet to read The Winners Curse. I think we should make it a point to read each others recs this year. 


 5. Best series you started in 2014? Best Sequel of 2014? Best Series Ender of 2014?


Jen:
Every Breath (Every #1)
Lucky Aussies have known about Mycroft and Watts for awhile, but we in the States have had to wait for their arrival. I've already read the first two books and am now dying for Every Move.

Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3)Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3)
I loved both of these sequels (threequels?) so much that I can't decide which one I loved more. :)

Dreams of Gods & Monsters (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #3)Ruin and Rising (The Grisha, #3)
Two of my favorite series ended this year, and they both went out with a bang.

April:
Bloodlines
CressIgnite me
 Bloodlines is the best series I started this year, What the hell took me so long? Cress was a fantastic sequel, and Ignite me... wow, what a great series ender. I know there were some haters, but I happen to love the hell of it. 

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2014?


Jen: Mary E. Pearson, author of The Kiss of Deception and the Jenna Fox Chronicles

April: Morgan Matson Author of Second Chance Summer, Amy and Roger's Epic Detour and Since You've Been Gone. 

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?


Jen:
I'll Give You the Sun
I don't read all that much contemporary fiction compared to some, and I read even less of the heavy-hitting stuff, the stories that are bound to hurt my heart and make me cry. But I learned with The Sky is Everywhere that Jandy Nelson can make it painful and heart-breaking while also telling a beautiful story.

April:
The Book Thief
 I don't typically like these kind of serious historical books, but The Book Thief was pretty freaking great. Depressing but great. 

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?


Jen:
The Perilous Sea (The Elemental Trilogy, #2)
It's not often that a sequel surpasses the first book, but this one did just that. I'm excited/afraid/nervous for what the third book holds!

April:
The Wells End
 This one is so action packed, I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. I cannot until March for The Dark Water. 

 9. Book You Read In 2014 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?


Jen:
Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe, #1)
I've already read or listened to this book three times this year alone, so it's a solid bet that I'll do so again next year. (But I can also promise you'll I'll be relistening to April's pick, too. It's one of my favorite audiobooks ever.)

April:
The Scorpio Races
 I will have to listen to this one again next year. The audio is amazing. I wanted to start it over the moment I finished. 

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2014?


Jen:
Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe, #1)Jackaby
Aren't these both just so lovely? They're just so eye-catching, and that hint of red on the Jackaby cover just POPS.

April:
Second Chance Summer
 I had to pick this one again.. because this cover!!! It's home in the summer time. <3 

11. Most memorable character of 2014?


Jen: Probably Guillermo from I'll Give You the Sun or Maeve or Rowan from Heir of Fire or maybe Jesse Dittley from Blue Lily, Lily Blue

April:
The coldest Girl in coldtown
 *sigh* Gavriel.. I cannot get that vampire out of my head. <3 

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2014?


Jen:
I'll Give You the Sun
Sure, it was purple, but it was still such a gorgeously-told story of love, family, friendship, and loss. (See, April agrees that Jandy Nelson writes beautiful stories, too. :D)

April:
The sky is everywhere height=
 I think it says a lot for the author that Jen and I both chose books by her for this question. :) 

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2014?


Jen:
Plus One
What would happen if a pandemic split the population into two groups, those that live in the daylight and those that must spend their waking moments at night?

April:
A Death Struck year
 This book is about Spanish Influenza. It's terrifying in a realistic kind of way. Makes you really think, ya know?

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2014 to finally read? 


Jen:
Vicious
Victoria Schwab is just amazing. I should have read this one the second it was released; it's so my kind of story, but for some reason -- maybe the fact that it's not YA -- I waited until this year to buddy read it with a friend.

April:
Ashfall
 I waited forever to finally get this book. I had wanted to read it since before it hit shelves. It was worth the wait. I loved it.

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2014?


Jen: "But what she didn't realize about Blue and her boys was that they were all in love with one another." from Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

April: "Time does not care how precious it is, how hard you are working not to squander it. time passes." from Maybe One Day by Melissa Kantor

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2013?

How I did this: Went to my read books on Goodreads and sorted by page number and just looked for what I knew I read this year that was the shortest and longest.

Jen:
Adrenaline Crush
shortest (excluding novellas & short stories) - 192 pages

Dreams of Gods & Monsters (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #3)
longest - 613 pages

April:
16143347
Shortest- 277 pages

Ashen Winter (Ashfall, #2)
longest - 576 pages

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)
Jen:
The Kiss of Deception
I so did not see that twist coming. I'm not even sure it was a twist...more like misdirection, but damn did it have me shocked and flipping pages to see where I was lead astray.

April:
The Secret Diamond Sisters (The Secret Diamond Sisters, #1)
 This will sound horrible, but I was shocked this book was so horrible. I mean, it was bad. I thought I would like it, maybe not be blown away, but wow.. just wow. I'm still shocked. It makes me mad all over again thinking about it. 

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)
Jen: One? For the entire year? Fine. Um...Blue & Gansey from Blue Lily, Lily Blue. And Celaena and Chaol from Heir of Fire. And Mycroft and Watts from Every Breath. Sorry, I just can't with the only one thing. That's an impossible feat.

April: Sydney and Adrian from Bloodlines. ♥

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year


Jen: Celaena and Rowan from Heir of Fire - They love to hate each other in the beginning, but then they find common ground and become each other's confidantes. I know some are hoping for more from this relationship, but I love it as it is.

April: Zoe and Olivia (Best Friends) from Maybe One Day by Melissa Kantor 

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2014 From An Author You’ve Read Previously


Jen:
Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)
OMG, this book was seriously adorbs. Such a great way to end this "series".

April:
17788401
 I've always loved Colleen Hoover, ever since I discovered her as an author. Out of all her new releases this year, Ugly Love was my favorite. 

21. Best Book You Read In 2014 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:


Jen:
The Summer I Turned Pretty (Summer, #1)
April wanted me to read these books so bad that she bought them for me for my birthday. :) I liked it...I just have to find the time to read the rest of the series now.

April:
11235712
Recommended by Everyone! lol. I should have added The Sky is Everywhere and Scorpio Races to this, because Jen recommended those and I adored them as well. 

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2014?


Jen: Mycroft from Every Breath, Rafe from The Kiss of Deception, Rowan from Heir of Fire, Micah from The Art of Lainey, Tamlin from A Court of Thorns and Roses & Ignifex from Cruel Beauty. I crush a lot and I crush hard. :D

April: Sean Kendrick from The Scorpio Races. I blame the Narrator. 

23. Best 2014 debut you read?


Jen:
Cruel Beauty (Cruel Beauty Universe, #1)
I think it's pretty obvious by now that this was one of my very favorite books this year. How awesome that it was also Rosamund Hodge's debut?!? And her second full-length novel is equally as amazing. (I'll be posting my review for Crimson Bound hopefully this week or next.)

April:
16101138
Loved this book. I wish it would get more attention. :) 

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?


Jen:
This Shattered World (Starbound, #2)
If I'd have done this survey last year, I probably would have picked These Broken Stars. This collaborative effort is just flawless and the world-building is beyond amazing. With each book, I've felt like I was completely transported to those planets. (I could also have picked Cruel Beauty here, too, but I really don't want it to be my answer to every question. :P)

April:
15839984
Ahhhh!!! This whole world is just incredible.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?


Jen:
Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)
As I said, totally adorable and smile-inducing. (Though, I should say, Lola is still my favorite.)

April:
15749186
Adorable and had me laughing for much of the time. 

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2014?


Jen:
The Assassin's Blade (Throne of Glass, #0.1-0.5)
I finally read this compilation of the novellas that came before the Throne of Glass books, and I knew bad things were coming, but damn. I still bawled like a baby.

April:
18053047
I bawled. I mean legit bawled my eyes out. Such a great story of friendship. 

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?


Jen:
Rites of Passage
This book wasn't even on my radar, and then I saw review after review raving about it, and I had to check it out. Turned out to be one of my favorite books of the year.

April:
The Kiss of Deception (The Remnant Chronicles, #1)
I wasn't really sure about this one. Then I saw Jen read and loved it, I had to see for myself. Fantastic! 

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?


Jen:
Lady Thief (Scarlet, #2)
I still don't think I've recovered from this one. Good thing the final installment is on the way.

April:
12970552
I didn't cry while I read this one. I think I was pretty much prepared, but it still didn't make the ending less crushing. I just got the movie for Christmas on dvd, so I'm going to have to relive the pain. 

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2014?


Jen:
I'll Give You the Sun
The prose is gorgeous, but it's the way this story is told, split between two siblings with three years separating their narratives that makes this novel so unique.

April:
12813630
Such a neat spin on vampires. I'm late to the game since it came out ages ago. 

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?


Jen:
Side Effects May Vary
I know a lot of people didn't like this one because of the supremely unlikable main character, but I thought her character was more interesting because of that. Doesn't mean I didn't want to smack some sense into her a time or two. She was infuriating!

April:

The Secret Diamond Sisters (The Secret Diamond Sisters, #1)
The underage drinking. I mean. lots of it, and the fact that they go to live with their dad because their mom has a.... wait for it.......... wait for it...................... Drinking Problem!!! And is in Rehab! 

book-blogging


1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2014? 


Jen:


I followed Cait back when she was still using Notebook Sister as the name of the blog she shares with her sister, Mime. Probably since before 2014, but I really started actively paying attention to these girls this past year. I haven't had a chance to chat with them in a bit, but I read all their posts and I can't get enough of their snarky, witty, Aussie humor.

April: I can't narrow any down. I've discovered way too many this year.



2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2014? 


Jen: Probably a combination of my regular review for Kiss of Deception and my Review in a GIFfy for it

April: Our joint review for Second Chance Summer, hands down.

3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?


Jen: I really liked our summer reading recommendations post because of the graphics, but if I'm going based off content, it would probably be our recent post on blogging stress.

April: Definitely the blogging stress post. 

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?


Jen: I got to attend the Texas Teen Book Festival this year and met some supremely awesome authors, including Sarah J. Maas and Marie Lu and Jandy Nelson.

April: In the Spring I volunteered for YA Fest 2014. It was so fun. 

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2014?


Jen: When April joined the blog, of course! =)

April: When Jen asked me if I wanted to join her on the blog. I was so freaking excited. Best decision ever.   

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?


Jen & April: By page views, it was naturally a giveaway post. But by comments, it was Jen's review of The Art of Lainey, though that's also probably because there was a giveaway involved, lol.

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?


Jen: Um, any of the reviews it took me two hours to write? Lol.

April: Same is my favorite. Second Chance Summer, Because I spent weeks working on a trailer to go along with it. 

9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?


Jen: Um, that would definitely be Book Outlet. I mean, I've ordered from their a few times now, and each time, I got like 20 books for around $45, including shipping. (This also might explain why one of my resolutions every years ends up being something along the lines of quit hoarding books and cull some books off those shelves. :P)

April: Audiobooks! I was always so insistent that I couldn't get into them, but Jen persuaded me to try again. 

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?


Jen: I'm terrible at reading challenges -- or keeping up with them at least -- so the only one I really participate in is the one on Goodreads. I've met it every single year I've done it, too...upping my goal by 25 books each year and surpassing it, too. I think I'm going to focus less on quantity this year, though. I want to just read solidly good books, not mediocre ones, no matter what my book count is at the end.

April: Not really. I kinda blew all my reading challenges just because of personal life changes, but my one main goal going into 2014 was to either quit blogging altogether, or find a way to make it enjoyable again, and I think I accomplished that with Jen's help. :) 


looking-ahead-books-2015

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2014 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2015?


Jen:
The Body Electric
I really liked the Across the Universe series -- though I still technically haven't finished it -- but I was always SO curious what everyone back on Earth was doing. I really, really need to make time for this book.

April:
Isla and the Happily Ever After
I've waited ages for this one! 

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2015 (non-debut)?


Jen:
A Darker Shade of Magic (A Darker Shade of Magic, #1)
I have this book in my possession and I've just been forcing myself to hold off till after I finished ACOTAR and while I caught up on a few January books, but it's been torture...torture, I tells ya!

April:

22392915
Loved her last book, can't wait to read this one. 

3. 2015 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?


Jen:
An Ember in the Ashes
This book sounds like exactly my kind of story: a Rome-like setting, a military academy, and what sounds to be star-crossed lovers. PERFECTO!

April:

We all looked up
This book sounds so freaking good! 

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2015?


Jen:
End of Days (Penryn & the End of Days, #3)Burn (The Rephaim, #4)Every Move (Every, #3)
Take your pick. Any or all of them may ruin me for all other books in 2015. 

April:

8709528
I would like to have this one like... yesterday. 

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2015?


Jen:  I really want to get that damned Review Archive completed. o_O

April: The Archive, for sure. We can do this! lol

6. A 2015 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone:


Jen:
A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1)I'll Meet You There
These are two of the best books I've ever read. I'm not even kidding. SJM is supreme queen ruler of my reader heart and her words will never be wrong. And I'm quickly discovering that pretty much everything Heather Demetrios writes is perfection. Like, I can't even...

April:

18966819
I'm almost done with this one, and it's pretty awesome. If you liked Red Rising, it will be a winner for sure. :) 




Well, that wraps up 2014 for us. Hope you had a great reading year and that 2015 is even better for you!





4 comments:

  1. Cruel Beauty was one of my favourites this year too and I intend to read Red Rising this year...

    Happy New Year

    ReplyDelete
  2. I keep seeing Every Breath in everyone's survey! I had no idea it existed, but I really want to check it out now! Happy New Year, girls!

    Marianne @ Boricuan Bookworms.

    ReplyDelete
  3. It's been a long time since my last visit, hasn't it girls?

    I always end up missing you two! Hopefully 2015 will be nicer to me, and I can come by more often. *squeezes*

    Okay, so I don't even know where to begin! You two read so much! I don't know how to comment on the books. lol! Be prepared for a long ass comment:

    I'm so HAPPY you discovered The Lunar Chronicles this year, April! It is one of my favorite series, and I know the three of us will have much to gush about once Fairest and then Winter hit shelves! I'm going to have to fit in a re-read, for sure! How about you two?

    Jen, it's awesome you gave Rites of Passage a chance! It was the BEST standalone of the year for me! That Drill tho? Isn't he somethin'? ;)

    Naturally, I've got to read Cruel Beauty! Both of you were impressed by it, so I've got to make it a priority in 2015! I've got my birthday coming up in March, so I know what to add to the wishlist. ;)

    Okay, Morgan Matson and Jandy Nelson are two authors I have to READ LIKE NOW! Both are queen contemporary writers, it seems. And I'm the only one who hasn't discovered that. I needs to fix this!

    As for those thought-provoking stories go, Plus One will be read VERY SOON! After all, I have it staring right at me! And though I never gave A Death-Struck Year much thought, I think I'll have to give it a chance. Both of these seem like they deserve the attention. :)

    I've got a lot of series to get to this year: Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Angelfall, (finish) The Grisha trilogy, make a dent in Vampire Academy, so I can read the Bloodlines series. I have to do so much reading! I can forget about sleeping, I think.

    I could go on and on (and I think you know this about me already, so I'll stop here). :P I want to end this by saying that I love what you two bring to the blogosphere, and I wouldn't change a single thing. I thank you for your friendship, and I look forward to getting to know you two better this year. <3

    Here's to another year of amazing reading and good times!

    Love,

    Marlene @ The Flyleaf Review

    ReplyDelete
  4. So many new ones to me on this list -- thank you! Totally agree about My Life Next Door!! Disappointing (but mostly because of the hype)

    My survey HERE

    ReplyDelete

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