Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 End of Year Book Survey and Happy New Year! #BestBooks2016


The Annual End of Year Book Survey is hosted by The Perpetual Page-Turner

Note: The survey is for books you read throughout the year, no matter when they were published, and is not limited to just books that came out in 2016!!


Number Of Books You Read: 

53 (only 7 shy of my 60 book goal!)

Number of Re-Reads:

2 - Dracula and A Christmas Carol. Both were audio books, and both are favorites so I know I will probably re-read again. 

Genre You Read The Most From:

Horror. This would have been historical fiction in prior years, and that genre did run in second this year, but horror won the day. I read some really great horror this year (which I review on my sister blog, Castle Macabre).

You can check out my year in books on Goodreads here.



1. Best Book You Read In 2016?

I'm not going to do a top ten list this year so I'm going to break this down by genre (if I reviewed the book, the title will be linked):

Best Historical Fiction - The Secrets of Lizzie Borden, Brandy Purdy 
Second place: Medicis Daughter, Sophie Perinot

Best Horror - The Night Parade, Ronald Malfi
Second place: Children of the Dark, Jonathan Janz

Best General/Literary Fiction - The Mountain Story, Lori Lansens
Second place: And the Mountains Echoed, Khaled Hosseini

Best Audio Book - The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins (narrators - Clare Corbett, India Fisher, Louise Brealey.
Second Place: Dracula, Bram Stoker (read by an all star cast including Tim Curry, Alan Cumming and more).

Best book published before 2000: Roots, Alex Haley
Second place: 'Salem's Lot, Stephen King

Best Poetry: Paradise Drive, Rebecca Foust
Second place: The Jane and Bertha in Me, Rita Maria Martinez

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

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Ransom Riggs

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

There's a story behind this one. I really thought the cover was so cheesy, and I remember thinking it wasn't going to be any good. Man, was I wrong. Just an amazing concept horror novel, but you see what I mean by the cover (just my opinion).

Hexagram, Duncan P. Bradshaw

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

The Night Parade, Ronald Malfi

5. Best Sequel of 2016?

The Secret Language of Stones (The Daughters of La Lune, #2), M.J. Rose

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2016?

Michelle Garza and Melissa Lason, authors of Mayan Blue, a fantastic horror novel I read and reviewed this year. They were dubbed The Sisters of Slaughter by the editors of Fireside Press. That is a most worthy moniker for them.

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

This did not apply this year

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

This was a tie between The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins and Wolf Land, Jonathan Janz

9. Book You Read In 2016 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens - I read it almost every year. The last two times, I listened on audio. This year it was an Alison Larkin production and it was wonderful. Click the title to read my review.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2016?

Too hard to choose just one!



11. Most memorable character of 2016?

Lizzie Borden



12. Most beautifully written book read in 2016?



13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2016?


14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2016 to finally read?

See #13 above.

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2016?

I know there were many, and I'm sure I quoted a bunch in reviews, but I never write them down. That ends in the new year. Book journal will be utilized! These two I did remember though, so I knew to go back to them.

This one is from Hexagram by Duncan P. Bradshaw...

"Look what we do as people. We've spent our entire time killing each other and everything else on this planet. We invented religion so that people can kill other people who believe in something different, or to offer some hint of better things when you've gone through your entire life serving those with power. It's bullshit. We're supposed to evolve as a species, yet it feels like all we do is go backwards. We find new and inventive ways of killing each other and ruining the planet..."

This is the line from my review introducing this sonnet from Paradise Drive by Rebecca Foust...

I leave you with this final sonnet, which speaks to my love of books and reading, to the mother who instilled that love in me, and to the validity of the escape and redemption that can come from reading a book...

Forgotten Image

Your mother, reading on the stairs in light
poured in a wide shaft. At night, shadows,
soft thuds and pleading, clink-clink of his ice
in the glass. Your mother, reading. Light seen
through a chink in a cellar wall. The attic air,
dry and danced with bright motes. You know
it's there, at the top of the house, the stairs
you must muster the mind to ascend. But how?
Where is the first step? Your old notebooks,
dust-felted, stacked up somewhere. Your mother,
reading. The sense of another life, inside
and outside the walls. An attic, other upper rooms
in the home. Other homes. You are a mother now,
too--so many open mouths, so much to do--
your mother reading, reading herself alive. Showing you.


16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2016?

Shortest - Saris and a Single Malt, Sweta Srivastava Vikram, 46 pages
Longest - Roots, Alex Haley, 688 pages

17. Book That Shocked You The Most

Hands down! (My review will explain why)


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

I didn't really fan girl over any one true pairing in the books I read. I'm old, I guess. 😉

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

David Arlen and his daughter, Ellie in The Night Parade by Ronald Malfi.

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2016 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

The Secrets of Lizzie Borden by Brandy Purdy

21. Best Book You Read In 2016 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

N/A

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?

N/A

23. Best 2016 debut you read?

I'm going to go with Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt. While not technically a debut, it did debut in the United States in 2016. It became a best seller in the Netherlands and was translated and released for the first time in the U.S. in 2016. Apparently, Warner Bros. is developing a TV series. That should be interesting!


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

Hexagram by Duncan P. Bradshaw

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

The Lion in the Box by Marguerite de Angeli

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2016?

The Mountain Story by Lori Lansens
Roots by Alex Haley
And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

The Candle Giver by Barbara Briggs Ward - Honestly, Barbara writes such wonderful Christmas books.

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Roots by Alex Haley

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2016?

Tie between Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt and Hexagram by Duncan P. Bradshaw

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

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins - I loved this book, but it made me mad as hell. I've never wanted to punch a bunch of characters as much as in this book. 😁


1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2015 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2017?

Um, there are a bunch, but there are actually two that I've been really thinking about...

The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice - I actually started this in 2015 and had to put it aside (no, I was not hating it...everyone knows Anne is my favorite author). Mom bought me Anne's most recent release, Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis for Christmas, and I have got to get busy reading the other books in the series so I can get to it. I suppose I could read out of order. My whole love affair with Anne's books began when I read the third Vampire Chronicles book first, The Queen of the Damned, and it remains my favorite book of all time. Something to think about.

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin - This remains one of my most favorite series of all time (so far...I've only read books one and two) and I want to continue on. It's time.

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2017 (non-debut)?

Two EmpressesBrandy Purdy

3. 2017 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

Talon of God, Wesley Snipes - purely because I'm such a big fan of him in the Blade movies. I'd like to see if his writing is any good.

4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2017?

Winds of Winter, George R.R. Martin (if it does get released...rumor says this year)

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2017?

I recently had a talk with myself (yes, I do that) and basically it involved my thinking that there is no reason I can't read more than I do. My goal is to read at least 100 pages each day. Let's face it. 100 pages is really not that much in the grand scheme of things, so I really don't see that as an unaccomplishable goal, and if I can read more than 100, it will really up the ante on my reading.

I need to write more reviews. Meaning...review the books that I read that aren't for review, even if it's just short and sweet.

Get back to writing my A Reading Life posts each week. I have two features on this blog, Cat Thursday, which I'm pretty great at keeping up with, and the aforementioned on which I have severely slacked. I will try.

Any year of reading is a great year, no matter how crappy the year was. Am I right?
How was your reading year?

Wishing you all much health, peace and prosperity...Happy New Year!


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4 comments:

I apologize for word verification, but I turned it off and had close to 50 spam comments within 12 hours (nobody has time for that) so I had to turn it back on. Sorry!

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  1. Roots was on my favorite list when I first read it a few years ago. Should be required reading (at least parts!). I listened to Girl on the Train this year too - now I need to see the movie!

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  2. You had a great year. Happy 2017!

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  3. The Mountain Story was so good--I had never heard of it before you put it on the list for Tuesday Book Talk, but I am so glad I read it. I'm with you on Girl on a Train--couldn't put it down despite frustrating characters. Also underwhelmed with Miss Peregrine.

    Also, thanks for hosting the Roots read-a-long. Can't believe it took me so long to read it. Sobering and heartbreaking and something we all should read.

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  4. Love reading these recap posts...though I know how much work goes into them...mine took me about 7 hrs no joke! lol

    I really need to read Hex. And I so agree about Girl on the Train. Wonder how the movie compares. Maybe they won't all be as annoying! lol

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