2015 End of Year Survey

end-of-year-survey-2015

2015 is over and now it’s time to wrap up my reading and blogging year! I saw the End of Year Book Survey on Jamie @ Perpetual Page Turner‘s blog and I thought it’d be a neat way of reflecting on my year and looking ahead to 2016. There’s a link up on Jamie’s page of other bloggers who have filled out the survey, so head over there to check out some other blogs!


 

2015-reading-stats

Number of books I read:

read-books-2015

Number of rereads: 1 (Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone)

Genre I read the most from: Contemporary


 

best-in-books

1. Best book I read in 2015

all-the-light-we-cannot-see a-little-lifeill-give-you-the-sunAll the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr tops the list!

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara and I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson come in second and third. I have a full top ten books of the year post if you want to see more.

2. Book I was excited about and thought I was going to love more but didn’t

a-study-in-charlotte i-was-hereA Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro is a 2016 release that I read an eARC of. I love all things Sherlock-inspired so I was really excited for this novel. Unfortunately, I was a little bit let down.

I also didn’t enjoy I Was Here by Gayle Forman. I’ve loved all of her other books but this one was kinda average and didn’t do it for me.

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

finding-audrey Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella definitely was a wonderful surprise for me.

This is a book about a 14 year old girl who suffers from severe anxiety. I wasn’t expecting this novel to be funny but it was exactly that. There were so many hilarious scenes and I loved Audrey and her family. The book starts off with a bang and the rest of it followed in the same manner. I could not get enough of it!

4. Book I “pushed” the most people to read (and they did)

all-the-light-we-cannot-see miss-peregrines-home-for-peculiar-childrenAll the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr has appeared in almost every Top Ten Tuesday or tag post that I have done on this blog. My love for it has pushed some people to read it (thanks Aentee) or at least put it on their TBR.

Another one is Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. CW @ Read Think Ponder read it after reading my review (sadly, she didn’t like it) but I saw in the comments of her review that lots of people bought the book due to my recommendation.

5. Best series I started in 2015? Best sequel of 2015? Best series ender of 2015?

I think I can answer all of these with The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. Winter was just the most fantastic finale!

6. Favourite new author I discovered in 2015?

what-i-thought-was-true My-Life-Next-Doorthe-boy-most-likely-toHuntley Fitzpatrick! I’ve given all of her books 4.5-5 stars.

What I Thought Was True
My Life Next Door
The Boy Most Likely To

Patrick Ness is an honorable mention. I really loved his Chaos Walking trilogy and A Monster Calls but wasn’t in love with The Rest of Us Just Live Here (though I still enjoyed it).

7. Best book from a genre I don’t typically read/was out of my comfort zone

blue-lily-lily-blue the-coldest-girl-in-coldtownI don’t typically read a lot of paranormal fantasy books but I read and loved nearly all of Maggie Stiefvater’s books. My favourite book of hers is Blue Lily, Lily Blue, the third book in The Raven Cycle.

I also really liked The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black. It was a wonderful paranormal novel and I want a sequel really badly!

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

winter

9. Book I read in 2015 that I am most likely to reread in 2016

carry-on Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

It was fast-paced and magical. The characters are fantastic and I could read about them over and over again. It also has a really great romance and I could read about Simon and Baz over and over again.

I wanted to reread this as soon as I had finished it so I’ll definitely pick this one up again.

10. Favourite cover of a book I read in 2015

I loved all of the hardback covers of these books! The shimmer of the covers of All the Light We Cannot See and Blue Lily, Lily Blue are beautiful. I love the intricate illustrations on the Everything Everything and A Darker Shade of Magic (US) covers. And the cover of The Coldest Girl in Coldtown has the most amazing texture!

all-the-light-we-cannot-see   blue-lily-lily-blue   everything-everything   the-coldest-girl-in-coldtown    a-darker-shade-of-magic

11. Most memorable character of 2015

I had a hard time choosing since I loved so many characters this year. But I choose Nina from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.

Photo 30-12-2015, 2 22 30 PM

12. Most beautifully written book in 2015

all-the-light-we-cannot-see ill-give-you-the-sunthe-strange-and-beautiful-sorrows-of-ava-lavender All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr and I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson are my favourite novels of all time because of their spectacular writing. But The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton also deserves a mention!

13. Most thought-provoking/life-changing book of 2015

a-little-life I don’t want to put down All the Light We Cannot See again, so I’ve gone with A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.

This was a beast of a book (720 pages) and there wasn’t a single page in the book that didn’t affect me deeply. It was the most heart-shattering and emotional book I’ve ever read and I had the craziest book hangover after I finished reading it. It was a really dark but cathartic read and I’m so glad that I gave it a chance.

14. Book I can’t believe I waited until 2015 to finally read

the-lightning-thief I finally read The Lightning Thief and the rest of the Percy Jackson and the Olympian books by Rick Riordan in December!

I cannot believe I waited this long to read it since this was everybody’s childhood (to be fair, I didn’t find out about this series until last year). But I am now completely in love with Percy and Rick Riordan! I’ll be marathoning The Heroes of Olympus series soon and I also have Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods and Greek Heroes!

15. Favourite passage/quote from a book I read in 2015

I have so many favourite quotes from books I read this year (I have a whole Top Ten Tuesday post with my favourite quotes). For this question, I had to choose a quote from my favourite book!

“But it is not bravery; I have no choice. I wake up and live my life. Don’t you do the same?” – All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

16. Shortest and longest book I read in 2015

shortest-longest-book

17. Book that shocked me the most

crown-of-midnight the-knife-of-never-letting-goThere were character deaths in both Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas and The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness that really shocked me.

I think I’m still slowly recovering…

… nah, there’s no recovering from what happened. I’ll never get over it.

18. OTP of the year

carry-on Simon and Baz from Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is my OTP of the year! I will go down with this ship!

Some honorable mentions: I loved Kaz & Inej, and Nina & Matthias from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. I loved all four pairs of characters from The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. I loved Will, Tessa & Jem from The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. And Celaena & Rowan from the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas.

19. Favourite non-romantic relationship of the year

clockwork-angelthe-knife-of-never-letting-go My-Life-Next-DoorI loved Will and Jem in The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. Favourite bromance EVER. Todd and Manchee were adorable together in The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. I also loved George’s relationship with everyone in My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick.

20. Favourite book I read in 2015 from an author I’ve read previously

saint-anything Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Sarah Dessen was one of the first YA authors that I read when I was a teenager. 7 or 8 years ago I read everything she had released up to that point in time. I absolutely loved her writing and I’m so happy to be reading Sarah’s books again! Saint Anything was the most beautiful story about family and self-development. I enjoyed all of the characters and their stories. It definitely did not disappoint!

21. Best book I read in 2015 that I read based solely on a recommendation from somebody else/peer pressure

a-little-life the-knife-of-never-letting-goI picked up A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara after seeing Max (WellDoneBooks on Youtube) do a rave review of the book. And it turned out to be a great decision.

I read The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness after months and months of intense, non-stop peer pressure from Joey @ Thoughts and Afterthoughts and Aentee @ Read at Midnight.

22. Newest fictional crush from a book I read in 2015

William Herondale, of course ❤

Photo 30-12-2015, 3 15 14 PM

23. Best 2015 debut I read

simonvs I enjoyed Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli so, so much! It was adorable, sweet, funny and everything I want from a contemporary novel. It also has some wonderful messages about diversity and LGBTQ+ issues.

I am so excited that Becky is writing a companion novel to Simon vs and that we’ll get to read more about Simon and Blue. Also happy to hear that they won’t be broken up 😀

24. Best worldbuilding/most vivid setting I read in 2015

six-of-crows Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

I love the Grisha world in Leigh’s books so much. While I thought the Grisha trilogy was kind of weak when it came to plot development, pace and characterisation, I can’t deny that it had a great world. I was so happy to have a whole new duology set in the same world. Six of Crows took the world to a whole new level and the setting was so vivid. I enjoyed all the places that the book took us to!

25. Book that put a smile on my face/was the most fun to read

carry-on   simonvs   finding-audrey   harry-potter-illustrated-edition-cover

26. Book that made me cry or nearly cry in 2015

I am a book crier. I cry all the time. This list is never ending so I’ll just include 10.

all-the-light-we-cannot-see   a-little-life   clockwork-princess   the-knife-of-never-letting-go   the-last-time-we-say-goodbye   me-before-you   a-monster-calls   the-perks-of-being-a-wallflower   the-storied-life-of-ajfikry   if-i-stay

27. Hidden gem of the year

the-last-time-we-say-goodbye The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

I loved this book more than words can explain. In early 2015, I read a whole pile of books about depression and teen suicide and this novel tops the list for me. It explored grief, depression and suicide wonderfully. While some of the other novels with the same theme were emotional tear-jerkers, a lot of them either misrepresented depression or didn’t explore it enough. This book had everything!

28. Book that crushed my soul

Pretty much every book that I mentioned in Question 26. But particularly Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare. I remember having to take the next day off work because my heart was shattered from the feels.

29. Most unique book I read in 2015

illuminae Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

I don’t think there can be any other answer. The formatting of this book is just so unique and I’ve never read anything like it!

I was lucky enough to attend the book launch in Sydney and meet Amie and Jay. They were super lovely and I even though I didn’t totally love Illuminae, I can’t wait to read Gemina!

30. Book that made me the most mad

sway Sway by Kat Spears

I don’t think a book has ever made me as angry as I was after reading this book. I found it very offensive towards everybody and everything and I just could not  get past it. I didn’t see any character development. There was insta-love. The protagonist is a douche. The love interest forgives all his douchey-ness even though she dumps some other guy who was less of a douche. I just can’t.


 

blogging-bookish-life

1. New favourite blog I discovered in 2015

I only started book blogging in June of 2015 so pretty much every blog I’ve discovered is my new favourite.

2. Favourite review I wrote in 2015

I love writing reviews and I love most of the reviews that I have posted. I don’t think I can choose one so I’ll go with my most recent review (that isn’t a sequel), The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater.

3. Best discussion/non-review post I had on my blog

I haven’t actually posted any discussions on this blog (yes, I know). So my favourite non-review post was a Top Ten Tuesday post on dinner dates that I want to be granted.

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

I was so lucky to be able to meet Holly Black and Cassandra Clare and have my books signed by them in August. They were so lovely and it was an absolute honour to meet them (except Cassie was running a poll of everybody’s favourite characters so that she could figure out which unpopular character to kill off. Beware, guys). I also got to meet Sarah J. Maas in November and omg, she’s so funny!

cassie-holly-event   sjmaas-event

I also really loved participating in Top Ten Tuesday every week. I haven’t missed a Top Ten Tuesday since I started!

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015

The best moment was definitely being chosen as a co-blogger for Happy Indulgence! I love chatting with Jeann and Aila every single day. They’re so much fun to be around and we have hilarious inside jokes 😉 They’re also super talented and Aila draws us adorable things all the time!

cropped-hichristmas

happy-indulgence-drawing

6. Most challenging thing about blogging in 2015

I’ve been a bit lazy with replying to comments and blog-hopping lately. I used to reply instantaneously but now I end up replying to everything a day or two later. Hopefully I can change my habits and start fresh in 2016!

7. Most popular post on my blog in 2015

My most viewed post on my blog is my review of Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs.

8. Post I wished got a little more love

I don’t really have a single post that I think is unloved… but sometimes I do wish that my reviews of Aussie YA books or indie books on this blog were better received. They’re some of my least viewed posts but I love promoting Aussie books and self-published books.

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

I am so happy to have discovered HelloHappyCo on Etsy at the very beginning of this year! I have bought so many magnetic bookmarks from them, including the Six of Crows and The Infernal Devices bookmarks I showed above. I’m also happy to have discovered RedBubble. I buy so many mugs and fandom tote bags from them!

10. Did I complete any reading challenges or goals that I set for myself at the beginning of 2015?

GR-reading-challenge-2015


 

looking-ahead

1. One book I didn’t get to in 2015 but will be my number one priority in 2016

eleanor-and-parkLet’s be real. I have lots of books I didn’t read in 2015 that I’d like to read in 2016 (AKA my whole TBR). But I’ll choose Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell.

This was the first Rainbow Rowell book I ever bought and it’s now the only one that I haven’t read. I started reading it when I first bought it but then real life happened and I had to put it down after about 40 pages. And I have yet to pick it back up.

2. Book I am most anticipating for 2016 (non-debut)

lady-midnight I did a Top Ten Tuesday post earlier this week featuring all the non-debut early-2016 releases that I’m highly anticipating.

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare is one of my most anticipated releases of 2016. I cannot wait to start another Shadowhunters trilogy! I am also highly anticipating Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo, the sequel to Six of Crows. That one doesn’t come out until later in 2016 but I am already dying from the wait. I NEED!

3. 2016 Debut I am most anticipating

I absolutely cannot choose just one but I did a Top Ten Tuesday post on my anticipated 2016 debuts a few weeks back.

4. Series ending/a sequel I am most anticipating in 2016

snow-like-ashes ice-like-fireRight now I am most excited for the last book in the Snow Like Ashes trilogy by Sara Raasch, Frost Like Night.

Snow Like Ashes is one of my favourite YA books and I was really excited for the release of Ice Like Fire. Unfortunately, that sequel fell a bit flat for me and had second book syndrome. But I know Frost Like Fire will be really, really epic!

5. One thing I hope to accomplish or do in my reading/blogging life in 2016

I am hoping to be better at commenting and replying to comments in 2016. I have seriously been slacking off in the last few weeks.

I also want to experiment more with graphics. I’m pretty lazy when it comes to graphics. I just use the same ones over and over, with some small modifications. In 2016, I want to spend more time on them and play around with different things. I tried to do a different header for this post and it didn’t take me that long to make so hopefully I can play around a bit more. I still want to stick with the simple and minimalist theme I have right now though, so I don’t want to go overboard.

6. A 2016 release that I’ve already read and recommend to everyone

a-study-in-charlotteI have a whole pile of 2016 releases waiting to be read but the only one I’ve read so far is A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro.

Which I wasn’t the biggest fan of. However, it’s got some pretty good reviews and ratings on Goodreads, so I’d encourage you to check it out anyway if you like detective stories or Sherlock Holmes. My expectations were probably just too high. I’m a pretty hard person to please when it comes to retellings of Sherlock Holmes.


I hope you enjoyed this wrap up of my reading and blogging year for 2015. Happy new year!

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45 thoughts on “2015 End of Year Survey

  1. Marie @ drizzleandhurricanebooks says:

    Loved reading your answers, Jenna! And I’m so happy to see I’ll give you the Sun on here, THAT BOOK. Thank you. Yes I will thank you on every occasion I get for that book :p I can’t wait to read all of Patrick Ness’ books, I’m so excited to order them, finally! 😀
    I really hope you’ll read Eleanor & Park soon, and enjoy it. It’s easily one of my favorite books! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. GryffindorBooks says:

    I saw it A Study in Charlotte on goodreads and it seemed amazing (plus the cover is beautiful), so I’m sad to hear you didn’t like it! I’ll still probably give it a try, but it’s good to know that I shouldn’t have crazy high expectations 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      I guess I still liked it but I was kind of disappointed with it. I couldn’t stop myself from comparing the characters to the originals and they were too similar for my liking. The book just didn’t feel original. But I know that lots of people loved it so it’s probably just me 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jeann @ Happy Indulgence says:

    What a fantastic year of reading it’s been Jenna! I’m so glad you decided to join the blogging world and you’ve found joy in this passion of ours! Our ship is totally the same and I loved Nina as well from Six of Crows. I’m so glad we were able to fangirl over so many books that we both loved, like Carry On and Illuminae! I’m keen on hearing your thoughts about E&P.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ashley says:

    That is awesome that you read 207 books in 2015! I am totally jealous about that! More than half of mine were audiobooks.
    I finally bought a copy of I’ll Give You the Sun, so I can’t wait to read it! I am so sad that I am not enjoying the Lunar Chronicles as much as I hoped I would. I really liked Cinder, but Scarlet and Cress are not living up to the hype for me sadly. I am a little over halfway done with Cress.
    You have so many awesome books in your survey that I really want to read still! I had The Knife of Never Letting Go on my survey quite a few times too. It was just so good and also so dang heartbreaking!
    I wish I would have included multiple books in my survey. I tried to just do the one like they asked and I am sad that I missed out on putting some other really awesome books I read on the list, sigh. Now I know for this year, haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      Oh no! I hope Cress gets better for you because it’s one of my favourites of the series. Winter is probably the best one but I thought Cress was up there. From memory, it does get better in the second half of the book where there’s more action and our babies are all back together.

      I actually really want to get into audiobooks but I’m kind of worried that I’ll zone out and have to keep rewinding. It seems like something that I would listen to while doing other stuff but I’m actually not that great at multi-tasking so I probably will zone out. I might see if I can borrow some from the library and see how it goes.

      And hahaha I’m just the ultimate cheater when it comes to tags and stuff like this. I can never just have one answer!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ashley says:

        I just got to the part where they are all reunited, so hopefully it starts getting better.
        For my job, I’m doing the same things over and over all day; so it’s pretty much engraved in my head and it’s easier for me to stay focused on the audiobook. If I know I won’t be able to, then I just stop it for the day.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Summer @ Xingsings says:

    Congratulations on reading 200+ books while adulting and with ongoing research. Are a lot of your in real life friends avid readers like you? Haha, my goal is to read a Rainbow Rowell book this year (I have both Fangirl and Eleanor and Park, but Fangirl appeals to me more). Can you believe I never heard of Rainbow or a lot of the new authors until I started blogging? (I literally fell of the face of the reading community in my later years in high school and first year of college.) Along with an RR book, other priorities for this year are The Winner’s Curse, Six of Crows, The Wrath and the Dawn, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, and Soundless. 🙂 And I can’t wait until you start discussion posts someday, Jenna! On my blog, I keep promising them but posting them never happens. Oh well. 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      My problem with discussion posts is that I feel like all of the topics I can think of have been discussed before and I don’t really know what I can bring to the table that’s new. But I’ll give it a go anyway. I have one that I might do on Happy Indulgence in a few weeks time so we’ll see.

      I haven’t read Eleanor & Park yet but I really enjoyed Fangirl. And I LOVE Carry On! Those would be my two top recommendations for Rainbow Rowell. I love Six of Crows and The Wrath and the Dawn so I hope you get to those too! I just started The Winner’s Curse this morning and it’s great so far (only read 2 chapters though). I think it’ll end up being at least a 4 star unless something goes horribly wrong.

      And no, none of my friends are readers T_T. I have a friend who really enjoys reading but he’s definitely a classics/lit guy and I feel totally stupid when I say that I read mostly YA. I’m trying to get two of my girlfriends into reading more though by getting them to come with me to author signings and events haha. They’re progressing slowly 😄

      Liked by 1 person

      • Summer @ Xingsings says:

        Well that’s progress. I only have one bookish friend left after the others applied and moved to other states for college. So I dragged that friend to Yallfest, but it didn’t really take much convincing. And everyone seemed to love Carry On! I’m anticipating the feels already. I agree, it’s difficult finding a unique discussion post. Plus, I always feel like I’m lacking inspiration and creativity to start with. Ah well. >.<

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Valerie says:

    I love how this whole survey is All The Light We Cannot See. BUT IT IS THE TRUTH. IT IS AN AMAZING BOOK AND EVERYONE SHOULD LISTEN TO JENNA AND READ IT! Ok? Yes. (I wonder if they will make a movie out of it? Random thought)

    I still really want to read Carry On. I have read Eleanor and Park, and even though contemporary isn’t my thing, I still really liked it! And I’m excited for Rowell’s first fantasy novel, even though it is based off of Fangirl.

    Glad you had such an awesome year of blogging Jenna!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      Thanks Val! I must continue to spread my love for All the Light We Cannot See because it’s the best thing on earth! I think they’ll probably adapt it at some point since it’s a Pulitzer Prize winner now… but I kinda don’t want them to. What if they ruin it?!!!

      YES YES YES READ CARRY ON! It’s probably my favourite of all of Rainbow’s books. I actually skimmed most of the Simon Snow stuff in Fangirl… but I really enjoyed the story in Carry On! It’s so reminiscent of Harry Potter that I couldn’t help but love it ❤ The characters are EVERYTHING.

      Like

  7. Ksenia says:

    What a great blogging and reading year you had, Jenna! I think you finally convince me to pick up A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. I still need to read What I Thought Was True. I Was Here by Gayle Forman was a disappointment for me too.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Charnell @ Reviews from a Bookworm says:

    Great post. This survey takes so much time to do every year, I feel we should all be awarded a medal for completing it. My Life Next Door is one of my favourite books of all time. It’s just soooooooo good. Definitely feel like I want to reread that one this year. I have owned The Coldest Girl in Coldtown and even got it signed, but have still not got to it. I need to change that. Six of Crows was one I loved, I just got myself those bookmarks too and they are sooo adorable.

    Great answers! I hope you have a great reading year in 2016! 🙂 Here’s my survey if you want to check it out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      I know right? This post took me about 5 hours to draft and format and everything. Next year I’ll know to start putting it together like a month in advance. I definitely want to reread My Life Next Door this year as well. It should be one that I reread every year 😀 Ooh, I hope you get around to reading The Coldest Girl in Coldtown soon. It’s probably my favourite book about vampires that I’ve read so far (not that I’ve read that many). And YES! How could we pass up those beautiful HappyHelloCo bookmarks?

      Like

  9. peculiarb says:

    I love your survey (you deserve an award for doing it since it takes SO LONG)! I can’t wait for Lady Midnight to come out, I’m halfway through the Infernal Devices myself and I absolutely love the world and characters Cassandra Clare has created!

    Liked by 1 person

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