Thursday, December 12, 2013

End of Year Book Survey 2013

My favorite book blog, The Perpetual Page Turner, is hosting its annual End of Year Book Survey. I'm excited to participate and take a look back at all the books I read this year! (View the entire survey and see other participants' answers here.)

1. Best book you read in 2013?

Tough choice, but I'll go with "The Passage" by Justin Cronin. Government experiments gone wrong and zombies, oh my!

2. Book you were excited about and thought you were going to love more but didn't?

Unfortunately, there were a LOT of these this year. I think this may have been one of my worst reading years ever --  there were books I struggled through but hated, books that bored me to sleep, and books that I couldn't even finish. A few of the books I was expecting to like much more than I did were "A Casual Vacancy" and "The Cuckoo's Calling" by J.K. Rowling; "Inferno" by Dan Brown; "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" by Alan Bradley; "The Heist" by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg; and "Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker" by Jennifer Chiaverini. I also expected to really love "The Fault in Our Stars" but wasn't as wowed as the rest of the book blogging world.

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2013?
"The World's Strongest Librarian" by Josh Hanagarne was a great autobiography by a fascinating guy who's got Tourette's, is a strongman, and spends his days working as a reference librarian in Salt Lake City.
4. Book you read in 2013 that you recommended to people most in 2013?
"Divergent." I recommended it to everyone (friends, family and library patrons alike) who enjoyed the Hunger Games books and even bought it for a couple friends.
5. Best series you discovered in 2013?
There are a few of these: the Divergent series by Veronica Roth, the Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books by Laurie R. King, the Passage trilogy by Justin Cronin, and the Matched series by Allie Condie.
6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2013?
Kate Morton. I loved her book "The Secret Keeper" and will definitely read more of her work.
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
"Ender's Game" was the first real science fiction book I read.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2013?
"Divergent" was a real page-turner, but so was "The Secret Keeper."

9. Book you read in 2013 that you are most likely to re-read next year?
I hardly ever re-read books! But I might re-read Deborah Harkness's "A Discovery of Witches" and "Shadow of Night" before the ending to her All Souls trilogy comes out in 2014. (P.S. This is kind of cheating, since I read both of those books in 2012.)
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2013?

11. Most memorable character in 2013?
Quadriplegic Will from "Me Before You" by JoJo Moyes.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2013?
"The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak.
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2013?
Huh. Nothing is coming to mind here. Like I mentioned above, this wasn't the greatest reading year for me. So I'll tell you which book affected me the most that I read last year (which was a much better year for books for me!) -- "Unbroken" by Laura Hillebrand, the true story of an Olympian turned WWII bombardier turned POW.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2013 to finally read?
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice," the first in Laurie R. King's Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series. And after picking up several used Maeve Binchy novels over the past few years, I only just got around to reading one this summer.
15. Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2013?
"The Age of Miracles," a coming-of-age/end-of-the-world tale by Karen Thompson Walker, had tons of quotable quotes and lovely writing. Of course, I didn't write any of them down...
16.Shortest and longest book you read in 2013?
Shortest: "The Yellow Birds" by Kevin Powers (226 pages -- luckily, since I didn't like it)
Longest: "The Passage" by Justin Cronin (784 pages)

17. Book that had a scene it it that had you reeling and dying to talk to somebody about it?
"Allegiant," the final book the Divergent trilogy. I didn't love everything about this book, and I was anxious to compare thoughts with my mom and friends as soon as I finished.

18. Favorite relationship from a book you read in 2013?
Louisa and Will in "Me Before You," and Liesel and Max in "The Book Thief." I also always love the Stephanie Plum-Lula friendship in Janet Evanovich's books (like this year's "Takedown Twenty").
19. Favorite book you read in 2013 from an author you've read previously?
"Where We Belong" by Emily Giffin.
20. Best book you read in 2013 that you read based solely on a recommendation from somebody else?
"Horns" by Joe Hill.
21. Genre you read the most from in 2013?
Not sure. Mystery?
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2013?
If I were 10 years younger, I'd totally have a crush on St. Clair from "Anna and the French Kiss."
23. Best 2013 debut you read?
"The Light Between Oceans" by M.L. Stedman.
24. Most vivid world/imagery in a book you read in 2013?
"Divergent" or "The Bone Season" by Samantha Shannon.
25. Book that was the most fun to read in 2013?
"Where'd You Go, Bernadette" by Maria Semple.
26. Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2013?
"Me Before You" by JoJo Moyes.
27. Book you read in 2013 that you think got overlooked this year or when it came out?
"Where'd You Go, Bernadette." It's so kooky and hilarious!
Looking Ahead:

1. One book you didn't get to in 2013 but will be your number 1 priority in 2014?
Oh gosh, there are several of these! First place would probably be "House of Hades" by Rick Riordan. I had it checked out from the library but ended up returning it because I knew I wouldn't have time to read it. And of course there were dozens of people ahead of me when I put my name back on the hold list.
2. Book you are most anticipating in 2014?
The final book in Deborah Harkness's All Souls series.
3. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging in 2014?
I want to read more, and read better books. 2013 was a very disappointing year in reading for me, and looking back at my blog posts it's hard to believe how few books I actually read! I feel like I'm at a bit of a crossroads in my reading life, like I've suddenly grown out of genres and authors that have appealed to me for years. I hope to experiment with some new types of books and authors in 2014. I've already decided to delve into the world of fantasy; George R.R. Martin and Brandon Sanderson are on my to-read list.

My reviews of books mentioned above:
"Anna and the French Kiss" by Stephanie Perkins
"Divergent" by Veronica Roth
"Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card
"Horns" by Joe Hill
"Inferno" by Dan Brown
"Me Before You" by JoJo Moyes
"Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker" by Jennifer Chiaverini
"The Age of Miracles" by Karen Thompson Walker
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice" by Laurie R. King
"The Bone Season" by Samantha Shannon
"The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak
"The Casual Vacancy" by J.K. Rowling
"The Fault in Our Stars" by John Green
"The Heist" by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg
"The Light Between Oceans" by M.L. Stedman
"The Passage" by Justin Cronin
"The Secret Keeper" by Kate Morton
"The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" by Alan Bradley
"The World's Strongest Librarian" by Josh Hanagarne
"The Yellow Birds" by Kevin Powers
"Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand
"Where We Belong" by Emily Giffin
"Where'd You Go, Bernadette" by Maria Semple


  1. I am with you on 2013 being not that great of a reading year. I've read A LOT of books, but very few of them really stuck with me and were really amazing. I've had a hard time filling out this end of year survey for that reason! :(

  2. I enjoyed some of the same books that you have read, but looking to some that I haven't yet, maybe "The Secret Keeper". I had it, but then had to return it before enjoying it. Looking forward to some good reads in the new year.

  3. 2013 was a mixed bag for me, too. But I'm delighted that you enjoyed The Beekeeper's Apprentice; that's one of my favorite mystery series ever. I hope you have a terrific reading year in 2014.


Thanks for stopping by! Comments make my day, and I read and appreciate every single one!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...