Here we are for the highlight of everyone’s year—the End of Year Book Survey! This was created by Jamie of Perpetual Page-Turner—you can find her original post here. If you want to see the debacle that was last year’s post, you can find it here. Last time I ended up in the hospital before I could finish it, leaving everything to Michelle, but I’ve already done my hospital trip early this month so we should be safe. Without further ado, let’s go!
Number Of Books You Read:
ELY: Right now it’s 185, including rereads and DNFs, but I’m hoping to finish another two books, at least.
MICHELLE: The current count is 80 but by the year is up most likely 81 when I finish PS I Love You by Jenny Han
Number of Re-Reads:
ELY: 13. This is probably the most amount of books I’ve ever reread in a year—there are quite a few I’m already planning for next year.
MICHELLE: I only re-read 3 books this year despite setting a goal originally to re-read one a month. Hopefully, I improve on this number in 2017.
Genre You Read The Most From:
ELY: Contemporary. This actually shocked me, even though it’s one of my favourite genres. I just didn’t think I’d read that many.
MICHELLE: Either comics or contemporary I think which is very normal for me.
1. Best Book You Read In 2016?
ELY: This is hard. Quite a few of the books that made my ‘favourites’ list this year were rereads—The Great Gatsby, Jane Eyre etc. But I think I’ll have to go with Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne. It inspired my Honours thesis topic and a whole host of other posts and whatnot.
MICHELLE: This is the toughest question ever but you can see a small list of my fave reads in this post here.
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
ELY: I was really expecting to love Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, especially since I loved Rose Under Fire. I was actually kind of disappointed in it, which makes me really sad.
MICHELLE: Bruiser by Neal Schusterman, I had heard a few good things that lead me to believe that I would really love this but it was just average in my opinion.
3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
ELY: The Island Will Sink by Briohny Doyle. I picked up this from the library on a whim because the cover looked kind of cool. I ended up seriously loving this book. Definitely a new favourite!
MICHELLE: I was pleasantly surprised with The Sin Eaters Daughter by Melinda Salisbury, I picked it up on a whim not expecting much. I am not big on fantasy much but it wasn’t too heavy and I was sucked into the story.
4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
ELY: I think this one might be Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys (finally!). This is one of my all-time favourite books, and I finally got some people to read it this year! I re-read it myself this year and broke my heart all over again. It was great.
MICHELLE: I am always pushing an insane amount of people to read The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon, that might have been my answer last year too. I just love this book guys.
5. Best series you started in 2016? Best Sequel of 2016? Best Series Ender of 2016?
ELY: Best series I started in 2016 would have to be Pure by Julianna Baggot, which was just incredible. Best sequel would have to be The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman. Best series ender is a toss-up between The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman and Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski, both were amazing and landed themselves spots in my favourite series of all-time.
MICHELLE: The Next Together and The Last Beginning duology by Lauren James was just amazing.
6. Favourite new author you discovered in 2016?
ELY: Joan Didion. Why oh why did I not read Joan Didion before 2016? I only read two of her books this year—The Year of Magical Thinking and Blue Nights, but they both affected me so much that I couldn’t think of anyone better.
MICHELLE: Lauren James maybe? I loved both books in her duology and am very excited to read more from her that’s for sure. (Wow I am mentioning her so much already) Also the queen Poetess Amanda Lovelace.
7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
ELY: I’ve never been a huge fan of magical realism, but I read The Love that Split the World by Emily Henry and The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende right after one another and loved them both.
MICHELLE: Illuminae by Amy Kaufmann and Jay Kristoff was an action packed and highly addictive sci-fi read, I don’t normally read sci-fi so I was pleasantly surprised.
8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
ELY: Micro by Michael Crichton and Richard Preston. Anyone who knows me well must be shocked to see me make it to question 8 without mentioning Michael Crichton. He’s one of my faves, and his books are always really fast-paced and enjoyable.
MICHELLE: I think I basically answered this one from the previous question, but I would also add The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan as an unputdownable read.
9. Book You Read In 2016 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
ELY: Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne. This might be a cop-out answer because I know for a fact I’ll be reading this multiple times next year. It’s one of the books I’m studying for my Honours thesis, so I need to know this book inside and out.
MICHELLE: Probably a poetry book because they are short and I really love poetry, it will be interesting to see how the poems make me feel a year later. Either Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur or The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace.
10. Favourite cover of a book you read in 2016?
ELY: Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley is definitely my favourite cover of 2016. It’s incredibly beautiful, and the design inside the book is incredible. Would highly recommend this!
MICHELLE: The Last Beginning and The Next Together by Lauren James both have beautiful and colourful covers and match so well (there I go again on the Lauren James train).
11. Most memorable character of 2016?
ELY: I have to go with Evie from Am I Normal Yet?…again. When I look back over the books I read this year, she is the character that stands out to me the most. I might have found some super hot new book boyfriends this year, but Evie might be my new book BFF.
MICHELLE: Oh this is really hard because I forget a lot especially when you read about so many characters. Possibly Frankie from Frankie by Shivaun Plozza, she is angry, stubborn and fierce. Also quite recently Grace Town from Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland because in some weird way I related to her.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2016?
ELY: Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys. I think this little book is one of the most beautifully written books ever. It’s a sort of follow on from Between Shades of Gray, and they’re both gorgeous.
MICHELLE: The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace is a poetry book that is written so incredibly beautifully, it will break your heart.
13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2016?
ELY: This a tie between My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem and The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. My Life on the Road made me think a lot about feminism and travel, and a whole host of other things. While The Year of Magical Thinking got me thinking a lot about grief—both my own and others. I respect both Gloria and Joan a whole lot, and I could never pick between the two books.
MICHELLE: This is a hard one and I want to mention poetry again but I think I’ll do a non-fiction. Girls Will Be Girls by Emer O’Toole. A very interesting novel on feminism.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2016 to finally read?
ELY: I’ve had P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahern on my shelves for probably about 4 or 5 years now. I finally read it, and I loved it.
MICHELLE: I had Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood sitting on my shelf for a long time maybe two years before I read it, but when I did read it I really loved it.
15. Favourite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2016?
ELY: ‘Grief, when it comes, is nothing we expect it to be’ – The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion.
MICHELLE: “I can’t lie to you and tell you that standing in front of someone and offering them your soul and having them reject you is not gonna be one of the worst things that ever happens to you. You will wonder for days or weeks or months or years afterward what it is about you that was so wrong or broken or ugly that they couldn’t love you the way you loved them. You will look for all the reasons inside yourself that they didn’t want you and you will find a million.
Maybe it was the way you looked in the mornings when you first woke up and hadn’t showered. Maybe it was the way you were too available, because despite what everyone says, playing hard to get is still attractive.
Some days you will believe that every atom of your being is defective somehow. What you need to remember, as I remembered as I watched Grace Town leave, is that you are extraordinary.”
― Krystal Sutherland,
16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2016?
ELY: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon was the longest at 896 pages, and Heaven or This by Topaz Winters was the shortest at 28 pages. I really enjoyed both of them!
MICHELLE: Not including a DNF Read the shortest book I read was Lazurus Vol 2 by Greg Rucka with 104 pgs and the longest book I read was Illuminae by Amy Kaufman and Jay Kristoff.
17. Book That Shocked You The Most
ELY: Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare, hands down. I didn’t expect to ever read this book, let alone enjoy it, but it turned out to be one of the best books I read in 2016.
MICHELLE: Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas because it was just so twisted and I did not see that shocker coming.
18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
ELY: Me/TBR. I’m kidding. I don’t know that I really have an OTP for the year. I’m more of a movie/TV shipper than a book one.
MICHELLE: I’m not much of a shipper, to be honest, sorry to disappoint you all.
19. Favourite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
ELY: I have to go back to Am I Normal Yet? I love the friendship between Evie and her other Spinster Club friends. They’re a really good group of friends and I think we need more like them in books!
MICHELLE: I am much more interested in friendship relationships overall than romantic ones. I loved the friendship between Mikey and Jared from The Rest of us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness.
20. Favourite Book You Read in 2016 From An Author You’ve Read Previously
ELY: I loved The Hate Race by Maxine Beneba Clarke. I read her short story collection last year, and I just really admire her as a writer.
MICHELLE: Radio Silence by Alice Oseman because she is my fave.
21. Best Book You Read In 2016 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:
ELY: I actually picked up a few books on other people’s recommendations. The two that stand out the most are Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis which was recommended to me by Emily, and Batman Hush Vol. 1 by Jeph Loeb which my best non-blogging friend, Katey, recommended.
MICHELLE: Oh Gosh I can’t even answer this one.
22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?
ELY: This is hard. It’s kind of a tie between Will Parry from His Dark Materials and Julian Blackthorn from Lady Midnight. They’re both gorgeous and lovely, and I want to wrap them up in blankets and keep them safe.
MICHELLE: I think I am weird and have grown out of fictional crushes, at least for a while I have. If I was going to pick I’d say Henry from Words From Deep Blue by Cath Crowley because he likes books. DUH.
23. Best 2016 debut you read?
ELY: The Love that Split the World by Emily Henry was incredible! It was one of my most anticipated books of the year, and it did not let me down! I can’t wait for Emily Henry’s next book in 2017!
MICHELLE: I have not read that many debuts because I totally suck at doing such things. I’d most likely say Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland.
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
ELY: Obernewtyn by Isobelle Carmody. The world-building in this series is to die for. I’ve only read the first two (and a half) books, but the setting is incredible and constantly becoming better.
MICHELLE: Stray by Monica Hesse had such a strong and disturbing setting that I could easily envisage and was hooked into.
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
ELY: This absolutely has to be Zodiac Starforce: By the Power of Astra by Kevin Panetta and Paulina Ganucheau. This book is full of girl power, and the most gorgeous colour palette ever. Seriously, are you guys sick of me talking about this colour palette yet? ( Michelle seconds this)
MICHELLE: I read so many good books that made me smile one such book being Lobsters by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison. About a boy and a girl that meet in a toilet and then spend the rest of the book searching each other out.
26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2016?
ELY: Cecelia Ahern always makes me cry, so I’ll have to go with How to Fall in Love and One Hundred Names both by her. They’re both really lovely stories, but incredibly emotional too. Highly recommend Cecelia for all your crying needs.
MICHELLE: Umm okay which books didn’t make me cry is probably an easier question. Both Our Chemical Hearts and Illuminae made me cry so much both for completely different reasons.
27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?
ELY: Stardancer by Kelly Sedinger blew me away this year. I love myself a bit of sci-fi, but I don’t read it a whole lot. I guess I’m kind of fussy. I loved this one, though—the characters were great, and the world was incredible. I really need someone to discuss this with!
MICHELLE: Driving Under the Influence by Jenna Martin is an Australian adult book featuring a road trip between father and daughter. I loved it and it really reminded so much of the relationship I have with my father.
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?
ELY: Talking to my Country by Stan Grant. This book is super heavy—it’s about racism in Australia. It is just incredibly poignant and important, I hope more Aussies will read it in 2017.
MICHELLE: Here I go repeating myself again, The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace because you can not read her words without having your soul crushed.
29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2016?
ELY: Nutshell by Ian McEwan has to take the cake. This is basically a retelling of Hamlet, only from the point of view of a baby in a womb. It was super weird, but super good.
MICHELLE: I think Cats Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut, I have never read anything like this book and I was so surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It’s told from the perspective of a man who is writing a book about the inventor of the Atomic Bomb and it draws heavily on a fake religion the author made up.
30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?
ELY: At the time I rated Me Before You four stars and gave it a pretty good review, but the more I think about it the angrier I get. It has probably one of the most disgusting messages about disability, in my opinion.
MICHELLE: Yes Please by Amy Poehler because I wanted so so much more.
1. New favourite book blog you discovered in 2016?
2. Favourite review that you wrote in 2016?
ELY: Probably The Sleeping Prince by Melinda Salisbury review I did at the start of the year. The book helped me get out of a reading slump, and writing the review helped me get out of a reviewing slump. Win-win really.
MICHELLE: Ughhh I don’t write many reviews because I completely suck at them so I’m just going to move along.
3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?
ELY: We did a post the other day about the posts we’re most proud of, so those ones.
MICHELLE: Funnily enough my most successful discussion post was about how I hate writing reviews which can be read here.
4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
ELY: I loved getting to hang out with Angel this year—she’s one of my best friends and an amazing person. Event-wise though, I actually have to pick two events I went to by myself. That’s been a big thing this year actually, and I’m proud of myself for managing to do it. Anyway, the events were Gloria Steinem’s talk in May and Hannah Kent’s in September. They were both incredible events, and I’m so happy to have seen them both.
MICHELLE: I’m not sure about this one, I went to a few events but I think my favourite things are always catching up with my friends from the Starlight Collective.
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2016?
ELY: The best moment was anytime anyone called us ‘one of their favourite blogs’. I can’t put into words how much this means to both of us.
MICHELLE: Getting to work with Ely through this whole blogging process is always the best bit. Our friendship and this blog is alight!
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
ELY: Val and I hosted the Make Me Read It Read-a-thon again in 2016, and it was incredible. So many people participated, and the post is definitely our most-viewed thing.
MICHELLE: What Ely said ^ ^
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
ELY: I wish my review of Extraordinary Bodies got more views. I think it’s a really interesting book and I want more people to be aware of it.
MICHELLE: I did a post on which book characters I thought would be great BFF’s that didn’t getting any love or comments that I liked writing.
9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
ELY: I’m pretty happy with the bookish discoveries I’ve made up to this point in my life. I really can’t afford to find anymore.
MICHELLE: You know there is this really cool blog out there called Tea and Titles……
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
ELY: Originally my goal was to read 215 books, but I knocked that down to 200. I didn’t make that either, but I’m still proud of the books I managed to read.
MICHELLE: Not really, I was supposed to read 135 books but had to knock it down to 70 which I did complete but still not what I had originally planned for.
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2016 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2017?
ELY: Every book ever? Okay, no, probably Den of Wolves by Juliet Marillier. I kept putting it off because it’s the final book, but I want to finish as many series next year as I possibly can!
MICHELLE: I have SO SO MANY! The Sleeping Prince by Melinda Salisbury will definitely be up there.
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2017 (non-debut)?
ELY: A MILLION JUNES BY EMILY HENRY. Ahem *cough* I’m just mildly excited for that. Nothing over the top...
MICHELLE: The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon, is this even a real question?
3. 2017 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?
ELY: Wicked Like a Wildfire by Lana Popovic sounds magical. It also has a seriously gorgeous cover…I’ll take it just for that.
MICHELLE: There are so many good ones coming out that I really couldn’t pick one I’m most anticipating. However to name one Forget Me Not by Ellie Terry sounds so good, I love books told in verse and this is a middle grade following a girl with Tourettes.
4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2017?
ELY: Silver Stars by Michael Grant *heavy breathing* I’ve been waiting for this since this February, and I am so beyond ready to have it in my hands.
MICHELLE: THE SONG RISING BY SAMANTHA SHANNON
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2017?
ELY: Honestly, just keep going is my motto for next year. I can already forsee it being a busy year, so I’d just be proud of myself if I survive it.
MICHELLE: I’m with Ely, as long as we keep going and keep posting I’d be pretty happy.
6. A 2017 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone:
ELY: Lol. Yeah, we’re not important enough here at Tea & Titles to have access to that kind of stuff. But you know what? That works for us. We don’t need that stress.
MICHELLE: I still need to read books from 2014 so yeahhh nothing to see here guys.