Books of 2012: A Year in Review

2012-end-of-year-survey

1. Best Book You Read In 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)ender

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (and I read a lot of good ones).

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

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green. Though it had many elements I was drawn to, it never quite gelled for me.

 3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012? 

Summer by Edith Wharton. I was just surprised by how much I enjoyed it, being a short romance with an often frustratingly willful main character.

 4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?The_Scorpio_Races

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

 5. Best series you discovered in 2012?

Divergent by Veronica Roth. I recommended this one quite a bit as well, and I’m excited to see where Roth takes it in the third installment. I really enjoy the concept around which she has based her utopia.

 6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?

David Levithan. I first found him through his collaboration with John Green (will grayson, will grayson) and then read his Every You, Every Me. His characters have such vivid, unique voice. Nina LaCour, author of The Disenchantments, another one with strong voice. My review of that novel is here. Catherine Knutsson, author of Shadows Cast by Stars. I loved everything about that book, and can’t wait to read whatever she writes next.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?9961796

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins. I don’t read a lot of romance in any genre, and I had reasons for avoiding Perkins’ other novel, but this was getting so many good reviews I gave it a shot. A sweet, fun read.

 8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?

The three books that kept me up reading through the night: Divergent by Veronica Roth, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, and Duma Key by Stephen King.

 9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year:

Shadows Cast by Stars. It’s on my list to buy in hardcover.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?

I hated the book but I still think the cover is lovely and alluring:

the_selection_book_cover

Well designed, Harper Teen.

11. Most memorable character in 2012? 

Dink Meeker from Ender’s Game (not least because I see him as my personal reaction to the situation Ender finds himself in).

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012? 

Walden by Henry David Thoreau. I have not quite finished it yet, but I’ve been looking into a lot of philosophical theories in the past few years and its invigorating to come across one that closely mimics my own views. This book was given to me by the proprietor of a bookstore in South Dakota, when he spotted it in my pile he told me it was on the house!

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read? 

Aside from Ender’s Game, which people have been recommending to me for an age? Probably Grapes of Wrath (which I have not finished).

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012? 0619f_dumakey

“At one point during my interview with Mary Ire, she said
discovering in my middle age that I could paint with the best
of them must have been like having someone give me the
keys to a souped-up muscle car—a Roadrunner or a GTO. I
said yes, it was like that. At another point she said it must
have been like having someone give me the keys to a fully
furnished house. A mansion, really. I said yes, like that, too.
And if she had gone on? Said it must have been like
inheriting a million shares of Microsoft stock, or being
elected ruler for life of some oil-rich (and peaceful) emirate
in the mideast? I would have said yeah, sure, you bet. To
soothe her. Because those questions were about her. I
could see the longing look in her eyes when she asked
them. They were the eyes of a kid who knows the closest
she’s ever going to get to realizing her dream of the high
trapeze is sitting on the bleachers at the Saturday matinee
performance. She was a critic, and lots of critics who aren’t
called to do what they write about grow jealous and mean
and small in their disappointment. Mary wasn’t like that.
Mary still loved it all. She drank whiskey from a water-glass
and wanted to know what it was like when Tinker Bell flew
out of nowhere and tapped you on the shoulder and you
discovered that, even though you were on the wrinkle-neck
side of fifty, you had suddenly gained the ability to fly past
the face of the moon. So even though it wasn’t like having a
fast car or being handed the keys to a fully furnished house,
I told her it was. Because you can’t tell anyone what it’s like.
You can only talk around it until everyone’s exhausted and it’s time to go to sleep.
But Elizabeth had known what it was like.
It was in her drawings, then in her paintings.
It was like being given a tongue when you had been
mute.
And more. Better. It was like being given back your
memory, and a person’s memory is everything, really.
Memory is identity. It’s you.”

– Stephen King, Duma Key

 16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012?

Longest: Duma Key (though I am currently reading Anna Karenina, which is longer).

Shortest: Do Unto Otters by Laurie Keller, or any of the picture books I read with K-3rd classes I subbed for this year.

 17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!

I feel that way about every book I read! It’s why I have a blog, that desire to discuss what I’ve read. It’s also why I appreciate each and every person who comments here on Ink so much 🙂

18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).shadows cast by stars

Edgar Freemantle and Wireman in Duma Key. King can write male friendship like no other. The budding romance between Blue and Adam in The Raven Boys and the strained but loving sibling relationship between Cassandra and Paul in Shadows Cast by Stars were also up there.

19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously

In the interest of not naming the same books over and over, I will go with The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. It’s a promising start to her new series The Raven Cycle.

20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:audrey

Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway. I knew nothing about it other than that I had read one good review, but I picked it up when I recognized the cover at the library and loved it.

 Book Blogging/Reading Life in 2012 (optional)

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2012? 

Probably The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say Sssh. We have different taste in books, but I always enjoy reading her thoughtful perspective. I won my copies of Life as We Knew It and Ender’s Game in a giveaway on her site!

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2012? The_Maze_Runner_cover

Probably The Maze Runner by James Dashner. I like whenever I am able to pinpoint why I didn’t like something, rather than just saying “Hurr hurr, it sucked”.

3. Best discussion you had on your blog?

There were some strong reactions (including an entire opposing review) in my review of How I Paid for College: a Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship, and Musical Theater by Mark Acito. I appreciated the discourse.

4. Most thought-provoking review or discussion you read on somebody else’s blog?Katniss

I enjoyed Ginny Tonic’s discussion of Katniss Everdeen as a feminist role model on The Charlie Tonic Hour. I found it when she linked to my entry on the subject.

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

My second NaNoWriMo and the Top Ten Tuesdays I wrote this year.

6. Best moment of book blogging in 2012?

Developing stronger relationships with other bloggers who write fiction in addition to their blogs. Their support has kept me motivated.

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

Top Ten Books I’d Like to See Made into Movies, by far. It gets at least a few hits each day thanks to the picture of Christina Hendricks (I now know what her name looks like in Arabic).

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

All of them, but especially the reviews. I love to hear people’s thoughts on books I have also read, even if we disagree.

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

Uhhh, uhhh…discovering that my local library will let me renew my books online?

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

I finished half of the ten books I chose for my Top Ten Tuesdays Summer Reading List, but I didn’t really set any reading goals. I play it by ear and try to alternate classics with popular contemporary fiction, and I did that again this year.

Looking Ahead…

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?Sweetly Cover

Sweetly by Jackson Pearce. I really enjoyed Sisters Red, and I only have lukewarm feelings toward the story of Red Riding Hood. Very excited to see what she did with one of my favorites.

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?

The second book of The Raven Cycle

3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?

Review more regularly. I read a lot of books and sometimes I am at a busy moment in my life or what I want to say about a book isn’t immediately clear to me on finishing. I’d like to get into the habit of writing a few posts when I have a few posts worth of reviews stored up and spacing them out rather than posting all at once, so that when I’m having a bit of a dry spell I don’t go months without a single review (I don’t think I’ve posted a review since my niece was here in October).

3 responses to “Books of 2012: A Year in Review

  1. Wow! Thank you for the kind words about my blog — and I’m so glad you enjoyed Ender’s Game. I agree that we have different taste in books, but I always enjoy reading your reviews (even when we have totally different opinions of the same books) (maybe even ESPECIALLY when we have different opinions!). Happy New Year!

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