The End of Year Book Survey is brought to you by Jamie of The Perpetual Page Turner
Number Of Books You Read:
Meg: I have no idea
Kat: Some pathetically small amount of books. I barely read this year.
Steph: According to Goodreads, 60. That’s my lowest ever since blogging.
Number of Re-Reads:
Kat: Rereading is what I did the most of. Lots of Jeaniene Frost rereads for comfort.
Steph: 1. I rarely re-read.
Genre You Read The Most From:
Meg: Maybe I should start tracking this stuff
Kat: Paranormal romance *hides*
Steph: Sci-Fi and Fantasy, but I also managed to read a bunch of Contemporary this year and that is unusual for me.
1. Best Book You Read In 2014
Meg: Any of the books on this list.
Steph: I have a Goodreads shelf just for questions like this. For those who are lazy and didn’t click the link: The Winner’s Crime, Little Peach, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, Red Queen, Golden Son and a bunch of others.
2. Books You Were Excited About and Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t
Meg: Second Star. I still don’t understand how this book was such a resounding fail.
Steph: The Queen of the Tearling. I thought is was an overhyped Middle Grade, wannabe Fantasy/Dystopian/Historical Fiction novel dressed up as an Adult novel, marketed to YA readers.
3, Most Surprising (in a good or bad way) Book You Read in 2014
Meg: Queen of the Tearling. Pretty much everyone I know either disliked or outright hated this book. However, I had an ARC and it was just so damn pretty I couldn’t help myself and decided to give it a shot. Surprise! I loved it. Say what? I can’t argue that it’s flawless, there are definitely some gaping holes, but I don’t know, I thought it was entertaining and interesting and I’m excited to see where this series goes.
Steph: Roomies. I went out on a limb and listened to the audio despite reading “meh” reviews and came out really loving it.
4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (and they did) In 2014
Meg: Ummmmm, probably The Raven Cycle books by Maggie Stiefvater and Every Breath by Ellie Marney. I don’t think I’m a huge book pusher (kind of weird for a book blogger, right?) I get really excited when people are reading books that I love but don’t necessarily go out of my way to push them. Maybe I have a totally inaccurate read on myself. I don’t know.
(It has been pointed out to me that the above statement is entirely factually inaccurate -Meg)
— Snowless Lyn (@Heartless_Lyn) December 31, 2014
Kat: I don’t have an answer for this other than that I was to agree with Meg. She DID push The Raven Cycle a lot. 😉 (I REGRET NOTHIIIIING -M)
Steph: Probably Red Queen. I haven’t really been a good book pusher this year, but I was talking about that one a lot. MAKE SURE IT’S ON YOUR TBR, OKAY?
5. Best Series You Started in 2014/Best Sequel of 2014/Best Series Ender of 2014
Best new series: The Every Series by Ellie Marney
Best sequel: Symbiont by Mira Grant and Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
Best ender: Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor and Endsinger by Jay Kristoff
Best new series: Red Queen Trilogy
Best Sequel: The Winner’s Crime and Golden Son
Best Ender: The Return of Zita the Space Girl and Dreams of Gods and Monsters and Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo.
6. Favorite New Author You Discovered in 2014
Meg: Ellie Marney. I love her books, she writes incredible ships (the CHEMISTRY) and based on her twitter seems like an all-around awesome person.
Steph: Jason Reynolds. I loved When I Was the Greatest and had the opportunity to meet him in person during BEA. He’s so down to earth and brimming with personality. I can’t wait for his next book.
7. Best Book From A Genre You Don’t Typically Read/Was Out Of Your Comfort Zone
Meg: I don’t typically have a comfort zone because I like making myself uncomfortable, so I guess the closest I came was You by Caroline Kepnes. It’s a novel about a stalker told in second person from the stalker’s perspective and as interesting as the sounds, the potential for disaster and/or extreme discomfort was huge. It ended up being fascinating and brilliant and definitely uncomfortable but in an intentional way that completely worked for me.
Steph: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (AKA The Bloggess) was HILARIOUS. I don’t really do non-fiction or memoirs, but I will read anything that woman writes. It’s really hard to believe that some of the stories she tells in her book are true and that just makes it all the more funny. (Thank you again, Meg, for gifting this to me!)
8. Most Action-Packed/Thrilling/Unputdownable Book of the Year
Meg: Endsinger by Jay Kristoff. I was hyperventilating and hand-wringing the whole way through.
9. Book You Read In 2014 That You Are Most Likely To Reread Next Year
Meg: This isn’t saying much because I reread a lot but most likely the entire Raven Cycle in preparation for the conclusion (!!!!!!!!!), other stuff depending on my mood. I’m currently rereading the Newsflesh Trilogy by Mira Grant which I reread in 2014 and will most definitely reread in 2015 so does that count?
Steph: Uhhh, I don’t know. I will probably listen to the audiobook version of The Winner’s Crime when it is available.
10. Favorite Cover of a Book You Read in 2014
Meg: Idk, I don’t have my bookshelf in front of me. Probably The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton but I haven’t read it yet so it only half counts. (Get on it, Meg, it’s beautiful inside and out! -Steph)
11. Most Memorable Character of 2014
Meg: Ronnie from Symbiont, Gwenellian and Piper from Blue Lily, Lily Blue.
Steph: Simon from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli for his lovable awkwardness and Greg from Me, Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews for having such great character development for an anti-hero.
12. Most Beautifully Written Book Read in 2014
Meg: Blue Lily, Lily Blue and Sinner. Maggie Stiefvater’s prose is Meg catnip. It’s flawless and I adore it more than all others.
13. Most Thought-Provoking/Life-Changing Book of 2014
Meg: Uhhhhhhh I don’t know. I’m a bad book person and can’t think of a book that’s changed my life this year. However, The 100 absolutely changed my life as it made me incapable of not shoehorning The 100 into every conversation I’ve had since I started watching it.
Steph: Outlander, and more specifically Pocket Jamie. I just CANNA stop saying CANNA.
14. Book You Can’t Believe You Waited UNTIL 2014 to Finally Read
Meg: The Legend of Eli Monpress by Rachel Aaron. Technically I didn’t know this book existed until 2014 but that in itself is mind-boggling. This series started in 2010, more people should have read it and be talking about it because it is absolutely fantastic.
Steph: American Gods by Neil Gaiman. HOLY SHIT BALLS. <= Sums up everything I have to say about that book.
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read in 2014
But what she didn’t realize about Blue and her boys is that they were all in love with each other. She was no less obsessed with them as they were with her, or one another, analyzing every conversation and gesture, drawing out every joke into a longer and longer running gag, spending each moment with one another or thinking about when next they would be with one another.
– Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
OT5 FOREVER. HOORAY FOR FLAWLESS, COMPLICATED CHARACTER DYNAMICS.
Christmas was still the same. It’s not like you could change the birth date of a diety.
– The Selection by Kiera Cass
This continues to be probably one of the most hilariously, blatantly incorrect, factually presented statements in any book I’ve read recently. Diety-ness and religious conviction aside, it is documented that early Christians specifically decided to make December 25th Jesus’ birthday to coincide with the winter solstice and convert more people. This is a known fact acknowledged by the church. And yet, this sentence is a thing in a hugely popular book that some have called “flawless” (there are about a million other reasons to not call this book flawless, imo it’s utter shite, but this quote is in the first three pages and really sets the stage for what’s to come) (whoops that got kind of ranty). (BAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! I have never seen this quote and I will be forever LOLing in a corner now. Someone fetch Kiera Cass the internet. -Steph)
Steph: I have a few:
“For the record, I’m in the midst of a penis panic attack.” – I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
“You are but a mortal,” Roque whispers in my ear, riding his horse alongside the chariot, as per tradition.
“And a whorefart,” Servo calls from the other side.
“Yes,” Roque agrees solemnly. “That too.” – Golden Son by Pierce Brown
“I don’t even know. I’m just so sick of straight people who can’t get their shit together.” – Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
“Thanks for the rescue.”
“Everyone needs a hobby.”
“I thought yours was preening.”
“Two hobbies.” – Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
16. Shortest and Longest Book You Read in 2014
Shortest: The Haunted Vagina (100 pages and I only made it to 69%) (no, seriously) (okay, maybe it was like 67% but I’m going with 69%)
Longest: The Legend of Eli Monpress (1,040 pages and technically cheating because it’s a three book omnibus), Symbiont (608 pages)
Shortest: Four Houses by Victoria Scott and Hunting Monsters by S.L. Huang. Both were short stories.
Longest: Outlander audiobook. 33 hours and 8 minuets of fun and adventure! Also, SEX (NSFW).
17. The Book That Shocked You The Most
Meg: The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey. I went in knowing next to nothing about this book and it made for the best reading experience.
Steph: Outlander. I really didn’t think I would enjoy it because so many people warned me about the spanking scene. It honestly didn’t bother me the way it did others. Plus, I thought I would get bored from the length. Surprisingly, I didn’t. Also, Red Rising, because I was really close to DNF’ing. The beginning is so. incredibly. slow. But I’m glad I hung in there because the second half was sick in the best possible of ways.
18. OTP of the Year
Meg: Clarke and Bellamy from The 100, duh. Book wise? Ronan/Adam from The Raven Cycle and Watts/Mycroft from Every Breath (if any of you try to point out in the comments that some of these are not technically canon romantic couples yet, fair warning, I may murder you in the face).
(Bleak doesn’t count because they aren’t a real couple, Meg! -Steph)
(DO NOT START WITH ME STEPH I HAVE A FULL 45 MINUTE PRESENTATION INCLUDING VISUAL AIDS -Meg)
Steph: I’m shocked that I didn’t read many books heavy on the romance this year, but:
Akiva and Karou from Dreams of Gods and Monsters. Their love is true!
Mustang and The Reaper from Golden Son. SERIOUSLY, IF ANYTHING HAPPENS TO MY SHIP, AJKSHFHBUEKNHG!
19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship of the Year
Meg: Sal/Ronnie from Symbiont by Mira Grant. It’s really only for a single scene but it’s my fucking favorite.
Steph: Jude and Noah from I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. I really loved how the book was about siblings falling out and finding their way back to each other.
20. Favorite Book You Read in 2014 From An Author You’ve Read Already
Meg: Blue Lily, Lily Blue and Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater, Symbiont by Mira Grant, Endsinger by Jay Kristoff
Steph: The Winner’s Crime, Golden Son and Complicit.
21. Best Book You Read in 2014 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else
Meg: The Selection by Kiera Cass (technically this wasn’t a recommendation from Gillian of The Writer of Wrongs as much as an ‘omg this book is my nemesis’ but same thing for me, tbh).
Steph: Poisoned Apples was recommended to me from Hannah of The Irish Banana and Outlander from Stephanie No BS Book Reviews. They said I would love it and they were totally right. That’s impressive, considering how picky I am.
22. Newest Fictional Crush From A Book You Read in 2014
Meg: Mycroft from Every Breath by Ellie Marney. He’s smart as shit, clever, cranky and has a healthy disrespect for authority. Also, Morgan from Gone With The Words casually fancast him as Bob Morley so obviously I am all over that. Also, Eli Monpress from The Legend of Eli Monpress by Rachel Aaron. Charming, clever thief who constantly outsmarts his opposition with hidden depths and a seeming inability to ever take anything seriously? Yes please, I will take all of them.
Steph: Ehhhh, I actually don’t have any new fictional crushes. Clearly, I am reading all the wrong books. But I’m going to go with Jamie from Outlander. He’s a complicated kind of guy: vulnerable, shy at times, strong, kinky, sex fanatic, vigorous, and oh hai things just got howt.
23. Best 2014 Debut
Meg: Every Breath by Ellie Marney and The Falconer by Elizabeth May (technically I read this in 2013 because it came out earlier outside the US and Ellis is one of the best humans on the planet and sent me a copy for my birthday but it’s a 2014 US Debut and I’m comfortable putting it on here)
Steph: Toss up between Red Queen and Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. They technically don’t come out till 2015 tho.
24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting
Meg: This is tricky for me because while I appreciate a good setting, for me the story is all about the characters in the setting so a lot of times I don’t notice holes in world building until they directly affect the story. The world Rachel Aaron built in the Eli Monpress books is probably my favorite ever because every piece of the world has a personified spirit so the setting is literally made up of characters in the story.
Steph: This must be a trick question. I read both Outlander and American Gods in the same year. There are no other books that come close to touching that level of skill.
25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face (was the most fun to read)
Meg: I don’t think I’ve ever laughed harder than I laughed while reading The Selection but that was certainly not intentional on the author’s part.
Steph: SIMON VS. THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA. OH HAI, I’M A BROKEN RECORD.
26. Book That Made You Cry
Meg: Lots of books make me cry but Endsinger gutted me.
Steph: The Winner’s Crime‘s ending was particularly devastating.
27. Hidden Gem of the Year
Meg: There aren’t enough of you reading the Parasitology series by Mira Grant. IT’S NOT AS GROSS AS IT SOUNDS I PROMISE. (FINE. I’ll read it in 2015. -Steph) (WAIT NO READ IF YOU’RE DOING MIRA GRANT READ NEWSFLESH FIRST OR MAYBE NOT BECAUSE IT’S THE BEST OF THE BEST HELP WHAT DO I DO WHAT DO I REC -Meg)
Steph: Little Peach, Poisoned Apples and The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender.
28. Book That Crushed Your Soul
Meg: The Selection by Kiera Cass. This is one of the most YA popular books in the US and most people have never read/heard of Melina Marchetta and I can’t fathom this.
Steph: On the Fence by Kasie West. I love everything about Kasie and her books always speak to my soul, but I could not bring myself to love that On the Fence and it hurt me so.
29. Most Unique Book
Meg: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. Cheating because I originally read this book in 2013 but I reread it in 2014 and it continues to be one of the most unique reading experiences I’ve ever had. Also Perfect Fifths by Megan McCafferty. It’s not so much that this book was particularly out there as much as it feels really different from the rest of the series (I adored it).
Steph: If by unique you mean strange and balls-to-the-wall WFTness, then I give you American Gods.
30. Book That Made You The Maddest (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)
Meg: 50 Shades of Grey by E. L. James. I cannot fathom loving this book. I’ve never read anything quite this level of world-burningly infuriating. I fucking loathe this book guys. Not only is it offensively poorly written but the fact that I’m supposed to accept it as a love story makes me want to destroy everything. I thought about reviewing it just to vent but we already have two reviews and I don’t want to give it additional page time and Jenny Trout’s chapter by chapter commentary sums up basically every issue I have.
Steph: The Queen of the Tearling. I was expecting to love it and it let me down super hard. I don’t understand why trees were cut down for it. Really, it was my worst read of 2014. Also, Golden Son because THAT ENDING KILLED ALL THE HAPPINESS.
1. New Favorite Book Blog
Meg: These don’t really count as book blogs as much as author blogs, but I’ve been reading Jenny Trout’s and Chuck Wendig’s blogs a lot lately. Ditto Sarah Rees Brennan’s livejournal (she does these incredible parody recaps of that show I won’t shut up about).
Steph: Ummm…. hmmm. Let me get back to you in 2015 when I’ll hopefully have time for blog reading.
2. Favorite Review You Wrote
Meg: Writing Second Star review felt really good, I just kind of let it go.
3. Best Discussion Post You Had On Your Blog
Meg: I really had to psych myself up to posting my S Word post and the response was incredible. You guys are the best and sometimes when I have a why do I bother with this day I go and reread the comments and maybe have myself a bit of a cry.
Steph: Probably Will Our Non-Blogger Readers Please Stand Up post I did earlier this year.
4. Best Event You Participated In
Meg: Um, BEA. No contest. I met Maggie Stiefvater, guys. Like, whut?
Kat: I loved BEA. It was so awesome.
Steph: BEA. I got to meet my co-bloggers for the first time. Amazing!
— Cuddleberries (@Cuddlebuggery) May 29, 2014
Also, hanging out with all the wonderful people I’ve met by way of this blog:
— Cuddleberries (@Cuddlebuggery) May 28, 2014
5. Best Moment of Bookish/Blogging Life
Meg: When Ellis CAME TO MY WEDDING (FROM BELGIUM) (I LOVE YOU). This doesn’t really count as a moment, but to everyone I’ve started talking to on a daily basis this year (and some before), you guys are my absolute fucking favorite people on the planet and I love you so much I want to punch myself in the face because I don’t know what to do with all of this overwhelming earnest emotion. I can’t imagine my life without you and I have no desire to even try.
Steph: Wow. I mean, how do I even follow THAT up, Meg? Hmm… I’m going to go with meeting Bennett Maddison, author of September Girls, at BEA this year. I know that seems strange, but after I caught so much SHIT after writing that review, it discouraged me a bit (it still remains the review that I regret the most because of all the drama that ensued). It was refreshing to chat with Bennett. Thank you, Lenore Appelhans, for setting that that up. <3
— Steph Sinclair (@Sailor_Stephie) June 1, 2014
Also, that time Taye Diggs followed us and a bunch of other bloggers on Twitter, causing the blogosphere to freak the fuck out for a solid hour. It was awesome.
Taye Diggs just followed the blog's Twitter account. The rest of the day can now go home.
— Steph Sinclair (@Sailor_Stephie) December 23, 2014
@megsaysthings He is seriously following all these YA people/publishers/authors. It's an awesome Christmas miracle!
— Andi (@andiABCs) December 23, 2014
— Jamie M. (@brokeandbookish) December 23, 2014
— Christina Megan (@Reader_Fictions) December 23, 2014
— Andye (@ReadingTeen) December 23, 2014
Steph: He follows 240k+ people Me: DO NOT RUIN THIS
— meg (@megsaysthings) December 23, 2014
6. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog
Steeeeeeeeph how do I figure this out?
Steph: HAHAHAHAHA! I love how you all just yelled my name for this. I will take this time to break down some Cuddlebuggery end of the year stats for you all.
Busiest day of the year with 4,676 views: Random Reads: T-Rex Troubles by Christie Sims and Alara Branwen
Top 5 popular posts:
Review: The Fault in Our Stars
Random Reads: T-Rex Troubles by Christie Sims and Alara Branwen
Authors are People Too – With Yaoi (NSFW)
Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James
Kat Recommends: Five Young Adult Yaoi Mangas
Longest posting streak: 21 days in a row (March 16th-April 5th)
Total page views in 2014: 460,000
What I have learned from this data: Kat should write about more Yaoi, sex really sells books, and I should probably review more again.
7. Post You Wish Got A Little More Love
Meg: Oh man, I don’t know. I just say things, how much you love it is up to you.
Kat: It’s hard to even think about a post I wish hadn’t gotten a little more love. I don’t know. I’m a glutton for love so I’ll say all of them.
Steph: Umm, all of Paul’s reviews. He reviews with such intelligence, that I just can’t even. It’s more than just a review with him. It’s like he dissects books piece by piece and can totally pinpoint things I would have never even thought of. We’re lucky to have him writing on our blog. (I super, hardcore second this, Paul’s brain is amazing and you all need to appreciate the hell out of it. -Meg)
8. Best Bookish Discovery
Meg: The 100 (thank you for enticing me down this rabbithole with you Gillian), Out of Print Clothing Company (help, I can’t stop buying stuff), The Art of Young Adult Society 6 store (both a shameless pug for Gillian and also because I won’t rest until all my throw pillows are YA themed).
Steph: Yeah, yeah, yeah. The 100 is addictive.
9. Did You Complete Any Reading Challenges or Goals?
Meg: No. But I also didn’t participate in any or set any goals for myself so I still win.
Kat: No, but I also didn’t set any goals for myself so… yey?!
Steph: No. I’m kinda sad about it, but oh well, I’m not bothered.
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2014 But Will Be Your #1 Priority in 2015
Meg: You guys, I still haven’t read Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett (latest Discworld, came out in March). Who am I?
Steph: The Fever series. I was supposed to get to that this year, but clearly, I have failed. I’ll go sit in my corner of shame now. (omg I am here for you when you read it, it’s madness -Meg)
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2015 (non-debut)
Meg: THE LAST RAVEN CYCLE. The Vanishing Throne by Elizabeth May, A Darker Shade of Magic by Victoria Schwab
Steph: Delicate Monsters by Stephanie Kuehn
3. 2015 Debut You Are Most Anticipating
Steph: The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
4. Series Ending/Sequel You Are Most Anticipating
Kat: The Winner’s Crime sequel for sure.
Steph: Winter by Marissa Meyer. I must have it!
5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish/Do In Your Bookish/Blogging Life in 2015
Kat: Actually doing any blogging would be really great!
Meg: Build a massive, two-story fort out of my books and then live in it and declare myself the God of Booktonia. I would also settle for a throne (I GUESS).
Steph: What Kat said. Also, I’d like to find some balance between Real Life and blogging.
6. A 2015 Release You’ve Already Read and Recommend to Everyone
Meg: Please read An Ember In The Ashes by Sabaa Tahir ASAP and then join me in my EXCUSE YOU WHAT DO YOU MEAN THERE’S NO SEQUEL THERE HAS TO BE A SEQUEL support group.
Steph: RED QUEEN. SIMON VS. THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA. THE WINNER’S CRIME. GOLDEN SON. LITTLE PEACH.