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2012 End of Year Survey

This is the second year I’m participating in Jamie from the Perpetual Page Turner’s End of Year Survey and I love it! She’s added a few more questions to the last part of the survey and I’m sure it’s going to make it even tougher then last year, but still fun. My favorite part about this survey is it gives me a chance to reflect back on the year and see what really stood out and how I want to change my reading for the year to come. So, without further hesitation on my part, my 2012 End of Year Survey…

1. Best Book You Read In 2012?

Because it’s next to impossible to choose just one and because I’m a big cheater, I’m choosing one from each age range.
First up, picture books!
Creepy Carrots!
Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds and Illustrated by Peter Brown

Easy Reader/Early Chapter Books
Rabbit and Robot: The Sleepover
Rabbit and Robot: The Sleepover by Cece Bell

Middle Grade
(This one is a tie, I simply cannot choose.)

The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom Twelve Minutes to Midnight

The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy
Twelve Minutes to Midnight by Christopher Edge

Young Adult
Small Damages by Beth Kephart
Small Damages by Beth Kephart

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
Cinderella Ate My Daughter by Peggy Orenstein – I thought I was really going to enjoy this book and hoped it would help me balance my parenting. Boy was I wrong. This was one of only a handful of books that I’ve given one star to.

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?
Everybody Sees the Ants
Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King – Initially I wasn’t sure I’d like this one and in fact I nearly put it down during the first one hundred pages. I’m so glad I didn’t. I’m in love with anything AS King writes now, just amazing.

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
Rot and Ruin
Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry – Zombies, Katana swords, incredible action and great writing. Need I say more?

5. Best series you discovered in 2012?
Embrace Final Cover
Embrace by Jessica Shirvington (The Violet Eden series)

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
Ame Dyckman, AS King, Birgitta Sif, Christopher Healy, Christopher Edge, Julie Kagawa, and EM Kokie.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
Personal Effects
Personal Effects by E.M. Kokie – I’m not normally a fan of war related books, but this one (not heavy on war action, more about the surrounding events) blew me away. Brilliant book.

8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
The Immortal Rules
The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa – Loved this dystopian take on vampires. So original and creative.

9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year:
The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy – I loved this book, so much, and now I have a copy of the second book! In preparation I’ve actually already read it again believe it or not. So good!

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?
Cinder by Marissa Meyer – Hands down my favorite cover of all time. It just doesn’t get much cooler than this cover. Stunning.

11. Most memorable character in 2012?
In a YA novel – Allison Sekemoto, Allie, from The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa – Finally! A kick butt girl character that wasn’t afraid to have real emotions and not just “swooning over a boy” emotions. She was raw and real and strong. One of my favorite characters ever.

In a Picture Book – Oliver from Oliver by Birgitta Sif – This sweet boy reminds me so much of not only myself, but my Turkeybird. I couldn’t help but fall in love with Oliver and his sweet introvert self. Wonderful.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
Hands down Small Damages by Beth Kephart. This isn’t really a question for me, it’s a given. Beth’s writing sheds so much light on the workings of my soul that I’ve yet to uncover or have hidden away that I can’t help but fall in love with everything she writes, and Small Damages is no exception.

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?
Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King – I also read Ask the Passengers by A.S. King this year (which was also published this year as well) and both were amazing, but Everybody Sees the Ants did something to me that changed me forever. It’s a powerful book, so much so that even now I get teared up thinking about it. Read it!

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?
I’m honestly not sure. I didn’t read many books in 2012 that weren’t published in 2012, I’m planning on working on that this year. If I were to pick one though I’m guessing it would be Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King since it was actually published back in 2011.

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012?
This one again from Everybody Sees the Ants:

I think back to the last time I told Dad about Nader and what he said. “Son, there will always be bullies in your life. Some people just don’t know how to act.”

Always? I know this sounds totally stupid, but sometimes I really can’t see the point in living if I will always have to deal with this crap. I know I will have better times in my life, and I might even make myself into someone important, but if the whole time I have to deal with a**holes, then what is the point?

Mom says that Nader is a loser who will grow up to be a loser and that I’ll understand when I’m forty. But I want to understand now.
(p. 129-130, ARC Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King)

It says so much about talking to teens and children. About how they deserve more than pat answers and they need the real support of those around them that love them and will take the time to show it.

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012?
This can’t be a real question for me…haha. I read so many books that are only twenty four to thirty six pages that I could have a list a mile long of those “short” books. But for longest books it would have to be The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa at 485 pages, and it flew by!

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!
Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King. I talk about it a little in my review, but there is a scene that’s eluded to throughout the book and when it’s finally revealed it took my breathe away and had me in tears for days.

18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).
Hadley and Oliver from The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith. So romantic and filled with all those feelings you love in the beginning of a relationship. I adored this couple!

19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously
This Is Not My Hat
This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen

20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
Bluefish by Pat Schmatz – Recommended by my friend Raquel and I’m so glad I listened to it on audio! So so good!

Book Blogging/Reading Life in 2012

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2012?
Sturdy for Common Things – I met Rebecca just prior to being on the Cybils panel with her and I adore her site. And I get to meet her in person soon! I can’t wait!

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2012?
A Monster Calls
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness – This review took me an entire year to write. I’m not sure I can explain why here, I’d just say to go read it. It’s my favorite review I’ve ever written, ever.

3. Best discussion you had on your blog?
This was a goal for me last year and it didn’t go so well. I’m hoping that this year will bring more discussions and more reviews. My top two priorities this year for the blog!

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
Book Expo America and Armchair BEA! This was my first year to get to attend BEA and it was amazing. Couple that with being involved with Armchair BEA for the third year, it was a week I’ll never forget.

5. Best moment of book blogging in 2012?
Attending BEA, hands down. I was able to meet so many authors and publishers that I’ve worked with over these last few years as well as tons of book blogging buddies. It’s one thing to chat online or comment on sites, but meeting fellow book lovers is something I’ll never get tired of doing and I hope to do more as the years go by. My BEA posts and wrap-ups:
It’s A Wrap! 2012 Book Expo America and Armchair BEAIt’s A Wrap! 2012 BEA Book Blogger Conference

6. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
Tons of comments on this one, but it was really exciting news! My Big Huge Amazing Announcement…I Have An Agent!

7. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
Oh my, this one is bad. I had a ton of goals this last year and it was the biggest flop since I started book blogging. I think I was a bit too ambitious last year. I went into 2012 thinking that more would push me to do so much, but it really backfired on me. I’m hoping 2013 will be a little more balanced.

Looking Ahead…

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?
The Night Circus
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – I even have a UK edition of this gorgeous book because I loved the edition so much, but I haven’t even read it! I am reading it this month!

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?
Picture Book:
Mustache Baby
Mustache Baby by Bridget Heos and Illustrated by Joy Ang

Middle Grade:
The Hero's Guide to Storming the Castle
The Hero’s Guide to Storming the Castle by Christopher Healy

Young Adult:
More Than This by Patrick Ness – No cover yet and no details even, but it’s Patrick Ness. I will be completely unavailable come September when this fabulous new book is released!

3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?
I want to enjoy it more. That may sound odd, but I feel like I get easily overwhelmed with trying to keep up with others and/or requests. I want to spend this year reading and really blogging about the books that come across my path. I want to review more and talk more about the books, not just post and walk away.

So, there’s my year in a nutshell! How did yours go? How would you answer some of these questions?

12 Responses to 2012 End of Year Survey

  1. Ingrid says:

    I adored Everybody Sees the Ants. More people need to talk about that book!
    I can’t believe Libba Bray’s The Diviners isn’t on here. I’m obsessed.
    Great list!

    • I completely agree. It was one I wasn’t completely sold on initially, but once it took hold I’ve never been the same.

      I need to read The Diviners! I even have a copy believe it or not! 😉

  2. I love these recap posts! It’s like reminding you of all the wonderful books out there that others loved, but you might have missed. I’ve got to try Everybody Sees the Ants. I loathed Dust of 100 Dogs by A.S. King, so I have avoided her. But now…

    • I know! I’m such a fan, I always forget things I meant to read and so it’s nice to have a reminder. 😉

      You must try a new AS King book! The last two have been fantastic.

  3. Kami says:

    I read Rot & Ruin last year as well, and I loved it!! I totally want a Katana for the zombie apocalypse.

  4. That was awesome.
    Do you have a favorite adult read?
    I love that quote.
    I love how each parent had such a different view.
    It’s good to get both ya know?

    • Awww…thank you so much! 🙂

      Favorite adult read this year would probably be Losing Clementine by Ashley Realm. It was incredible. I should have mentioned it in the post, such a good book.

  5. Raquel says:

    Great recap! You have such an eclectic taste in books. And I am so glad you liked Bluefish!

    Here’s to a great 2013!

  6. PragmaticMom says:

    Sending this list to my 7th grader for YA books since she is out of “good books to read.”

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