#2019RoundUp: End of the Year Reading Survey

Friday, 27 December 2019


How the time flies.



How many books did you read? Did you meet your goal?
So far, I have read 160 books this year. I think I am about to head for another count of 161, like 2018, as I am currently about a quarter of the way through Maaza Mengiste's utterly marvellous novel, The Shadow King. There are still a couple of days left and I am eager to squeeze it in to make an utterly pointless (but pleasing to me) matching pair.

Most read genre?
Ooo, that is a tough one. To be honest, I would hazard a guess a literary fiction. I mean, if that can even be classed as a genre and not a subset of a larger type.

Longest and shortest books you read?
Thanks to trusty ol'Goodreads I can tell you that the longest was NOS4A2 by Joe Hill and my shortest, similarly to last year, was another of Mª Isabel Sánchez Vegara's Little People Big Dreams picture books. To celebrate Halloween, I picked up the one about Mary Shelley and it filled my twisted heart with gloomy, adorable joy.

Favourite book published in 2019?
I can't pick! Honestly, there is just over a weekend to go until the end of the year and my top ten list is still initialising - keep checking the blog for it, when I finally get around to choosing!

Favourite debut book in 2019?
So many. Over the last few years, I have come to find that I love a debut. There is just something so new and sparkly about them.

Favourite book not published this year?
Less by Andrew Sean Greer. That book is a masterpiece and I can completely see why it bagged the Pulitzer a couple of years ago.

A book that lived up to the hype.
Rules of Civility by Amor Towles. Remind me to keep listening to @abookolive over on Youtube because she ALWAYS nails it with the recs. 

A book that did NOT live up to the hype.
Sorry, guys, but it has to be The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. Seriously. Were all of you on drugs when read it, or did I just get a dud copy?

Book that felt like the biggest accomplishment?
Murmur by Will Eaves. That book took three tries but I think I have finally wrapped my head around it.

Favourite character.
Daisy Jones. I want to be her, I want to date her. Honestly, she is the first book!crush that I have had in bloody years.

Least favourite character.
The unnamed narrator from Rebecca. She really just needed to get off of her arse and speak to her husband.

Most shocking book/moment.
The treatment that 'Marie' received from law enforcement, family members and basically everyone else in her life after her sexual assault. Her case was transcribed in Unbelievable by T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong and adapted into a Netflix documentary this year and, to know it really happened, makes my stomach turn. 

Favourite couple/OTP.
Robbie and Cecilia in Ian McEwan's Atonement. I loved them for years as Keira Knightley and James McAvoy in the film adaptation, and now I have experienced them in fiction, I have fallen even more in love with ultimately star-crossed couple.

The best written book you read this year.
This is the hardest question on this last, by far. After-all, if a book has good writing, then it is pretty much a winner in my book... To be honest, I think it may be a tie between Saltwater by Jessica Andrews and This Brutal House by Niven Govinden.

Book that you pushed the most people to read in 2019.
The Nickel Boys. Read it, shout about it, give it the recognition the Booker screwed it out of. That book could receive all of the praise in the world, and I would still think it deserved more.

Favourite book cover of the year.
Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. I have found this year that I have been consistently drawn to covers that depict the natural world and the orange sky on this one, is particularly stunning. 

Favourite adaptation.
The Book Thief. Reading the book this year (another that turned out to be awful), reminded me just how much I loved it.

A new favourite author you discovered this year.
Niven Govinden? Ta-Nehisi Coates? Andrew Sean Greer? Angie Kim? Hilary Mantel? Colson Whitehead? Amor Towles? Jessica Andrews? So many.

Guilty pleasure read of the year.
I never feel guilty about any of my pleasures.

Favourite book you re-read this year.
I technically re-read The Handmaid's Tale as a graphic novel this year. It was a new adaptation/configuration out from Jonathan Cape and the aesthetics of that book made an even stronger, startling impact than seeing all the red on screen for the first time.

Were you happy with your reading year? What will you do different in 2020?
Eh. Another year, another half wasted on one and two star reads. I am so done with this mediocre (or just downright bad) crap and, no matter what I do, I can't seem to avoid it. I have no idea how to rectify it but, give me a few weeks, and I will have probably put an overly ambitious plan in place.



Head on over to http://bit.ly/2y7JSWV for all of these books, as well as all of the others featured in my reviews, complete with the added bonuses of free worldwide shipping and bringing a little joy to my life.

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