2016 in Review

Goodbye 2016! Good riddance! ¡Adiós! It was a rough year to be alive. But I read some awesome books! I wanted to do a year-long wrap-up! I originally set a goal of 80 books, but I met that in about half a year. I upped my goal to 200 then, which would be the most books I’ve read in a year, ever. Here’s the stats of my year!

Total books read: 214

ARCs read: 54
Listened to over 39 days worth of audiobooks!

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(I didn’t rate any books at 1 star this year, but I abandoned quite a few.)

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I keep a shelf every year that has every book I’ve read that year in the order I’ve read them. This of course doesn’t include books that I don’t own a physical copy (ebooks, audiobooks, library books). It always looks so pretty and I love it!

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How did your 2016 reading goals go? I will be posting a top 20 of 2016 and a 2017 goals post soon, so keep an eye out for that! Thanks for a great year!

“Everything You Want Me to Be” by Mindy Mejia

New Release Tuesday!

29276588Told from three viewpoints, Everything You Want Me to Be is a thrilling whodunit. Hattie, an aspiring actress, tells her story before she was murdered and left in a barn. Sheriff Del Goodman follows the trails left behind to try to catch Hattie’s killer. And Peter, a new resident of Pine Valley, has his own role to play in the story. The story has plenty of false trails, twists, and the classic small feeling that a tiny town brings to a book.

I won’t lie to you — this book may hurt you. I stayed up way too late because I couldn’t put it down and only got 4 hours of sleep. That next day was a real struggle, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I wouldn’t have been able to concentrate not knowing what Hattie did, who killed her, and why. Pick up this book for a cozy snow day read — it’s killer.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Purchase the book here.

I was provided with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

December Wrap-Up

Well everyone, 2016 is officially over! I’ll be doing another post about the  year in review, plus a bonus top 20 of 2016 post!

December was a somewhat slower month — I read some larger books that I’d been meaning to get to. I read 22 books in December, giving me a grand total of 214 books in 2016!

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Here’s what I read!

  1. Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman
  2. Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E.K. Johnston (review)
  3. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  4. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens*
  5. All Fall Down by Ally Carter
  6. Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here by Anna Breslaw
  7. All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
  8. See How They Run by Ally Carter*
  9. Blankets by Craig Thompson
  10. Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin
  11. Everything You Want Me to Be by Mindy Mejia*
  12. The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner
  13. The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
  14. The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace
  15. Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
  16. You by Caroline Kepnes
  17. The River at Night by Erica Ferencik*
  18. The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon
  19. My True Love Gave to Me edited by Stephanie Perkins
  20. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
  21. None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio*
  22. Caraval by Stephanie Garber

*Not pictured — read as audiobook, library book, or ebook.

What did you read in December? What are you looking forward to reading in January?

“Scythe” by Neal Shusterman

28954189In a futuristic world, humans have found the cure for every disease and can keep people alive indefinitely. Since this would lead to overpopulation, the world has Scythes who randomly choose citizens and kill them. It’s a government-provided service and is considered something that is good for the community. Citra and Rowan both have run-ins with Scythe Faraday, who is in turn impressed with the two teenagers’ personalities. Faraday decides to take both on as apprentices for one Scythe position. They learn more about the society that Scythes are ruled by, and train in combat, compassion, and common sense. There are several tests that they are required to perform, and the best apprentice will become a full-fledged Scythe, granting them and their family immunity from death.

While this sounds very morbid, this book was absolutely fascinating. I read this monster in one day, putting off everything I should have been doing instead. Scythe is so well-written and has such an amazing premise and world-building. This is the first book I’ve read by Neal Shusterman, and I definitely plan on reading his other books now. It’s easy to get lost in the story, rooting for the good guys, hoping the bad guys get what’s coming to them. Definitely pick this one up — it’s to die for.

Rating: ★★★★★

Purchase the book here.

“One True Loves” by Taylor Jenkins Reid

27189194Emma Blair’s first husband died in a plane crash over the ocean. She was understandably heartbroken and it took her years to recover from the tragedy. But eventually, Emma heals, and she decides it’s time to start dating again. She runs into an old school friend and they end up getting engaged. But one evening, when Emma and Sam (her fiancee) are out at dinner, Emma gets a life-changing phone call.

Her first husband is alive. He survived the plane crash. And he’s headed back home. Now, Emma must make the unbelievably hard decision between going back to her husband, her first love, who she was so horribly separated from, or continuing with her plan to marry Sam, her new love.

I listened to this on Audible, and I loved the narrator. I adore Taylor Jenkins Reid’s books — I loved Maybe in Another Life last year, so I was so excited to see she was coming out with this book. This book was heartbreaking, beautiful, and addicting. This would be a good one to read by the fireplace, cozy in a warm blanket. Who knows — maybe this book will be one of your One True Loves…

Rating: ★★★★★

Purchase the book here.

“Exit, Pursued by a Bear” by EK Johnston

25528801.jpgThis is such a hard review to write. It’s a book I enjoyed a lot, a book that I thought about for days after finishing it. But here’s the thing: It’s going to sound pretty morbid for this to be one of my favorite books I’ve read this year.

Hermione Winters is captain of her cheer team, plus it’s her senior year of high school and that’s stressful enough as it is. The captain has a lot of expectations, especially at cheer camp — be the loudest, the bubbliest, the most precise during their routine. But at the end-of-camp dance, Hermione is drugged and raped, and left in the lake. When she comes to at the hospital, she has no memory of what happened. She remembers going to the dance, and getting tired and thirsty, and that’s where her memory ends. Exit, Pursued By A Bear is the story of Hermione’s assault, recovery, healing, and coping with what has happened to her.

Exit, Pursued By A Bear is heartwrenching, beautiful (in a sad way), exceptionally well-written, and it’ll stay with you for days (if not longer). I listened to the audiobook and the narrator was captivating. Honestly, this book was one of my favorites of 2016. You’ll find yourself cheering for Hermione to overcome.

Rating: ★★★★★

Purchase the book here.

November Wrap-Up

November was a great month for reading. I had a four-day weekend thanks to Thanksgiving, in which I read like the world was ending. I managed to get through 31 books! Some of them were graphic novels, which I just started reading for the first time. They still count in my eyes!

2016 challenge update: As of the end of November, I am at 192 books read for my goal of 200. I’m on track to win!

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Here’s what I read this month:

  1. Defending Jacob by William Landay*
  2. Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  3. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
  4. Ex Machina Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan, et al.
  5. Can I Sit on Your Lap While You’re Pooping? by Matthew Carroll
  6. The Homecoming by Stacie Ramey* (review)
  7. Saga Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan
  8. Saga Vol. 2 by Brian K. Vaughan*
  9. Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi
  10. Saga Vol. 3 by Brian K. Vaughan*
  11. Saga Vol. 4 by Brian K. Vaughan*
  12. Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi
  13. Saga Vol. 5 by Brian K. Vaughan
  14. Unite Me by Tahereh Mafi
  15. iZombie Vol. 1 by Chris Roberson*
  16. Heartless by Marissa Meyer
  17. Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick
  18. iZombie Vol. 2 by Chris Roberson*
  19. Panic by Lauren Oliver*
  20. Scythe by Neal Shusterman
  21. iZombie Vol. 3 by Chris Roberson*
  22. Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver*
  23. One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  24. A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
  25. Saga Vol. 6 by Brian K. Vaughan
  26. Fight Club 2 by Chuck Palahniuk*
  27. Forever, Interrupted by Taylor Jenkins Reid*
  28. Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris
  29. Talking as Fast as I Can by Lauren Graham*

*Not pictured — read as audiobook, library book, or ebook. Not included are 2 books read for work that are outside the scope of this blog.

Man, I really need to catch up on reviews this month! What did you read last month? What are you looking forward to reading in December?