1. Best Book You Read In 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)
Hemingway's Girl touched me. I don't know why or what it was, but I felt like I was THERE and that Hemingway should have been my man. I had other favorites, but I mention a few more of my favorites in other questions below.
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. Drrrrrrrrrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaggggggggggggggg. Did not finish. Plus, when there are approximately 4,666,232,852 other reviews online, it seems less important that I review it. Especially since it was a personal copy and not a free review copy. It became so easy to ignore.
The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony (One gripe is that I am not a dog person, and there was a point of view from a dog; definitely unexpected when I was looking forward to a cast of lace makers). Thank God this was a short book. With a very short abrupt ending to top it off.
3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?
Central Park Rendezvous, of the Romancing America series. Historical stories but told by four different authors so it was like novellas turned into one book! I was skeptical, but I loved it.
4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
Probably it was Code Name Verity, since it could appeal to many different readers and I devoured it pretty quickly (while ignoring the family, which is a rare feat and goes to show how great this book was).
5. Best series you discovered in 2012?
Without a doubt, the Secrets of The Cross Trilogy by Elizabeth Musser. Fantastic story that was beyond epic with love, war and faith all at once with unforgettable characters that I now miss.
6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
So many great reads this year! I'll say of the new authors that I read this year and will definitely be clamoring to get their next release it would have to be Elizabeth Ludwig (No Safe Harbor), Laurie Alice Eakes (A Necessary Deception, and others), Tamera Alexander, Julie Klassen and Susanna Kearsley.
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
Out of my comfort zone would have to be The Orphan Master. It was a bit of a historical chiller thriller thing, and even though it wasn't my cuppa tea as it seemed purposely over the top with the shock value, this one got some high praise because of it. I think it's something you have to be in the mood for and thinking back on it, it really was very interesting though I was slightly disturbed while reading it.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
LOVED Julie Klassen's The Maid of Fairbourne Hall.. the Jane Eyre type feel made me turn those pages deep into the night. A great read with a clever mix of themes, I would recommend this to many folks. Pretty sure this one won several literary awards.
9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year:
I have so many books unread that I rarely reread books within such a short span of time. If I had to pick one to reread, it would be While Lilacs Still Bloom by Jane Kirkpatrick.
10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?
I loved the shiny hardcover on The Kingmaker's Daughter by Philippa Gregory. But there weren't any other really truly special covers this year. Reading eBooks and ARCs a lot deters this wow factor for me.
11. Most memorable character in 2012?
AMBER!! Of Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor... wow, she is a crazy bitch.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
Frank Delaney's prose is fantastically mesmerizing. Loved it while reading The Last Storyteller. I am so ready to sink my teeth into some more of his work. If I was able to pick myself a writing teacher, it would be him.
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?
The aforementioned Secrets of the Cross trilogy by Elizabeth Musser.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?
15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012?
I don't normally (ever) quote books, and if I was going to now it would be from the Bible since there are tons of good ones there!!
16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012?
Shortest: Belonging by Robin Lee Hatcher, 277 pages (I was like wow, this was a quickie!)
Longest: Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor 976 pages (I was like wow, I don't want this to end!)
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 would have loved to have a partner to spout exclamations with during my reading of Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor. Bodies being thrown out windows, murderous thoughts towards husbands and other general madness...
18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).
Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman was full of relationship angst. I was most interested to see how Joanna handled being married to the man who was the adversary to her father, King John.
19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously:
Hemingway's Girl by Erika Robuck, and I LOVED her previous release Receive Me Falling as well.
20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
Code Name Verity. It was spreading on the YA blogs like wildfire, and even I noticed =).
BOOK BLOGGING LIFE IN 20121. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2012?
Estella's Revenge, by Andi Miller, as she writes with honesty and wit. Also, I am in awe since I think she sort of emulates what it is like to be a book blogger without a review schedule, which is where I wanna be soon.
2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2012?
It was probably for A Dangerous Inheritance by Alison Weir, as I didn't have a clue how to cull the long review and I had to get alot off my chest. Still don't know which way I leaned towards my final feelings of the book. Some parts seemed so silly that it ruined the rest of the book, but then if I was not so critical maybe I would've loved it.. LOL see, I can't even minimize this answer.
3. Best discussion you had on your blog?
Eh, nothing too earth shattering here. I post reviews, and that's pretty much it. =) But when I have rants and I complain, I tend to get support, LOL!!!
4. Most thought-provoking review or discussion you read on somebody else’s blog?
Sarah Butterfield's blog comes to mind from this summer. She wrote a review and apparently was called out on it, and there was another reviewer who didn't love a popular author's work and the feeding frenzy began. These events made me re-evaluate why I was even a book blogger, so I decided then and there to stop being a free publicity machine for authors and start going back to the basics of reading for fun.
5. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
Armchair BEA this year. Last year I went to an event with Margaret George, but nothing fun went on near me this year.
6. Best moment of book blogging in 2012?
Well, I got a nice email from an author recently who applauded my Ranting Review policy. Or maybe it was this one. Grin.
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views?)
According to Google Analytics, the most popular post for the year of 2012 is the review of Tumbleweeds by Leila Meacham. Of course, the most popular landing page is the domain home page itself, but next up in the 2012 list is Tumbleweeds. The post was from August, so that is indeed popular. And it only has six comments. Oye vey. COMMENT MORE, people!!
8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
My reviews. Gah. There are some that go by without a second glance. (Without a comment).
AND my freaking giveaways! There used to be giveaway gimme galore a few years ago, and I guess with the expansion of the blogosphere, a free book or two just isn't so awesome anymore when EVERYONE is doing it. But it aggravates me when it is I who has to stand on line at the post office forever and a day, and the giveaway post didn't get a lot of attention. Yuck.
9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
My Goodreads iPhone App!!!!!! I love Goodreads in general and always have.
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
I did a few Read alongs in order to participate more in the blogosphere, but those bombed. I did do a fun event, Armchair BEA, where I participated in almost all of the Twitter Parties and blog posts, and that was tons of fun. There were mostly new bloggers there, and most were of the YA genre, though they welcomed this old maid with open arms. So I wonder if it's an age group who is open to chatting and that older folks are just too busy or too wary to participate or what. The Armchair BEA was not geared towards YA Bloggers, but that was the majority of the participants. I was so excited to see and be a part of their enthusiasm for books and blogging, and I hope I remember to sign up again next time.
1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?
All those in my 2013 TBR Pile Challenge!
2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?
I am trying not to think of that, because of my goal of below....
3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?
I would like to be able to limit my actual FOR REVIEW books, to a nice manageable number of around 15. That is an ambitious goal for me. The rest of my 40 or so reads need to be books from my neglected personal library of over 900 books.