I wanted to post this when June officially is over – when it is truly midway through the year – but looking at my current reads and upcoming schedule, it’s not going to make a difference whether I do it now or later. I’m almost done with a light novel and an audio book and neither are to write home about. Also, starting tomorrow – June 30 – I’ll be in Anime Expo mode until the 4th of July. I am excite!
Here is my last year’s post – 2016 Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag. I definitely read more this year with better diversity in genre and media. I’ve also made better book-buying choices. I’ve missed a couple of good sales even with the new free shipping option from Book Outlet and crazy deals from Better World Books and Thriftbooks. I became more excited about author events. Overall, this is shaping up to be a better reading year than the last.
As of this posting, I’ve read a total of 69 books and “currently reading” 3.
1. Best Book You’ve Read Yet in 2017
I’ve seen many bloggers and booktubers give multiple answers to this so I’m giving two: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson and Battle Royale by Koushun Takami. They’re brilliant in their own way. One has such a rich world that sucks you in from page one. The other has so much action that rivals even the goriest movies. I
2. Best Sequel You’ve Read So Far in 2016
Spiral by Koji Suzuki, hands down. It’s my favorite out of the Ring series even though I rated it a star lower than the first one. I think it’s more twisted than Ring in a more psychological way vs actual ghost horror.
3. New Release You Haven’t Read Yet But Want To
I pre-ordered a signed copy of Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab but I somehow got sort of spoiled for the ending so I’m not leaping through fire to read it right away. I don’t mind… at least I’m ready LOL. Also, A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas. I’m not the biggest fan of this series but it became sort of a guilty pleasure. I’m not really on top of new releases.
4. Most Anticipated Release for the Second Half of the Year
I have two: Warcross by Marie Lu. I am waiting for her tour schedule so I can either go (if they include Vroman’s Pasadena) or pre-order a signed copy. And Origin by Dan Brown. At this point, I’ve read all of his published work and he’s definitely one of my auto-buy authors, especially his Robert Langdon series.
5. Biggest Disappointment
No, it’s not Caraval by Stephanie Garber. Frankly, I never expected much from it based on the reviews from people I trust. The “honor” goes to The Grisha trilogy – or whatever it’s called now – by Leigh Bardugo. And this was tough. I met her at a book signing and I had a sort of signed bookplate (a Post-It, really) from her for Six of Crows. She was nice. The Grisha trilogy was so very hyped even years after the series ended. It almost sent me to a reading slump. I would put down the second book and have absolutely no desire to pick it back up. I didn’t like any of the main characters, especially Mal. I’ve been told that the Six of Crows duology is way better and I’m hoping it is. I also want to read her Wonder Woman book so I haven’t given up on her work.
6. Biggest Surprise
Not so much a book but a book format. Audio books. I’ve resisted for the longest time but I think I’ve found my niche. I love listening to mystery thrillers on audio. I’ve gone through most of James Rollins‘ back list through audio and loved it. I’m getting my audio books through Hoopla Digital. I mean, it still takes me ages to decide which book to listen to but I think I am getting the hang of listening to spoken word. After all, I love me some podcasts. It works for me because I do actually walk to work and that’s a little under an hour. Then I can just have it playing while I work. It’s not as immersive as reading words off a page but with the right narrator, it can be.
I could also say Him and Us by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy but I already know that I have a soft spot for m/m fiction… if my intake of yaoi fan fiction is any indication. 😉
7. Favorite New Author
I don’t think I have one. I’ve been reading a lot of manga and translated fiction this year. And those “new to me” authors aren’t impressing me that much. But I guess Maggie Stiefvater can be my answer to this question. I recently read The Scorpio Races on audio and while it wasn’t as gripping as my mystery thrillers, I loved the writing. I’m planning to acquire a physical copy of this book to re-read.
8. Newest Fictional Crush
Arin from The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski. I don’t know what it is but it is. I love how he is a tortured soul yet quiet and clever. People have said that it is safe to fall for him and I have every intention of continuing with this series. I can also say Azriel from A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas simply because he reminds me of Otabek Altin from Yuri!!! ON ICE.
9. Newest Favorite Character
I don’t get very may favorite BOOK characters. Kane, maybe, from the Tucker Wayne series by James Rollins and Grant Blackwood. I look forward to his parts in the books. Also in manga, therefore, anime – the Anglerfish Team girls from Girls und Panzer. And my precious Hiroto Suwa from Orange. Of course, the Phantomhive servants from Black Butler.
10. Book That Made You Cry
I am made of stone and I never cry when reading. Almost. This year, A Silent Voice (stand alone) by Yoshitoki Ooima killed all my existing feelz. It resonated with me. I was severely bullied psychologically in high school and frankly, I don’t think I’m totally over that. This manga opened up old wounds and it showed that people don’t really change. Kids can be awful.
11. Book That Made You Happy
A lot of the manga-turned-anime stuff that I read so far made me so happy. I get a kick seeing a scene from the anime on print and still have the same effect on me. I can hear the voice actor’s voices in my head when I read the words. I can see the characters move. Even though I already know what happens, I’m still so excited to read it.
12. Favorite Book to Film Adaptation
I haven’t watched many movies this year but I’ve binge watched anime like there’s no tomorrow. And the best adaptation I’ve seen this year is Orange by Ichigo Takano. It’s almost 100% faithful and I love it so much. Even the live action is on point with casting and everything. With each format I see, I fall more and more in love with Suwa.
13. Favorite Post You’ve Done This Year
I’ve done mostly the weekly tags. I just can’t be bothered with reviews LOL. But I’m pretty proud of a couple posts:
14. Most Beautiful Book You’ve Bought This Year
Caraval has a pretty stunning cover. That and the fact that it is signed and personalized are reasons why I’m not unhauling it. I also have the Indie Bookstore Day copy of Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. And of course, the Slytherin hardback edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling. I also have the paperback but the emerald green against the black is just stunning. Not to mention the colored edges.
15. What Books Do You Need to Read by the End of the Year?
Short answer: as many as I can. Long answer:
- I want to at least start The Remnant Chronicles by Mary E. Pearson.
- I want to read The Young Elites trilogy by Marie Lu before Warcross comes out.
- The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. I have this on audio read by Claire Danes. And I also have a physical copy. I am loving the Hulu adaptation so much.
- Continue and finish The Winner’s Curse trilogy and Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy by Laini Taylor. And explore Laini Taylor’s writing in general. I also have Strange the Dreamer and it’s a signed copy.
As for my current reads, I have Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie on an indefinite hold. The main couple in that story is so boring but I’m not DNF-ing just yet. I have one more chapter to go with Sound! Euphonium Vol. 1 by Ayano Takeda. I’ll finish it tonight probably. It’s one of my favorite anime series and I’m also enjoying its source material. And finally, I’m in the final 3-4 hours of Amazonia by James Rollins. I’ll probably get that done by tomorrow or over the weekend.
There you have it. How is your reading year going so far? 🙂