Blog Post, Giveaway, Giveaway Hop, Giveaways, Monthly Review, Year In Review

2014 End of the Year Book Survey

inde3xWelcome to my Big Book Survey for 2014!

Number Of Books You Read: 82 (goal of 60)
Number of Re-Reads: 2 (The Giver & The Canterbury Tales)
Genre You Read Most: LGBT/Criticism/History

Best Book You Read In 2014?

Better Angel by Forman Brown; Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf; Eminent Outlaws by Christopher Bram; The Book Thief by Markus Zusak….. so many.

Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

Let Us Now Praise Famous Men by James Agee

Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read in 2014? 

Life Studies by Robert Lowell – Incredible collection of poetry. I’m not a poetry person, but this was stunning.

Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did) In 2014?

Ulysses by James Joyce (because I hosted a read-along for it).

Best series you started in 2014? Best Sequel of 2014? Best Series Ender of 2014?

The Giver Quartet by Lois Lowry, The Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan, and The Magicians by Lev Grossman

Favorite new author you discovered in 2014?

Andre Aciman, David Leavitt, and A.S. King

Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer (original Middle English)

Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

 The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan

Book You Read In 2014 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

 Better Angel by Forman Brown

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2014?

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Most memorable character of 2014?

Beloved from Beloved by Toni Morrison or Leopold Bloom from Ulysses by James Joyce.

Most beautifully written book read in 2014?

 The Hours by Michael Cunningham

Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2014?

This is Water by David Foster Wallace

Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2014 to finally read? 

The Stand by Stephen King

Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2014?

“The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day.” –David Foster Wallace (This is Water)

Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2013?

Shortest: He Cried: Poems and Stories by Dennis Cooper (32 pages)

Longest: The Stand by Stephen King (1,153 pages)

Book That Shocked You The Most

Totempole by Sanford Friedman. It’s a gay coming-of-age story published (barely) in 1965. Incredible depth, roundedness, and honesty for such a “subversive” work in such an uptight time.

OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

Kurt and David from Better Angel. Beautiful.

Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Finn and Cade in 100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith

Favorite Book You Read in 2014 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Eminent Outlaws by Christopher Bram or Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf. Or The Stand by Stephen King (lots of repeat authors, clearly!)

Best Book You Read In 2014 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley (and it was good!)

Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2014?

Maybe Billy Sive from The Front Runner by Patricia Nell Warren?

Best 2014 debut you read?

I don’t think I read any 2014 debuts…

Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

The Stand by Stephen King or Beloved by Toni Morrison. Also, Other Voices, Other Rooms by Truman Capote and The Dog Star by Donald Windham

Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

If This Isn’t Nice, What Is? By Kurt Vonnegut

Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2014?

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Life Studies by Robert Lowell and Better Angel by Forman Brown

Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Beloved by Toni Morrison, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, and The Normal Heart by Larry Kramer.

Most Unique Book You Read In 2014?

Let Us Now Praise Famous Men by James Agee or Ulysses by James Joyce

Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Philosophy by Roger Scruton – This book was no guide. It was biased, bigoted, ideological, and patronizing. Such a waste of time.

New favorite book blog you discovered in 2014? 

Oops – none…. Haven’t had much time to explore! Any recommendations?

Favorite review that you wrote in 2014? 

On Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?

J.K. Rowling Can Say What She Wants

Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?

 Austen in August!

Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2014?

5 Year Blog Anniversary & Ulysses Read-along

Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

Announcing the 2015 TBR Pile Challenge!

Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

 Review: 100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith

Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

The Easton Press Leather Bound Editions – can’t afford ‘em, but definitely want!

Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

I blew my Goodreads goal of 60 books out of the water, but I failed miserably at my 2014 TBR Pile Challenge.

One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2014 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2015?

The Return of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2015 (non-debut)?

Studies in Classic American Literature by D.H. Lawrence

2015 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

The Alex Crow by Andrew Smith (March – I think!)

Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2015?

Well, this series isn’t ending (that I know of) but I’m looking forward to reading the second book in Cleo Coyle’s Coffee House Mystery series, Through the Grinder. I’m WAY behind in this series.

One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2015?

I hope to be able to find time to actually blog/review again.

A 2015 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone:

Hmmm…. Don’t think I’ve gotten any 2015 releases!

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15 thoughts on “2014 End of the Year Book Survey

  1. My brother has Easton Press’s SF collection and I am mad jealous. One day, when I have enough room for a proper library of my own….!

    I had the same reaction to James Agee this year, though for me it was “A Death in the Family.” I feel like it was a book that could have been fantastic under more revisions from Agee (this is why I don’t read unfinished works published posthumously) or an editor he trusted. There were some moments of great writing in the first few pages, but then…..no. I don’t know if they do this with every edition, but in the one I got from the library there were entire sections printed in italics (these were sections that Agee had in the manuscript but the publishers were unclear where it should belong), which made them totally unappealing to read.Terrible typesetting decision!!

    Beloved was a heavy read for me, too. But well worth it.

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  2. The Canterbury Tales in Middle English! Impressive! I’m attempting it this year but not in ME. Ahhhh ….. David Foster Wallace …….. I tried reading Infinite Jest this past year and stalled. I wonder if starting with This Is Water would be better …..??? It’s looks like you had a great reading year and may it continue into 2015!

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  3. Pingback: Reflecting on 2014: Reading | Zezee with Books

  4. litandlife says:

    I read Beloved years ago and can’t recall of the details of the book other than, yeah, that soul crushing. That unbelievable soul crushingness. I often think I’ll reread it but I’m not sure I can.

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