Happy New Year! It’s 2020 and we’re at the beginning of a new decade: it’s the Roaring twenties all over again so let’s get drunk, riot, and bring back flapper dresses.
My plan for 2020 is to get a job that relates to my degrees in some way, so please wish me luck with that. I have some bookish and blogging plans that I’ll be putting up in another post. Last year, I completely failed at my bookish and blogging plans so here’s hoping this year is better — I’m going to try and not be too ambitious so I’m not disappointed.
This post is made up my answers to the questions from the 2019 Year in Review Survey. The survey, created by Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner, is an annual event that many bloggers participate in, myself included. There are usually some stats at the beginning of the post, but I’ll be doing a seperate post about my reading stats soon so I haven’t added them here.
Best in books
Best book read in 2019
For so long my favourite book of the year was something else, but at the very end of the year, The Starless Sea swooped in and stole the title. The book is such a calming experience for me and I was swept into the story in a way I never have been before. It’s about Zachary Ezra Rawlins, a gaming student working on his thesis about gender and narrative in modern gaming. When Zachary stumbles upon an authorless book that features a strange moment from his childhood, he’s unwittingly caught up in a dangerous quest of myth and magic, a quest that will lead him to a secret library hidden far beneath the earth.
The writing is superb and full of imagination. The book follows Zachary’s journey, mixed in with multiple stories and narratives from books and other character’s lives — stories within a story — and it’s up to the reader to try and piece all these diverse stories together. I adore this book so much and I want everyone to read it.
Best series you started in 2019? Best Sequel of 2019? Best Series Ender of 2019?
The Gilded Wolves was a great series starter. I am obsessed with it and all the amazing characters, especially Hypnos!
Holy holy holy crap, but The Kingdom of Copper was an incredible sequel to The City of Brass! So many different plot points came together and that cliff-hanger? How can I wait for June for the last book?
The Electric Heir doesn’t come out until March 2020, but I got to read an ARC of it and it is phenomenal. Absolutely phenomenal. You will cry so much during this book, but TW for: pedophilia, sexual assault and domestic violence.
Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
I’m not a big fan of sci-fi and I hardly ever enjoy sci-fi books when I read it, but I absolutely loved The Bone Season. Samantha Shannon is a fantastic writer and the world building in this novel is so fascinating: creatures from another world/alternate reality who control the world while a small group of people fight back. Love it!
Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?
I’ve never read a book quite like The Fifth Season before and I don’t think I will again. The book features such incredible worldbuilding, I’m in awe. It’s set in a dystopian future of earth where something important has disappeared and, as a response, the earth hates humanity and frequently sets off natural disasters that wipe out almost all of humanity.
Best 2019 debut you read?
This is definitely the best debut I read last year. It was so romantic and sweet and powerful, I will never forget it.
Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?
I’ve made at least three people read this book and another has bought it because of me. And all of them so far have loved it!
Book You Read In 2019 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?
I will reread this book at some point this year because I absolutely adored it! Shannon has created the f/f, feminist book of my dreams.
Hidden Gem Of The Year?
This is How You Lose the Time War came out of nowhere and floored me! Not many people discuss this book enough and that’s a real shame.
Book That Crushed Your Soul?
Ahhhhh, this book! Raze is a romance novel but the climax of the book had me sobbing into my pillow! Just thinking about it makes me tear up.
Most Unique Book You Read In 2019?
Oh boy! Docile doesn’t come out until March 2020 but holy crap was it an amazing book! The book is set in a dystopian future where debt is inherited and a young man sells himself as a sexual slave in order to get his family out of debt. Very unique!
Most beautifully written book read in 2019?
The Starless Sea for sure. I am in awe of Erin Morgenstern’s writing, it is stunning and evokes such an atmospheric tone.
Most Thought-Provoking/Life-Changing Book of 2019?
Definitely Seven Brief Lessons on Physics. This book describes, quickly and in easy to understand terms, the seven main theories of modern physics. It’s so interesting!
Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
I was very surprised by how profound and beautiful Tell Them of Battles, Kings, and Elephants was! It’s about Michelangelo’s time in Constantinople and it was so informative and lovely. I adore it.
Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
Definitely The Ruin of Kings! I could not put this book down — there was so much action, the book never stopped! Each chapter ended on a mini cliffhanger and keeps you wanting to read.
Book That Shocked You The Most
I’ll Be Gone in the Dark is a non-ficton book about the Golden State Killer and one’s woman’s obsessive search for it. Everything that happened in this book shocked me to my core: from the killer’s behaviour and acts, to the author’s own death. Such an amazing read.
Favourite Book You Read in 2019 From An Author You’ve Read Previously
Heartsong was an angst-ridden book that also made me feel a bit hopeful too. I absolutely adore TJ’s books and this one was no different.
Best Book You Read In 2019 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
I read this book based on Laura’s recommendation and am so thankful! The City of Brass is incredible and I can’t wait for the last book.
Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?
Definitely The Winter Quarters! This book is so much fun because it’s so sweet and romantic. I love the main characters’ relationship with each other — it’s full of banter and so lovely.
Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2019?
I absolutely cried while reading this book and you will too!
Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?
This book definitely made me mad and not in a good way. I hated the ending which sounds weird because it’s semi-autobiographical, but even so. I hate books that make the queer character forgive their violently homophobic parents WHO NEVER APOLOGISE AND NEVER LEARN.
Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
So disappointed in this! I fully expected to love it, and I did … until the second half of the book which ruined everything. So weird and such a disappointing conclusion to an amazing series.
Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2019 to finally read?
I can’t believe I waited so long to read this book! It was fantastic — I actually read it three times last year, that’s how much I loved it.
Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2019?
Favourite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2019?
Images are mine
Favourite new author you discovered in 2019?
Samantha Shannon! Last year was the first time I read a book from her and I adored both of them. Very keen to keep reading her in 2020 and beyond!
Favourite cover of a book you read in 2019?
THIS COVER! Look at the dragon, at the tower — ART.
Most memorable character of 2019?
The Unspoken Name doesn’t come out until February so a lot of people won’t have met my favourite character yet, but his name is Talasseres Charossa. Icwill protect this baby boy with my entire life! He’s rude, depressed, destructive, and a disaster gay, and I love him so much. When you read this, you’ll love him too!
OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
Ead and Sabran from The Priory of the Orange Tree! I can’t find any fan art of them together, so here’s some of them seperate at least.
Favourite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
I absolutely adore the relationship between Derrick (Bear) and his brother Tyler (the kid). After their mum leaves, Bear has to raise his younger brother and they are ride or die for each other.
Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2019?
I adore Alizayd al Qahtani from the Daevabad series! He’s such an honourable sweetheart who deserves the world. In the first book, he’s a bit stuffy, but in the second I had the biggest crush on him because he does what’s right, even if it goes against his family.
New favourite book blog/bookstagram/YouTube channel you discovered in 2019
I made quite a few good friends last year, but my main girl is Beth! Beth is such a sweetheart, we first bonded over our The Cruel Prince theories and hate for baby boomers and a patriarchal, heteronormative white society. And we keep talking more and more shit, and I hope we continue to do so!
Favourite post you wrote in 2019
I wrote up a pretty cool post about my most hated books with Ariana Grande helping me out. Check it out here!
Favourite bookish related photo you took in 2019
Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, etc.)
I didn’t attend any bookish events because I live in Australia and we have nothing here, but I did manage to get my hands on the Call Down the Hawk Owlcrate box!
Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2019
When I posted 500 blog posts! I also reached 900 followers and am close to 1000 now.
Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year
Keeping to my schedule! I used to post every couple of days, so at least three times a week, but I got very slack this year.
Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)
That would definitely be my UnsolvedAThon announcement post! I made a readathon around Buzzfeed Unsolved and it was one of the best things I did last year!
Post You Wished Got A Little More Love
Maybe my books to read in winter post! I put a lot of effort into that — well, I put a lot of effort into all my posts — but I really liked this one!
Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)
Hmm, I haven’t really discovered any new sites, so I’m just going to go with Abebooks.
Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
I came very close to completing the Popsugar Reading Challenge! I had about three prompts from the list left, and five from the advanced. I came very close! Ah well.
One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2019 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2020
Still can’t believe I haven’t read this!
Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2020 (non-debut)
I need this book yesterday!
2020 Debut You Are Most Anticipating
So excited for this fantasy f/f book about a romance between a queen and her spymaster!
Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2020
I am dying to read the final book in the Green Creek series, it’s going to be absolutely amazing!
One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2020
I’m hoping to reach 1000 followers on my blog and to read 52 books!
A 2020 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable)
I’ve read all of these books and created them all 5 stars, because they’e absolutely amazing.
How was your 2019? What was your favourite book? Your favourite blog post? Let me know!