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2017 End of Year Book Survey

Happy Holidays everyone!
Except for the three-month reading slump that I had this fall, this year has been a good one for reading, not because I read a lot of books, but because the books I read were so good.

This survey is put out by Perpetual Page Turner. I've done my best to answer her questions, but I skipped some and have also added in a few of my own.

Total books read: 76

Female authors: 51 (67%)
Male authors: 25 (33%)
I actually don't pay attention to the gender of authors when I choose books to read, but obviously I tend to choose female authors.

Non-fiction: 12 (16%)
Fiction: 64 (84%)
I am not really surprised by this split as I am much more interested in fiction than non-fiction. However, I feel like this year is the year that I have read the least non-fiction ever. I am a Cybils judge for non-fiction so in the next two months I will be reading a bunch of YA non-fiction.

Adult books: 32 (42%)
YA books: 44 (58%)
I thought I read way more YA than adult this year because I used YA to pull myself out of my reading slump, but I guess not. Not a bad split, though.

Countries visited through reading: 35. I feel like I did really well in reading around the world this year. You can see which books match up with each country by visiting my 2017 Google Map
Afghanistan, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Boliva, Bosnia, Canada, China (Hong Kong), Columbia, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, North Korea, Palestine, Poland, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Syria, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, Vietnam, Zimbabwe, and an unnamed African country. I kept track thanks to World in Books Challenge hosted by Tanya at Mom's Small Victories.

US states visited through reading: 21. I feel like I did really well in reading around the world this year. You can see which books match up with each country by visiting my 2017 Google Map
Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawai'i, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Utah, Washington, Washington, DC, and Wisconsin. I kept track thanks to The Literary Escapes Challenge is hosted by Escape with Dollycas.
Now that the details are exposed, how does that translate into actual books?

Best book of 2017?
I have never been good at picking one favorite book so this year I choose two: If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo and The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, both of which are YA and deal with super important topics. I wrote this post a week or so ago then read an amazing book, which I need to add to my favorite list: Far From the Tree by Robin Benway. Wow.

"Worst" book of 2017?
I tend not to finish books if I don't like them and then I forget about them, but the one I did finish and liked the least would have to be The Perfect Horse by Elizabeth Letts. It's an adult non-fiction and I just never connected to the story so it didn't work for me.

Book you were excited about but didn't love as much as you expected?
This year, the books that I was excited about all lived up to their expectations, so I'll have to choose The Outliers by Kimberly McCreight. I really enjoyed her first book, but this one was a little flat for me.

Most surprising (in a good way) book of 2017?
It's definitely Cracker: Best Dog in Vietnam by Cynthia Kadohata, which I meant to read years ago, but for some reason didn't. I think it seemed like it was going to be too young, but I really ended up enjoying it!

Book you pushed most people to read in 2017?
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (boy this book is showing up a lot in this post) is the book I've suggested most this year. I think this book is well written, timely, important, and so darn good.

Best series you discovered in 2017?
I just discovered a series at the very end of this year, but have only read the first book, Ghost, by Jason Reynolds. I definitely want to read the other two books in this series.

Favorite new author you discovered in 2017?
This is a tough one because there are a number of authors that I read and loved that were new to me: Emery Lord, Jenny D. Williams, Angie Thomas, Jeffrey Zentner, and Meredith Russo.

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2017?
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas gets this category because the book was so powerful that I needed to find out what happened to the characters. It made me mad, sad, and inspired all at once. This one is going to win awards for sure! I would also put Far From the Tree by Robin Benway here.

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2017?
I thought I wasn't super impressed with the covers of the books that I read this year because none of them made me gasp, which I love. So, this year's winners for best cover is Scythe by Neal Shusterman and Amina's Voice by Hena Kahn because the covers evoke the right feelings I got from the books. Actually, I just remembered that I do think The Librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe has a really good cover.

Most memorable character in 2017?
The character who has stuck with me the most this year is John Lewis from his March graphic novels. I realize that John Lewis isn't a character, he is a real man serving in Congress, but his books and his life keep coming back to me. This is probably because politics is on my mind so much this year: the sadness, the frustration, and the inspiration I draw from people like Congressman Lewis.

Most thought provoking or life-changing book of 2017?
If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo is the most thought-provoking book I read this year. The author is transgender, the girl on the cover is transgender, and the main character is transgender. This book was excellent and it really got me thinking about life for transgender people. I have a couple people in my life who are transgender and this book helped me to understand them and their lives better.

Book that put a smile on your face?
One book that put a smile on my face this year was Jennifer Niven's Holding Up the Universe. Her main character, once the "fattest girl in America," had a great attitude that I enjoyed reading. I am also going to list When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon for this category since it is a lighthearted romance that I enjoyed.

Book that made you cry in 2017?
It is not difficult to get me to cry while reading a book. And I usually cry about the good stuff, the touching stuff. So this year I am going to have to give this one to Cynthia Kadohata's Cracker: Best Dog in Vietnam. I mean, come on. A dog, a war, a young boy, and a solider? Seriously. Tears throughout the whole book. And Far From the Tree by Robin Belway made me sob for the last third of the book.

Book you feel you should read in 2018? I always have a bunch of books I want to read in the new year and sometimes they get lost in my Christmas books. I'd say I am looking forward to reading John Green's Turtles All the Way Down.

Book you are most anticipating in 2018?
I hope that I find an adult book that pulls me in like Shilpi Somaya Gowda's and Gail Tsukiyama's books do. They are just so beautiful. I don't know what that book is. In YA I am looking forward to American Street by Ibi Zoboi.

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