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Archive for December, 2015

2015 End Of Year Survey

Posted by Caitie F on December 30, 2015

Thanks so much to Jamie at Perpetual Page Turner for doing this again! She’s the best, you should follow her on all social media.


Number Of Books Read: 100
Number of Re-Reads: 1

Genre Break down:
YA fantasy: 15
YA Science fiction: 5
YA contemporary: 14
YA historical: 1
Middle Grade: 4
Adult fantasy: 4
Adult science fiction: 5
Graphic novels: 15
Adult romance: 7
Adult historical: 2
Adult mystery: 5
Adult other: 5
Nonfiction: 8
Books with male authors*: 32
Books with female authors*: 77
Diverse books**: 25
Full manuscripts read***: 22

*Some books counted twice because coauthors
**This means books written by and/or with a main character who is not white, straight, cis gendered, or abled.
***Approximate, each only counted once

1. Best Book You Read In 2015?

That is easy. ILLUMINAE by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, also known as the book that will be the answer to 1/3 of all these questions.

But I also want to break down by genre and this is where it gets hard because this was my best reading year ever. I have more books I loved this year than every before.

YA fantasy: SIX OF CROWS by Leigh Bardugo
YA Science fiction: BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED by Margaret Stohl
YA contemporary:  ALL THE RAGE by Courtney Summers
Middle Grade: GEORGE by Alex Gino
Adult historical: IN THE UNLIKELY EVENT by Judy Blume
Adult fantasy: THE MAGICIAN KING by Lev Grossman
Adult science fiction: GOLDEN SON by Pierce Brown
Adult romance: PLAY by Kylie Scott
Memoir: BROWN GIRL DREAMING byJacqueline Woodson
Nonfiction: BEHIND THE BEAUTIFUL FOREVERS by Katherine Boo

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

That one is easy. GO SET A WATCHMAN by Harper Lee. blarg

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

THE BURNING SKY by Sherry Thomas – somehow I missed it when it came out but LOVED it. Need to finish the series

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

ILLUMINAE by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff- I pushed it on people constantly and actually got dozens to read it. Go me!

 5. Best series you started in 2015? Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?

Series started: Duh. ILLUMINAE, but also RED RISING by Pierce Brown and I have to alsos include LIGHTLESS by C A Higgins
Sequel: This one is tied between GOLDEN SON by Pierce Brown and THE ROSE SOCIETY by Marie Lu
Series Ender: THE BLOOD OF OLYMPUS by Rick Riordan – perfect ending to that series.

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?

I am picking two:

Nicola Yoon. EVERYTHING EVERYTHING was brilliant and I will read everything she writes.

Max Wirestone. I laughed more reading THE UNFORTUNATE DECISIONS OF DAHLIA MOSS than anything else all year.

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

I don’t do westerns, but WALK THE EARTH A STRANGER by Rae Carson was phenomenal.

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

ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention to UNWIND by Neal Shusterman

 9. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

None – no time for rereads.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2015?

red rising

11. Most memorable character of 2015?


 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?

FIRE by Kristin Cashore

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2015?

THE LIFE-CHANGING MAGIC OF TIDYING UP – I mean, it is in the title.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read? 


 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2015?

“Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.” – ILLUMINAE

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2015?

Longest: FALL OF GIANTS by Ken Follet


 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

ILLUMINAE just all of it.

LIFE AFTER LIFE by Kate Atkinson

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

I don’t have one!

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Kady and AIDAN from ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention: Simon and Penny in CARRY ON by Rainbow Rowell

 20. Favorite Book You Read in 2015 From An Author You’ve Read Previously


21. Best Book You Read In 2015 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

MS MARVEL – all volumes.

22. Best 2015 debut you read?

RED RISING by Pierce Brown

23. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention: THE BLADE ITSELF by Joe Abercrombie

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

WE CAN WORK IT OUT by Elizabeth Eulberg

25. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2015?

ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention: GOLDEN SON by Pierce Brown

26. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

THE SAFEST LIE by Angela Cerrito

27. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention: GOLDEN SON by Pierce Brown

28. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?

ILLUMINAE. Honorable mention: MODERN ROMANCE by Aziz Ansari

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

GOLDEN SON by Pierce Brown

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

The one on a day in the life of an agent/assistant!


31. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015?

Signing my amazing clients. I can’t wait until you all get to read their books

32. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2015 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2016?

Just one?  SIMON VS THE HOMO SAPIEN AGENDA by Becky Albertalli, SHADOWSHAPER by Daniel Jose Older…I also have this entire list to get to.

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2016 (non-debut)?

I am listing a few:
WHAT WE FIND by Robyn Carr
FROM HERE TO HOME by Marie Bostwick

3. 2016 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

THE COLD BETWEEN by Elizabeth Bonesteel

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2016?

I have several: MORNING STAR by Pierce Brown, GEMINA by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, THE YOUNG ELITES #3 by Marie Lu



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Fall Mini Reviews: Adult Books Edition

Posted by Caitie F on December 22, 2015

Title: In the Woods woods
Author: Tana French
Pub Date: May 17, 2007
Hardcover: 429 pages
Publisher: Viking
Rating: ++++

Summary from goodreads:

As dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only one of the children. He is gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing blood-filled sneakers and unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours.

Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad and keeps his past a secret. But when a 12-year-old girl is found murdered in the same woods, he and Detective Cassie Maddox (his partner and closest friend) find themselves investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved mystery. Now, with only snippets of long-buried memories to guide him, Ryan has the chance to uncover both the mystery of the case before him and that of his own shadowy past.


I am always looking for great mysteries and this book really works! It has been on my shelf forever and I am so glad I finally read it. What makes a great mystery for me is the characters and these characters were fantastic. From the leads to the suspects to the side characters, every single on was defined and I had to know what happened next. Absolutely brilliant.

Title: A Discovery of WitchesdiscoverAuthor: Deborah Harkness
Pub Date: February 8, 2011
Paperback: 579 pages
Publisher: Viking
Rating: ++++

Summary from goodreads:

In this tale of passion and obsession, Diana Bishop, a young scholar and a descendant of witches, discovers a long-lost and enchanted alchemical manuscript, Ashmole 782, deep in Oxford’s Bodleian Library. Its reappearance summons a fantastical underworld, which she navigates with her leading man, vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont.


I was not expecting to like this as much as I did. Vampires don’t interest me very much, and neither does paranormal. But I still picked this one up finally because so many people I tend to agree with said it was fantastic and it was. The writing in this is just stunning and that is what makes it stand out so much.

Title: Modern Romancemodern
Author: Aziz Ansari
Pub Date: June 16, 2015
Hardcover: 277 pages
Publisher: Penguin Press
Rating: ++++

Summary from goodreads:

At some point, every one of us embarks on a journey to find love. We meet people, date, get into and out of relationships, all with the hope of finding someone with whom we share a deep connection. This seems standard now, but it’s wildly different from what people did even just decades ago. Single people today have more romantic options than at any point in human history. With technology, our abilities to connect with and sort through these options are staggering. So why are so many people frustrated?

Some of our problems are unique to our time. “Why did this guy just text me an emoji of a pizza?” “Should I go out with this girl even though she listed Combos as one of her favorite snack foods? Combos?!” “My girlfriend just got a message from some dude named Nathan. Who’s Nathan? Did he just send her a photo of his penis? Should I check just to be sure?”

But the transformation of our romantic lives can’t be explained by technology alone. In a short period of time, the whole culture of finding love has changed dramatically. A few decades ago, people would find a decent person who lived in their neighborhood. Their families would meet and, after deciding neither party seemed like a murderer, they would get married and soon have a kid, all by the time they were twenty-four. Today, people marry later than ever and spend years of their lives on a quest to find the perfect person, a soul mate.


This book was so fascinating – and I think if you are dating is even more so. I still loved it and loved what it said about my generation as whole – and it isn’t all bad things! Reading this really gives some insight into the world now…and it is also really funny. I would love to see more like this from Aziz.

Title: DauntlessDauntless
Author: Jack Campbell
Pub Date: July 2006
Mass Market: 304 pages
Publisher: Ace
Rating: +++

Summary from goodreads:

The Alliance has been fighting the Syndics for a century–and losing badly. Now its fleet is crippled and stranded in enemy territory. Their only hope is a man who’s emerged from a century-long hibernation to find he has been heroically idealized, beyond belief…

Captain John “Black Jack” Geary’s legendary exploits are known to every schoolchild. Revered for his heroic “last stand” in the early days of the war, he was presumed dead. But a century later, Geary miraculously returns from survival hibernation and reluctantly takes command of the Alliance fleet as it faces annihilation by the Syndics.

Appalled by the hero-worship around him, Geary is nevertheless a man who will do his duty. And he knows that bringing the stolen Syndic hypernet key safely home is the Alliance’s one chance to win the war. But to do that, Geary will have to live up to the impossibly heroic “Black Jack” legend…


This was such a fun book – it was fast, entertaining, and made me feel like I was watching a great episode of Star Trek. Is it the best book ever? No. But it is a fun way to spend a couple hours.

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2016 Reading Challenge

Posted by Caitie F on December 21, 2015

So last year I did this challenge through an official challenge and failed at it in the fall. But I wanted to set the goal again to read 48 specific books, and try to balance it to four a month. This is just my own personal challenge.

My only rule I am making for myself is that it cannot be a 2016 book. These have to be books that were published in 2015 or earlier.

Most of these are books I really want to read this year. The bottom 15 were picked at random from my spreadsheet of books I want to read.

1. Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff (finished 4/3/16) (and the rest of the series)
2.These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meghan Spooner (and the rest of the series)
3. Mr Mercedes by Stephen King
4. Planetfall by Emma Newman
5. Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older
6. Nimona by Noelle Stevenson (finished 7/5/16)
7. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
8. A Darker Shade of Magic by V E Schwab finished 1/28/16
9. The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon
10. The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma finished 3/15/16
11. Willful Machines by Tim Floreen
12. Night Film by Marisha Pessl
13. The Map of Time by Felix J Palma
14. The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson
15. Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates (finished 12/14/16)
16. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
17. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
18. Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
19. The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley
20. Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard
21. Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor
22. The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
23. Before They are Hanged by Joe Abercrombie
24. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
25. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas
26. In the Hand of the Goddess by Tamora Pierce
27. Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers
28. Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes
29. The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman
30. Lost in a Good Book by Jasper Fforde
31.This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
32. Adaptation by Malinda Lo
33. Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
34. Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen
35. Nowhere But Home by Liza Palmer
36. The Returned by Jason Mott
37. Feed by Mira Grant
38. The Ward by Jordana Frankel
39. Manor of Secrets by Katherine Longshore
40. Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho
41. All These Things I’ve Done by Gabrielle Zevin
42. We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Nielsen
43. The Forbidden Library by Django Wexler
44. Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers
45. Deadline by Chris Crutcher
46. Fan Art by Sarah Tregay
47. Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu
48. Working in the Shadows: A Year of Doing the Jobs (Most) Americans Won’t Do by Gabriel Thompson

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Mini Reviews Fall 2015 YA Contemporary

Posted by Caitie F on December 18, 2015

Title: We Can Work It Outwe can work
Author: Elizabeth Eulberg
Pub Date: Jan 27, 2015
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Point
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

When Penny Lane started The Lonely Hearts Club, the goal was simple: to show that girls didn’t need to define themselves by how guys looked at them, and didn’t have to value boyfriends over everything else. But what happens when the girl who never thought she’d date a good guy suddenly finds herself dating a great one? She doesn’tneed a boyfriend . . . but she wants it to work out with this particular boyfriend. And he wants it to work out with her.

Only, things keep getting in the way. Feelings keep getting hurt. Words keep getting misunderstood.

Penny Lane worked hard to declare her independence. Now she needs to figure out what to do with it — and how to balance what she wants with what everyone else wants.


Elizabeth Eulberg is on my “must buy” list. Her books are just so much fun and have such smart and interesting women in them! This is no different. I was so happy to be back in the world of Penny Lane and all her friends. I hadn’t realized how much I missed it until I opened this book.

Another brilliant book from one of my favorite authors!

Title: Everything, Everythingeverything
Author: Nicola Yoon
Pub Date: Sept 1, 2015
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly. Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster


This book was SO well-written. I was absolutely captivated by every page. This was one of those books that I read on my bus commute, even if it made me feel a little queasy (TMI). It was totally worth it. If you haven’t read it yet, just know that you won’t be able to put it down once you start.

I don’t want to give anything away, so I won’t. But if you love books with beautiful writing, characters who jump off the page, and that give you a look into something completely different from what you know, pick this up. I can’t wait to read what Yoon does next. And isn’t that cover stunning?

Title: The Sky is EverywhereSky is Everywhere
Author: Jandy Nelson
Pub Date: Mar 9, 2010
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Dial Books
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life – and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey’s boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie’s own. Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they’re the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can’t collide without the whole wide world exploding


How did it take me so long to read this book? It was everything I love – great family and friends, a romance that feels SO real, and a character you is imperfectly amazing. Lennie is everything I look for in a YA character. I loved that dynamic with Toby.

This book is absolute perfection. if you haven’t read it yet, don’t wait another day.

Title: Dumplin’Dumplin
Author: Julie Murphy
Pub Date: September 15, 2015
Hardcover: 375 pages
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Rating: ++++

Summary from goodreads:

Self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson (dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Put a bikini on your body. With her all-American beauty best friend, Ellen, by her side, things have always worked…until Will takes a job at Harpy’s, the local fast-food joint. There she meets Private School Bo, a hot former jock. Will isn’t surprised to find herself attracted to Bo. But she is surprised when he seems to like her back.

Instead of finding new heights of self-assurance in her relationship with Bo, Will starts to doubt herself. So she sets out to take back her confidence by doing the most horrifying thing she can imagine: entering the Miss Clover City beauty pageant—along with several other unlikely candidates—to show the world that she deserves to be up there as much as any twiggy girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.


A YA BOOK ABOUT FRIENDSHIP! What more can you ask for? There is a romance, but the real focus is on the friendships. And they are SO great and SO real including the clashing and jealousy sometimes felt.

It is also inspirational without being “this is an inspirational book”. It is funny. It is the kind of book that makes you react, which is what I think we all want in books. Another one you absolutely must read and I hope teenagers are getting their hands on it.


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Mini Reviews Fall 2015: Science Fiction/Fantasy

Posted by Caitie F on December 17, 2015

Time for more mini reviews! In the next few days I will finishing reviewing everything I have read this year. Let’s get started with the book I cannot shut up about.

Title: Illuminaeilluminae
Authors: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Pub Date: October 20, 2015
Hardcover: 599
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

Summary from goodreads:

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do. This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

Mini Review:

This is the best book I read this year and is now that it is has been over a month, it is also in my top 10 books of all time. OF ALL TIME. A seemingly crazy AI! Swoon-worthy romance! Brilliant writing! Incredible format!

This is a long book, but it is a really fast read. I did take my time. I read AIDAN scenes more than once because the writing was breath-taking. There were so many little detailed throughout that made it so much more than anything else I have read.

Everything about this book is amazing and if you haven’t read it yet, stop what you are doing and read it now. SO GOOD!!!! I can’t stop talking about this book.

Title: Black Widow: Forever Redblack widow
Author: Margaret Stohl
Pub Date: October 13, 2015
Hardcover: 401 pages
Publisher: Marvel Press
Rating: +++++


It is a Black Widow YA book. That is all you really should need to know.


This is the Black Widow thing we have all been waiting for. Can it be a movie now? It should be a movie. It is fantastic – love all of the characters and the emotion. Stohl adds so much to this character and writes brilliantly.

Title: The Rose Societyrose society
Author: Marie Lu
Pub Date: October 13, 2015
Hardcover: 395 pages
Publisher: G P Putnam Sons for Young Readers
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she and her sister flee Kenettra to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers who nearly killed her.

But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good, when her very existence depends on darkness?


The Young Elites was one of my favorite books from last year and the sequel is even better. The new characters were well-developed, the returning characters were even deeper. I could not put it down once I started. This is the perfect action-packed young adult fantasy book. Everyone should read it. I need the last book now please.

I will read every single book Marie Lu ever writes. She is that amazing

Title: Carry Oncarry on
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Pub Date: October 6, 2015
Hardcover: 522 pages
Publisher: St Martin’s Griffin
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen. That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.


This book was just an absolute joy to read. It gave me all the warm and happy feelings that Harry Potter gave me. The magic, world building, characters, and romance were all absolutely incredible. If you want to escape for a while, this is the book to read!

Title: Six of Crowssix of crows
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Pub Date: September 29, 2015
Hardcover: 465 pages
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Rating: +++++

Summary from goodreads:

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Kaz’s crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.


I love books like this – the characters are not necessary the good guys in the grand scheme of the world, but they are the protagonists and readers can’t help but love every single one of them because of their flaws. This is another book that was impossible to put down once I started. More REALLY cool magic in this book. I love that it was set in the same world as her other books, but you don’t have to read them to understand this.

Another one of my favorites of the year.




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