2016 Reading Challenge Wrap-Up and 2017 Aims

As with 2013, 2014 and 2015, the end of 2016 means it’s time for my end of year Reading Wrap-Up. In some ways, this reading year was more relaxed than 2015 (a target of 41 books, as opposed to 52), but I also had a lot of required reading to do for my MA, which included a number of heavy and detailed volumes that I wouldn’t have necessarily read for pleasure.

Aims for 2016
Read 41 books
I managed to read 42 books (102%)
Complete the 2016 Reading Challenge
Yeah, this one was always going to be tough: I completed 24/40 challenges (60%). Ultimately, I failed, but it was quite early on in the year that I decided to read largely for pleasure (and my MA English compulsory books) and as a result, many of the criteria fell by the wayside.
Read five novels on the BBC Big Read list
Another fail: I read three (60%), two of which were for my MA.
Read three 2016 releases
I read ten (333%)
Read ten new-to-you authors
I read 28 (280%)

Author Title BBC Rated My Rating Date Read Pages
Albertalli, Becky Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda 8 Jan-16 303
Bronte, Charlotte Jane Eyre 10 6 Jan-16 542
Burr, Tanya Love, Tanya 4 Apr-16 304
Butler, Marcus Hello Life! 6 Mar-16 256
Campbell, Jen Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops 7 May-16 119
Coetzee, J.M. Foe 7 Apr-16 157
Collins, Suzanne Mockingjay 8 Jan-16 390
Crossan, Sarah One 8 Sep-16 434
Dahl, Roald Matilda 74 6 Sep-16 240
Daniels, Dr. Benjamin Confessions Of A GP 7 Aug-16 327
Defoe, Daniel Robinson Crusoe 5 Jun-16 373
Flynn, Gillian The Grownup 7 Apr-16 67
Gino, Alex George 7 Mar-16 215
Gomes, N.D. Dear Charlie 6 Oct-16 222
Hayes, Terry I Am Pilgrim 9 Mar-16 888
Kerman, Piper Orange Is The New Black 7 Oct-16 344
Kipling, Rudyard Kim 159 3 Oct-16 263
Levithan, David Every Day 6 Feb-16 371
Lu, Marie Legend 7 Aug-16 295
Maroh, Julie Blue is the Warmest Color 6 Mar-16 156
Matson, Morgan Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour 6 Apr-16 343
Milton, John Paradise Lost 3 Sep-16 511
Moran, Caitlin How To Be A Woman 6 May-16 312
Morgan, Kass The 100 8 Aug-16 323
Morgan, Kass Day 21 8 Sep-16 311
Moyes, Jojo Me Before You 8 Apr-16 481
Ness, Patrick A Monster Calls 7 Nov-16 214
Nijkamp, Marieke This Is Where It Ends 9 Jan-16 282
Peters, Julie Anne Keeping You a Secret 7 May-16 256
Pratt, Non Unboxed 7 Dec-16 139
Rhys, Jean Wide Sargasso Sea 4 Jan-16 171
Rosin, Lindsey Cherry 6 Sep-16 390
Rowell, Rainbow Eleanor & Park 6 Feb-16 328
Rowell, Rainbow Kindred Spirits 7 Apr-16 62
Rowling, J.K. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child 7 Aug-16 343
Rowling, J.K. Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide 7 Sep-16 79
Rowling, J.K. Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies 5 Sep-16 68
Rowling, J.K. Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Politics and Pesky Poltergeists 5 Sep-16 63
Rowling, J.K. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 7 Sep-16 766
Shakespeare, William Coriolanus 3 Mar-16 315
Sutcliffe, Lucy Girl Hearts Girl 6 Dec-16 273
Yoon, Nicola Everything, Everything 8 Sep-16 310

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Facts and Figures 2016
Highest scoring novel – TIE: I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes & This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp (9/10)
Lowest scoring novel – TIE: Coriolanus by William Shakespeare, Kim by Rudyard Kipling & Paradise Lost by John Milton (3/10)
Most books read in a calendar month – 10 in September
Most books read by one author – 5 by J.K. Rowling
Total pages read – 12,606
Total books read – 42

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Best In Books
1. Best book you read in 2016?
I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes – an outstanding piece of craftsmanship

2. Book you were excited about and thought you were going to love more but didn’t?
Love, Tanya by Tanya Burr – it tried to be too many things, and in the end wasn’t anything

3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read in 2016?
The 100 by Kass Morgan – I didn’t expect to find a new series I’d become obsessed with

4. Book you “pushed” the most people to read (and they did) in 2016?
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes – I made my Granny read it, then my Mum (who is currently part-way through it)

5. Best series you started in 2016?
The 100 by Kass Morgan – incredible characters, fabulous world building

6. Favourite new author you discovered in 2016?
Kass Morgan – I read two books by her this year, and plan to read the next two in 2017

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?
Confessions Of A GP by Dr. Benjamin Daniels – I don’t read a lot of non-fiction, but these amusing anecdotes were fabulous

8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?
Unboxed by Non Pratt – I read it in one sitting and shed a tear at the end

9. Book you read in 2016 that you are most likely to re-read next year?
George by Alex Gino – I rarely re-read books within a few years, but this one was so cute and important I may well do

10. Favourite cover of a book you read in 2016?
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling – it’s just so intriguing 

11. Most memorable character of 2016?
Clarke Griffin (The 100 by Kass Morgan) – she’s badass, smart and true to herself

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2016?
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness – the writing was gorgeously creative

13. Most thought-provoking/life-changing book of 2016?
George by Alex Gino – this story of a transgender child will stay with me forever

14. Book you can’t believe you waited until 2016 to finally read?
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë – I can’t actually believe I, as an English student, didn’t read this book until I was 22

15. Favourite passage/quote from a book you read in 2016?
“Life is a gift. Don’t forget to live it.” (Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon)

16. Shortest and longest books you read in 2016?
Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell (62 pages) / I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes (888 pages)

17. Book that shocked you the most?
I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes – I think it was the plain and simple fact that the entire plot was so well constructed that it could be believable and that is terrifying

18. OTP of the year (you will go down with this ship!)?
Scorpius Malfoy and Albus Potter (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling) – I have discovered a new love for Scorbus

19. Favourite non-romantic relationship of the year?
Matilda Wormwood and Miss Honey (Matilda by Roald Dahl) – I love that the pair have a profound connection and care for each other implicitly 

20. Favourite book you read in 2016 from an author you’ve read previously?
Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops by Jen Campbell – I read the sequel last year (wrong way around, I know) and I love them both

21. Best book you read in 2016 that you read based solely on a recommendation from somebody else?
Blue Is The Warmest Colour by Julie Maroh – I saw a number of YouTuber’s recommending this graphic novel and I really enjoyed it

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?
Clarke Griffin (The 100 by Kass Morgan) – both on the page and the screen

23. Best 2016 debut you read?
This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp – a school shooting in a small town in America, multiple perspectives as the attack is unfolding, LGBT characters: I loved it

24. Best worldbuilding/most vivid setting you read this year?
I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes – simply incredible settings all over the globe

25. Book that put a smile on your face/was the most fun to read?
Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson – pure, unrivalled fun

26. Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2016?
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness – I actually took a selfie afterwards, I was in such a mess

27. Hidden gem of the year?
Foe by J.M. Coetzee – I definitely didn’t expect to enjoy a book for my MA so much

28. Book that crushed your soul?
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes – I love the characters and this book was emotional from the word go

29. Most unique book you read in 2016?
Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys – it was so incredibly strange

30. Book that made you the most mad?
Orange Is The New Black by Piper Kerman – some of the facts quoted about the US prison system were astonishing and ridiculous

Looking Ahead
1. One book you didn’t get to in 2016 but will be your number 1 priority in 2017?
Don Juan by Lord Byron – my final compulsory MA book, I need to dedicate a large portion of the early part of the year to this volume

2. Book you are most anticipating for 2017 (non-debut)?
A Court of Wing and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas – I didn’t get around to reading A Court of Mist and Fury in 2o16, but at least I won’t have much of a wait between the two now

3. 2017 debut you are most anticipating?
Wing Jones by Katherine Webber – I heard about this novel at YALC and I want to finally get my hands on it

4. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging life in 2017?
BookTube – I said it last year, but it wasn’t the right time (plus I’m very awkward in front of the camera). Maybe next year will be the right time?!

Aims for 2017
– Read 52 books
– Complete the 2017 Reading Challenge
– Read five novels on the BBC Big Read list
– Read five 2017 releases
– Read fifteen new-to-you authors
– Listen to five audiobooks
– Keep track of reading habits in journal

Bring on 2017!


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