2011 in Review!

After several attempts to write up my own year-end post, I have just given up. Fortunately, Jamie of Perpetual Page-turner, a lovely person who has a lovely blog, thought about the rest of us and made this year-end survey.

1. Best Book You Read In 2011? 

It’s always tough to whittle this down to ONE book. This year, though, I didn’t love a lot of what I read. I can easily trim it down to a top 3, though:

Essex County by Jeff Lemire
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan

2. Most Disappointing Book/Book You Wish You Loved More Than You Did?

The Marriage Plot by Jeffery Eugenides. I really, really, didn’t like it. I loved Middlesex, so I wish I had loved it.

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2011?

A Good Hard Look by Anne Napolitano. I usually dislike fictional books about real people, but this novelization of a brief period in Flannery O’Connor’s life totally charmed me.

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2011?

Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan, The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey, Essex County by Jeff Lemire, Owly by Andy Runton.

5. Best series you discovered in 2011?

The Monstrumology Series by Rick Yancey!

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2011?

J. Courtney Sullivan! I read Maine and fell in love, so I went back and read Commencement. I didn’t like Commencement nearly as much, but I’m very excited for her next book.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?

I don’t have a comfort zone! But I guess most of the novels I read are late 20th and early 21st century. I read Good Evening Mrs Craven by Mollie Panter-Downes. It was published during WW2 and it was fabulous. I also read The Awakening by Kate Chopin. I’d like to read more turn of the century and early-mid 20th century novels in 2012.

8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2011?

Oh, gosh. Probably The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey, my reread of The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness, and the YA favorites Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, and Divergent by Veronica Roth.

9. Book you most anticipated in 2011?

The Marriage Plot by Jeffery Eugenides, unfortunately!

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2011?

Meh book, awesome cover!



11. Most memorable character in 2011? 

Bunny from The Secret History by Donna Tartt.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2011?

The Watery Part of the World by Michael Parker and The Illumination by Kevin Brockmeier

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2011? 

Tomatoland by Barry Estabrook and Autobiography of an Execution by David R. Dow.

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2011 to finally read? 

I was hoping the answer to this question would be The Mists of Avalon, but I slogged through that beast. I’ll go with both The Year of the Flood and The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2011? 

I really wish I had done a better job keeping quotes this year. Next year!

16. Book That You Read In 2011 That Would Be Most Likely To Reread In 2012?

I desperately want to read The Secret History by Donna Tartt again, already! I’ll also probably reread The Knife of Never Letting Go and Harry Potter again, of course.

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!

The end of The Marriage Plot left me reeling with anger! Also, that one part in The Kitchen Daughter by Jael McHenry!

Looking Ahead… 

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2011 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2012?

Reading a hefty classic, like Moby Dick!

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2012?

Probably The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Good thing I don’t have to wait too long!

3. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2012?

One thing for both: to be, all around, more consistent.

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38 thoughts on “2011 in Review!

  1. ‘m looking at your survey and realized I still haven’t read “Before I Fall”! I hear such good things and want to, so I need to make that one a priority this year. I read “The Awakening” by Chopin in high school and absolutely loved it; it rocked my world though! There’s a reason why its a classic. Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting 🙂

    1. It really is good! You know, I started reading Delirium (there was a chapter included at the end of Before I Fall) and I didn’t love it. The writing didn’t seem as good! The Awakening was great. I read it with a male friend, we had this sort of book club going on, and he didn’t love it though. It was an interesting discussion. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  2. Now I really want to read The Monstrumologist and The Knife of Never Letting Go… I have the second one, but haven’t read it yet. You’ve read a lot of cool books this year 🙂

    1. You have to drop everything and read them now! They’re both so good! It’s funny, because looking back on 2011, it doesn’t really seem like a great reading year, but there were a few gems in there.

  3. I’ve so enjoyed reading everyone’s answers to these questions. I have and desperately want to read two of your top 3 reads for the year…and now I obviously need to get my hands on Maine, too!

    Happy Happy Happy New Year, Lu!!!

    1. Happy New Year, Debi! You really need to read Maine… it’s so good! I wish I had a copy of my own; I’d send it to you in a second!

  4. Are you talking about that thing with the bicycle in The Kitchen Daughter? Because I was soooo not happy over that.

    And Moby Dick? Seriously? If so, good luck with that. 😉

    And Happy New Year!!

    1. Seriously! And it’s good! 🙂

      And yes, that is the part I’m talking about. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it, but regardless, it was well done. Even if I wasn’t pleased.

      Happy New Year!

  5. I’m excited you are making Moby Dick a 2012 priority!! Connie and Ingrid are hosting a readalong in January at The Blue Bookcase if you want pals. The reading starts Jan 5. 🙂

    Cheers and Happy 2012, Lu!!

  6. So happy to see you’ve included The Monstrumologist as many of your answers! And that S&S has given the go ahead for Rick to write the fourth and last book in the series instead of canceling it, of course 🙂 I’m also super excited for The Fault in Our Stars!

    1. That was the whole reason I read the series! So I guess a little drama goes a long way. We don’t have to wait too much longer for The Fault in Our Stars fortunately. I love your icon!

    1. Do you keep going back and forth on whether you liked it or whether or not to read it? Because if it’s the latter than you really must read it! 🙂 I wish you were joining in the readalong with us, but it is a busy January. I know!

  7. Looks like you had a nicely eclectic reading year! I have to agree, Divergent was pretty unputdownable. And I’m sorry to hear America, Pacifica was only “meh” — I haven’t read it but the cover is indeed beautiful!

    1. I love to read all sorts of books. I can’t even really tell you why America, Pacifica wasn’t great. It just didn’t feel… genuine? I guess that’s the write word. But the cover is lovely!

    1. I’ll be really interested to see what your book club thinks! This is one that I think would be better read with people so you can discuss. I still don’t think I would have liked it very much.

    1. Yeah, it’s not a very popular opinion. Though I do know of a couple people who didn’t love it, but it’s definitely the minority.

  8. Everybody’s read The Marriage Plot, but me. However, I didn’t much care for Middlesex, so I’m not exactly dying to pick up his next one. Your disappointment assuaged my obligation to join the masses. 🙂

  9. I just read The Knife of Never Letting Go and was blown away by it. So good. I’ve got the second book but I’m kind of terrified to start it… I want to read the Monstrumologist (wait, it’s a series? – no wonder I haven’t been able to locate the book…) I need to look up this Maine business too.

    1. The Monstrumologist is a series, but the first book is called The Monstrumologist as well. Maine was so so good. Don’t be terrified of the second book! It’s good! Perhaps not quite as good, but still a great read.

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