Monday, December 31, 2018

Link up reminder

Hello all, happy last day of 2018! Just a quick reminder to anyone who wants to link up - this Thursday the 3rd is the next What's New With You link up if you want to join me!

Grab button for What's New With You
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Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Books of 2018 - favourites + stats

Yay bonus book day! It's no secret I love to read and the end of the year is so much fun, looking back on what I've read, spending way too much time with my head in a spreadsheet extrapolating the data into fun numbers and percentages... anyone else? I did it for 2017 and 2016 and couldn't wait to do it for the books of 2018. Actually, I start this post at the end of the previous year because I enjoy it way too much. I've already started 2019's.

Audiobooks, physical books and e-books
I read mostly e-books this year for a few reasons - I read mostly romance, and they are easier and cheaper to get a hold of in e-book format. Also, my 2 local libraries closed for renovations or because they are moving completely next year, so it was a pain in the butt to get to a library to pick up a real book. Also, there's the whole convenience thing, I always have an e-book on me, I can read in the dark, instant gratification, etc etc.

Library, ARCs, purchased, kindle unlimited or free/gifted/borrowed
Non fiction vs fiction
Not surprised in the least, non-fiction has never really been my jam though I sprinkle it in occasionally. This year, it was memoirs, self development books and a couple of fertility/trying to conceive books.

Male vs Female Authors
Zero percent surprised about this. Even before I read mostly romance, I gravitated towards female authors. Always have, suspect I always will. Totally okay with that.

Month by Month Breakdown
Favourite Books
 Daisy Jones & the Six - it is TJR, are we surprised?
How to Walk Away - there is a romance element to this, but I think it is more so general fiction.
Jane Doe - I also really liked this author's romance books she writes under a different name.
Kate Daniels series - personally I think this is more urban fantasy/paranromal than strict romance, though that is in there sporadically. Book 10 is pictured, but don't make me pick a favourite.
Seeing Red & Tailspin - these are 'romantic suspense' but the romance isn't super in your face or the focal point. 
Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine - oh, Eleanor. Let me give you a hug.

One of Us is Lying / Still Me / All the Ugly & Wonderful Things / Veronica Speedwell 1-4 this series is bloody delightfulPhoenix Unbound - again, there is romance in this, but I think it's more fantasy than romance. /

Favourite Romance Books
I didn't calculate it because it was too hard - there are romance books and then there are fiction books with a love story that isn't the focal point - but I would say 90% of the books I read this year were romance books. So there's a lot that I loved. Believe it or not, I tried to narrow this list down....

99 Percent Mine - definitely didn't love it as much as The Hating Game, but I still loved it.
Bridesmaids Behaving Badly series - I liked them all, but book #1 (pictured) was definitely my favourite.
A Duke by Default - I liked book 1 and am eagerly waiting for book 3, but this one was my fave.
Fight or Flight - hate to love at its best, stay away if you can't handle assholes 'cause this guy takes the cake.
Hidden Legacy Trilogy - my introduction to Ilona Andrews, definitely more 'romance' than Kate Daniels.
The Kiss Quotient - though I know this is kind of crossing over aka non-romance readers are checking it out a la The Hating Game, I would not recommend it if sex in books bothers you. It is steamy AF. Obviously I adored it, I read it twice. 

Josh & Hazel's Guide to Not Dating - I also enjoyed other books by this author duo this year - Dating You/Hating YouLove and Other WordsRoomies & My Favorite Half Night Stand.
Knitting in the City series - the whole series, but #7 (pictured) was definitely my favourite.
From Lukov with Love - not my absolute favourite of hers but I adore everything she writes.
IdolManaged and Fall - aka the VIP seriesManaged is hardcore my fave, but they all blew me away.
Act Like It & Pretty Face (pictured) - I loved Act Like It but Pretty Face stole my heart. 
The Ravenals series - book #2 (pictured) was my favourite and I am so excited for book #5, can't wait.

The Duchess Deal & The Governess Game - now if I could just get my hands on The Wallflower Wager...
Forbidden Hearts - ungh this series was amazeballs and I do not understand why it's not more popular.
Mackenzie's Mountain - oldie but a goodie.
Melt for You - I liked the first, but this was the second and I loved it 100 times more.
The Real Deal - started my Lauren Blakely love affair.
True North series - book #4 (pictured) was my favourite.

Two Wedding Crashers I also loved Three Blind Dates, but this one was soooo good.
Heartbreaker Bay series and Lucky Harbor series - Jill Shalvis can do no wrong in my eyes.
Pestilence - enjoyed it so much I read it twice, very excited for the next 3 books.
Rock Kiss series - surprisingly, the novella #1.5 (pictured) was my favourite from this series.
Psy-Changeling series - it amazes me how versatile an author she is. There are currently 17 books in this series and I'm up to book 12 and have enjoyed them all.

The Chaos series - I read the first last year but the rest this year. Book #2 (pictured) was my (unexpected) fave.
At Peace - definitely the best in this series, though I loved Hold On as well. The others were all just okay.
Immortals After Dark series - I'm only on book 7 but I'm working my way through (there are currently 18).
Mister Romance - I'd be lost without my book buddy Heather, let me tell you.
The Thing About Love - also loved Something About You by this author.
The Wedding Date - I know a lot of people weren't fans, but I adored this one.

Disappointing Reads
By the Book - this Persuasion retelling was such a bummer.
Fever series - the romance community might disown me but I do not understand the love for this series.
One Baby Daddy - after loving the first two in this series I was majorly disappointed in this one.
Pride - not the worst P&P retelling I've ever read, but pretty close.
Send Down the Rain - after loving The Mountain Between Us, this was such a let down.
A Spark of Light - so disappointed in this that I never want to pick up another Picoult book.
Twist of Faith - this didn't annoy me (enrage, more like it) until the ridiculous excuse for a twist is revealed.

Wish I hadn't read these
My goal for 2019: if I am reading a book I am thoroughly NOT enjoying as much as I did not enjoy any of these from the get go, learn how to freaking DNF.

Only had 3 this year, and have no strong feelings about them, glad I DNF'd for whatever reason, wish I had DNF'd the ones above.

I read an insane amount of books in 2018 because life was annoying and fiction is just so nice and cozy. Reading is not a competition and it's not like I win any awards, so I don't share this to gloat or brag about how awesome my eyeballs are, I just really like statistics and looking back on what I've read. I am actually hoping to read a little less in 2019, because it means focusing on other things that I neglected this year, like the outside world. So we'll see how this goes.

The last couple of years I was able to pinpoint an overall favourite, but I don't think I can this year. I would recommend almost all of the books in my 'favourite' list if they sound like your jam. Obviously only recommend the romance books if you like romance.

Right now, Becoming is in my head to recommend to everyone because I finished it a couple of weeks ago and keep thinking about how fabulous Michelle Obama is. So I guess that's my one book to recommend, if you have one book from this year you'd recommend, I'd love to hear it. 

Off to check out the other posts in Steph and Jana's link up!