The only reading goals I managed to keep were my total reading goal and knocking books off my TBR piles. Depressing, but I did those two quite well. I read a total of 417 books (not counting many dnfs), and of those, 207 were on my TBR piles. I had roughly 35 books that were a straight DNF; these include mostly Kindle Freebies. It should be noted that many of these were simply not to my taste.
Some, however, were just bad. Honestly, don’t get me started on Wet for Nessie. The poor Loch Ness monster. Honestly, if it is real; it is hunting for someone. Together Nessie and the giant Squid are taking on porn writers.
Sadly, this year I added four books to my ick-attack self. The fact that these are all suppose to be “erotic” but simply endorse rape culture should tell you why. On the plus side, I added many books to my poc-on-cover shelf. On the down side of that, most of them were non-fiction.
Without further ado – my various awards for what I read this year.
Favorite New Author I Discovered This Year: This is a tie between Mavis Gallant (who sadly died soon after I discovered her). Maryse Conde, and David O. Stewart. I read Gallant’s Paris Stories, and they are wonderful short stories. I picked up David O. Stewart after listening to a podcast that featured him. He is just as entertaining a writer. Conde’s book about Tituba was on my TBR pile, and then I picked up Segu, considered her best work. A close second is Max Gladstone whose Three Parts Dead is excellent. However, he places second because I brought more Stewart and Gallant quickly after reading their works. I just brought more Gladstone today.
Favorite Series I Discovered: This is a tie between Inspector Sejer by Karin Fossum and the Adventures of Mika – a graphic novel series about an orthodox Jewish girl who is a dragon slayer.
Book that Made Me Think: Big Porn Inc and Loot. Loot is about who has the right to ancient treasures. Big Porn Inc explains itself really.
Book that Made Me Mad and want to murder the author: Celine’s Death on the Installment Plan. But he’s already dead. This is tied with Abducted by the Kraken – but considering that the author of that kindle book is most likely a frat house, it will be somewhat messy.
Book that Made Me Mad and want to murder people: Wounded to Death. It’s similar to the Vagina Monologues, but the women die. It’s good, but you will want to hurt people. This is tied with Twelve Years a Slave. Seriously, everyone talks about Solomon, but it’s his wife and children I feel for.
Book that Made Me Mad and Want to Kill the People Who Put It on the Bestseller List: Fifty Shades of Grey. Seriously, people!
Book Readers Should Read: The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George. Seriously. I got this via Netgalley, though it isn’t being published until April or after. It should be one of the top books of 2015.
Book its Good I stuck With: The Bone Church. I actually had to start reading it over, but it is a book that sticks with you.
First Novel Award: The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly Recently translated into English. Wonderful, touching and sad.
Best Entry into a Series (Fiction): Sovereign of Stars by L. M. Ironside (She King Series)
Best Entry into a Series (Non-Fiction): Rebellion by Peter Ackroyd. He has this award tied up until his series of English history is done.
Worst Entry into a Series: Cold Days (Dresden files). Heading to Anita Blake realms for me.
Best Book Published 2014 (Non-Fiction): Elephant Company by Vicki Croke. Seriously, it’s The Great Escape with elephants.
Best Book Published 2014 (Fiction): The Anatomy Lesson
So That’s How You Got Published Award: The Great Love of Queen Margaret. The writer of this book offers proofreading services. Don’t use them.
The Poor Trees: The Abominable
Graphic Novel of the Year: Hereville
Everyone Loved It But Me Not So Much: Cold Days
Audio Book Award: Dracula (with Tim Curry) tied with the freebie Snow Queen
Best YA Book Read This Year: Hands down it is The Tyrant’s Daughter. And it’s not that stupid YA stuff that is really rape culture either. It’s actually tied to the news.
Best Children’s Book Read This Year: Angry Little Puffin tied with Mr. Squirrel & The Moon
Best Children’s Fairy Tale Book: Pickin Peas
English Teacher’s Award: An Ambush of Tigers
Teacher’s Award: Undeniable by Bill Nye. I kept telling my students to read this.
Most Disappointing Book: When She Woke – promised so much but delivered so little.
Book that Surprised Me: Hog Wild. Who would have thought that erotic 3 Little Pigs would exactly be good?
Best Travel Guide: The Complet Ankh-Morpork tied with Secret Montreal
Worst Travel Guide: Copenhagen Top Sights. Proofread please.
Best Souvenir Book: Arlington National Cemetery
Reporting Book: Ghettoside tied with The Underground Girls of Kabul
Art: Fairy Homes and Gardens
What Drunken College Frat Boys Think is Good: Abducted by Kraken
Worse Fairy Tale Redo – Wet for Nessie
Kindle Single: We All Should Be Feminists
Best Collection of Essays: Bad Feminist tied with A Slip of the Keyboard
Best Short Story Collection: Stone Mattress
I Laughed Milk Up My Nose: The Best of Twisty Christmas Tales (Honestly, really funny)
Not Another Book About ____; Gosh that Was Good: The Woman Who Would Be King
Wow, I did Not Know That: Manchu Princess, Japanese Spy
Animal Book (Non-Fiction): Animals Behaving Badly
Animal Book (Fiction): The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly
Best Fairy Tale Inspired Fiction: Wolves and Witches
Short Story: Burning Girls. Read this now.
Independent Author Award: In a year where many authors tied to big publishing house acted like stupid spoiled brats, I would like to single out the following independent published authors as having class and professionalism.
Marty Gregor: I didn’t like his first book that much. Not only did he thank me for the review after I posted it, but he also sent me a very nice happy holiday email where he thanked me again.
Danielle Ackley-McPhail and Day Al-Mohamed – I gave their book 3 stars and they both were very nice.