Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Wrap Up!

So I did my post about the challenges that I wrapped up for the year, now here's the post about the year in general.
2011 was a pretty big year for me.  I blogged pretty consistently throughout the year (up until the end anyway!)  I set goals and broke them, several time, and I'm pretty proud of that.  I gained a lot of new followers through the year and met some awesome bloggers and read a lot of great books.  I also managed to graduate college which is my greatest accomplishment to date so overall, I would say that it was a pretty fantastic year.

Now, let's focus on the reading part of the year.
Originally I had set my goal for books to read at 40.  I thought that with school I wasn't going to be able to finish that many.  I broke that goal, upped it to 50, broke that, upped it to 60, broke that, upped it to 65 and kept it there, but I still broke it.
Total books read for 2011 = 68 books
Pages read = 20,865 pages
Compared to the 17 books that I read in 2010, I would say this is a vast improvement!

Best of the Best
I read so many good books this year.  In fact, there wasn't a single book that I deemed unfinishable, which is good compared to the 2 from last year.  So many of the books that I read were so good, but here's a few of them that I thought were just phenomenal.  Click the links to be take to my reviews!
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon - I was scared to read this one at first, because of some of the reviews that I had previously read, but I'm so glad that I picked it up.  I loved this book SO MUCH.  I completely fell in love with the characters and the time period and the writing and everything.  I had planned to read the rest in the series, but I got overly ambitious with all of the things I wanted to read, and never got around to it.
Anything Kurt Vonnegut - I discovered my mom's old copies of some of his books and read them and I'm so glad that I did.  I love Vonnegut, his characters and his writing style.  He managed to steal a place in my list of favorite writers.
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy - Okay so I'm one of those people that saw the movies way before I read the books, but I did read the books, which counts for something, right?  And I LOVED the books.  I have e-book copies of them, but this is a collection that I plan of getting in print as well.  They were by far some of my favorites from the year.
book cover of The Sleepwalkers by J. Gabriel Gates
The Sleepwalkers by J. Gabriel Gates - I got this as an ARC from NetGalley and thought that it would be a good one to read for October.  I was SO RIGHT.  It was so fantastic.  It was a lot like watching a horror movie, but reading the subtitles.  Full of action and suspense and some moments that will scare the pants off of you.  I highly recommend it.
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell - I've always been told that this is a must read, but I have struggled through a lot of the classics and I was wary of picking this one up.  Ohmygosh I'm so glad that I actually did.  I fell in love with this story and the characters and the time period and the historical value of it and basically, everything.  I loved this and I still can't believe that I waited so long to read it!
Other fantastic reads for the year:  Everything by Joshua Grover-David Patterson, Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet, That Day in September by Artie Van Why, Blackstone: Drawing the Circle by Jason Bieneke, The Synarchy Series by DCS, The Undertaker by William Brown, Dead of Winter by Brian Moreland

The NotSoFavorites of the Year
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad - Everyone is constantly telling me what a great book this is and what a classic it is and blahblahblah.  Okay, I read it and I could see what he was trying to do, but I REALLY didn't like it.  I just didn't.  Click the link to read my review as to why.
book cover of Mile 81 by Stephen KingTreasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson - Another classic that so many people loved that I really did not.  I can't really tell you why.  I think the writing was one of the things that I disliked the most but either way, I really was not a fan of this one.
The Siege of Trencher's Farm by Gordon Williams - Another one that I didn't like.  Its a psychological thriller, okay I get it, I've never seen the movie and I really have no desire to.  The characters really annoyed me, and the book is as much about the relationships of the characters as the crazy things that are happening and I hated the characters, so, I didn't like this book.
Mile 81 by Stephen King - By far one of the biggest disappointments of the year.  I pretty much wanted to throw my Nook when I got to the end of it.  It was just a bad story, read my review to find out exactly why.

So those are the best and the worst of the year!  Check back tomorrow for a  rundown of the goals that I've made for 2012 and what you can expect in the year to come!  And come back later today for an edition of In My Mailbox!


Unfinished Person said...

I really need to reread The Lord of the Rings, but after reading it and rereading it for so many years as a teen, I admit it's difficult to go back. Kurt Vonnegut: don't remind me, yet another classic author I need to read more of. Ugh. :)

S.Leighanne @ Leighanne's Lit said...

I'm in the middle of The Hobbit right now and I love that one just as much as LOTR.
You should so pick up more Vonnegut! I still have several of his that I need to work my way through! :]

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