Best of 2015

2015-end-of-year-book-survey-1024x984-900x865This survey has been put together by Jamie @ The Perpetual Page-turner

I usually shy away from these sort of surveys because I don’t read that many books in a year. This year though, I read a lot of good books, but I’ve been having trouble deciding what to highlight. Enter the 2015 End of the Year Book Survey.

1. Best Book You Read In 2015?

Magic is my bailiwick. By far, the best book I had the opportunity to read this year was volume two of House of Mystery, edited by Todd Karr and Teller. It contained all the crunchy bits that were missing from my understanding of David P. Abbott.

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

This designation goes to my first read of 2015: Raylan by Elmore Leonard. It was the weakest of his books that I read and far inferior to Justified.

3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. …And not in a good way. Considering how beloved this book is, I was pretty underwhelmed. Sorry, everyone!

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

I was really happy that at least one blogger I know read Michael Pronko’s Beauty and Chaos because of me (I think).

5. Best series you started in 2015? Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?

I don’t read enough series to have an ender as well as a beginner, but I was pleased to start J. A. Lang’s Chef Maurice series.

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?

Despite my disappointment with Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier is a writer I’m really excited to read more of. I also read her anthology Don’t Look Now and the novella “The Birds.” Lots of good stuff there.

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

The Ghost Shrink, the Accidental Gigolo, & the Poltergeist Accountant by Vivi Andrews. This was a super fun little romance. Not too steamy. 😉

8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

Motherless Child by Glen Hirshberg. I think I read this in a day. I don’t read books in a day.

9. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

Okay, time to be “boring” again. My most likely two-years-in-a-row reread is River City Empire by Orville Menard. Totally a research book, but really good none-the-less.

11. Most memorable character of 2015?

I’m going to have to go with a duo here: Vera Van Slyke and Lida Prasilova from Tim Prasil’s Help for the Haunted.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?

This goes to a reread: The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle.

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read?

The Turn of the Screw by Henry James. Seriously, how did I miss reading this for 30 years?

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2015?

I don’t keep track of quotes, so I looked back on my Kindle highlights. Maybe not my favorite quote, but something that’s been going around in my and Eric’s writerly heads lately:

All enduring popular literature has this open-ended quality, and extends this invitation to the reader to continue, on his or her own, with the adventure. Through a combination of trompe l’oeil allusions, of imaginative persistence of vision, it creates a sense of an infinite horizon of play, an endless game board; it spawns, without trying, a thousand sequels, diagrams, and Web sites.  ~Michael Chabon, Maps and Legends

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2015 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. I didn’t think I’d like it as much as I did.

21. Best Book You Read In 2015That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

Well, since it’s Gothic, not solely based on peer pressure, but after reading Bellman & Black, I was strongly advised to read The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. And I liked it! But probably not as much as I liked Bellman & Black. Sorry, everyone!

23. Best 2015 debut you read?

I didn’t read many true debuts, but I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend The Witch of Lime Street by David Jaher.

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

On the River, Down Where They Found Willy Brown by Theodore Wheeler. I love Wheeler’s depiction of 1910’s Omaha. Definitely looking forward to his Kings of Broken Things in 2017.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Aside from Chef Maurice and a Sopt of Truffle, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Vol. 1 by Ryan North and Erica Henderson was the most fun I had reading this year.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

The Rise of the Indian Rope Trick by Peter Lamont. Okay, I knew it was going to be pretty good, but I really liked the take on history and research that Indian Rope Trick presented.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?

The Castle of Otranto Horce Walpole. A novel published in 1764 and the basis of a genre might be an odd choice for the most unique, but seriously, how many books have giant stone helmets falling from the sky?

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and The Future of Neurodiversity by Steve Silberman. I’ll have a review of this coming up in the next couple of weeks, but some of the very backward attitudes people have toward autism really, really get to me.


I did skip a few questions, here and there. I’ll have a stats update in the New Year.


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