1) Best book you’ve read so far in 2015
Polina: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness and the Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson. (You may have noticed I haven’t shut up about Mistborn at all since I read it). There are more, but if I start listing them this post will get out of control.
Sondra: Dear God this is hard, but it’s probably gonna go to Illuminae. Months later and I’m still screaming about it.
2) Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2015
Polina: Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray. It was well worth the wait. (Although…please don’t make us wait that long again).
Sondra: Gonna have to agree. Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray.
3) New release you haven’t read yet, but want to
Polina: A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab. I still can’t believe I haven’t read it.
Sondra: I can’t believe I haven’t gotten around to Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headly. I was so excited for it, I even have an arc, I just haven’t read it.
4) Most anticipated release for the second half of the year
Polina: Winter by Marissa Meyer
Sondra: Winter by Marissa Meyer for sure.
5) Biggest Disappointment
Polina: The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker. It was so tropey and predictable and boring and not at all the exciting morally conflicted emotional adventure I was anticipating.
Sondra: The Jewel by Amy Ewing. The characters were just so hard to even want to like.
6) Biggest Surprise
Polina: Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz. I picked it up because it was one of Pulseit’s free weekly offers and came out on the other side with a lot of tears in my eyes and a new favorite author.
Sondra: This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzie Lee. It was a little out of my normal reading but I found that I absolutely loved it!
7) Favorite New Author
Polina: UM. Brandon Sanderson, V. E. Schwab, Rosamund Hodge, Hannah Moskowitz, Patrick Ness, Adam Silvera, Sabaa Tahir, Becky Albertalli…
Sondra: V. E. Schwab. Renee Ahdieh. Noelle August.
8) Newest Fictional Crush
Polina: Elend from Mistborn. We’re first introduced to him when he’s reading at a party, so I kind of didn’t have a chance. Also, Celaena Sardothien. As a lot of Throne of Glass characters (including Celaena herself) will tell you, it’s kind of hard not to have a crush on Celaena Sardothien. (I’ll get used to calling her Aelin eventually, I swear I will.)
Sondra: Since I read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen for the first time this year can I ACTUALLY use Mr. Darcy? If not I’ll go with Adam from Rebound by Noelle August.
9) Newest Favorite Character
Polina: My most recent favorite is Agniezcka from Uprooted by Naomi Novik, which I’m currently reading. But shout-out to Hazel from The Darkest Part of the Forest and Cress from The Lunar Chronicles and Penryn from Angelfall and Victor from Vicious and Etta from Not Otherwise Specified and Simon from Simon vs and Ling from Lair of Dreams and Vin from Mistborn and Rachelle from Crimson Bound and I just have a lot of favorites, okay?
Sondra: I’m currently reading Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson and Kelsier has really creeped up on me man. He’s great.
10) Book That Made You Cry
Polina: I’m going to mention A Monster Calls again. It made me cry. A lot.
Sondra: Umm…none yet? I’m figuring I’ll be crying in either Queen of Shadows or Winter, but as of yet I haven’t cried this year.
11) Book That Made You Happy
Polina: Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, aka the cutest book in the entire world. (Have I said that before? Probably. Will I keep saying it? Probably.)
Sondra: Can I just use the entire Boomerang series by Noelle August???? All of them made me so stupidly happy my grin literally hurt.
12) Favorite Book-to-Film Adaptation You Saw
Polina: I haven’t actually seen any this year, so I’m going to cheat and say the second season of Carmilla even though it has hardly anything in common with the source material any more. (I do plan to see Paper Towns eventually. There’s that.)
Sondra: I’m actually the same… I was just thinking about how there were less book to film adaptations this year, or at least there seemed to be less YA to film adaptations.
13) Favorite Post You’ve Done This Year
Polina: I’m kind of proud of my reviews of Red Queen and The Retribution of Mara Dyer, because I had really mixed feelings about these books and I think I managed to articulate the good and bad parts fairly well. I’m also kind of proud of my Demon’s Lexicon review, because that’s one of my favorite series and I managed to maintain an acceptable fangirling-to-discussion ratio.
Sondra: Umm… Well mine is probably my Illuminae review which is scheduled for later, oops?
14) Most Beautiful book you bought this year
Polina: Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee. Gorgeous colors are gorgeous.
Sondra: The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh!! That book is SO gorgeous inside and out!
15) What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
Polina: most of my ARCs from ALA, for one thing. (Illuminae and Six of Crows are currently the highest priority for me.) In terms of new releases, Winter and Queen of Shadows and Demon Road. In terms of books already out, A Darker Shade of Magic, the rest of Brandon Sanderson’s books, Chaos Walking, The Lies of Locke Lamora, These Broken Stars, the rest of Vampire Academy, Girl of Fire and Thorns, and I want to at least start the Falling Kingdoms series.
Sondra: Um, all the books. I’ve got a few releases from authors I love coming up, but also I really want to try and knock out some of those books that I’ve bought over time and just never read. They’ve been languishing on my shelves, sometimes for literal years, and I want to fix that for the rest of this year.