Tuesday 1 August 2017

Mid-Year Book Tag | 2017

We're just over half way through the year and you know what that means? Essentially superfluous but fun mid-year book tag time! Okay so it's actually called the 'mid-year book freakout tag' but I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be freaking out about.

My reading has been much slower this year, I could make excuses about busyness and reading slumps but you know what? It is what it is. I may have read 19 books compared to the 41 I'd read by this time last year but my life is also very different from this time last year, and I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

So let's get into this tag!

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2017.
2017 has been a great year so far for UKYA and it's a toss up between A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard and Margot and Me by Juno Dawson for the best book I've read this year. AQKOT is a an uplifting read and the best depiction of anxiety I've ever read whilst Margot and Me is full of 90s nostalgia, love, loss and family - it's pretty epic. See my full thoughts on Margot and Me here.

2. Best sequel you've read so far in 2017.
The one and only sequel I've read this year is The Early Birds by Laurie Graham, the long-awaited (by me anyway) sequel to The Future Homemakers of America, a book I've read countless times and raved about for years. The Early Birds continues on immediately from Future Homemakers, and follows Peggy, Kath, Lois, Audrey and Gayle through the turn of the 21st century. The longtime friends and ex-airforce wives are now in their seventies and the novel deals with family, health, loss and love against the backdrop of a constantly changing America. I love these characters and it was a joy to be back with them once again, I can only hope that Graham plans to write another in this series.

3. New release you haven't read yet, but want to.
That's got to be When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon. I've heard such wonderful things about this book and it sounds like the perfect summery read. I want to buy it so badly but I have so many books on my TBR that I just can't justify it right now.

4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year.
It's got to be John Green's long awaited fifth novel, Turtles All the Way Down. I've been a fan of Green's for years after discovering his books through watching him and Hank on Vlogbrothers. It's been four years since he released his last book, The Fault in Our Stars (*sob*), and I actually squealed when I saw the announcement about Turtles All the Way Down, I'm forever a fan girl.

5. Biggest disappointment.
Unfortunately, it has to be How to Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell. I was looking forward to a raw depiction of addiction and growing up but instead found a grating writing style and a boatload of unacknowledged privilege which could have done with more editing and less name-dropping. Not my favourite read.

6. Biggest surprise.
The most surprising book would probably be my most recent read: One Italian Summer by Keris Stainton. I went in expecting a fluffy but enjoyable summer read but I actually got a lot more than that. One Italian Summer is surprisingly emotional read, with well-developed characters and a thoughtful take on loss. It still has those lovely, fluffy, summery vibes, so it's the perfect beach read - but make sure to also pack your tissues!

7. Favourite new author. (Debut or new to you)
In January, Katherine Webber released her debut novel Wing Jones, a story of love, family and running. It's stunningly written and incredibly powerful and I can't wait to see what else is to come from Webber.

8. Newest fictional crush.
I don't think I've actually read any characters who I have a crush on this year, which is so weird. I'm still thinking about Kaz Brekker and Nina Zenik from last year though...I basically have a crush on everyone from Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom.

9. Newest favourite character.
I really loved Molly from The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli, because I felt a strong connection to her. She's funny and fat and full of love, there's real strength in her vulnerability and I love her for that.

10. Book that made you cry.
I rarely, if ever, cry when reading but Margot and Me by Juno Dawson had me ugly-sobbing. It was partly the emotional connection I had to the situation and partly the incredible writing but that book broke me, and you should definitely read it so it can break you too.

11. Book that made you happy.
The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**k by Sarah Knight had me smiling. Once you realise you don't need to be giving so many fucks, you feel a lot better about life.

12. Favourite book to film adaptation you saw this year.
I haven't actually watched any book to film adaptations this year, I'm not a huge fan of them, but I do really want to see Hidden Figures at some point.

13. Favourite review you've written this year. 
My review for Margot and Me by Juno Dawson is my favourite review so far, but I'm working on one for Patrick Ness' Release which is going to be epic because that book is just. so. good.

14. Most beautiful book you've bought so far this year (or received).
One Italian Summer is pretty dang gorgeous. I mean look at those colours.

15. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
My TBR is kind of ridiculous so I really want to cut it down by getting my reading on, even if it's just the books I've been sent for review consideration. I'm particularly looking forward to The Good People by Hannah Kent and Phantom Limbs by Paula Garner.

So that's the mid-year book 'freakout' tag! (I still don't know what I'm supposed to be freaking out about.) I'm going to tag some other fabulous book bloggers to do this because I think it's a nice way to reflect on what you've read so far. I'm tagging: Grace, BeeFaye and Hollie. So get mid-year book freaking out (or something)!!

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