Favorite Reads of 2014 & An Update

It’s 2015 and I’m sitting here typing this up, wondering where the time went. I realize that I’ve had this blog for a while and that I always say I’m going to update more and I never really do. I’ve always loved books but as a sophomore in college, I’ve turned my love into a career goal.

For those who have stuck with me and still read this, gold stars and much thanks to you. To everyone who has recently found me (surprisingly, people still do since I get emails about subscribers): welcome! I forever apologize for updating infrequently, but I’ve come to terms with the fact that it will always be that way.

A little update on my life: Last fall, I interned with the literary agency McIntosh & Otis, Inc. (they’re known for John Steinbeck’s titles). This semester, I’m interning at Bloomsbury USA. Hence, why I never update  (plus college and classes and all that).

Anyways, I’m here to share my favorites of 2014. I read a whopping 42 titles in 2014 (not really, since some of those titles are mangas, but let me believe I read 42 books). As always, my goal for 2015 is to read 100 titles and we’ll see how that goes…Here are my picks for 2014:

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Favorite YA book released in 2014:

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Why: What can I even say? I love fairy tales, and I love re-makes of fairy tales even more. Hodge’s book is seductively beautiful. She is a wonderful world and character builder and I was hooked from page one. If you wanna know a little bit more of my love for this book, it’s up on YA Interrobang; all of us posted our fave reads of 2014 there.

Favorite NA book released in 2014:

London Falling (International School #2) by Chanel Cleeton

Why: I loved the first book, I See London and was excited for the sequel. Cleeton is my favorite NA author because she writes characters that I can connect with and understand completely. Not only that, but there are passages where I find thoughts and feelings I’ve felt forever put into words and that means everything.

Favorite YA book that wasn’t released in 2014:

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Why: I’m sad that I didn’t read this book when it was released a few years back. Everyone talks about this series and I finally got around to it. To me, the idea isn’t 100% brand new to hear about, the way Cass writes America’s story is very addicting. I’m hooked on the relationships in this series and America’s indecisiveness. Not only that, but I also love the idea of having a prince.

Honorable Mentions:

Branded by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki

Why: Not going to lie, I was captivated with the Stockholm syndrome theme. While the action and destruction in this book is interesting, I really enjoyed this book because the romance is written well.

Let’s Get Lost by Adi Alsaid

Why: Alsaid’s story beautifully captures moments and that’s all I’m going to say.

Now, since I have some time to read before the semester starts I would love to hear your favorites; I need reading material. In addition, what books are you looking forward to in 2015?

What I Realized in 2013

What I realized in 2013:

-That it’s hard to find time to read in college.
-That I’m starting to become kinda picky about the books I want to read.
-That although I’ve had the goal of reading 100 books in a year since 2009, I do not see it ever happening in the near future.

Here’s the thing: I’m not upset or confused about any of these three things. And if you find yourself agreeing with any of the things above, you shouldn’t be upset either.

I mean, yes, I would’ve love to have more reading time. But between classes, clubs, and commenting, it really isn’t possible. This past semester, I managed to read about two books a month. Since I had so little time, finding the time to read was nice. It felt special to get captured by a good story. I also know what it feels like to miss reading; which makes reading better when I actually do (that makes sense, right).

Second, I’m obviously getting older. I’m in a new place with new experiences. My taste in books is changing because I’m changing. I noticed that I’m not that interested in a lot of YA books anymore and am more interested in NA and now even a little bit of non-fiction. At first, I was a little upset about this, since YA books are all ever read and that my blog is a YA book blog; but I finally realized there is nothing to be upset about. So what if I like different kind of books? They’re still books; I’m still reading.

I also haven’t stopped reading YA books; actually they’re still a majority of what I read. I’m just not as interested in certain types of plots. This though, gives me the chance to read other story lines.

Last, reading 100 books is still possible, even though I don’t think it will happen. Back in 2009 when I first made that goal, I sometimes read a book really quickly because I just wanted to finish it. I didn’t read into all of the details of the book and didn’t enjoy the story it was telling. When reading a book, you’re supposed to read it for yourself; for your own enjoyment and at your own pace.

Since I have never accomplished this goal, I still have hope of doing so. One day. (:

What I also realized in 2013:

-I feel accomplished every time I write a blog post. I also realized the fact that my blog is small.
-The reason why I am going into my major.
-That some required reading in college is really interesting.

To begin, I know I rarely post. I know that I manage to put out about 2 or 3 posts a month. Honestly, I don’t mind that I post only a little. Blogging is fun, but it isn’t my life. I love to read and I love book blogging, and I have found a way to still incorporate it into my life even with my busy schedule.

Thank you to all of my blog followers. I’ve said this many times and I’m saying it again: I appreciate and I am thankful for your support ❤

Second, I am hoping to be a Marketing major (well really, a Marketing & Advertising Communications major). Going into college, all I knew was that I wanted to work in book publishing. This semester I realized that the reason I want to go into book publishing is to make a change to the way books are marketed. I want promote diversity in books. As of right now the marketing for diverse books is slowly changing and becoming more prominent, but it isn't yet. I hope to find a job one day that will allow me to to make it prominent.

Lastly, reading is a wonderful thing. It lets your mind wander and opens you up to a completely different world. I didn't think required readings in college would be that interesting; but some books were very interesting. I enjoyed the readings from some of my classes, and I hope you did too. I know that a reading from class makes the book less desirable, but keep an open mind; it's required for a reason.

All in all, 2013 was a decent year for me. I read about 40something books and started to blog about the New Adult genre. What are some of the things you guys noticed about yourself in 2013?

I wish you all a wonderful new year! Here's a toast to all the memories of 2013, and the ones to come in 2014 (:

My Favorite Books of 2012

2012 was a year of amazing books, was it not? Although I didn’t read as many as I had hoped, I was still able to find a few books that BLEW MY MIND. That’s actually saying a lot for me, becuase I’ve noticed that I’m not as wowed by that many books anymore…

I’m sure I’ve mentioned these reads before, either on my blog or on my twitter; either way, I definitely think you should check them out if you have not! The books below have wonderful story lines, unique characters, beautiful writing, and heart-wrenching plot twists.  I give you my favorite books of 2012:

[The books below were all released in 2012.]

Another book that stood out to me was The Realm of Possibility by David Levithan. It wasn’t written in 2012, but I only managed to stumble-upon this book last year. It is a novel composed of poems from different characters who are all in high school. Reasons why I really liked this book:

  • Each poem only gives you a glimpse of what is going on in that person’s life.
  • Each story is told in a different way (you’ll understand what I’m saying when you pick up the book).
  • It emotionally grips you. My heart was torn, healed and broken all at once. I cried, I laughed and punched the wall. I could understand and felt what a lot of the characters were going through.
  • Levithan’s writing is absolutely wonderful.

If you get a chance, I’d love it if you read these books! If you do, e-mail me or something so we can discuss them; I have so much to say (:

What were your faves of 2012?

Books/Mangas I Read in 2012

For those of you who do not know, every year, my goal has been to read 100 books. Ever since I have started my blog, I have not been able to read my goal 😦 Still, I will continue to make my goal – even if it takes me the rest of my life!

2012 was a pretty good year in books, don’tcha think? [Then again, isn’t every year?] As sad as I am to see another year go, I’m excited for the new beginning and what it has to bring (:

Books I Read in 2012 (in order)

  1. Dreaming Awake by Gwen Hayes
  2. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight Jennifer E Smith
  3. Ugly to Start With by John Michael Cummings
  4. The Rivals by Daisy Whitney
  5. Juliet Immortal by Stacey Jay
  6. The Hidden Sun J. Lloyd Morgan
  7. Immortal City by Scott Speer
  8. 172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad
  9. It’s Our Prom (So Deal With It) by Julie Anne Peters
  10. Revived by Cat Patrick
  11. The Last Princess by Galaxy Craze
  12. Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz
  13. A Midsummer’s Nightmare by Kody Keplinger
  14. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
  15. The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler
  16. Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James
  17. The Last Policeman by Ben Winters
  18. Perfect Escape by Jennifer Brown
  19. Spy Killer by L. Ron Hubbard
  20. Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson
  21. Saving June by Hannah Harrington
  22. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
  23. July’s People by Nadine Gordimer
  24. The Boy Recession by Flynn Meaney
  25. Adaptation by Malinda Lo
  26. The Realm of Possibility by David Levithan
  27. Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr
  28. Fathomless by Jackson Pearce
  29. Love Story by Jennifer Echols
  30. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
  31. Paper Covers Rock by Jenny Hubbard
  32. Everyday by David Levithan
  33. Fever by Lauren DeStefano
  34. Vessel by Sarah Beth Durst

Manga I Read in 2012 (in order)

  1. Stepping on Roses v. 7
  2. Kitchen Princess v. 1
  3. Alice in the Country of Clover: Bloody Twins
  4. Black Bird v.1
  5. Black Bird v. 2
  6. Black Bird v. 3
  7. Black Bird v. 4
  8. Black Bird v. 5
  9. Fall in Love Like a Comic v. 1
  10. Stepping on Roses v. 8
  11. Absolute Boyfriend v. 1
  12. Fall in Love Like a Comic v. 2
  13. Absolute Boyfriend v. 2
  14. Full Metal Alchemist v. 1
  15. Black Bird v. 6
  16. Black Bird v. 7
  17. Black Bird v. 8
  18. Black Bird v. 9

…eh, I didn’t read that much this year, did I? Oh well.

So what do you guys read in 2012? Any of you read a lot of the same books that I did? Leave your thoughts below!

Goodbye, 2012; you were fun 😀 Happy new year’s eve, everyone!

Four Books I’m Thankful For

Guess what tomorrow is?! THANKSGIVING! [Well, for the United States anyway.] I love this holiday because I get to spend it with my entire family. I also love to eat a lot of food.

This is a holiday of thanks. I’m thankful for my life and every person in it. I’m thankful for a bunch of things, but especially books. Where would my life be without books? Where would your life be without books?

Thanksgiving got me thinking: What books am I really thankful for? I have a bunch of favorites, but which ones have been significant parts of my life? Here are the ones that came to mind (in no particular order):

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

I read this book in my 6th grade project plus class. I loved this book so much that I went to the bookstore and bought the rest of the series. To this day, it still bothers me that I don’t have the second book because the store never had it, but that I have the rest of the series. A Wrinkle in Time was the book that got me to transition to YA books. Even though it’s a middle grade read, I decided to challenge myself and venture into the YA section after finding a few good middle grade reads.

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

I read this book in the middle of 7th grade. All of girls would pass around a book they really loved and Twilight happened to be the pick of the year. Half of my middle school life revolved around this series. My friends and I spent hours discussing different aspects of these books. We went to book and movie releases, swooned over the characters, and even baked a cake! I got my best friend into reading by getting her into this book. Without Twilight, my best friend would not be reading today.

Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon

This book was the first book I read with an Asian protagonist. At the time, I was finally realizing that I should embrace my culture instead of pushing away from it. Although my parents were both born in China, they never raised me and my siblings with Chinese traditions (other than the Lunar New Year). This book influenced me to learn about my culture even more.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna and the French Kiss made me truly realize a lot of the things I preached. For example, I have always disliked when people use the word ‘gay’ as a derogatory word. It wasn’t until the characters in this book made me really realize that. I don’t remember if I the word ‘gay’ or ‘lesbian’ was used against me in a derogatory way, but I know that before sophomore year, I probably would have been upset if some called me that. This book made me ask myself “why?” Why would I be bothered? I didn’t believe those words were derogatory, so why should I react as if they were derogatory? That’s when it clicked. It shouldn’t bother me because there is nothing wrong with being homosexual.

The click I had means a lot to me. I see it as an important spot in my life because I don’t think I’ve ever had something so prominent stand out to me as this one.

Out of the hundreds of books I’ve read, these have impacted my life the most. I know that I would not be the same if I had not read these, and I wouldn’t go back and change anything. Now tell me, which books are you thankful for?

A Look Back into September

Here is a list of all the books I read in September. You all probably know by now that my goal is 100. At first I thought I was gonna make it but with the rate of the most recent month I’m afraid I’m falling behind… 😦 I honest to goodness have no time to read!

67. Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser
68. Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt (review here)
69. Falling for Romeo by Jennifer Laurens
70. Shut Out by Kody Keplinger (review here)
71. Divergent by Veronica Roth

What books did you read last month? Any recommendations?

A Look Back into August

Here are all of the books I read last month: 

62. Everlasting by Angie Frazier
63. Dark Parties by Sarah Grant (review here)
64. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
65. Sweetly by Jackson Pearce (review here)
66. Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

Yepp, it was a slow month 😛 Hopefully I’ll get back into the reading habit since school has started up again. What did you guys read last month?! Any recommendations?!