My Best-of 2015

2015 was a much better year for me than last year. I got new responsibilities at work that have been challenging and have made my life busier, but have also been a TON of fun. I didn’t read as much but what I read, overall, was better. Either that, or I was just in a mood to like more of what I read. I still need to work on upping my books by authors of color, but I did a better job of keeping track this year, so at least I have an accurate starting point. I’m quite pleased with my year and I’m looking forward to another good one in 2016.

By the Numbers:

Middle Grade Fiction: 70
YA Fiction: 46
Graphic Novels: 14
Non-Fiction: 16
Adult Fiction: 25
Number of those that were sci-fi/fantasy books, not counting graphic novels: 62
Number of those that were by authors of color: 22
Number of those that had prominent characters of color: 39
Number of those that were audio books: 15
Number of those that were rereads: 6

Grand Total: 171

Abandoned: more than I kept track of

And now this year’s awards:

Best Adult Fiction: Prayers for Sale
Best YA book: Trouble is a Friend of Mine
Best Middle Grade book: The Penderwicks in Spring
Best MG Speculative Fiction: Being a part of the Cybils EMGSF panel this year, I’m not at liberty to say. But the shortlist will be announced tomorrow!
Best Fantasy: Shadow Scale
Best Sci-Fi/Distopian: The Martian
Best Graphic Novel: Roller Girl and Ms. Marvel
Best Non-Fiction: Bad Feminist
Best MG/YA Non-Fiction: I Will Always Write Back
Best Romance: Kissing in America
Best Mystery: The House of Silk
Best Audiobook: You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost)

And in other categories…

Cover love:

dungeoneers 5b2fb-cuckoosong f4d17-msmarvel1 The Hollow Boy

Don’t judge a book by its cover: 


Best in-person book group book: Prayers for Sale

Best YAckers book: Uprooted

Favorite reread: A Room with a View

Aliens!: Mars Evacuees, Nomad, Armada, Magonia, Smek for President, Red Queen

The Hype is Right: All the Light We Cannot See

*Blush*: The Viscount Who Loved Me

Absolutely Gorgeous and Defies Categorization: The Marvels 

Feminist and Proud: Bad Feminist, Uprooted, Prayers for Sale, How to be a Heroine, Ms. Marvel, The Bitch in the House, Bone Gap, The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate, Scarlett Undercover, Gabi a Girl in Pieces, The Boston Girl, Honor Girl, Roller Girl, The Forgotten Sisters, Glory O’Brein’s History of the Future

Difficult, but Powerful: Between the World and Me, Just Mercy

We Got ArtHow to be Both, Big Magic, The Truth Commission

Twists FTW: The Blackthorn Key

History with a Side of Fiction: Stella by Starlight, Walk on Earth a Stranger, The Hired Girl, Beautiful Ruins, The Boston Girl, How to Be Both, Black Dove, White Raven

Okay, I Cried: Circus Mirandus

Unbelievable Debut: An Ember in the Ashes

I Adore a (Mythology and Fairy Tale) Retelling: Shadows of SherwoodBaba Yaga’s Assistant, The Sword of Summer, The Wrath and the Dawn

Give it Up for Religion: The Porcupine of Truth, The Bishop’s Wife, Siddhartha, Scarlett Undercover

Snorting Milk Through My Nose: Dory and the Real True Friend

I Love Language: Between You & Me

I Also Love Food: Life from Scratch

Basketball Poetry is Awesome, Who Knew?: The Crossover

WTH Just Happened: The Library at Mount Char, The Nest, Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future

Finding Space in My Head: Siddhartha, The Joy of Living

I’ll Happily Grow Up with Mo: The Story of Diva and Flea

My 10-Year-Old Self Would Have Loved This: The Hunters of Chaos, Goodbye Stranger

Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic isn’t overdone (yet): Station Eleven, MiNRS, The Fog Diver, The Scorpion Rules

I Like Gaiman Better in Short Form: Trigger Warning

Not Out Yet, but Worth Watching For: Summerlost, To Catch a Cheat, The Memory of Light

Begs to be Read Aloud: Appleblossom the Possum

Where’s the Next One?: The Heart of Betrayal, The Winner’s Crime

Books I should have read AGES ago: Something Fresh, Cold Comfort Farm.

Awesome LGBTQ+: George, The Porcupine of Truth,  Honor Girl, The Scorpion Rules, The Marvels

Woo-hoo, they’re back!: The Hollow Boy, The Odds of Getting Even, Switch, The Golden Specific, The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate, The Shadow Cabinet, Dragons Beware, The Forgotten Sisters, The Penderwicks in Spring

Waaaah, it’s OVER: Jinx’s Fire

Loved it, but can’t seem to sell it: The Bishop’s Wife, Confessions of an Imaginary Friend

Books I finished but didn’t feel the love for: Orbiting Jupiter (I couldn’t bring myself to write a review), My Brilliant Friend, Steve Jobs, The Thing About Jellyfish, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Fables for Our Time

Author everyone else loves that I discovered I liked: Anne Lamott (Small Victories)

“Best” Part of My Job (aka Author Events I Managed): Joelle Charbonneau, Middle Grade Mania (Steve A, Faith H, Greg T, Marcia W), Ridley Pearson, Judy Schachner, Bill Konigsburg, John Flannagan, Jacqueline Woodson, Penguin Teen on Tour (Ally Condie, Meg Wolitzer, Jandy Nelson), Geoff Rodkey, and Ally Carter.

What are some of your bests this year?

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