Friday, January 22, 2016

2015 Bookish Resolutions Wrap-Up

Before I get started on my resolutions for the coming year, I wanted to go back and see how I did on my resolutions for last year so that can inform my new goals! So let's look at how I did on my 2015 resolutions. 

1. Post more often! 

I did really well on this for the first half of the year. Then after the summer I started tapering off, and as you know, I stopped posting in the last few months of the year. So this is a half-success!

2. Booktube more often! 

Again, did really well in the first few months! And in August, I did the Book-tube-a-thon and did several videos then! Not so much in the last few months.

3. Tweet/Instagram more often! 

Same. The end of the year kinda sucked.

4. Be more active in the community in general! 

This was a bit of a fail. Better luck this year!

5. Read Insurgent and Allegiant before March 20th! 

Success! I think I actually finished Allegiant ON March 20th. Ha.

6. Finish more series than I start! 

Success! I finished 15 series and only started 10!

7. Read more contemporary! 

Success! In fact, contemporary was my second-most read genre of the year. (Right behind comic trades. Go figure.)

8. Limit the book buying! 

Toward the end of the year, I started doing really well with this. I haven't bought very many books in the last few months, and I'm really excited about it!

9. Participate in at least ONE readathon! 

I participated in THREE. Boom. So proud.

10. Read 40 books in 2015!

I read 96! WOO!

I also want to look at the list of books that I said I HAD to read in 2015, and see how I did!

1. Insurgent and Allegiant by Veronica Roth -- READ
2. City of Ashes and City of Glass by Cassandra Clare -- UNREAD
3. Lark Ascending by Meagan Spooner -- READ
4. Echoes of Us by Kat Zhang -- READ
5. Forged by Erin Bowman -- READ
6. The Darkest Minds trilogy by Alexandra Bracken -- UNREAD
7. The Body Electric by Beth Revis -- UNREAD
8. Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld -- UNREAD
9. Reached by Ally Condie -- READ

So...could have done better on that. Oops!

The last thing I wanted to do was look at my Most Anticipated Books of 2015 and see how many I actually managed to read!

Fairest by Marissa Meyer -- READ
99 Days by Katie Cotugno -- READ
The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West -- READ
Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan -- UNREAD
Forged by Erin Bowman -- READ
The Rose Society by Marie Lu -- UNREAD
Please Remain Calm by Courtney Summers -- READ
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo -- READ
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas -- READ
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas -- READ
Winter by Marissa Meyer -- READ

So there are only two of those books I haven't read yet, but I DO own them, so hopefully I will be reading them this year, still! 

Tell me: how did YOU do on your bookish resolutions for 2015? Let me know in the comments below!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Most Anticipated Books of 2016!

Before we get into the books I just can't WAIT to read this year, I will note that since this post is coming late, there is a book on this list that have already been released. However, I haven't bought or read it yet, so I'm going to go ahead and put it on the list anyway! So here we go!

10. Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi
Release date: August 30th

There isn't an official cover for this one yet, but based on how much I loved the Shatter Me series, I know that I'm going to want this. 

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9. Yellow Brick War by Danielle Paige
Release date: March 15th

The Dorothy Must Die series is a trilogy that's gotten some bad press in the community, and I feel like not very many people love it. But I enjoyed the first two books much more than I expected, so I'm so ready to see how the story is going to conclude!

8. Summer Days and Summer Nights-- an anthology edited by Stephanie Perkins
Release date: June 14th

This is basically the summer version of My True Love Gave to Me, which I enjoyed. There were certain stories in that anthology that I didn't like at all, but there were others that I absolutely loved, so I'm excited to see what this volume has to offer!

7. The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson
Release date: May 3rd

Really, I discovered that I loved Morgan Matson this year. So I'll read ANYTHING she writes. But that cover is so precious and perfect and I can't wait to read it. 

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6. The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
Release date: May 3rd

The Wrath and the Dawn was a book that definitely took me by surprise this year. I had heard great things, but I didn't expect to fall in love with it nearly as hard as I did. I'm desperate to find out how the story will end, so I am anxiously awaiting this sequel. 

5. Untitled Throne of Glass #5 by Sarah J. Maas
Release date: September 6th

Duh. With the end of Queen of Shadows, I'm going to need this book, like, yesterday. But of course we don't even have a title or a cover yet. That doesn't mean I'm not insanely excited about it. 

4. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
Release date: May 3rd

Duh. I loved ACOTAR this year (just like I knew I would), so I can't wait to see where this installment in the trilogy takes us! (And I can't wait to see more Rhys. Ha!)

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3. Stars Above by Marissa Meyer
Release date: February 2nd

When I finished Winter and cried a thousand tears, I was devastated that it was over. It was a fitting conclusion for the series, and I absolutely loved it, but I'm so glad that the story's not quite over. The more we get to see these characters again, the happier I am!

2. Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
Release date: January 5th 

I haven't gotten my hands on this beauty yet, but I've been waiting for this book for almost two years, so it's almost unbelievable to realize that's it's actually here. But I've been hearing great things, so I can't wait to read it for myself!

1. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Release date: September 27th

This one also doesn't have a cover yet, but unlike Furthermore and ACOMAF, it doesn't even have a PLACEHOLDER cover yet. And that's utterly awful for me because Six of Crows was completely incredible. Leigh Bardugo has a way of making me fall head over heels in love with her characters before bombarding me with feels. And I just need to know what happens to these characters. I need it now! 

So that's it. Those are my top 10 most anticipated books for 2016. But don't be fooled; there are a great many more books that I'm excited about. I had to narrow down my list by almost half in order to get it to this number. So fear not! 2016 is far from lacking in exciting YA titles.

Tell me: which of these books are YOU most excited about? What other books are you excited for that didn't make my list? Let me know in the comments below!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Favorite 15 of '15!

Today I'm going to tell you what 15 books made my top favorites list for the year of 2015! Looking back at my list, it's easy to see when I fall in love with an author because there are four authors who made this list with TWO books! So without further adieu, here they are!

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Let's be completely honest. These are in no particular order. I couldn't even tell you which of these fifteen were my absolute favorite. But I'm really proud of how diverse this list is. Yes, I admit, they are all YA. But there is a nice mixture of contemporary vs. fantasy/sci-fi, and also standalones vs. series. 

Overall, I think I think I had an incredible reading year, and I can't wait to see what this coming year brings, as well! 

Tell me: did any of my favorites make YOUR favorites list of 2015, too? Let me know in the comments below!

Monday, January 18, 2016

2015: Year in Review!


A year ago, I was so proud of myself for reading 50 books. In 2015, I outdid myself. I will admit that my overall number wouldn't be quite as impressive if I didn't include comic book trade paperbacks, but I do. They're on Goodreads and they take at least half an hour to read (for me), so they get counted! So here are some breakdowns to everything I read this year. 

I read NINETY-SIX books in total!

I also kept track of the number of books I read in each genre. As you can see, I read mostly comic trades, and fantasy and contemporary YA novels. 

I've started TEN new-to-me series: 
  • DOROTHY MUST DIE by Danielle Paige
  • UNEARTHLY by Cynthia Hand
  • MAGONIA by Maria Dahvana Headley
  • THE WRATH AND THE DAWN by Renee Ahdieh
  • BURN FOR BURN by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian
  • MIND GAMES by Kiersten White
  • SIX OF CROWS by Leigh Bardugo

And I've finished FIFTEEN series!: 
  • SHATTER ME by Tahereh Mafi
  • SKYLARK by Meagan Spooner
  • THIS IS NOT A TEST by Courtney Summers
  • DIVERGENT by Veronica Roth
  • TAKEN by Erin Bowman
  • ELIXIR by Hilary Duff
  • UNEARTHLY by Cynthia Hand
  • BURN FOR BURN by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian
  • MATCHED by Ally Condie
  • MIND GAMES by Kiersten White
  • ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS by Stephanie Perkins
  • PECULIAR CHILDREN by Ransom Riggs
  • LUNAR CHRONICLES by Marissa Meyer
So there are FOUR series that I've started and finished within the same year. 

So if you'd like to know which of these books were my absolute favorites of the year, be sure to come back tomorrow to read my Favorite 15 of '15 post! 


As you probably already know, I take an unexpected hiatus from the community at the end of the year. If you want some more information on that, check out yesterday's post HERE

Other than that, I did manage to make several videos on my booktube channel this year! One I'm particularly proud of is my Avengers Book Tag! I had a lot of fun coming up with the questions for the tag, and Christine from Polandbananasbooks actually ended up using my tag for her collaboration video with author Margaret Stohl when promoting her book, Black Widow: Forever Red! That was a truly awesome experience. 

I participated in several read-a-thons this year, all of which were awesome, and I am definitely looking forward to doing more this year! I even participated in the Booktube-a-thon and made a few videos for it! 

Again, I just want to thank you. If it weren't for the people like you reading my blog, liking my Instagram pics, or watching my videos, I wouldn't keep doing it. I like talking to new people and finding others who share my interests. I had a lot of fun doing this for the first half of last year, so I'm looking forward to making this fun again. 

Be sure to come back every day this week for more! 

Unexpected Hiatus: An Explanation

Hello, everybody, and welcome back to YA, By the Way! 

Wow. It's...been a while. Hasn't it? I haven't posted a review since the end of September, and I haven't posted ANYTHING since October. I am SO sorry.

Really. I have no real excuse for how I've neglected things. And it wasn't just this blog. I have posted maybe five pics on Instagram in four months. I haven't been on Twitter at all in almost three months. And I haven't posted a video to my booktube channel in five months. Again: 

And like I said, I really have no excuse. It's not like my work life was super busy; on the contrary, I didn't work very much at all in the fall. Nothing super drastic happened in my personal life. It was more just a series of small distractions and moments that added up to several months of inactivity on social media. I was sick for a couple weeks in November, and in the middle of that, my friend came to stay with me for a week. Then there was Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Year's. So there was shopping and spending time with family and playing around with Christmas gifts. 

So basically, I just got lazy. I got so far behind on my reviews that I just go so overwhelmed. So every time I came to my dashboard, thinking about writing a post,  I got so anxious about all the things I was supposed to be writing that I ended up writing nothing at all. When I got an idea for a post that wasn't a review or a feature, I talked myself out of it because I needed to catch up on my "required" posts first, and I just never felt like doing that. 

So. Where does that leave me now? It's a new year. It's 2016! So once again, I'm striving for a fresh start. I'm not going to abandon my online life. And that means that I'm going to be blogging again, and producing videos, and generally regaining my online presence. That starts now. 

Starting today, you can expect a new post every day this week. I know that it's already the middle of January, but I'll be using this week to get some closure on the past year and discuss the plan for the new year. Today, I'll be posting my 2015: Year in Review. Then tomorrow, I'll be posting my Favorite 15 Books of 2015. Starting on Wednesday, I'll be looking forward with my Bookish Goals, my Most Anticipated, and the books I HAVE to read in 2016! 

So if you've stuck around through my radio silence, thank you so much. I'm sorry I disappeared for a while, but I'm back and hopefully better than ever.