The Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag

So guys! At the moment, I’m working on a post that’s going to be quite a handful to write, all about Christian romance novels and some of the trends I’ve noticed in them that I find concerning. I was hoping to have it out for today, but I need to do more research and read a few more books on the topic, so for today I’m going to be doing the Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag, which is a tag I’ve done before and will serve nicely to update you on my reading of late!

1.Best book you’ve read so far in 2020

Ooh, this is tough! I think this award probably goes to Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik. I absolutely loved this book and I really desperately want to read it again soon. The characters are so well written and the plot is thrilling…*sighs* so good.

2.Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2020

Knock Three Times by Cressida Cowell. It wasn’t quite as good as the two books that come before it, but it’s actually pretty much the only sequel I’ve read this year, so it wins by default. It was really good though and it amped up the stakes and had me hanging onto every word. I can’t wait for the next book. Fingers crossed it will be just as good.

3.New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins. There’s so much controversy about this book. Some people seem to have loved it, and others hated it. But I want to read it and decide for myself, though I’ll wait till my library gets it, because I don’t want to waste money on it.

4.Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

Sisters of Sword and Song by Rebecca Ross. This one comes out next week actually, but I probably won’t read it for a few months. It looks so good though and I hope it doesn’t disappoint.

5.Biggest disappointment

The Magnolia Sword by Sherry Thomas wasn’t awful, but I also didn’t like it as much as I was hoping, given that its supposedly a retelling of Mulan, one of my favourite stories ever. It just was meh, with bland characters, bland worldbuilding and a very stereotypical plot.

6.Biggest surprise

Great South Land by Rob Mundle. I was expecting a bland non-fiction book about the white man’s discovery of Australia, but it actually turned out to be a rollicking adventure, very well-written and it inspired the novel I’m currently working on! Definitely check it out if you’re interested in learning a bit about Australia’s past.

7.Favourite new author. (Debut or new to you)

Definitely a toss up between Kate Forsyth and Naomi Novik. I love them both (they also have quite a similar style, so that’s probably why I have such difficulty choosing between them). They have such magical stories, plots and well-fleshed out characters…They’re both really good.

8.Rereads this year

Um, quite a lot. The whole Deltora Quest series, for one. Plus, I reread Howl’s Moving Castle, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, and The Wizards of Once and Twice Magic.

9.Underrated gems you’ve discovered lately

Ohh…Not really sure, I haven’t read many obscure books this year, which I’ll definitely have to amend.

10.Book that made you cry

Actually haven’t cried over any books this year! Don’t know if that’s something to be proud of or a sign that I haven’t read enough sad books.

11.Book that made you happy

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. Norse mythology was basically my childhood (yes, I had a weird childhood) and listening to these stories, rewritten and read by Neil Gaiman, was a very happy occasion for me.

12.Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

Do you guys want to know something desperately sad? I haven’t been given or bought any books this year. However…most beautiful book I read this year would definitely be The Blue Rose by Kate Forsyth. Just look at that cover. It’s stunning.

13.What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

I haven’t really got a set TBR for the rest of the year. I’ve been doing mostly mood reading lately and just picking up whatever I feel like at the time, so I’ll probably be doing that for the rest of the year. If I could get a LOTR reread in there though, that’d be awesome.

What about you guys? What books have blown you away this year? Any disappointments? Any new releases you are looking forward to?

20 thoughts on “The Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag

  1. Well, Spinning Silver was one of the books I read- loved it. A couple years ago, I read Uprooted. Both incredible books

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  2. It was so interesting to hear your thoughts on the books that you’ve read so far this year! I’ve heard so many good things about Naomi Novak’s books at this point, that I just need to go ahead and pick one up; it’s something I’ve been meaning to do for a while, but haven’t got around to yet for whatever reason! It would be so cool if you could do a reread of The Lord of the Rings! I’m currently working through reading (and rereading) all of the Tolkien books that I have on my shelves and I hope to get to LOTR by the end of the year!

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  3. The books that have blown me away this year are Children of Blood and Bone (Tomi Adeyemi), The Queen’s Resistance (Rebecca Ross), A Monster Calls (Patrick Ness) and also the Evaporation of Sofi Snow (Mary Weber), which was a quite surprise. A disappointment would be Spin the Dawn (Elizabeth Lim). And one new release is definitely Sisters of Sword and Song!

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  4. Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes was solidly good, IMO, but not fantastic. My main complaint was that it was way longer than it needed to be. And the third-person narration wasn’t cutting it for me. But it was really interesting to see Panem before Katniss’ time and learn about how things evolved. Definitely worth a read to see what you think for yourself!

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  5. It is a pity that The Magnolia Sword is not better – Mulan is one my favourite animations/stories and I have always been on a lookout for a good retelling of it. I need to pick up Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman – it goes straight to my TBR, thanks!

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  6. i’ve heard such good things about naomi novik’s books (and her writing!). i’m so glad you loved spinning silver, i definitely need to get around to reading her ❤ and i'm sorry to hear the magnolia sword wasn't that great! i love mulan so that's disappointing to hear 😦 i hope you have a great last half of 2020!!

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  7. Yes, Children of Blood and Bone was fantastic! I really enjoyed it, but I haven’t read the sequel yet. The Queen’s Resistance was also a solidly good book and A Monster Calls is one of my favourite books of all time. Sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy Spin the Dawn!

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  8. Yes, I can definitely see you really enjoying Naomi Novik’s books! Spinning Silver was my favourite, but Uprooted was also very good and they seem like your kind of thing.
    Ah, a Tolkien reread! Good luck with that and I hope you’re having fun 😀

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  9. One type of story I hope to write someday is one that takes place in an extensive world. Don’t exactly have an idea for that.

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  10. I kinda have one idea in story for that extensive story: basically a sequel to Tale of the Cattail Forest. But don’t know if I will go if that or not


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