December 31, 2015

Looking Back on my Fifteen 2015 Reads

So if you missed my Fifteen 2015 Reads post series in 2014, you can find them all under the 'fifteen 2015 reads' label. But after I did the series, I realized I couldn't just leave y'all hanging when it came to the books I was anticipating. So back in June, I checked in with the books. I'd read most of the original thirty to make the list by then and now I've read all but two (and you'll see why later in this post). I'm not going to recap my opinions of all the books - just those I've read since June. If you want to know what I thought of the rest, here's the link to the check-in post.

Overall, out of all the Fifteen 2015 Reads choices I read, my average rating was 3.7, which is higher than my average rating for the entire year. So, even though I didn't love all my Fifteen 2015 Reads, I'd say I picked some good ones.

All Fall Down by Ally Carter
Emerald & Ashes by Leila Rasheed
Ensnared by A.G. Howard
Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West
The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough
Hello, I Love You by Katie M. Stout
My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga
The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows
P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han
Rogue Wave by Jennifer Donnelly
We Can Work It Out by Elizabeth Eulberg
A Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

A Million Miles Away by Lara Avery
Pretty good! (My review.)

The Trouble with Destiny by Lauren Morrill
Just as cute as Being Sloane Jacobs. (My review.)

Winter by Marissa Meyer
Liked but didn't love. I needed more of the reasoning behind the development in Thorne and Cress's relationship, and I thought the book was a bit long...

5 to 1 by Holly Bodger
Kissing in America by Margo Rabb
The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre

Lock & Mori by Heather W. Petty
Wasn't as great as I hoped. (My review.)

Court of Fives by Kate Elliott
I liked it for the most part. World-building was confusing at times, and I think parts could've been cut, but I liked this one.

The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi
Honestly, not as good as I hyped it up to be in my mind. And now I'm sad because I wanted to love this one.

Need by Joelle Charbonneau
First off, this one's cover has such a cool texture. But the content inside...there were a lot of POVs so I didn't get to know any of the characters as well as I wanted to, and I felt the plot was a little sparse in places.

The Cage by Megan Shepherd
Love, Lucas by Chantele Sedgwick
Scarlett Undercover by Jennifer Latham

Very in Pieces by Megan Frazer Blakemore

Tell the Wind and Fire by Sarah Rees Brennan
When I Wake by Elizabeth Norris (both of these got pushed back to 2016)

So those are the results for my Fifteen (well, thirty) 2015 Reads. I'm so glad I loved so many of them and I can't wait to see how I feel about all 64 of my Sixteen 2016 Reads!

December 30, 2015

What I've Read and Liked Recently

I did one of these posts back in October and it's basically an opportunity to talk up the books I've enjoyed but didn't/won't review.

The Rose Society by Marie Lu
A solid sequel. I like seeing that there are consequences to the powers. I definitely need to reread this one soon because I've kind of forgotten parts of it since October. :(

The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan
After the Heroes of Olympus series, which was a huge disappointment, The Sword of Summer was a breath of fresh air. The funny chapter titles are back, and while Magnus isn't quite as humorous as Percy, he's got a great inner narration.

All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
I'm still screaming over this one and its ending. If you haven't read The Naturals series yet, what are you doing?! (If you don't do mystery/thrillers, I'll let it slide.) BUT this series is holy wow and, at the risk of slightly spoiling things, Jennifer is playing a long game with her readers.

Do you ever read a book and worry its sequel won't be nearly as fantastic? Well that's not the case with the Firebird trilogy. A Thousand Pieces of You was my first favorite of 2015 and its sequel is magnificent.

Winter by Marissa Meyer
So I'm not as madly in love with the Lunar Chronicles' conclusion as others are, but it's still really good and I adored Winter (the character) and Jacin.

The Wig in the Window by Kristen Kittscher
Super fun middle grade. 

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
*questions why I waited so long to start this series* (Although I'm kind of glad because it meant I could put Maggie on my top ten new-to-me authors list this year.)
ANYWAYS, I really liked Blue, and Adam, and Noah. Noah is one of those characters that needs to be wrapped in blankets and given hot chocolate.

Not If I See You First by Eric Lindstrom
In general, I don't usually like books with female protagonists written by male authors because they rarely sound authentic. Not If I See You First was great, though. I loved Parker's voice and her emotions were conveyed clearly and I liked how there wasn't a happily ever after but still a happy ending.

Have you read and liked any of these books?

December 29, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated 2016 Releases Part 1

So this post is going to cover books released only in the first half of 2016 - thank goodness for that. I mean, as it is, I couldn't limit myself to ten! Anyways, these are the 2016 books releasing from January to June that I'm anticipating most, and they are in no particular order!

1. Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here by Anna Breslaw

2. Double Down by Gwenda Bond

3. Escaping Perfect by Emma Harrison

4. When We Collided by Emery Lord

5. Kingdom of Ashes by Rhiannon Thomas

6. A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

7. The Winner's Kiss by Marie Rutkoski


9. What You Always Wanted by Kristin Rae

10. The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

11. Traitor Angels by Anne Blankman

12. The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye

13. Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee

14. The Long Game by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

So what books are you anticipating in 2016?

December 28, 2015

2015 End-of-the-Year Survey: Blogging and Looking Ahead

Time to finish up the survey! 

Hosted by Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner.


1. New Favorite Book Blog
Once again, I can’t remember exactly which blogs I only discovered in 2015 and which I followed before. (I mean, there are ones I know I’ve followed since 2013 or 2014, but it’s still difficult to recall.) I think I’m going to have to say…

2. Favorite Review I Wrote in 2015
Anne & Henry by Dawn Ius (because of my GIF usuage)

3. Best Discussion on My Blog
I really liked It’s Not a Man (from May) and Dear Incoming College Freshmen (from June).

4. Most Thought-Provoking Discussion/Review on Another Blog
Discussion- A Selection of Thoughts on Diverse Books at Forever Literary

5. Best Event I Participated In
Without a doubt, OTSP Secret Sister. I participated in the February-July session and am currently a part of the third session (August-January).

6. Best Moment of My Blogging Life in 2015
When I met a publicist (shout-out to Courtney Griffin!) at a book tour, and she recognized me first.

7. Most Popular Post This Year on Awkwordly Emma
I’m not including giveaway posts in this, so the most popular post is… surprisingly, Taylor Swift and Poetic Devices. I love how I'm technically a book blog but one of my (many) posts about Taylor got more attention than the ones where I talked about books.

8. Post I Wish Got a Little More Love

9. Best Bookish Discovery
Book-themed lip balms! (On Etsy.)


1. Book I Didn't Get to in 2015 That I'm Prioritizing for 2016
Oh, totally, Resonance by Erica O'Rourke. If one of my Secret Sisters doesn't gift it to me soon, I'm just gonna check it out of the library.

2. Book I'm Most Anticipating in 2016 (non-debut)
This is a tough one…I’m gonna have to list a few.
Double Down by Gwenda Bond, When We Collided by Emery Lord, The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson, Traitor Angels by Anne Blankman, and The Long Game by Jennifer Lynn Barnes are just a few that come to mind.

3. Most Anticipated 2016 Debut
A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

4. Most Anticipated Series Ender or Sequel
The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski
The final Naturals book by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
The final Snow Like Ashes book by Sara Raasch

5. One Thing I Hope to Accomplish in Blogging in 2016
Lol, guess who didn’t accomplish her 2015 goal? (Which was to make it to one bookish convention.) I guess in 2016, I’d like to get an internship in the publishing industry. I know I can’t do a summer one this year, but I’d love to get a remote one with a literary agency.

6. A 2016 Release I've Already Read and Am Recommending
The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

So that's the last of my 2015 survey! Thanks for reading!

December 27, 2015

Rewind & Review #52

I hope y'all had a wonderful Christmas! I've been relaxing a lot, and it's been so wonderful. I'm looking forward to seeing my friends again in a few weeks, but I am not ready for classes or winter weather.

Books I Won/Traded for/was Gifted
Double Down by Gwenda Bond (via Switch Press on Twitter)
A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro (via Brittany and Emily Henry's giveaway on Twitter)
Velvet Undercover by Teri Brown (via trade)
Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch
Everything That Makes You by Moriah McStay (from my parents)
Don't Fail Me Now by Una LaMarche (from my grandparents)
The Grass Is Always Greener by Jen Calonita
Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin
Lock & Mori by Heather W. Petty (from my aunt and uncle)

Books I Bought
The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
See How They Run by Ally Carter

Books I Read
The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry
The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater (3 stars)
Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater (3 stars)
Need by Joelle Charbonneau (3.5 stars)
Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum
Front Lines by Michael Grant
See How They Run by Ally Carter (4 stars)
Bookishly Ever After by Isabel Bandeira
Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas (reread)
Not If I See You First by Eric Lindstrom (4 stars)
Heist Society by Ally Carter (reread)
Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter (reread)
The Pirate's Code by Heidi Schulz (4 stars)

Blog Posts You Might've Missed
   (From 12/14-12/19)
   (From 12/20-12/26)
  • 2015 End-of-the-Year Survey: Blogging and Looking Ahead
  • TTT: Most Anticipated Releases in 2016 Part 1
  • What I've Read and Loved Recently
  • Looking Back on My Fifteen 2015 Reads
  • Rewind to 2015: Best Debut Authors
  • SST: The Possibility of Now Excerpt
  • Rewind to 2015: Reading Stats
  • Rewind to 2015: Books I Acquired
  • Rewind to 2015: Favorite Blog Posts
  • Rewind to 2015: What I Binged
  • Rewind to 2015: Books That Got Me Through Life

December 26, 2015

2015 End-of-the-Year Survey: the Books

Hosted by Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner.

Third year of this book survey, yo! Y'all ready?


1. Number of Books I Read: As of typing up this post on December 24th, 276.
2. Number of Rereads: No idea. I'm an avid re-reader, and I kind of kept track on my spreadsheet, but it doesn't include 2015 releases that I read and then reread. 
3. Genre I Read the Most From: It’s a toss-up this year (in my opinion at least). I’ll be posting more of my reading stats in a few days, so come back then to find out.


1. Best Book I Read in 2015
Just like last year, I'm breaking this down by genre.

Contemporary – Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu, Don’t Fail Me Now by Una LaMarche, and Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic - Deceptive by Emily Lloyd-Jones
Historical Fiction – Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee and A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis
Science Fiction – A Thousand Pieces of You and Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray
 Mystery/Thriller – The Fixer and All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Fantasy – The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
Middle Grade – Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George
Other - The Archived by Victoria Schwab and The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

2. Book I Thought I Was Going to Love But Didn't
Very in Pieces by Megan Frazer Blakemore and Winterspell by Claire Legrand

3. Most Surprising (in a good way) Book of 2015
Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin, Anything Could Happen by Will Walton, and Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

4. Book I Recommended the Most
Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone, The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, and Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond

5. Best Series I Discovered in 2015, Best Sequel, Best Series Ender
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Emeralds & Ashes by Leila Rasheed

6. Favorite Author I Discovered in 2015
Gwenda Bond

7. Best Book Out of My Comfort Zone
The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore or Simon vs.the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

8. Most Thrilling, Unputdownable Read
Probably a three-way tie between All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Winter by Marissa Meyer, and Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray. I read all of them while at work, and I think I maybe neglected my duties just a little since I was so absorbed.

9. Book That I'm Most Likely to Reread
Everything I liked. I love to reread books. That's why I own so many books.

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10. Favorite Cover of 2015
Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed

11. Most Memorable Character of 2015
Grace from All Fall Down by Ally Carter

12. Most Beautifully Written Book
The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

13. Book That Had the Greatest Impact
Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone

14. Book I Can't Believe I Waited Until 2015 to Read
You Are Here by Jennifer E. Smith

15. Favorite Passage or Quote
“In friendship we are all debtors. We all owe each other for a thousand small kindnesses, for little moments of grace in the chaos.” ~ The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

16. Shortest and Longest Books I Read in 2015
Shortest (not counting e-novellas) - Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman (144 pages)
Longest – Winter by Marissa Meyer (827 pages)

17. Book That Had Shocked Me the Most
All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

18. Favorite OTP
Marguerite and Paul (Firebird trilogy by Claudia Gray)

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationships
Friendship – Paige, Tess, Kayleigh, and Morgan (The Start of Me and You)
Family – Celie and her siblings (Thursdays with the Crown)

20. Favorite Book From an Author I've Previously Read
Well, I won’t let myself choose a sequel, so I’d have to say… Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone

21. Best Book Read Solely on Someone Else's Recommendation
Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin (Shae has done it again. She’s pretty much 3/3—I think that’s how many books she’s recommended to me that I hadn’t already added to my TBR list.)

22. Newest Fictional Crush
I’m…not sure I have one this year! Actually, no, I take that back. I really like Asher Rhodes from The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes.

23. Best 2015 Debut
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

24. Most Vivid World/Imagery

25. Book That Was the Most Fun to Read
The Stars of Summer by Tara Dairman

26. Book That Made Me Cry
I don’t really cry when I read books. I think I’ve only ever cried during two.

27. Book That Got Overlooked This Year
Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson and Anything Could Happen by Will Walton

28. Book That Crushed My Soul
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas (Doriannnnnnnnnn.)

29. Most Unique Read of 2015
Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman

30. Book That Made Me the Most Mad
Don’t Ever Change by M. Beth Bloom (and definitely not in a good way)

Next part's coming your way on Monday!

December 25, 2015

Random Friday: Favorite Christmas Movies

Want to participate in Random Fridays? Just do the following: 
  • Include the above image in your post and link back to my post.
  • Blog about this week's topic.
  • Add the link to your Random Friday at the bottom of this post.
Merry Christmas, everyone!

I'm so excited to talk about my favorite Christmas movies because my mom and I love Christmas movies. My mom likes Miracle on 34th Street, White Christmas, It's a Wonderful Life, and The Santa Clause. My favorites are...

1. The Polar Express
I know a lot of people don't like this one but I DO AND THAT'S ALL THAT MATTERS. Ahem.

2. The Santa Clause

3. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
I think this is my favorite of all the old Claymation classics. Burl Ives's "Holly Jolly Christmas" is my jam, y'all.

4. A Charlie Brown Christmas
One of the movies of my childhood. And, in case you were wondering, I have been known to do the dance (see the little girls in purple in the gif above) at Christmastime.

So, as you can tell, I really love the Christmas season - between the music, the movies, and the baking.