2011 End of the Year Book Survey: The Best of Books, The Worst of Books

1. Best Book You Read In 2011?

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

2. Most Disappointing Book/Books You Wish You Loved More Than You Did?

The Accidental Billionaires by Ben Mezrich

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2011?

There Goes The Galaxy by Jenn Thorson

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2011?


5. Best series you discovered in 2011?

A Song of Fire and Ice by George R.R. Martin

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2011?

Ken Bruen

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?

Dr. No audiobook, as read by Simon Vance

8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2011?

The Crime Writer by Gregg Hurwitz

9. Book you most anticipated in 2011?

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami (still haven’t read)

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2011?

11. Most memorable character in 2011?

Jack Taylor

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2011?

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick (also beautifully illustrated)

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2011?

Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways To Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done In Less Time by Brian Tracy

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2011 to finally read?

The entire Harry Potter series. I read the first one years ago, but then never got back to the rest. WTF?

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2011?

One morning, they woke to a strange stillness. The rise and fall of the raft had ceased, and it sat virtually motionless. There was no wind. The ocean stretched out in all directions in glossy smoothness, regarding the sky and reflecting its image in crystalline perfection. Like the ancient mariner, Louie and Phil had found the doldrums, the eerie pause of wind and water that lingers around the equator. They were, as Coleridge wrote, “as idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean.”

It was an experience of transcendence. Phil watched the sky, whispering that it looked like a pearl. The water looked so solid that it seemed they could walk across it. When a fish broke the surface far away, the sound carried to the men with absolute clarity. They watched as pristine ringlets of water circled outward around the place where the fish had passed, then faded to stillness.

For a while, they spoke, sharing their wonder. Then they fell into reverent silence. Their suffering was suspended. They weren’t hungry or thirsty. They were unaware of the approach of death.

– from Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

16. Book That You Read In 2011 That Would Be Most Likely To Reread In 2012?

None, I’m not a re-reader.

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!

Unbroken (yes, again) for passage quoted above

This end of the year survey (part 1) was suggested by Jamie of the Perpetual Page Turner via Trish of Love, Laughter and a Touch of Insanity who did her own funny version of it on Sunday and then again yesterday with a more serious version. Feel free to use it on your own blog or if you want to just keep it short, tell me your favorite book read this year in the comments. It doesn’t have to be a book published this year.

21 responses to “2011 End of the Year Book Survey: The Best of Books, The Worst of Books

  1. I’m collecting year end/beginning lists at Semicolon’s Saturday Review of Books this week:
    And as a bonus, I’m suggesting books for each blogger based on their list of 2011 favorites. You’re invited to add a link to your list post if you’re interested.

  2. Pingback: Tres cool’s a charm?: My reading plans for 2012, Part III | an unfinished person (in this unfinished universe)

  3. Pingback: Ending 2011 with Murakami, starting 2012 with Doyle | an unfinished person (in this unfinished universe)

  4. Cool! I enjoyed The Crime Writer, too. and I just tbr’d There Goes the Galaxy. I’m curious why the letdown on Accidental Billionaires? but not that that I would probably argue with you on anything. 🙂
    I have the entire Harry Potter series on my list for 2012. I *think* I read the first one – way so long ago. I’ve seen to many movies. I fear oversaturation but I need to read these darn books.

    • The letdown on Accidental Billionaires? I guess I wasn’t as enthralled with the story as I thought I would be, and I’m not sure I thought the writing was all that great. The story, of course, was interesting, but nothing earth-shattering. I guess that’s what I wanted.

  5. Hugo Cabret is so gorgeous! Annnd, I really need to get on reading Unbroken. >.>

  6. I need to eat more frogs :0
    Hope you had a great Christmas!

  7. I’m so glad you raved as much about Unbroken as you did – it made it onto my best of 2011 list, too.

  8. Everyone LOVES Unbroken. I must need to read it. And thanks for the recommendations – they sound good! : )

  9. I’m glad you managed to finally read Harry Potter this year. And, I love ASoIaF, so it’s awesome you’ve discovered it too!

    • I had to read Harry Potter this year with the last movie coming out. I really enjoyed the last movie, but the books were that much more incredible. As for ASoIaF (I had to scroll back to see what that acronym stood for), I’m hoping to get back to it with A Clash of Kings here in the new year.

  10. I’m lame and never took the time to figure out what eating frogs meant. It’s a procrastination thing? (I must have been procrastinating on my blog reading).

    Really want The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Unbroken was FANTASTIC wasn’t it? Hmmm..if I were to revise my list I’d put that at honorable mention #3 of my best of.

  11. I’ve seen several of these on other lists as well. Great choice for a cover!