Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Polark Picks of 2009

I didn't set a reading goal on the number of books I wanted to read this year, nor will I this year. I just want to read and enjoy it and not worry about counting. Though I am happy that I read more books this year than since I was a teen! The last ten years of being a mom took me away from reading just for myself. Sure I read tons of board books and picture books (and I do loooooove picture books), but I never relaxed and read just for myself. 2009 changed all that. I enjoyed reading the Harry Potter series with my oldest, then went on to the Twilight series, and on and on. I loved reading recommendations from fellow bloggers, and I loved reading blueboarder's or blogger's very own books!

So my total of MG/YA/adult books was just under 20, but that's 18 more than I read in years! :) I also read many, many early chapter books, picture books and books of poetry this year as well.

Here are some of my favorites from this year:
Fave book of the year: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (only book that made me cry while reading and also because the series was done)

Fave book of the Twilight Series: Eclipse (I did enjoy that series! Team Jacob!)

Picture book that made me giggle the most: Guess Again by Mac Barnett, illustrations by Adam Rex (Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich by Adam Rex is a close second)

Fave Picture book by a fellow blogger or blueboarder: A New Job for Dilly by Rena Jones

Most inspirational MG- Operation Yes! by Sara Lewis Holmes

Favorite chapter book series: Junie B. Jones (love her sassiness!)

Favorite book with sophomoric humor (which I enjoy very much): Sophomore Undercover by Ben Esch

YA Book that I could not put down: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Fave book of poetry (my son loved it, too!): Dinothesaurus by Douglas Florian

Honorable mentions (books I just plain enjoyed reading): The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, The Emerald Tablet by PJ Hoover, Prada and Prejudice by Mandy Hubbard.

Some of these books I read were won on blog contests, so thank you again! And guess what....I just won another.

A big thank you to Myra McEntire . I won Beautiful Creatures on her blog! I am looking forward to reading it. Myra's debut YA novel, Hourglass, will be out in 2011!

Those are my good reads of the year. What's your favorite?

Do you want a fun challenge? Mother Reader and Lee Wind are presenting the Comment Challenge again this year! I participated last year, and this challenge helped me find new blogs and also got me into the habit of commenting regularly! The challenge begins Friday, January 8 (sign up Friday on Lee's or Mother Reader's blog) and runs to January 28. The challenge is to comment on five blogs daily. There are prizes too! If you forget to sign up on Friday, you can even sign up late and just up your daily average. See details here! This is a great way to communicate and network with new and current friendly bloggers and to get traffic to your own blog!

Speaking of challenges, did anyone else enter Nathan Bradsford's Dear Diary contest? I decided to late yesterday afternoon! Thanks to Sherrie and Anita for reminding me about it! I read both of yours in the comments, too, ladies. Intriguing, well written diary entries!! Alas, I didn't make it to be a finalist, but it was a great writing exercise. The finalists' entries were darn great.

Don't forget to check out Carrie Harris's contest to win a free critique! Her debut YA novel No Pain, No Brain comes out next year!
Also, happy birthday to my baby girl! My puppy, Daisy, just turned one! How long does puppyhood last? She definitely still acts like a crazy pup!

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40 comments:

Sophia said...

Wow, Kelly. That's impressive. I really need to read more. I have two books that I started awhile back that I should finish.

poemhome said...

Thanks, Kelly!

Bish Denham said...

Hey, I'm impressed with any mother who finds time to read and/or write while doing the most important job in the world. You go girl!

Carrie Harris said...

I adored The Forest of Hands and Teeth, but you probably could have guessed that. And thanks for mentioning my contest!

Kelly said...

Sophia- It's hard to find the time, but it's so relaxing when you do!
You are very welcome, Douglas!
Thanks, Bish! It is hard to find the time!
Carrie-It is a page turner! And thanks for having the contest!

wordwranglernc said...

You are one busy lady, K! I'll have to check out some of those books. I recognized many Blue Boarders!

My "TBR" list is growing almost as fast as my kids. *sigh*

peace,
Donna

Caroline Starr Rose said...

I loved THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH.

Lee Wind said...

Kelly,
Thanks for your reading round-up, and for joining in on the comment challenge. See, it's already working - I'm here, and commenting! And I know what you mean about reading for YOURself, in addition to the piles of books-that-you-read-with-your-kid!
Namaste and Happy Commenting,
Lee

Solvang Sherrie said...

Great books on your list!

I really enjoyed Beautiful Creatures. I read so many great books I don't think I could pick just one as my favorite. I like how you split up the list.

I'm bummed that no one I know is a finalist on Nathan's blog :(

The Wild About Writing Trio said...

My kids and I are reading The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew by Margaret Sydney. It's such a sweet story. It reminds me of All of a Kind Family by Sydney Taylor.

Kelly, I'm super-impressed with your book totals and I'm looking forward to reading some of your favorites.

Kim

Jaymie said...

Loved your year in review. That is a great idea- I'm just happy to get my reviews done, but I do keep track of what I read each month and doing a Top 10 for the year or something could be a lot of fun. Thanks for the idea! Your list also gave me some titles to check out, so thanks again!

PJ Hoover said...

Great list!
I have Operation Yes in my next to be read stack. I should get to it this month for sure!

Niki said...

I'm enjoying the Spiderwick Chronicles at the moment. I wish I had written a list of the great kids books I've have read. Will start this year! :o)

Catherine Ensley said...

Hi, I found you through the Comment Challenge. I also thought Guess Again was funny and so surprising. I also loved Forest of Hands and Teeth, though bleak. I'm going to follow you, and I will be back soon. I'm a children's librarian, so guess what? I review lots of kids books. I also write YA fiction.

Sharon Mayhew said...

You've read quite a bit. I only read three grown up books last year and they were written by friends. I don't count resource type books... I love reading YA. When I first began chosing them at the bookstore I was self-conscious of being in the teen section. I love YA!

Rena said...

Very impressive list. And YAY for me being on it -- thanks! :) I haven't read as much as I'd like to. Oddly, I've read a lot of political books this year. Funny for me, being that I write picture books. PBs ... politics ... same thing? ;)

Great list, all the same!

Tina Lee said...

So I am finally commenting on your blog, and it took the comment challenge for me to do that. Sorry about that. I am so jealous of those who keep lists of books. This is the year I do it. I have no number resolution, just to keep the list.

Sandra Stiles said...

I find reading relaxing most of the time. There are so many great books out there. I look for sites like yours to see what I haven't read. My students are middle schoolers but I have grandkids that are very young and I am out of the loop when it comes to picture books and board books. I do review some but not as many as YA. I also entered Nathan Bransfords Diary contest. I didn't make it into the finals but it was still fun. I look forward to checking back in with you from time to time.

Vonna said...

Operation Yes! is still on my TBR list. I'll have to read it in the next week or so before the Austin SCBWI conference. I'd really like to read The Forest of Hands and Teeth, but I'm afraid of it.

Angela said...

Oh, I'm with you I COULD NOT put down THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH!

Shelli said...

i agree with most of your picks!

Angela said...

I couldn't put down Forest of Hands and Teeth either! Great list!

Anita said...

Can you believe I never found my Bransford entry?! Husband says he saw it, though (he's become quite a writers' blogs lurker) and I saw yours (GREAT stuff!) and a couple from others I recognized.

I keep forgetting to get SOPHOMORE UNDERCOVER and the other one PMM likes...something about a fish. Husband, if you come here, please order those books for me.

Kelly said...

Donna- I do try and read bloggers/blueboarders' books if they interest me. I love how supportive writers are of one another!
Caroline,Carrie Angela and Angela- I know!!! I had to find out what happened next!
LEe- Thanks so much for hosting it!
All- Thank you for the recommendations too!!!
Anita- I wore a tank top under a sweater today in your honor. (okay it was under a sweatshirt)
Thanks to the new bloggers for stopping by (and of course to the regulars :)!!

Christina Farley said...

Lots of great stuff you're passing on here! I'm off to check out those contests! And Eclipse was my fav of the Twilight series too. I totally get the mommy reading thing. So true.

beth said...

I don't set a number goal for reading, but I do a lot of it. Parenting didn't slow me down much; for a while I worried my kids would hate reading because they see me doing it too much.

Now I worry that they don't get enough sleep because they are up too late reading...

Have you read Megan Whelan Turner's books? I'm rereading her Attolia books because of the new one coming out, and they are really good for kids and adults.

(Here on the comment challenge)

Jenny said...

Since you've chosen Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as one of your faves, you can now never, ever do any wrong in my book!

Jim said...

Who knew we'd be crying about the death of a fictional house elf? Good one.

nikki said...

obviously Kel.... "Sookie" should be on your list of TO DO's!!!! I'm startin' em a second time around ;)

Kelly said...

Welcome back, Christina!
Beth- I'll look into the Attolia books! Thanks!
Jenny- Loooooove Harry Potter!
Jim- Actually my crying came when someone else died near the end!!! :)
Nikki- I'm almost done with the second Sookie novel!!

Anita said...

Hee-hee!

C.R. Evers said...

That's a great list Kelly! My favorite reads for the year were Everlost by Neal Shuestermand and The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

What a great year of reading!

Here's to 2010!!!

Kelly said...

Anita :)
Christy - I just got the Hunger Games for Christmas. I've been hearing bloggers rave about it for over a year. Finally I'm going to read it!

Myra said...

I can't wait to hear what you think about Beautiful Creatures. SO. AMAZING. I know Sherrie agrees!

PJ Hoover said...

Kelly, thank you, btw! I just reread your post and saw EMERALD mentioned there! You are the best!

vanessa said...

Dinothesaurus is one I have not read yet (I love Douglas Florian!)--the title reminded me of a book called Thesaurus Rex by Laya Steinburg that my daughter fell in love with a few months ago.

Ms. Yingling said...

I may have to rethink The Forests of Hands and Teeth. I couldn't get into it, but then, I didn't like Twilight, either!

Amy Nichols said...

Just finished Forest of Hands and Teeth. Count me in the Couldn't Put It Down Club. What a nail biter!

Z-Kids said...

Great picks! We came close to reviewing Dinothesaurus last year... Maybe in the days ahead...
-AZ

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