2019 Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

Well- I’m a little late to the party on this one.  I wasn’t tagged by anyone on this and don’t plan to tag anyone else but I wanted to do it anyway because it looks like fun.

But first some mid-year stats because I love stats of any sort.

Pages read: 16,149

Novels or Novellas read: 37
Graphic Novels read: 6
Short Stories (not as part of a larger collection): 6
Short Story collections: 3

Genre Breakdown:
20 Fantasy
16 Science Fiction
6 Science Fantasy
3 Thrillers
3 Classics
2 Historical Fiction
1 Western
1 Horror

25 “not men” (women and non-binary authors), 27 men (6 of these are Brian K. Vaughan from reading the Saga series, so I’m not doing too bad here).

12 featuring LGBT+ characters

9 authors of color

32 New-to-me authors (which is fantastic for me because I have a tendency to read the same authors over and over again)

Challenges:  I’m not really participating in any challenges this year.  But I’ve been randomly filling in a list of Pop Sugar prompts and I think I’ve been able to fill in about 28 prompts.

Best book I’ve read so far:

The Wolf in the Whale by Jordanna Max Brodsky

The Wolf in the Whale by Jordanna Max Brodsky is the only book I can put here without an asterisk next to it.  A close second is:

The Mere Wife Maria Dahvana Headley

The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley.  The only thing holding this back from being a full 5 star read for me is the ending, which felt a little too abrupt for me.

Best sequel I’ve read so far:

Luna Moon Rising Ian McDonald

Moon Rising (Luna #3) by Ian McDonald.  Technically not a sequel.. but a next-in-series.  My other options were Saga Vol. 2, and Mahimata (Asiana #2) by Rati Mehrotra, which were both solid reads.

New release I haven’t read yet but want to:

Famous Men Who Never Lived by K Chess

Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

The Haunting of Tram Car 015 by P. Djeli Clark

Most anticipated release for the second half of the year:

All of them?  Does that count?

The Menace from Farside by Ian McDonald (novella set in world of Luna)

Rules for Vanishing by Kate Alice Marhsall

The Institute by Stephen King

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

The Monster of Elendhaven by Jennifer Giesbrecht

Biggest disappointment:


The Stand by Stephen King.  I’ve had several disappointments this year- but there really isn’t anything more disappointing than a favorite author’s well-loved book not living up to the hype for you personally.  It’s my own fault for expecting too much, because I know King is hit or miss, but I really wanted to love this and couldn’t.

Biggest surprise:

Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney

Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney.  It was such a surprise I didn’t even know I wanted to read it until it was in my hands.

Favorite new author (debut or new to me):

An Illusion of Thieves by Cate Glass

An Illusion of Thieves by Cate Glass.  I didn’t rate this 5 stars, but it’s probably at the top of my 4 star reads.  I would have put Headly (The Mere Wife) here, but I ended up DNF’ing her Queen of Kings, and I loved Brodsky’s The Wolf in the Whale but I am not overly interested in reading her others.  So I’m going with Cate Glass, because I can’t wait to get my hands on the sequel to this one.

Newest fictional crush:

I don’t have one so far this year!

Newest favorite character:

The Wolf in the Whale by Jordanna Max Brodsky

Omat & Brandr from The Wolf in the Whale.  I don’t know if either of them individually are new favorite characters but they are definitely a new favorite couple.

Book that (almost) made me cry:


Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James. So if I’m being honest I think the only book that made me cry this year is once again The Wolf in the Whale.  But I really would hate to use that book for all of these prompts.  So the runner up, which almost made me cry, was Black Leopard, Red Wolf.

Book that made me happy laugh:

Walking to Aldebaran by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Walking to Aldebaran by Adrian Tchaikovsky.  This book is really funny- and it needed to be because it’s also really dark.

Honorable mention to Chuck Wendig’s Wanderers, which I’ve only read a little of so far but has given me a few laugh out loud moments.

Favorite book to film adaptation I saw this year:

The Burning Land by Bernard Cornwell

The Burning Land by Bernard Cornwell.  I don’t know if this is cheating, since I actually read the book in 2017.  The Last Kingdom which is a Netflix show is one of my favorite shows.  I saw season three earlier in the year and enjoyed that (although I do think it deviated a lot from the books).

Favorite review I’ve written this year:

The Mere Wife Maria Dahvana Headley

The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley.  Mostly because it gave me so many fabulous quotes to include.

Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West by Cormac McCarthy

Honorable mention to Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West because the review kept evolving after I had written it.  It started as a rant, and then when I went to edit the rant I had thought about the book some more and I had to add a whole slew of new stuff.  And later when I edited that, I had even more thoughts to add.

Most beautiful book I’ve bought so far this year (or received):

Inland by Tea Obreht

Inland by Tea Obreht.  I recently received an ARC of this in the mail and even though it’s an ARC there’s a cover with some promotional blurbs and behind that the front cover is just really pretty with all the colors.

Books I need to read by the end of the year:

SO MANY.  I feel so far behind right now.  But a few that I already own that I really want to get to are:

Micro by Michael Crichton

Blood of Elves by Andrzej Sapkowski

The Winter King by Bernard Cornwell

The Dead Lands by Benjamin Percy

War of the Wolf by Bernard Cornwell

And that’s it!  I’m a little disappointed I don’t have more titles to freak out over.  Hopefully the second half of 2019 will be a little better!


17 thoughts on “2019 Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

  1. I’m glad you did this tag, I always love reading everyone’s answers. Oh and I’m reading Wanderers right now as well. How are you liking it? It’s taking forever to read but I actually don’t mind. Its definitely a “Wendig” book, with his brand of humor and especially the political elements. I’m loving it but I want to know what’s going on!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m only about 100 pages in- but I’m loving it too! It isn’t even that it’s taking me too long to read, I’m just so busy right now I don’t have a ton of time to read. When I do get time the pages fly by.

      I am excited to see where it’s going because I definitely had post apocalypse vibes from the blurb and it’s not there yet.


  2. Great post! I love seeing what stats other people track (sometimes it gives me ideas of what I want to track) so I really enjoyed your intro. I would also have to write a disclaimer for my male/female author ratio, since I’ve read so many Seanan McGuire books this year. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Are they non-binary? I wasn’t aware- so thank you for letting me know! I definitely need to read more of their work. I liked Into the Drowning Deep a lot (actually it’s pretty much my favorite kind of book) but I haven’t read anything else.


    • Oh yeah – go for it! I haven’t seen anyone really tagging people, just saying: anyone who wants to, go do it! So I just left it open. I’m also not sure who to credit for the original tag. (Sorry whoever you are- thanks for the fun tag!)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh I hope you like The Haunting of Tram Car 015! It’s one of my favorite novellas, a fun mystery with a setting I loved. And I’m with you on anticipating The Monster of Elendhaven, I haven’t heard a lot about it but it has the potential to be so good. I hope it won’t disappoint either of us!
    And what you said about The Wolf in the Whale is making me curious, I’m not sure it’s my kind of fantasy but now I want to look into it (and also, why not try new things.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well- I will say that The Wolf in the Whale isn’t going to be for everyone. For starters, it’s mostly a historical novel with some magical realism, except for the end. It has queer characters who struggle a lot with their pasts/identities and can be kind of dark. I do remember parts of it were slow going but I loved the characters so much I was okay with it.

      I don’t want to discourage you from reading it though because it really is a fantastic book, and I think the rating on goodreads remains pretty high so most readers enjoyed it, but I know some readers don’t enjoy as much history with their fantasies. I’ve always loved historical fiction which is why it was perfect for me.

      I hope that helps a little? If you do decide to pick it up (I think it’s on Kindle right now for 4.99 for the US) please let me know what you think!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I REALLY have to read Luna. I’ve had these books on my TBR forever.
    I recently found a used copy of Black Leopard, Red Wolf, so now I have to go see your review!
    Also, my post for this is going up next week and I’m going to add the stats portions as well because it’s such a good idea 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha- thanks! I love stats so I’m excited to compare! I’ll be curious to see what you think of BLRW. It’s definitely not an easy read. And please read Luna!! That’s one series I don’t think gets enough love.

      Liked by 1 person

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