2012 End of Year Book Survey

I saw this on Délaissé, and thought it looked fun!  Though I haven’t read a ton of books this year, I’m going to give it a try:

1. Best Book You Read In 2012?
Hard to say – probably Dracula for a new book, and definitely Heart of Darkness and Eugene Onegin for re-reads.
2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
The Remains of the Day, The Great Enigma, and The House of the Seven Gables.
3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012? 
Dracula, definitely!  It was way better than I expected.
4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
Probably Heart of Darkness.
5. Best series you discovered in 2012?

I didn’t read any series.

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?
Chesterton was awesome, and I’d read more Turgenev and Zola!
7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you? 
Chesterton’s Orthodoxy, somewhat of a new genre and not a typical choice for me.
8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012? 
Dracula and The Ladies’ Paradise.
9. Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year: 
Eugene Onegin – I cannot get enough of this one (besides, there are many translations to try!).  Probably Heart of Darkness as well.
10. Favourite cover of a book you read in 2012? 
Most of the books I read were e-books without covers.  🙂
11. Most memorable character in 2012? 
Shackleton and his expedition team in South; Van Helsing in Dracula; Mr. Stevens in The Remains of the Day.
12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012? 
Not a book, but Edgar Allan Poe’s “The City in the Sea.”  I have a new respect for Poe’s poetry.
13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012? 
Shackleton’s South, Dracula, and Chesterton’s Orthodoxy.
14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read? 
Dracula, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Beowulf, and The Communist Manifesto.  I should have read all of those at least five years ago!

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012? 

I highlight passages (in my Nook) like you wouldn’t believe.  Here’s a few:

“No, it is impossible; it is impossible to convey the life-sensation of any given epoch of one’s existence–that which makes its truth, its meaning–its subtle and penetrating essence. It is impossible. We live, as we dream–alone.”  (Conrad, Marlow, Heart of Darkness)

“A man must shape himself to a new mark directly the old one goes to ground.” (Shackleton, South)

“A man cannot think himself out of mental evil; for it is actually the organ of thought that has become diseased, ungovernable, and, as it were, independent. He can only be saved by will or faith. The moment his mere reason moves, it moves in the old circular rut; he will go round and round his logical circle.”  (Chesterton, Orthodoxy)

“Productive power, in short, is a far more important element of reality in relation to modern civilization than is accumulated wealth.” (Mackinder, Democratic Ideals and Reality)

“For in this enlightened age, when men believe not even what they see, the doubting of wise men would be his [Dracula’s] greatest strength.” (Stoker, Van Helsing, Dracula)

“The modern world is insane, not so much because it admits the abnormal as because it cannot recover the normal.” (Chesterton, Eugenics and Other Evils)

“With the quality of our desires, thoughts, and wonder proportioned to our infinite littleness, we measure even time itself by our own stature.” (Conrad, The Mirror of the Sea)

16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012? 
Longest: Probably South
Shortest: Probably The Queen of Spades

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It?  Be careful of spoilers! 
Probably South
18. Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc). 
I love the friendship/mentorship between Van Helsing and Jonathan & Mina, in Dracula.  In Heart of Darkness, Marlow’s fear/hatred/admiration of Kurtz was fascinating as well.
19. Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously 
Conrad’s The Mirror of the Sea and A Personal Record.
20. Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
Turgenev’s Fathers and Sons was recommended to me by Julia on Goodreads – it was a great read!

1 Comment

  1. Just wanted to say I enjoyed reading this post! Especially liked the favorite passages from this past year. ~~ Here's to a brand new year of wonderful books!


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