Mid(ish)-Year Freakout Book Tag! (Finally)

So! In my First Half of 2019 post, I said I was planning to do a Mid-year Freakout post. Did you doubt me?? ‘Cause HERE I AM.

Admittedly, we are now more than mid-way through the year. BUT I am only going to talk about books that I read up until the end of June, so it’s sort of like I actually wrote it in June? Kind of??

ANYWAY. Let’s just answer the questions, shall we?

1. Best Book you’ve read so far in 2019?


The Boy who Steals Houses by C.G. Drews


Brothers? Runaways? Angst? Big family with snarky, very accurate sibling interaction? Brownies? Other food? So many reasons to CRY? Accurate representation of glitter as the evil invention it actually is??

This book has ALL of this and more.

Sam and Avery are my CHILDREN. Must protect them. This book is my jam.


Vango: Between Sky and Earth by Timothée de Fombelle (translated by Sarah Ardizzone)


No, I did not read it in the original French.

This book is a little bit like a cross-between the movie The Bourne Identity (main character is fluent in a billion languages+he doesn’t exactly know who he is+half the world is trying to kill him and he doesn’t know why+general gallivanting across Europe) and the book Code Name Verity (historical fiction set during World War II+ Scottish brother and sister who live in a castle…in Scotland).

I’m super endeared to Vango, and I don’t even know why.



2. Best sequel of 2019 so far?


Jack Frost: The End Becomes the Beginning by William Joyce

…Did I really just say that?

Is this book AMAZING? No. Is 87% of the reason I like it because of the pictures? Quite possibly.

I’ve been waiting for this book to come out for something like five years. Usually this means that I get all hyped up and am more likely to be disappointed, but for some reason with this book I was just glad that it finally came out. I enjoyed reading about the transition from being Nightlight to being Jack Frost. I’ve always been fascinated by the character of Peter Pan, and William Joyce readily admits that Jack Frost is partially based on Peter Pan…so I guess I was destined to like him?

Also, can we all just take a moment to appreciate the beauty that is this illustration??

jack frost.JPG

Me as a child: “Oh, look! Pictures! Fun!”



A Prince Without a Kingdom by Timothée de Fombelle (translated by Sarah Ardizzone)

This book and the first one are so much two parts of the same story that I have a hard time actually remembering what happens in which book.

Basically there’s more of Vango climbing up buildings and things to avoid getting killed. There’s more food. There’s also more backstory! Because we need to know these things.




3. Biggest Surprise?


The Missing Piece of Charlie O’Reilly by Rebecca K. S. Ansari

So all of my sisters read this before me and told me I should read it. Then, before I could read it, one of them said something that spoiled a major plot point…and I was completely oblivious. I guess I was concentrating really hard on my sandwich? I didn’t even hear. Thus, I did not see said plot point coming. At all. And it was BEAUTIFUL.

Even though my sisters all liked it, I wasn’t expecting to like this book as much as I did. So SURPRISE.



4. Biggest Disappointment?


A Bandit’s Tale by Deborah Hopkinson

…Does it count as a disappointment if you weren’t expecting anything?

I picked it up because there was a kid dressed like a newsie on the cover, so why not? And pickpockets are cool (in books, mind you. In real life I am an upstanding, law-abiding citizen….mostly). There were definite Oliver Twist parallels, and I love Oliver Twist…but I just didn’t care. About anything.



5. Favorite New Author?

I guess I’ll just say Timothée de Fombelle? Because he’s one of the only new author’s that I actually read multiple books by…

It’s weird because there were aspects of his writing style that I would think would annoy me/ bore me, but they don’t. Sometimes there’s a lack of subtlety, but for some reason it works? And I don’t know why? But I really like it??


6. New Favorite Character?

Sam from The Boy Who Steals Houses: Because there have been people in his life that I would like to throw off a bridge and he’s so focused on taking care of his brother and he just wants a home and I just want to cry.

Jonathan from The Missing Piece of Charlie O’Reilly: He made a mistake that hurt someone he loves and he will do ANYTHING to fix it and he just NEEDS A HUG.


7. Book that made you happy?


Enchanted Glass by Diana Wynne Jones

Things that made me happy about this book:

  •  Mrs. Stock’s determination to move the piano
  • Andrew panicking and shouting for someone to bring biscuits because the child is crying and what is one supposed to do in such a horrifying situation?
  • Aidan’s never-ending appetite
  • The child dressed as a tube of toothpaste for the fancy dress contest.




8. Book that made you cry?


The Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon

This book didn’t actually make me cry. The fact is, I haven’t read any books that literally made me cry this year. BUT. This book made me want to cry.


He’s basically an older brother to Subhi and…and…No spoilers, but STUFF HAPPENS AND I HAVE FEELINGS.



Also The Boy Who Steals Houses by C.G. Drews

Because Sam! And Avery! And the ENDING. And the MIDDLE. AND BASICALLY THE WHOLE BOOK.



9. Favorite book-to-movie adaption?


A Series of Unfortunate Events Season 3

Hush, I know it’s not a movie.

I’m still in awe that this exists. It’s hard enough to adapt a standalone book into a movie and so often the sequels go downhill- but this series adapted THIRTEEN BOOKS and it STAYED AMAZING.

Season 3 introduced some of my favorite characters from the books (especially KIT. KIT SNICKET IS MY HERO). Also The Penultimate Peril brings back characters from earlier in the series like JUSTICE STRAUSS (*screaming*). And the way they did the end??? The way The Penultimate Peril ended? And the way The End started?? My sister and I may or may not have actually been squeaking and squealing and shouting “Wait- is it?? Are they??” (and the rest of our family kept looking at us like What is wrong with you??)

Suffice it to say, this is one of the best book-to-“movie” adaptions I’ve seen in a long time. And I’m still freaking out about it.


10. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?


The Book Thief by Markus Zusak


Know why? Because this is the same answer I gave to this question when I did this post LAST YEAR. I said I wanted to re-read this book. And GUESS WHAT?

I still haven’t gotten around to re-reading it. AND I WANT TO SO BAD. The writing is SO BEAUTIFUL. And the characters?? I love them ALL.


I also want to re-read every one of Kate DiCamillo‘s books. Because her books are POETRY and they are BEAUTIFUL.


What’s the best book you’ve read so far this year? Who are your newest favorite characters? Have you read any of these books? Do you ever freak out over illustrations? Have you ever been completely oblivious to someone spoiling a book for you? Do tell!


8 responses to “Mid(ish)-Year Freakout Book Tag! (Finally)”

  1. Ahh I still have yet to read one of Cait’s books! Have you read both of them?
    Wait, I’ve read Code Name Verity, but I don’t remember the siblings or the castle or Scotland. I do remember two girls and the ending.
    Jack Frost is a book??? I thought it was just a movie! I actually loved the movie. I saw it when it first came out, and it was around Christmas and I’m pretty sure it was snowing, which is too perfect. And wow, that is beautiful.
    Ah yes, I’ve heard about The Missing Piece of Charlie O’Reilly from your sister :))
    Diana Wynne Jones! I love your description of Enchanted Glass. Howl’s Moving Castle is one of my favorite books ever!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have read both of Cait’s books! I love them both, but I think I like The Boy Who Steals Houses better 🙂
      The main character in Code Name Verity Scottish. She actually has a bunch of brother’s but there’s only one who is actually in the book (JAMIE. And he’s amazing).
      The movie Rise of the Guardians is based on the Guardians of Childhood books by William Joyce…even though most of the books came out after the movie. But I think William Joyce was pretty involved in making the movie.
      YES, Howl’s Moving Castle is THE BEST.
      Thanks for commenting 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Did you have to order them online? I haven’t checked to see if my library has them, but from snippets of what people have said, it sounds like they might be kind of hard to find in the States?
        Ohh, that rings a bell. So does Jamie.
        Oh, interesting! Ah, it makes sense that the author was involved in the making of a good adaptation. (Cough cough, Percy Jackson.) For some reason I thought it was based off of a much older book?
        You’re welcome!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I did have to order Cait’s books online- on Bookdepository to be specific.
        Yes, authors being involved in movie adaptions seems to help. Other adaptions often don’t fare so well… (*screams*)
        The Guardians books are pretty new, but they do have sort of an old-fairy-tale vibe. I mean, they’re based on old fairy tales, of course. So I can see how someone might think the books are older than they really are 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Ahh, I am freaking out about this post!!
    First of all, I really want to read TBWSH, agh. I just haven’t yet because I am slightly broke and to get it I need to order it on Amazon? But it looks really good, I’ve only seen rave reviews, and I enjoyed the other book C.G. Drews wrote, so I feel like I really can’t go wrong with it. I’m glad you enjoyed it!
    I had no idea Rise of the Guardians had an accompanying book series?? I used to be obsessed with that movie. Not going to lie, as a child, I had such a big crush on Jack Frost and thought he was so cute. (Even though he is animated…)
    I WILL ALWAYS SCREAM ABOUT ASOUE. I cannot get over how amazing the Netflix adaptation was. Seriously, spot-on. Brilliant. Wonderful. Perfection. I will be rewatching it in years to come because it got!! it!! right!!! There were so many times I recognized exact wording from the books, too, which made me so happy.
    I hope you finally get to read The Book Thief! It is a masterpiece.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hope you get to read TBWSH soon! I hope money to buy it and/or a copy of the beautiful book itself falls from the sky into your hands.
      It’s complicated because the movie Rise of the Guardians is based on the Guardians of Childhood book series by William Joyce, but most of the books actually came out after the movie. But the artwork in both the books AND the movie is beautiful ❤
      I WILL SCREAM ABOUT ASOUE WITH YOU. Seriously- how did it turn out so WONDERFUL? There were so many moments that actually made me squeal/squeak/shout out loud because they included a line or a scene that I LOVE.
      Thanks for commenting!!

      Liked by 1 person

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