Looking Back on 2014

Reading-wise, 2014 wasn’t a good year. I was aiming for 70 books because I was able to read around 60 last year. I started out pretty great in the beginning, even managing to be a few books ahead at some point. However, the slumps I had to experience were one after another — you can blame those school assignments, but hey, it’s mainly because I’ve gone back to watching a lot of anime shows like I used to do.

But that’s enough of regret! Now, let’s talk about the highlights of the year 😀

Went to my first anime convention ever. It was Anicult and the event was held back then in early July. I ended up buying so many merchandises LOL. (SNK, Kurobasu, Free!! and Haikyuu!!)

Discovered so many good anime shows and manga series, particularly the sports ones. Who would have thought? I mean, I’m one of the laziest people and I suck pretty bad at sports. BUT YOU GUYS. THE FEELS. THE FRIENDSHIP. HOW MUCH EFFORT THE CHARACTERS PUT. WINNING. LOSING. ASGHGDGFHFJDHJHD *clutches fave characters tightly*

Contemporary is officially one of my favorite genres. Half of my favorite books I read this year are, in fact, from this genre. Three years ago, I wouldn’t give any contemporaries a chance but look at me right now, so many that I would like to read.

Received my first physical review copy. I was at school when the packaged arrived but thank goodness my grandmother was home to receive it. I was so happy when I first saw it!! <3

Met so many new amazing bloggers. It was nice getting to know you guys! It’s kinda shocking that I know more people from the Philippines, Singapore, Australia, etc than fellow Indonesians but international friends are just as awesome! ^^

Lovely classmates. Have I ever told you how much I love my new class? This is probably by far the best that I’ve ever had, mainly because the atmosphere is warm and everyone gets along well. 11th grade has been AMAAAAZING so far, and it’s mainly because of them. I think I’ve gotten much more talkative as well.

Two years of blogging. 28th December was actually my second blogoversary but silly me, I forgot about it haha. So happy belated blogoversary to Chapteriosity!! More blogging years to come ;D Thanks for everyone who are still sticking up with me even though my posts are so very inconsistent 🙂

And of course, with the year ending really soon I gotta share the best books I read this year! I only managed to read 40 this time *shakes head* but there are seven books that really stood out for me! (The majority of them are back list books though.) In no particular order:

Pivot Point (#1) by Kasie West | ASGHFDGHSJKDHGFD SO FLUFFY!!!! Trevor is the sweetest guy I’ve ever known and gawddddd the romance is so swoony! This is probably the books that I pushed to people the most. So far everyone whom I lent the book ended up loving it as well. 😛

Split Second (Pivot Point #2) by Kasie West | As good as its predecessor <3 Laila and Connor are sosososo adorable! Kasie West is definitely on my auto-buy list for next year and the year after that!

Finnikin of the Rock (Lumatere Chronicles #1) by Mellina Marchetta | I really liked how the social issues are handled here. Poverty, famine, government oppression… The author successfully delivered the message and I was left in tears. Family relationships are portrayed well  and it touched me deeply how much everyone’s willing to go to such length for their family.

The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden #1) by Julie Kagawa | Completely defied all vampire books stereotypes with its kick-ass protagonist and action-packed story. On top of that, the author’s excellent writing made it easier to devour this book.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (#1) by Jenny Han | Biggest surprise of the year…in a good way, of course! I previously read Han’s Burn for Burn series and I didn’t enjoy them at all. But this book was different and I was just so absorbed with the story. It was a quick and light read yet meaningful as well.

A Midsummer’s Nightmare by Kody Keplinger | Definitely an emotional read. I really liked Whitley’s sassy voice and the love interest Nathan. He is sporty and nerdy at the same time! <3

Ruin and Rising (The Grisha #3) by Leigh Bardugo | PERFECTION. I couldn’t ask for more in this series conclusion. I was so attached to all of the characters, especially my beloved Sturmhond aka Nikolai Lantsov <33

Honorable mention(s): 

  • Mortal Gods (The Goddess War #2) by Kendare Blake
  • Killer Instinct (The Naturals #2) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
  • Deception (Defiance #2) by C.J. Redwine
  • Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods by Rick Riordan

It is also no secret that most of my spare time this year was spent on reading manga and watching anime. Therefore, it is only right if I also share my favorites this year *winks* (This is your cue to start taking notes and give them a try!^^) In no particular order:

Kuroko no Basket by Fujimaki Tadatoshi | I never thought I could be so obsessed with a sports anime…until I watched this show. The matches were super tense and I have way too many favorite characters in it. The whole Generation of Miracles, Kagami, Takao, Kasamatsu, ughhhh….even I’m able to relive the feels by recalling the story asdfghjkl;klkjhg. Season 3 airs in January and I can’t wait to see Rakuzan in action! My emperor <33 Meanwhile, there’s a sequel to the manga (which ended a few months ago) about Teikou babies playing together again (UGHHHH YASSSS KISE, TEACH THOSE ASSHOLES WHO DARED TO SPIT ON SENPAI’S GLORIOUS HAND) 

Haikyuu!! by Furudate Haruichi | I started the anime after I saw Kurobasu and wow, I was once again mind-blown by a sports anime!! The manga and anime are just as good, though I kinda prefer the manga more. Hard work and teamwork are the main themes for this series so there’s a great deal of character development and every member of the team is considered important — proven by how the mangaka isn’t afraid to shift the spotlight to the overshadowed players. I loooooove everyone in this series! Be it the main team Karasuno players, or even their competitors like the whole Aoba Jousai players (BOW DOWN TO OIKAWA-SAN PEOPLE), Datekou (Aone and Futakuchi <3 Koganegawa is just so adorable!), the comical duo Kuroo and Bokuto, gigantic toddler Lev and shy Kenma — the list is ENDLESS. Hopefully season 2 airs soon enough cause I’m impatient to see the summer training camp 😀

Shingeki no Kyoujin by Isayama Hajime | I just HAD to include the series that started it all, okay? The anime is a nice place to start because admittedly, the manga art isn’t that good. But I guarantee, the anime doesn’t disappoint! It’s totally action-packed, and it comes with Levi-heichou EPIC spinning move! <3

Tokyo Ghoul by Sui Ishida | Probably one of the most talked about series this year. But guys, Tokyo Ghoul totally deserves the hype! I would recommend reading the manga because well, the anime left out a lot. The manga story is dark and gory and very very complex (in a good way). It has excellent character development and those twists will keep you on your toes. I really like the character design — I think they all have their own uniqueness that makes each of them stands out.

Honorable mention(s): 

  • Free!!
  • Yowamushi Pedal
  • Psycho Pass
  • Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun
  • Shokugeki no Souma

That is the end of the wrap-up post! There are many things that I wish I could have achieved (like read and blog more for example) but I’m not gonna let my regrets overshadow those positive things that has happened in my life this year. 2014 has been amazing, and I’m looking forward to enjoy the last remaining day.

Now tell me, what do you think of 2014? Have you read or watched any of those? Or did I miss any of your favorites? 🙂

a completely non-bookish rant

Hey all! This is just a completely random post I wrote just to let you know that I am, indeed, still alive.

I have been really busy this with school activities like retreat in mid-August and preparations for test week, then the actual test week. And also, thanks to this year’s new curriculum there has been more group work than ever and you can tell that I am not exactly happy with that. Some of you might have seen my rant on twitter a while ago and I actually swore which I’m not actually used to doing online. (However, in real life, honestly I do swear sometimes.)

I’m very very scared of getting bad grades — I don’t want to upset my parents because I’m the only child and my parents often say sentimental things like, “You’re our only hope, the only one that can make us proud” or something like, “You must study hard and get good grades! Other things don’t matter!” *oh, the pressure of an only child* And because I have been told those kinds of words since I was young, I don’t mean to brag but I have never taken any remedial or make-up tests…I usually get good grades and sometimes when I’m not lucky I get bad ones but thank goodness I still pass the minimum standard.

Earlier this week I felt really depressed because I made a ridiculously stupid and careless mistake during my math test. And we all know that saying “history repeats itself” right?? Cause it absolutely fits for my case as I repeated the same mistake AGAIN on my history and physics tests. Blame my careless self for that.

These negative thoughts about failing have taken over my brain for the past few days and I realize that even though sometimes I feel like, “ugh, why do I have to study?? Screw this stupid test I’m exhausted” and pretend that I’m not gonna study or care for the fact that I will flunk it…there will ALWAYS be that part of me which still wants to get perfect grades and I end up studying anyways. Till midnight. (And because of that I’ve had huge eyebags for a few days but anyway this is not important.)

There’s a reason why Akashi is my favorite character…I think he is a character that I can relate to on so many levels…We are both the only child and so we are pressured to be the best… We both have parents with unbelievably high expectations for us… And we have experienced winning (in my case good grades) so many times that I think they don’t matter anymore, that at some point of my life I actually want to get a bad score just to know how it feels like. But when we are cornered to such situation we realize that they are important to us anyway. That we have won/gotten good grades for as long as we know and we are quite not ready to let them go or step out of our comfort zone.

Sorry for getting really emotional on this post but I just want to get this off my chest…I totally understand if you guys stop reading somewhere over these jumbled mess AKA thoughts of mine… I hope I didn’t sound selfish or ungrateful.

But I have felt a little bit better today… I hung out with my best friends at the mall and we watched a movie together… And during that time I was able to momentarily forgot all my worries. Btw, I ALSO GOT PERCY JACKSON GREEK GODS!!!! *cue screaming*

I still have tests coming up next week and hopefully I will do them better.

On a completely unrelated thing, there’s going to be national and international universities exhibition at my school on Monday and I’m so very excited to visit the booths! Especially Melbourne and British Columbia…There’d better be their booths haha! (Yeah, US is not an option and I have managed to cut down the others…I decided that if I were to go to school abroad, it would be either Canada or Australia.)

If you didn’t stop reading, thank you very much! I know I haven’t been very active lately and I’m really sorry for that. A lot of things are going on in my life and I also have terrible time management skills…

Your Opinions Needed – My Anxiety is Acting Up … Again

Okay. I might be a little over-anxious over here, but I am truly nervous with the outcome of my own decision. In case you didn’t know, two months ago I confessed that I had been regretting my blog name for the past few months and up until now I still dislike my current name — Pansycake Reader.

Over the past couple of months ever since I published that post, I had been brainstorming my new blog name and finally found one that suited me. So “the journey” to this new name was pretty hard, I came up with a few silly names before ultimately I settled to one name… and then I realized that “one name” was too similar to another blog name so I ended up tweaking the name again. I have finally decided on a name, albeit still has relation to my original choice, it is not similar to any blog names. At least when I googled it nothing came out so that’s good. The name still has something bookish though so this is where my anxiety begins.

I love my new name. It’s different. And it’s shorter than my current name. I want to make the change. However, I am afraid that I will lose my readers. I am afraid that you won’t like the new name. I am afraid that my new name won’t be memorable enough. Here’s the thing I wanna ask you guys:

Will you remember me? Even though I am not Pansycake Reader anymore?

Oh my god, I sound like someone who’s about to quit blogging xD But trust me, I am NOT quitting anytime soon.

So that’s what I need to get off my chest. The change will happen this weekend cause I need a fast internet connection so I could move quickly and let you guys know and my internet is as slow as snail this time — it will get faster later this week so weekends!