Dec 20, 2008

A Contest and a Puppy Update

Let me start with the puppy. Remember him? I thought I'd post a few updated pictures in case you were wondering how he's doing. Much bigger, as you can see, but still incredibly cute:


I was inspired by some of you to try to take a picture of him wearing a Santa hat, but he was quick to let me know what he thought of the idea:


And now a contest: like many of you, this past few days I started looking back and thinking about what my favourite reads of the year were. I had a great reading year, so coming up with a list of favourites will actually be hard. I'm thinking of doing a top 20 or something. But even though there were a lot of books I loved, there are 5 in particular that really stand out. They were instant additions to my list of all-time favourites.

So I had an idea (I'm actually borrowing it from Literary Feline - I hope she won't mind!) I'm going to ask you, dear readers, to guess what those five books are. Then I'll draw a name from those who get it right, and the winner will get a book of their choice up to $20. If nobody guesses the five, I'll draw a name from those who guessed four, then three, etc. I suspect that many of you will be able to guess, though. But please do try even if you aren't sure at all. You never know!

Order doesn't matter, even because I don't think I could order them myself. I don't think this list is actually set in stone, and so it's quite possible that some of you will remind me of books that really ought to be included. But for the sake of fairness, I'm writing down the five I have in mind right now and sticking to those. Also, I'm not counting re-reads. And another hint: all five are fiction.

Here's a list of what I read this year. I realize that the fact that I don't use ratings makes this harder, so to make your lives easier I added a * before my favourite reads of each month. That narrows down the possibilities considerably. The giveaway will be open until I post my year's best list, which should be in a little over a week. Good luck!

46 comments:

  1. Howdy! You have a Christmas Spirit Award waiting for you at my blog...

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  2. Your puppy is cute! This is going to be a hard contest, you liked so many books this year. You did give me some great recommendations though. Here's my five:

    The Graveyard Book - Neil Gaiman
    Jazz - Toni Morrison
    Persepolis - Marjane Satrapi
    The Perks of Being a Wallflower
    The Wood Wife

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  3. Your puppy is SO cute!!

    I'm going to try my hand at your contest soon...

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  4. Awwww! The puppy is adorable. :) I'm not even going to try to pick out your five favourites, lol-just look forward to finding them out!

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  5. That puppy is too cute for words!!!

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  6. Your puppy is so cute.
    I've been trying to get my puppy and our other dog to wear a santa hat so I can take a picture too. They're both more interested in eating it!

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  7. Wow, that's a lot of great books read! I'm going with these 5 as your faves:

    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
    Nation by Neil Gaiman
    The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
    Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
    A Fine and Private Place by Peter Beagle

    :-)

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  8. He is so cute! I love the picture with the Santa hat. Here's my guesses:

    Lonely Werewolf Girl
    Winnie the Pooh
    The Complete Polysyllabic Spree
    The Ice Queen
    Tamsin

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  9. Aw what an adorable pup!

    Tricky competition, you've read and enjoyed a lot of books this year! I will guess:

    Nation by Terry Pratchett
    A Fine and Private Place by Peter S Beagle
    The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky
    Looking for Alaska – John Green
    Lonely Werewolf Girl – Michael Millar

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  10. Darn! I was hoping the contest was going to be for the puppy. ;)

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  11. Oh my goodness, he is so stinkin' cute I can hardly stand it! I want to crawl right through this computer screen to play with him! He looks like he loves to play!

    Wow...did you have a hard time choosing five? I'm probably going to be embarrassed with how bad I do at this, but here goes:

    Nation
    Looking for Alaska
    Lonely Werewolf Girl
    The Complete Polysyllabic Spree
    The Complete Maus

    Can't wait to see what the real list looks like!

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  12. Wow, this was hard!

    My guess:
    Persepolis
    Perks of Being a Wallflower
    Looking for Alaska
    Nation
    On Beauty

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  13. That puppy is too cute! I love the look on his face re: the Santa hat. :)

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  14. Ohhhh Zacarias is going to be such a handsome looking dog! My pups won't wear the hats either and besides I think the cat makes fun of when I try to put anything like that on them :)

    Your contest is so hard! But I finally narrowed it down to five (while adding to my tbr list along the way) lol

    My guesses:
    - A Fine and Private Place
    - Black Jewels Trilogy
    - Nation
    - The Graveyard Book
    - Lonely Werewolf Girl

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  15. I thank you all on Zacarias' behalf for all the puppy love :D And Bermudaonion, ha! He's all mine and none of you can have him :P

    I'm sorry that the contest feels hard, everyone! I guess I underestimated the amount of books I gushed about throughout the year. This isn't, however, a comment on how you're all doing. I won't comment on that for obvious reasons :P

    And thank you for playing along anyway. I was kinda worried that this was going to me another one of my epic fails...you know, like that one time I started a meme that a total of 2 people did :P

    Reading everyone's guesses has been fun. Keep them coming!

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  16. I didn't know you started a meme!

    Oh my god you're puppy is getting cuter and cuter, is just so so adorable, i want to squeeze him and cuddle him all day!

    so In thought guessing would be much easier but five is not much! I'll try:

    Nation
    The Graveyard Book
    Lonely werewolf Girl
    The handmaid's tale
    The black Jewel trilogy

    Iwas going to say Persepolis but that's biography, so...

    oh I still had to leave out loads so I don't think I've guessed right:P

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  17. Awww...cute doggie.

    Cute doggies beat books anytime. And he's smart. Santa hat - not the best fashion statement :)

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  18. Doh! What an idiot I am!!! How did I miss that all five were fiction?!! Where, oh where has my little brain gone?

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  19. Valentina, thanks for playing! And tis perhaps a matter best forgotten :P

    Dark Orpheus: I actually have a sentimental attachment to that particular Santa hat :P

    Debi: You are NOT an idiot, and you are more than welcome to replace the Spree with another guess (though to give you credit, that would undoubtedly by my #1 non-fiction pick)

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  20. Such a cutie! Look at those Lady Di eyes!

    I'm too brain-dead to play along but will look forward to your favorites!

    Daphne

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  21. My guesses:

    Nation by Terry Pratchett
    Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
    Enna Burning by Shannon Hale
    I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
    Maus by Art Spiegelman

    Becky

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  22. Okay, maybe I'm not an idiot, but I do a pretty good imitation of one. :)
    I am sooooo anxious to see what they are though!!! And I've been having great fun reading everyone's guesses.

    Thanks to you, I'm on the verge of finishing what is definitely going to make my top 5 list. Oh Nymeth, I am loving Looking for Alaska so much, for so many reasons. In fact, I suspect you're going to get a long rambling e-mail one of these days because I just have so many things I want to talk about...

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  23. The puppy is so cute! I'm not going to guess because I need to get rid of things, not acquire, but I'll look forward to reading your list. I'm loving Looking for Alaska, too -- need to add it to my sidebar.

    Merry Christmas!!!

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  24. What an adorable puppy! I was laughing at that last picture! Poor Santa hat!

    Anyway I think I almost echo most of the guesses but considering I haven't read the five I picked below but they're the five I wished I had read this year:

    1. Nation by Terry Pratchett
    2. A Fine and Private Place by Peter S. Beagle
    3. Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
    4. Looking for Alaska by John Green
    5. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

    I still have a few days left before the year is over and I have three of the five packed in my bag with me for my trip home :)

    And have a merry, merry Christmas to you and your family! Hugs!

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  25. That puppy is so darn cute!!! I love him :) And I'm in love with this contest....I would've stole it from you if I had more time, but I've been a busy person lately. Okay, here are my guesses:

    1. Nation by Terry Pratchett
    2. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
    3. A Fine and Private Place by Peter Beagle (This is going to be my next read...thanks!)
    4. Voice of our Shadow by Jonathan Carroll (I'm reading this after Beagle :p I finally got a copy from the Book Depository!)
    5. Looking for Alaska by John Green

    I have a feeling it may be Lonely Werewolf Girl instead of Voice of our Shadow, but I'm still sticking with that :p We'll see!

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  26. The puppy pictures are great! He looks like he'd just cheer up any room he's in.

    Your reading list is awesome. I'm not sure if I can guess which 5 you would have liked most. I'll have to think about that one for a bit!

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  27. Oh, your puppy is adorable! :)
    I've a hard time listing your five favourites, hehe... but here goes:

    1) The Black Jewel trilogy by Anne Bishop
    2) Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
    3) Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
    4) Nation by Terry Pratchett
    5) The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

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  28. What a tease, I thought you were givingaway Zacarias. He's still such a cute boy. See, there is something I covet more than books!

    I'm glad your keeping him as he is a family member.

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  29. Okay, I know I am not going to get it right, but no harm in trying right?

    The Graveyard Book - Neil Gaiman
    Persepolis - Marjane Satrapi
    Nation by Terry Pratchett
    Lonely Werewolf Girl – Michael Millar
    A Fine and Private Place by Peter Beagle

    Hope at least one book makes it to your top five.

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  30. i guess since the pup wouldn't wear a santa hat that antlers is out of the question?! lol

    Geez, you're like Chris.. there's very little you read that you don't like! That's an impossible mission (or is that mission impossible? ) heh

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  31. Okay, I want to try too! If international readers are allowed to join...

    1. Nation
    2. Voices
    3. Looking for Alaska
    4. I Capture the Castle
    5. The Graveyard Book

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  32. I am going absolutely and completely random. I am not going to go back and read reviews, just guessing (and by the way, adorable puppy):

    Ladies of Grace Adieu
    Graveyard Book
    Rebecca
    I Capture the Castle
    A Man Without a Country

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  33. Oh, your puppy is cuter than ever! What an amazing list of books read in 2008!! Okay, I'm going to guess randomly, like Carl V.

    Odd & The Frost Giants
    Practical Magic
    I Capture the Castle
    Nation
    The Complete Maus

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  34. Thanks for playing along, everyone! I love reading everyone's guesses.

    Debi, I hope you know that e-mail will be very, very welcome!

    Bookfool: Can't wait to read your thoughts on it!

    Teddy Rose: Never! :P He fits right in. The other dogs love him, even though he tries their patience at times :P

    Deslily: I have the feeling that antlers would be eaten too :P

    Josette: I forgot to say, but yes, it's open worldwide!

    Carl and Robin, yes, they are meant to be random! I didn't want to make it hard or time-consuming or anything like that :P Just guesses, either completely random or based on what people remember. No going back and reading posts again required, of course :P

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  35. Well this is hard. I am going back through your reviews and I remember certain ones more than others so here goes with the guessing!


    *Nation by Terry Pratchett
    *The Bromeliad by Terry Pratchett
    *The Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop
    *Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
    *Looking for Alaska by John Green

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  36. Here I am... this is a bit hard as you always seem to like all books, but here are my guesses:

    Persepolis
    Looking for Alaska
    A Fine and Private Place
    The Ice Queen
    The Graveyard Book

    Hope I'm getting at least something right...

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  37. Thanks for playing, Alessandra!

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  38. He's soooo cute! :)
    I thought about trying to get pictures of the boys with a Santa hat but I knew it wouldn't be easy and then I ran out of time.

    Here are my guesses:
    A Fine and Private Place
    The Graveyard Book
    Nation
    Lonely Werewolf Girl
    Looking for Alaska

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  39. wow, fun contests and the puppy is soooo cute! I do remember you posting about him before.
    Here's my guesses:
    1.The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman
    2.The Complete Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby
    3.The Bromeliad by Terry Pratchett
    4.Endless Nights by Neil Gaiman
    5.The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale

    http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/

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  40. Too cute! He knows what he wants (and what he doesn't want, with that Santa hat!)

    I haven't thought much about my Top 5 for the year; must give this some thought ...

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  41. He's SO cute! We've been joking about getting a puppy all month. My cat hates other animals though :o(

    My guess:
    I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
    The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
    The Road by Cormac McCarthy
    The Graveyard Book - Neil Gaiman
    Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

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  42. He is so adorable!! How many dogs and cats do you have?

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  43. lol-Zacarias has sure gotten bigger, that's for sure. He's adorable. Too cute about the hat. Buddy wouldn't like a hat either.

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  44. Trish: 4 cats and 3 dogs. I have a big back yard :P

    Dar: He really has! Looking at old pictures makes me realize just how much.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment - interaction is one of my favourite things about blogging and a huge part of what keeps me going.