With Christmas around the corner, I thought a book tag would be a fun way to wrap up the year ahead of my Best Reads list. I’m going to try to keep most of my answers to this year’s reading, but a few answers were slightly modified since the questions could be hard to find a book to match.

This tag was originally created years ago by YouTuber Lizzie Loves Books.

1. A Partridge in a Pear Tree: Favorite Stand-Alone Book?

Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley is a gritty thriller that was a love letter about Native culture and was beyond excellent! While it is a YA novel, it will also appeal to adults who are looking for an intriguing coming-of-age narrative

2. Two Turtle Doves: Fictional OTP/Favorite Ship?

Aging professional tennis players Carrie Soto and Bowe Huntley from Carrie Soto is Back have a sweet and realistic romance that proves second chances are possible!

3. Three French Hens: Favorite Trilogy?

The Appalachian Trilogy by Silas House is made up of books A Parchment of Leaves, The Coal Tattoo and Clay’s Quilt, and spans 100 years of the Sizemore family in eastern Kentucky, and is a respectful and loving look at an extended family. House is my favorite modern author known for writing authentic and beautiful fiction about contemporary Appalachia. 

4. Four Calling Birds: Favorite Fictional Beast/Creature?

I re-read the amazing graphic novel The Complete Maus this year.  I now understood better the reason why the author portrayed the characters as animals- with mice representing those of the Jewish faith, cats as Nazis, Poles as pigs, the French as frogs and Americans as dogs. This storytelling device surprisingly made them seem more human, as the reader better understands the unfairness of characterizing an entire culture or nationality as the same. It also made their trying to pass as non-Jewish with a mask on, more poignant.

5. Five Golden Rings: Show Five Golden Books

Not sure how to showcase five golden books, so instead I am choosing Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson. This harrowing historical fiction story about a young slave woman is based on the real-life of slave Mary Lumpkin and her life at Lumpkin’s jail in Richmond, Virginia. 

6. Six Geese a Laying: Rotten Egg- What’s Your Least Favorite Book?

Run, Rose, Run by Dolly Parton and James Patterson. I adore Parton, but the Nashville-based story was so fake and saccharine that I could barely finish it.

7. Seven Swans a Swimming: Show a Book with Water on the Cover

The Project by Courtney Summers is another YA gritty thriller about sisters in peril that has a lake on the cover, and the lake played an important part in the conclusion.

8. Eight Maids a Milking: What Fictional Food Do You Wish You Could Taste?

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles featured the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin, and the meals described at their restaurant sounded delicious.

9. Nine Ladies Dancing: Favorite Dance Between Two Characters?

The Appalachians: America’s First and Last Frontier is a lovely book of essays about the people, history and land of Appalachia. Black and white photographs, poems, diary excerpts and song lyrics also add to this collection, all of which celebrate Appalachian cultural heritage. The song lyrics sent me to YouTube where I watched many videos of folk songs and dancing from people in the region.

10. Ten Lords a Leaping: Favorite Book-To-Movie-Adaptation?

I’m flipping this- I read Lord of the Flies for the first time (I have tried many times over the years, and just couldn’t finish it until now), so afterward I watched the 1963 and 1990 films, and both were terrible adaptations! While books are always better than movies/tv, this was incredibly true with these two movies.

11. Eleven Pipers Piping: Favorite Book-To-Movie-Adaptation Soundtrack?

Beats me. On a vaguely similar note- I really enjoy the opening music on the tv series Yellowstone.

12. Twelve Drummers Drumming: It’s The End of The Song; What’s Your Favorite Book Ending?

I have been listening to a riveting Marvel podcast series that is based on Old Man Logan this year and last, and the sixth and final season is releasing weekly right now. I’ve been enjoying hearing about the adventures of Star-Lord, Hawkeye, Black Widow, Wolverine and Doctor Doom so I am looking forward to how they all will join together to save their dystopian world.

I rarely do book tags anymore, and as I conclude this one, I remember why- they take much longer than I expect to try to match up your answer to a question that can be oddly specific. Nevertheless, this tag made me comb through my Goodreads data, and I enjoyed looking back at my reading this year. Have a Merry Christmas everyone!