Saturday, December 31, 2022

End of the Year Wrap-Up and Favorite Reads 2022!!!

 End of 2022!!!

It's time to wrap things up for 2022! This post isn't going to be as colorful as other years thanks to a horrible internet the last few days. So, I hope you can forgive me. But that doesn't mean I don't have tons of stuff to share!

It's been a fun year on the kidlit front and offered some changes here on Bookworm for Kids...albeit small ones. I had fun digging through all the reads, discovers gems, and simply enjoying all the worlds and directions the books have offered. And that almost every single day. 

I thank you, all my readers, for dropping in and sharing your excitement for kidlit with me. Every year, this blog grows more and more...and has actually way outgrown this platform. I, honestly, am humbled and amazed at all my fellow kidlit fans out there. So thank you (I could never say this enough)! It's always a treat to hear from you and see the views.

This year, I had to temporarily get rid of my cover lists, but I am more than determined to bring those back in 2023...because I love my covers! Also, I added two more categories to my 'Reviewed' list: Chapter Books and Graphic Novels. I've been hitting more graphic novels as the years go by and do believe these need their own section, since I know many young readers who are focused on this area. Also, Chapter Books are a class of their own. I hope to get into more of those this upcoming year, too.

But before I keep babbling about the New Year (because that's tomorrow's post), let's finish up 2022.

First, here's a breakdown of the five main groups:

Picture Books: 124
Middle grade novels: 92
chapter books: 10
young adult: 85
graphic novels: 31

That gives us a grand total of 342 books! 

Now, this does not include any Mommy's and Daddy's Day posts. Plus, I do read even more on the side (I know that's crazy!)

Now, comes the fun part. We're going to breakdown some of these into genres. This changes year-to-year a little. The last couple years, I've seen an uptick in Contemporary...and Fantasy is always a favorite. So, let's see if these trends continued into 2022.

Middle Grade: 
       Contemporary: 15
        Fantasy: 24
        Paranormal: 3
        Mystery: 12
        Spy: 5
        Nonfiction: 16
        Science Fiction: 5
        Humor: 6
        Poetry: 2
        Other: 2

As usual, Fantasy refuses to let the other genres pull ahead, but there was a definite increase in the Nonfiction arena. I also was surprised to see how Mystery is catching up to Contemporary. Now, I realize that this isn't representative of the market, in general. But these do hint at the direction of what authors, publicists, and publishers are pushing toward me. 

Now, let's see if Young Adult swings in the same directions:

Young Adult:
        Contemporary: 5
        Fantasy: 28
        Paranormal: 14
        Mystery: 9
        Nonfiction: 5
        Science Fiction: 12
        Romance: 7
        Other: 5

Yep, Fantasy still stays ahead of the pack with two related genres coming in as next behind. Contemporary fell back, this year, though. Many of these could arguably be put in a different category, since there are quite a few leaning in the mixed direction, but I tried to push them into the genre which seemed more strongly represented during the story (to me). 

So what does all of that mean? Well, Fantasy and imagination still are going very strong and darker tones are definitely in.

Now, that we have that through, it's time to head into my favorite part of this post, which just happens to be a list of my the favorite reads which hit Bookworm for Kids this last year. This list might surprise you, since I tend to have very different expectations on what I consider great kidlit as opposed to many in the literary world. I also take into consideration (mostly, actually) what kids around me are saying and which books strike their interests. After all, these are books for kids, not for us adults.

So, let's get this going, shall we?

Oh, and these aren't in any specific order.

Favorite Reads of 2022!!

Picture Books

The illustrations are gorgeous and set the perfect stage for a bedtime read. I enjoyed the gentleness of the butterflies, the writing and the entire atmosphere as it invites to dreams.

This read is so much fun! The monster parade completely wins over with it's fantastical variety and silliness. It is one of those books, which will have young readers flipping through on their own to find their favorite beast.
Taking on much more serious tones, this one is for slightly older readers and holds depth. It is masterfully done from the illustrations to the bitter-sweet ending. 
Warmth and love radiate from this wonderful, nighttime read for younger readers out there. It just makes the reader want to snuggle up with their parents/guardians and enjoy the love and security. 

This is a 'feel-good' read, which has such a inspiring message about friendship, that it's impossible not to enjoy. It's gentle and touching and just one of those reads to cuddle up with again and again.

Middle Grade

Action, technology, tension, and even important messages slide into this wonderful high-tech, action, and mystery adventure. It was refreshingly original for the middle grade reader, doesn't talk down to the audience, and lets readers dive into the adventure. It is for slightly older middle graders and promises tons of suspense.

I was surprised at how well this one takes a gentle, wholesome character and setting, while weaving in the dusting of magic to let dreams drift right along as if they always belong to life. There's never a boring moment, making it hard to put down, and it's great for more sensitive readers, too.
While the plot does seem to take its inspiration from a story, which circulated the internet and news world a few years ago (whether it was reality or myth, I don't know), the author does a wonderful job at twisting it into an inspiring story for middle graders, while also bringing a different culture, lifestyle, and awakening awareness for certain groups in the process. Plus, I see readers contemplating if something similar would work for them. (And who could blame them?)
I remember how much this read surprised me. It uses various media formats within the story to build a well-laid mystery, which keeps readers guessing until the end. Plus, the format does a great job at creating a familiar reality in a school setting.
I was back-and-forth about adding this one to this list simply because it's probably unexpected for quite a few people out there. But it's so much fun, and I decided to just do it! The delivery of historic facts versus myth gives readers an unique view of history and cultures in a way, which could be translated as fantasy pure...but there are some truths there, too. The illustrations add to the fantastical atmosphere and will have readers wondering about many of the mentioned places themselves.

Young Adult

I'm actually going to recommend Books 1&2, since they both came out this year...and were both amazing. So much happens in these reads. The world building as well as the vibrant array of characters round off a complicated plot, which grabs until the last page. But this series isn't done with only these two and is expected the release of the third and final book in 2023.
Tackling the tough theme of bullying, this one takes on a thriller/mystery atmosphere with an ending, which leaves the reader in thought. It does hang high on high school drama and social difficulties, while carrying unexpected twists and a dark, original tone. 
Ready for a sarcastic and humorous tale of the afterlife? This one promises an original swing, while building in the excitement of demon hunting, too. The original direction and fresh, natural writing make this one something different, which will thrill the right reader. 
Not for the sensitive reader, this book hits more than a couple harsher themes and allows human nature to explore its greedy, ruthless, and raw-evil side. It leaves food for thought, while building tons of tension, many surprises, and action, too.

First off, this read swirls around Scramble...and that was a definite, new direction. It also builds in mystery, dealing with the loss of friends, and the ruthlessness determination can bring. All of this is woven into a well-written tale with a character, who is more than easy to root for.

Graphic Novels

This one is hitting my list not only because it is well-written and nicely illustrated...but because I know more than a few readers, who enjoy it quite a bit. And since it's a favorite with them, I'm definitely not going to ignore it.

This is the 2nd book in the series and contains three mysteries. I enjoyed the balance of illustration versus text and find the lighter style wonderful to bring across the scenes with the same delightful energy that Enola deserves. The mysteries are well-laid, but it's the characterization which wins over.

There is little to criticize in this read, except maybe that it does take a slightly darker tone, at times. So, this one is not for sensitive readers (it reminded me of the darker tones found in the Lion King). The graphics are very well done, and the story holds amazing pace. The characters are also of course, this one is on my highly recommended list.

With that done and the year coming to an end, I wish all of you a wonderful celebration tonight and will see you tomorrow for the 1st post of the year!

1 comment:

Natalie Aguirre said...

Wow! You read a lot of books this year. I loved reading your stats and seeing which were your favorites. Happy New Year!