I'm not sure what happened to December but let's start the New Year with great originality and my round-up of Books of the Year. As ever, it bears little relation to lists in the newspapers because few of the books I've read were actually published this year - and I'm not going all out to impress you with my erudition. (Though I did belatedly read Fifty Shades of Grey back at the start of the year. And I notice with some embarrassment that I didn't flag it on the sidebar! But don't feel you've missed out - it's not on the list - and it was (sort of) in the line of duty for the day job.)
My best read of all was only published last year - so it almost counts as new, though it took me a few months to catch up - and no surprises that it is Hilary Mantel's Bring Up the Bodies.
Next on the list is a bit of a cheat as Mrs Bridge by Evan S Connell topped my list for last year. But it was just as good when I read it again, this time with Mr Bridge. There's a review here. Mr Bridge and Mrs Bridge, read together, proved to be something very rare, a book group choice that was unanimously loved by everyone in our group and sparked off lots of discussion.
I don't think it was a vintage year for reading and so I found myself re-reading lots of old favourites, including Emma and Persuasion. And I enjoyed Marghanita Laski's The Village as much as I did first time round. On the other hand, Barnaby Rudge - I've started, so I'll finish - is never going to feature on my list of favourite Dickens.
The quirkiest book of the year was Ella Minnow Pea and my favourite heroine was Miss Mole.
And the forgotten book that everybody was talking about and I loved too was Stoner. But that's on every newspaper book of the year list.
I've read very little non-fiction this year but I greatly enjoyed Mad Girl's Love Song about Sylvia Plath's Life before Ted and Deborah Cohen's fascinating history of Family Secrets.
My Christmas read for dipping in and out of has been Love, Nina by Nina Stibbe, a sharp and funny collection of letters from a nanny in a literary household - Alan Bennett is always dropping in for supper - quite often laugh-out-loud funny but it went on a bit too long for me.
And now on to the film awards ...
We have the film I couldn't review because I woke up from a deep sleep as the closing credits rolled.
We have the most interesting film that not a single person I know went to see. (I must be a strong contender for the least influential blogger/reviewer of the year award.)
Surprisingly, however, a Shakespeare play turned out to be my most enjoyable film of the year.
And this film, with Julie Delpy as the actress I most wanted to strangle, was the most over-hyped and disappointing.
But to go out on a high note. The Cake of the Year award goes to this cafe in Hove, discovered by chance on a day trip to Brighton a couple of weeks ago, for their layered Victoria sponge with plum jam and buttercream, topped with pomegranate seeds and dusted with gold glitter ... I know that sounds strange, but it twinkled like fairylights and tasted fabulous. (Keep walking. It's opposite the big Tesco.)
And now all that remains to be said is Happy New Year and thank you to everybody who has read and commented through 2013.