This year, I tell ya. It was a doozy and the only way to deal with it? Focus on all the totally unimportant marginalia, of course! In this case, book stats and other book-related musings.
I read 117 books this year which was a new record for me, Yay! My average rating for the year was 3.3 out of 5 stars, Yay? Really that's a pretty average...uh... average and unfortunately it does kind sum up my year pretty well. I read a lot of books I enjoyed but very little that I thought were special. I only gave out one 5 star rating, followed by 35 4-star ratings, 78 3-star ratings and 2 2-star ratings.
Most of my reading, 95% in fact, was as usual in Fiction with only 6 non-fiction reads. Most of my fiction reading was in genre and my genre breakdown was also pretty predictable. Fantasy (45) topped the list, with mystery (34) and historical fiction (32) not too far behind. Science fiction (14) and romance (13) brought up the rear. Even though Romance and science fiction were my least read genres, they made a good showing on my best of the year list, with romance having 2 books on the list and sci-fi having 4!
NOTE: some books fall in more than 1 genre!
A majority of my reading was also female authors - 77 authors or 67% and then 35% (41) male authors. If you're good at math and are wondering why that adds up to more than 100%, I did read a couple multi-authored books with male and female authors (like Saga by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples). The books I read were overwhelmingly written by an author from and or set in the U.S. and the U.K. which isn't great and overall represented 7 countries. I do want to do better with this!
CHALLENGES AND RESOLUTIONS
I only had two "Official" challenges - the Goodreads number of books and a Star Wars novel tie-in challenge. I also had an unofficial challenge to get my series reading under control. Most of them get dealt with in my resolutions below so I'll address them there, though I may do a separate post about my book series issues.
Here's my list of 2016 resolutions - how well did I do sticking to them?
1) Read 115 Books in 2016.
117 books! So grateful for audio books and graphic novels - they played a key role in making this happen.
2) No More Reading Challenges... except for number 1 up there.
Well I did give in and join the Star Wars Challenge....which I failed, lol. I was supposed to read 3-4 Star Wars tie-in books and I only read one. It was Lost Stars by Claudia Gray and I LOVED it so much it made my top ten of the year but I still didn't manage to pick up 2 more Star Wars books. Blegrh.
I wanted to read more books out of my comfort zone, books that made me stretch and think. And I wouldn't say I really achieved this. I read a handful of books that fit with this but not very many.
4) Try to get a handle on my out of control addiction to series.
I'm not sure I really cut down on the number of series I'm in the middle of but I do feel like I have a bit more control over my addiction.
I started Star Wars - and it was awesome!
6) Read more Non-fiction
I only read 4 non-fiction books in 2015 and I wanted to up that number. Sigh.... I guess technically I did read more this year, reading 6, though I think I can do better.
I did develop more of a habit of this but it wasn't an every night thing. I will continue to develop this, especially because I should do a better job of turning off the electronics earlier.
8) Spruce up the blog and commenting system
Well, I didn't really spruce up the blog much but I did switch my commenting system to Disqus which is working well.