Friday Review: Reading in 2018

I did okay in 2018, as far as my reading goals went. I had set a goal of 28 books, and managed to read 34. My Goodreads total says 36, but there were two that I just couldn’t finish, so I don’t count those in my list.

I’ve also been trying to diversify my reading in the past few years. I started keeping track back in 2011 and when I looked at my list of completed books, each year was mostly fantasy, with a couple science fiction sprinkled in. Those are my favorite things to read, and they still occupy the majority of my lists, but I realized that I was kind of stuck in a rut of reading mostly similar books. So, I decided to try to remedy that. I think I have been pretty successful. I am definitely mixing more non-fiction in the list, and reading some fiction outside the usual. Here’s the breakdown:

(Note: Yes, I know the numbers may add up to more than 35, but some books do fall into multiple categories. For example, Memoir/Biography and Nonfiction. Or Mystery and Romance.)

Fantasy: 15

Nonfiction: 7

Science Fiction: 6

Literary Fiction: 4
Memoir/Biography: 3

Mystery: 2

Romance: 2

Horror: 1

Audiobooks: 11


Fantasy is still the winner, and probably always will be. But I am working some different (for me) stuff in there, too. The surprising category to me this year is the Literary Fiction. I am not a fan of many of the books that fall under that umbrella, but like most book genres, there are a few things that appeal to me. I just have to work a bit harder to dig them out.

So, into 2019. My goal is 29 books. Yes, I read well more than my goal last year, but my rule has been that if I complete this year’s goal, I add one to it for next year, no matter how many I go over by. I have two reasons for that. One, I suspect that I will, at some point, find a sweet spot for how many books I can realistically read in a year. I am not a fast reader, and I have other things I need/want to do, so reading time is budgeted. I think I will hit a number that I just can’t go beyond. I plan to run up to that one slowly.

Two, about a third of the books I finished last year were audiobooks, and that number will go down this year. I added a few more podcasts to my list and that is going to cut into audiobooks. So that will impact the total books I read, also.

Still, 29 is a respectable number. I have a tentative reading list planned (which I have upset already!), so I will not be at a loss for “what to read next?” 2018 was a good year for reading. I think 2019 will be, too.


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