I read a lot this year – more than any other year, in fact. As of today, the book-count according to Goodreads is 52, though I’ll surely finish the book I’m reading now (Patrick Ness’ The Knife of Never Letting Go) by year-end. I took a stab at gathering some analytics about what I’d read:
First, here’s the full list
There are a few short-stories and novellas mixed into the total book count, but overall, the average length was 286 pages. I read 48 pages per day. Goodreads tells me the total page count was 14,879.
Top 5 genres: Fantasy, Adult Fiction, Science Fiction, Humor, Music
Top 5 themes: Mystery, Paranormal, Horror, Dystopia, Death
I read an equal number of books written by male and female authors (totally by accident!). Digging in a bit deeper, I was curious about the relationship between gender of the author and gender of the main character:
Male author, male character: 11
Female author, female character: 17
Male author, female character: 6
Female author, male character: 6
The missing books above are the non-fiction ones – I read 40 fiction books and 12 non-fiction books.
Top 3 authors: Laini Taylor, Patrick Ness, Megan Abbott
Finally, here are the 10 books I enjoyed the most out of the lot (in no particular order):
Fates and Furies – Lauren Groff – I loved reading stories told through specific points of view – these characters had very strong and interesting points of view.
The Rest of Us Just Live Here – Patrick Ness – Just a ton of fun – particularly for a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer type stuff.
The Shining Girls – Lauren Beukes – Man, Lauren Beukes creates such a creepy and compelling atmosphere in this book. I wish I knew how to describe it better so I could find more books like it.
The Sellout – Paul Beatty – Awful, hilarious, unsettling. Can’t recommend it enough.
Uproot: Travels in 21st-Century Music and Digital Culture – Jace Clayton – Jace has always had a way with words. No exception here. This is a fun and fascinating travelogue/memoir/think-piece on modern music and culture.
Through the Woods – Emily Carroll – So dark and wonderful.
Night of Cake and Puppets – Laini Taylor – I enjoyed the whole series that this book is a part of, but this little story really stuck out. I’d love to read more short stuff by Laini Taylor.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman – Not sure why it took me so long to get around to reading this one. It’s as great as everyone says.
A Monster Calls – Patrick Ness – This one is one you have to read the physical version of – the art that goes with it is perfect. Ness handles grief here expertly.
Spelunky – Derek Yu – Here’s a book that’s ostensibly about a video game, but really I found to be more about creating something that’s important to you. I’d recommend it to anyone. I hope Derek Yu has more book-writing in his future.
So, what do I take from this analysis? What do I want to change about my reading habits? Not a lot, really. I’d like to read a few more non-fiction books, mostly just because the non-fiction pile seems to grow fast. Mostly, I just want to keep up the pace. I’ve made a conscious effort to read at least 40 pages per day this year – it’s been great and I want to keep that going.