Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009: My Year in Books

Wow! Another year down ... Book blogging has continued to be tons of fun for me. I love reading books, writing reviews, exploring your blogs, reading comments, writing comments - everything. Thanks for hanging out with me this year. I hope you keep coming back throughout 2010 and beyond!

Here's how my reading year played out (according to a highly-respected statistician me):

Total books read: 140 (25 more than last year)

Of those:

104 were fiction; 36 were non-fiction

71 were adult books; 36 were middle grade/children's books; and 33 were YA (I don't count picture books as part of my yearly total)

106 were written by women; 30 were written by men; 2 were written by a male/male team; 1 was written by a male/female team; and 1 was written by various authors

124 were written by Americans, 11 of whom are African-American, 1 of whom is Indian-American; and 1 of whom is Chinese-American.

5 were written by Canadian authors; 5 by English authors; 3 by Irish authors; 1 by a German author; and 1 by a Jamaican-born author.

10 of the books were written by LDS authors.

71 of the books I read were review books (51%); 47 came from the library (34%); and 22 came off my personal bookshelves (16%).

The books I listed as favorites are:

The Tale of Desperaux by Kate DiCamillo
In Their Own Voices by Rita J. Simon and Rhonda M. Roorda
Second Chance Pass by Robyn Carr
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Enna Burning by Shannon Hale
Nefertiti by Michelle Moran
The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke
The Likeness by Tana French
The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson
Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender
Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Honolulu by Alan Brennert
Schooled by Gordon Korman
Paradise Valley by Robyn Carr
Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko
While I'm Falling by Laura Moriarty
The Name of This Book Is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch
If You're Reading This, It's Too Late by Pseudonymous Bosch
Savvy by Ingrid Law
I'll Never Be French (No Matter What I Do) by Mark Greenside
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Lily's Crossing by Patricia Reilly Giff
Willow Run by Patricia Reilly Giff
The Body Finder by Kimbery Derting
A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly
Marley & Me by John Grogan
The Book of Story Book Beginnings by Kristin Kladstrup
Invisible i by Melissa Kantor
How to Write A Damn Good Novel by James N. Frey

My conclusion? My reading is not nearly as impressive as I think it is :) I feel like I spent every second of my spare time reading, but I only finished 140 books. Hmm ... and I didn't read as diversely as I wanted to. I guess it's not surprising that most of the books I read are by white American women - since that's what I am - but I feel as if I should be branching out just a little.

How did your reading go this year?

I've asked you all to tell me your bookish resolutions for 2010; here are mine:

- Mail out books to the winners of past contests. I'm doing this today since my husband has the day off. Yay!

- Read more. I'd really like to get up to 200 books a year. Do you think I can? I don't know. We'll see.

- Go easy on the challenges. Once again, I failed all the challenges I signed up for this year. It was only 1, but still ... This year, I'm only going to allow myself to sign up for challenges with no deadlines. Those are the only kind I seem to complete :) I also need to work on my own, personal challenge, My Light and Fluffy Fluke-a-Thon.

- Host an event. Again, this will just be a personal thing, but I'm pretty excited about it. My plan is to celebrate Black History Month (February) in a big way. I've discovered several new African-American authors this year, and I'm hoping to find lots more. Since adopting my daughter (who is bi-racial), studying black heritage/culture has become important to me. It may not be possible to post a review every day in February, but I'm sure as heck going to try. If I come up with some good giveaways, we'll do that, too. Sounds fun, right?

In order to be reviewed during Black History Month, a book needs to be either: 1.) written by an author who is Black or bi-racial; 2.) about a Black person/have a Black main character; or 3.) about a subject relevant to Black history, heritage or culture. If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them. I'm going to list "proposed" books on BBB's companion blog, More Bloggin' 'bout Books, so you can see what I've got in mind.

- Interact more with my readers, blogging friends. My Google feeder is so overloaded that I may never catch up, but I'm going to try.

- Keep on having fun.

Happy New Year, everybody!

8 comments:

  1. I'd like to do a breakdown like this...but I think I'm too lazy right now. Darn.

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  2. I just finished reading my 172nd book for 2009... and have my next one (Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George) all lined up. I'll probably hit 172.5 by midnight.

    Resolution: read less. Yes, Susan, LESS! Instead, I want to write more. Your goal of 200 books might be do-able (look how many I read with a full-time job and three kids!) but I think reading 100 books and WRITING ONE BOOK is even more impressive.

    **Who else would sacrifice reading a few of Susan's stunning book reviews for a chance to read a whole book by her? Let's hear it!!**

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  3. Great year Susan! And I love your Black History month idea. For the past two years, I tried to review some books about Black History in Feb. and have found it to be one of the more rewarding deliberate reading that I've done. http://blog.mawbooks.com/tag/black-history - if you are interested in some recommendations. I'm looking forward to seeing what you review.

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  4. I enjoyed your favorites list! I read The Hunger Games, The Help, and Schooled.

    Happy New Year, Susan!

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  5. Your list looks good I notice you enjoyed Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly I am reading her book The Tea Rose and really liking it..wow 140 books I could only dream of reading half of that,,I only read 24 books this year so that is one on my list is to read alot more books..and I would like to enter more challenges I only did 1 this year..well I hope you have a good New Year talk to you in 2010,,,

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  6. Only 140? ONLY? Please! That's a HUGE amount! :) Way to go!

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  7. Wow!! 140 is so impressive. I managed only 101. I was surprised to see that I read male/female authors fairly evenly (50 to 51). I didn't break down my books much more than that.

    Nice resolutions. I sign up for tons of challenges, but I managed to finish 20 last year, so I must be doing ok.

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  8. It looks like you had a great reading year, Susan, even if you don't think so. :-) To me, 140 is an impossible dream. LOL

    Good luck with your goals this year and have a very happy New Year.

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