My 2019 Reading Stats

I was aware during 2019 that my reading experiences weren’t reaching the highs that other years have. I put it down to me being disgruntled about things in general, but mainly the news in the UK and elsewhere. I read fewer books than I had since joining Goodreads, but still more than my Goodreads Challenge which was 100, I read 111. I thought that maybe I had actually read more pages as quite a lot of my reading seems to have been of chunksters, but no – I read fewer pages than ever before, but that was still 32,492 pages. Oh well, who cares, it isn’t a race! If you’re interested you can look at the books I read here.

I read 39 books by male authors and 72 by female authors (unusual for me as it usually inadvertently ends up being a fairly even score.)

Books by Scottish authors – 22 (must do better)

Books supposedly for children
– 14

Vintage crime – 8 (must be the lowest ever and could be the source of my reading woes)

classics – 21

contemporary crime – 6

non-fiction – 14

books in translation – 8

historical fiction
– 14

The book that most disappointed me was (it might be a shock to some) One Hundred Years of Solitude. It’s a complete mystery to me why that book is so popular.

Despite moaning about it being a bad year reading wise for me there were several that I felt really lucky to have found.

I loved Hilary Mantel’s A Place of Greater Safety.

Also Conn Iggulden’s Wars of the Roses series.

I read some Edna O’Brien books and wondered why I left off reading her for about 30 years.

I loved reading Lucy Mangan’s Bookworm

Hmm, maybe it wasn’t such a bad year for books after all. How was your reading year?

My Mid Year Reading Round Up

I thought I would do a mid year reading round up because I tend not to do any monthly ones. By the end of June I had read 69 books although there are a couple of them that I haven’t blogged about yet. That’s a lot of books read in six months, and it just shows you what a terrible long winter we had, with snow and ice on the roads on and off for six or seven months. The best thing to do was to ‘coorie doon’ and read.

Forty three of the books I read were by female authors, so obviously that means that 26 were by male authors. If I’m recalling correctly last year I ended up having an even split between the sexes, but that was just a fluke.

So far I’ve only read 13 books by Scottish authors – I must do better and I plan to read some by Ali Smith and Louise Welsh by the end of the year so that tally should increase.

Shockingly only 8 of the books I’ve read have been non-fiction. Improvement required! I always read far less non-fiction but I hope to read more by the end of the year. I have some history books I’ve been meaning to get around to for ages.

I think only 14 of the authors involved are actually still alive. This is quite normal for me as I prefer reading older fiction. Peter Ackroyd, Bernard Cornwell, Elly Griffiths, Penelope Lively, Richard K. Massie, Louise Welsh, Len Deighton, Adam Riches, John Le Carre, Anne Fine, Caroline Young, Ann Martin, Daniel Smith, Amor Towles.

Surprisingly only 7 of the books are vintage crime, somehow it seemed like I had read a lot more than that.

Six of the books were aimed at children but have become classics over the years. As ever, good writing is entertaining no matter what age you are when you get around to reading it.

Only four of the books fit into my fairly strict idea of a ‘classic’ Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, Lampedusa’s The Leopard, Trollope’s The American Senator and Sir Walter Scott’s The Bride of Lammermoor.

I couldn’t possibly say which is my favourite read so far this year, but by far the worst was The Strongest Weapon by Notburga Tilt. I have a signed copy of it too!

If you’re interested in seeing all of the books I’ve read have a look at my Goodreads list here.

I hesitate to say it but we’ve been having wonderful weather for over a month now. The schools have just broken up for the summer holidays so I hope it hangs around longer so they can enjoy the unusual weather. It’s over 20 years since we’ve had a decent summer and we had begun to think that the weather had changed and good summers were a thing of the past. The down side of it though is the horrendous peat moorland fires that are raging over large parts of northern England. They must just about be praying for torrential rain there.

Gardening has taken over from reading although I’m still reading quite a lot due to the fact that Jack is glued to the TV watching just about every match in the World Cup – three a day, you wouldn’t think it would be possible – five minutes of football watching is enough for me – but each to their own.