My reading life - what I read in 2017 and aims for 2018

Author: Anne

Date Published: Jan 1st 2018, 12:52pm

2017 was an excellent year for reading for me. I read 408 books in the year which is not as many as I have in previous years but still an impressive number ! I mostly accomplished this by doing little else apart from reading, reviewing and blogging and spending most of my evenings and weekends with my nose between the pages. I didn’t participate in any book challenges during the year so the books were mostly my choice based on preference and recommendations.

I read a variety of different genres and stretched myself l little more than usual. I finally got seriously into historical novels and have read those by Karen Maitland and Hilary Mantel among others. I have also spent a lot of time reading Regency romances for which I have acquired a taste – they are great, escapist reading.

21% of the books I read were crime/thriller/suspense which is actually a reduction on the year before because I do find so many of these are written to a too familiar pattern and I am tiring a bit of their predictibility. Fantasy/Science Fiction was much the same figure and holds steady year on year. The big change came with non-fiction where I read 54 titles which constituted 13% of the total which was double the proportion of the previous year. I have been trying to increase the number of non-fiction titles I read so I was pleased with this although I note that they do tend to take longer to read than the fiction so I do get through fewer in the time available. They were mainly history, biography and true crime.

The rest of the total was what I generally call novels. This includes classics, romances, literary fiction, historical novels and all those other books which are not so easily classified.

I read 42% of my books on one or other of my trusty Kindles and 55% in paper form. I am trying to dispense with the paper books but somehow my pile of unread titles doesn’t get much smaller ! The proportions are much the same as last year although this year I also read 14 titles on audiobooks having finally got into this medium, especially when commuting.

72% of these titles were written by women which is a large increase on the previous year and possibly reflects the Regency romances. Without a lot of research it is impossible to say how many of the authors come from an ethnic background different from my own but I do think that it is a very small number and I really need to seek out more diverse reading in the next year. I also read very few books in translation.

My aims for 2017 :

• Reduce the number of paper books I have waiting to be read y reading those I have and not acquiring any more

• Read more non-fiction

• Read more diversely in terms of author and of characters

• Abandon books sooner and stop reading to the end when I am not enjoying it

• Participate in a book challenge to encourage variety

As long as people read my blogs and reviews I shall keep on writing about the books I love.