I realize that 2015 is now well underway, but I had intended to write this post at the end of 2014 and got waylaid and now I just want to do it anyway. So here I am!
What happened to me in 2014? Theory: ToB + Non-fictionI got woefully behind this past year, both in reading my books and in writing about them. The reading, I think, happened early on in the year when I went all-out reading as many Tournament of Books books as I could, thereby pushing my TBR books to the bottom of the reading list for the first three months of the year.
As I've already said, that's not happening this year. It was fun in its own way, but I'm taking a break. If any of the ToB books strike my fancy, I may try to get to them before March, but I'm not racing to complete as many as possible again. It was too much, and then I burned out for at least another month after it was done.
Also... I had quite a few non-fiction books last year -- 7 out of 12 of my books! (I didn't realize Arc of Justice was not fiction until I started it...) I am not much of a non-fiction reader, so I struggled to write about those books (which means that I procrastinated and, when the end-of-the-year crunch hit, I was woefully unprepared). Only 3 of my books this year are non-fiction (well, as far as I know... apparently I am dumb and do not always notice!) so that should help.
Abandoning with Abandon = Success!I also wanted to report on my plan to "Abandon with abandon" this year. As you know, I *struggle* to stop reading a book I am not interested in, but 2014 was my year -- I abandoned reading 13 books! And I didn't look back! (Well, until right now, cause I wrote them down so I could tell you about them... and also so that I would remember not to pick them up again. Heh.)
Aaaand... on a related note, let's have a moment of silence for one of those books that has been near and not-at-all-dear (apparently!) to me... Don't Know Much About History. This book first showed up on my TBR list in 2012 and after 3 attempts at it (even completing an entire chapter in 2014 and making a year-long plan!) I have officially dumped it. It's already gone -- donated to the library. I just couldn't get interested. Guess I will continue to not know much about history. Oh, well. Moving on!
To Be Perused (TBR): What's up with that?!Oh, yeah... I had a whole other list -- art books to peruse! As I did a terrible job of keeping up with my TBR books, so TBP fell even further down on the To Be Done list. I did peruse one of them (Detroit Ruins) so I will write about that soon.
And, what the heck -- I'll post the list again for 2015. Perhaps this is my year? Or not... doesn't matter. It's our blog and I'll skip on my TBP list if I want to, list if I want toooooo....
My FavoritesI forgot that I listed my favorites of the year last year. I just checked my 2014 list to see if I had any that I really loved and yes, yes I did. Here they are:
A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth OzekiYou are familiar with this book, as it was on ToB. But besides just being a great book, this was also a terrific aBook/pBook combo pack -- I read the pBook and aBook together and I am so glad I did. The images in the pBook are fantastic, but the author herself reads the aBook and her self-editing throughout the book was so very interesting!
All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony DoerrThis one is on the ToB list for 2015, so I imagine you will be reading it soon enough -- I am looking forward to discussing a couple of plot points with you, actually. I really liked this book... interesting, touching, suspenseful. Just a great read.
Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman CapoteHave you read this book? I have seen the movie many times and this is totally a case where the book is so much better than the movie! While I did, of course, picture Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard the entire time I was reading it, I thought the story was so much more enjoyable, complex, and heartbreaking than the movie.
Calling Invisible Women by Jeanne RayOh, man. This book was kind of tough, but also funny and really good. After generally feeling like she is invisible for some time, this woman wakes up one day to find out that she is actually invisible. Aaand... her husband and kids do not notice! Ooof. I thought it was going to be super heavy-handed after that, but there is also a certain lightness to the book that makes it a truly enjoyable read while also being a commentary on a woman's status in the home and society.
Flat Out Love by Jessica ParkHave you read this? It's YA and pretty darned charming... much of it is predictable, but the "flat out" elements are sweet and disarming. I loved the characters and didn't want it to end.
Heft by Liz MooreThis one was random and unexpected -- I think I got it for free or super-cheap as a Kindle deal and I didn't have any expectations. But I really, really enjoyed it. An extremely overweight recluse and an athletic teenager become unlikely friends through their shared connection: the teen's mom is the older man's former student. This quote from Amazon nails it: "It is a memorable, heartbreaking, and ultimately redemptive novel about finding sustenance and friendship in the most surprising places."
Long Division by Kiese LaymonWell, I don't have to tell you anything about this book, cause I know you love it too. Another one that makes me grateful for the ToB. This one needs a re-read, I think!
Night Film by Marisha PesslSpooky good. Really tightly written. Mystery, drama, general weirdness. Loved it. Have you read it? I'd recommend the pBook -- besides the awesome story, there is a lot to see.
Paper Towns by John GreenAnother YA here -- I went on a little John Green odyssey this year and also read An Abundance of Katherines and Looking for Alaska, which were also good. But this one has stuck with me, months after reading it. The characters and their emotions and reactions were achingly real.
The NumbersAnd finally, the boring stuff: the numbers! In 2013, I read 100 books and I speculated that it was at the expense of not making things. But I am happy to report that in 2014, I read 101 books and I also made stuff! So yay! A big part of that is because, once again, about half of my books were aBooks (so I can listen while crafting). Same as last year, about a quarter were eBooks and a quarter were pBooks. Aaand... half of all of them were library books. The library is awesome!!
Thank you for indulging me on this retrospective. How was your year in reading?