I starting using the social reading site, Goodreads, a year ago today. Since then, I have been pretty faithful in recording the books I have read. Since I have so obsessively kept track of them, I thought it would be fun to tally up the statistics for this year of reading. I know I've probably missed a few books, and miscounted a few of these categories, but my underutilized librarian brain had such fun counting and categorizing.
Warning: this is full of dry statistics and will bore most people. Feel free to click away and come back soon for pictures of my kids from the month of April. Soon, I promise.
So here we are.
In the last year, I have read 118 books (about a quarter of the books I probably read annually in my heyday as a nursing mother). Of those, 26 were children's chapter books, 34 young adult novels, 43 adult fiction, 10 non-fiction, 4 comic books (probably lots more, but I started recording the Tintin ones-- it's been a while since I read them all 16 times as a kid), and 1 book of poetry (Caroline Kennedy's anthology, She Walks in Beauty; her criticism was pedestrian at best, but the poems were awesome.) I gave 31 books 5 stars (the highest rating), and 2 books 1 star. The most frequent rating was four stars, with 49 books in that category. There were probably about 4 books that I didn't even finish, because they were so terrible.
The book I read May 25, 2011 was The Five Minute Marriage by Joan Aiken. I had read her children's books, like the incredibly awesome Wolves of Willoughby Chase), but this was the first one of her adult books I had read. It was a deliciously gothic, yet different, sort of novel. And the last book I recorded was The Girl in Blue by P. G. Wodehouse-- a perfectly wonderful example of Wodehouse that Evan and I read aloud together.
I went weeks at a stretch without reading a whole book, most notably in February when we were heading up to Vaughans' for sugaring every weekend. Of course, not reading and finishing a book didn't mean I wasn't reading. I read the entire newspaper, the Syracuse Post-Standard, daily, and we subscribe to four magazines that I read in entirety: This Old House, Fine Homebuilding, Smithsonian, and National Geographic. I read the picture books the kids get out to the library, both by myself and to the kids. (Some popular read-aloud choices with Lincoln lately are Good Night Moon and The Going to Bed Book by Sandra Boynton). I have narrowed my criteria for what I will read lately-- I really don't want to read books about infidelity, or books that use profanity a ton, or books that just aren't well written.
I was surprised at the breakout of categories-- I would have thought I would have read more YA than adult fiction. I probably chose about 1/3 of my books by browsing library shelves, the rest by requesting books I had seen mentioned by other people, or read about in my daily Shelf Awareness e-mail.
I realize this a fairly tedious posting, I just wanted to record these statistics for my future biographers. Now I feel compelled to go read an actual book.