Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014: The Year in Review

2014: The Year in Review

In 2010 I got this meme, but alas I did not note where I found it. Still, it was a fun way to summarize the year, so I thought I'd do it again.

How many books read in 2014? 
82. I went two books past my GoodReads goal of 80!

How many fiction and non fiction? 
37 fiction and 45 nonfiction. I'm usually split pretty close to 50/50 but I always am surprised I didn't read more nonfiction because that is what I tend to gravitate towards. So not surprising this year! Book clubs certainly keep the fiction side of the equation up.

Male/Female author ratio? 
28 men and 57 women. Last year my list was also skewed this way although in the past this has also been 50/50. The difference this year is that I did make a conscious effort to read more women. I'm not sure how my year of reading would have looked different if I hadn't made that effort, but I'm glad I did as I thoroughly enjoyed it. (Both this and fic/NF are through Heathen)

Favorite book of 2014? The Martian by Andy Weir

Least favorite? 
Long Man by Amy Greene. That makes me sad. I really wanted to like this book, but it was a disappointment. The good news is that I read pretty much all books that I liked this year!

Any that you simply couldn't finish and why? 
And Ladies of the Club by Helen Hooven Santmyer. I still may finish it. It wasn't quite interesting enough to justify its length (1433 pages!) but I made it about halfway through. I've certainly finished much worse books, it's just they were shorter. I spent three weeks on this to get just halfway. I know it's the favorite book of a lot of people and I was hoping it would really pull me in like it's done for so many others, but alas, it did not.

Oldest book read?  The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey (1951)
Newest?  The Secret History of Wonder Woman by Jill Lepore (Oct. 28, 2014)

Longest and shortest book titles? (not including subtitles)
Longest:  Weird Things Customers Say in Bookstores (35)
Shortest:  Byrd and Wash (tie) (4)

Longest and shortest books?
Longest: The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York by Robert A. Caro (1344 pages)
Shortest: The Subversive Copy Editor: Advice from Chicago (or, How to Negotiate Good Relationships with Your Writers, Your Colleagues, and Yourself) by Carol Fisher Saller (148 pages)

How many books from the library? 
Fifteen, a new record!

Any translated books? 
None. Man, that's two years in a row! Pretty pathetic. I should be sure to make an effort in this area next year.

Most read author of the year, and how many books by that author? 
Gillian Flynn - 2. I really mixed things up this year. But it's rare for me to ever read a bunch of books by the same author in a short time frame.

Any re-reads? 
None. This is also unusual for me, but this year I read a LOT of new books, which squeezed out rereads for the most part. I have reread a couple of Little House books, but I've reread them so many dozens of times that I don't even count them anymore (Little House on the Prairie, On the Banks of Plum Creek, and By the Shores of Silver Lake)

Favorite character of the year? 
Mad Hannah Mabbot, the female pirate captain from Cinnamon and Gunpowder by Eli Brown

Which countries did you go to through the page in your year of reading? 
England, Israel, Guatemala, France, Mars (not a country, but certainly not local!), Australia, China, Germany, Libya, and Chechnya

Which book wouldn’t you have read without someone’s specific recommendation? 
The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York by Robert A. Caro (thanks Mariah)
America's Women: Four Hundred Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates, and Heroines by Gail Collins (thanks Emily)
Blood Done Sign My Name: A True Story by Timothy B. Tyson (thanks Bill)
The Goats by Brock Cole (thanks Emily again!)
The Distance by Helen Giltrow (thanks Books on the Nightstand)

Which author was new to you in 2014 that you now want to read the entire works of? 
Jill Lepore and Joshilyn Jackson

Which books are you annoyed you didn’t read? 
Life Itself by Roger Ebert (saw the documentary!), Pedestrianism: When Watching People Walk Was America's Favorite Spectator Sport by Matthew Algeo, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by Caitlin Doughty. These last two I even had checked out of the library and I was about to read them when I had to make a switch because of a work assignment.

Did you read any books you have always been meaning to read? 
The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York by Robert A. Caro, and The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey

2013 TOP EIGHT Book Events in Carin’s Book Life - in no particular order:
8. Attempted to take a MOOC (massive open online class), my first one, on Laura Ingalls Wilder, but at the exact moment the class started, I became completely swamped and that didn't let up until too late. I will try again next year.
7. I was asked to be a speaker at the North Carolina's Writer's Network Fall Conference
6. I had four events (so far!) for my book and one of them was standing-room only (Thanks Hub City Bookshop!)
5. I went to Booktopia-Asheville!
4. My book was named one of the Best Indie Books of 2014 by Kirkus Reviews!
3. I am now officially president of the Women's National Book Association!
2. Beat the pants off my sales goal for 2014! (Seriously, beat it by nearly 50%.)
1. Published my book!

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