In some ways it is looking like I’m blowing my usual reading amount for a year out of the water. I don’t know that I did for certain as I lifted my moratorium on novellas and short stories. But it is looking like I’ll end 2012 having read about 80 titles. In years past I’ve almost always hit the 62 title mark.
It was a pretty good reading year though. I had 46 rated at 4 stars, which at over 50% of my titles read is quite good in my mind. I tend to look at 3 stars as average - enjoyable and certainly not a waste of time to read, but nothing particularly unique or overly compelling. It is relatively rare that I rate anything 2 stars or less. For one, I usually won’t bother to finish it and unfinished titles don’t count in my final tally. I had only a handful I never finished this year and only one of those wasn’t finished because it was “bad.” The others I think I just wasn’t in the right mind space for them at the time I tried to read them. That happens.
I had only two 5-star rated titles this year. Which really isn’t surprising given that I dole those out very rarely and I did a lot of “popcorn” reading this year. The two 5-star rated titles were The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson and Garden of Lies by Eileen Goudge. Garden of Lies was a re-read as I recall that being my first “steamy” read and I was curious how steamy it would seem so many years later. It wasn’t nearly as steamy as I remember it, but the story is was still really great.
Another change in my reading habits is that I now frequently do have 2-3 fiction titles going at once. I used to only have 1 ficiton title and maybe 1 or 2 non-fiction titles being read at a time. But, I’ve found I still like reading paper books, but they are best read at home so there is usually one of those in progress. I get my fastest and most reading done via Kindle, both my 3rd generation e-ink model now known as the Kindle Keyboard and via desktop software during down time at work. Since there is no wi-fi at work I sometimes have a different title going on the Kindle Keyboard for lunch breaks and whatnot than what I read at work since the computer and Kindle don’t synch up until I get the Kindle on a wi-fi connection.
I do find keeping the books in separate genres helps. Which means I strayed a bit further afield from my cozy mysteries of the last many years and added in romance - more specifically cowboy or small town/rural romances. I would love to have more historical western America romances if you have any suggestions, but mostly I’m finding contemporary titles. The broader genre spectrum means I found a few more favorite authors I’m looking forward to continuing to read, but I found a couple of those in the cozy mystery realm as well.
- Susan Mallery - she wasn’t completely new to me, I had a read a few of her audiobooks in past years, but I fell especially in love with the Fool’s Gold series in the middle and am looking forward to starting it from the beginning at some point in 2013
- Linda Lael Miller - again not completely new to me, but it had been several years since I had read her and I got hooked on the Montana Creeds this year
- B.J. Daniels - I really enjoyed the couple books of hers I read this year, partly because they included good romance, but some decent suspense all set in a rural area so it was all my favs rolled into one
- Elizabeth Peters - is an author I have no excuse for having not read until now as her Amelia Peabody are of course some of the most revered contemporarily written cozies, but I only just got around to reading the first book of the series this year but am definitely looking forward to reading more of them soon
- Nevada Barr - much like Elizabeth Peters, I have no excuse for not having read any of the Anna Pigeon books yet, but after a conversation with my supervisor at work I checked into the availability of the titles at our library and discovered they were available for Kindle and started reading it almost immediately and this is another series I look forward to continuing to read
There are several other authors I will continue to read in 2013, especially as new books come out but there are really too many to name them all.
As is usually, I’m winding up the year with a bunch of holiday reads. They are total fluff and often more novellas and short stories than full length novels (though there are a handful of those as well). But I find they help me get into the holiday spirit a bit.
This year I tracked my reading mostly on Goodreads because they have an app for my phone which made it super convenient to make note of starting or finishing a book. I do try to catch up LibraryThing and Shelfari from time to time (LibraryThing is severely lagging so far this year). Feel free to connect with me on any of those if you’d like to keep up on my reading. Do be aware that my Shelfari tracks all of my Kindle book purchases and I grab a large number of the freebies to have for lending purposes so I may borrow other titles. That means the shelf on there is huge and I have spurts of rather large updates when I have it synch my Amazon purchases.
You can view all of my 2012 titles read on Goodreads. Note that two of the books in the above mosaic I’m expecting to have completed by 2013. I have one I’ll likely finish yet today - Unexpected Gifts by Elena Aitken. And the next one I plan to read I expect I’ll be able to finish before 2013 - Not Another New Year’s by Christie Ridgway.
So, what did you read in 2012? Did you have any stand-outs - either good or bad? Do you have any title suggestions for me for 2013?