What I Read in 2016: The Year In Review

What I Read in 2016: The Year In Review

For the Goodreads graphical version of this report, click here.

Over the past few years, I’ve set myself fairly aggressive reading goals, and managed to hit those goals. 2016 is the first year that I can remember falling short of my goal, and not by a little bit—but a lot.

My challenge to myself this year was to read 20 books, and I’ve only managed 19. That’s down almost in half from my total last year (itself down significantly from the year before). In fact, it’s the smallest number of books I’ve read in over a decade, and probably longer (I started tracking in 1999).

My staggering decline in reading started with my new job, which eliminated my daily commute. I used to let my Kindle read to me while driving to and from work, which allowed me to get through books at a more prodigious rate than simply reading when I had free time available. Add to the fact that 2016 left me very little free time at all, other than just before bed, and I end up with the low numbers overall.

Still, that’s not to say there weren’t some great books I read this year, because there were. Unfortunately, there are more books on my to-read list than I’ll probably ever get to. When I ended 2015, I had 84 books on this list. As of the end of 2016, the list stands at 96. At my current rate of reading, it will take me six years to finish them all—and that’s assuming nothing else gets added to the list, which most certainly will happen.

Looking forward to the next year, I’ve got some series that I want to both begin and continue, as well as some standalone novels that look really interesting. My choices lately have been difficult to make, partly due to the fact that I want to spend my limited time reading good books. As a result, I’ve shied away from some books that I might otherwise have selected.

Still, it’s time to look back at what I read this year:

Books

Books Read: 19
Pages Read: 7,650 (20.95 pages/day)
Average Length: 403 pages
Shortest Book: 332 pages (Old Man’s War)
Longest Book: 583 pages (Leviathan Wakes)
My Average Rating for 2016: 4.1

  1. Thunderbird by Jack McDevitt (370 pages | 1/1 – 1/11 | My rating: 4/5)
  2. Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith (498 pages | 1/11 – 1/31 | My rating: 5/5)
  3. The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu (400 pages | 1/31 – 2/16 | My rating: 3/5)
  4. ** Morning Star by Pierce Brown (545 pages | 2/16 – 2/28 | My rating: 5/5)
  5. ** Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey (583 pages | 2/29 – 4/7 | My rating: 4/5)
  6. Old Man’s War by John Scalzi (332 pages | 4/8 – 4/19 | My rating: 5/5)
  7. Quantum Night by Robert J. Sawyer (366 pages | 4/21 – 4/29 | My rating: 4/5)
  8. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers (467 pages | 4/30 – 5/21 | My rating: 4/5)
  9. Star Wars: Bloodline by Claudia Gray (352 pages | 5/23 – 6/24 | My rating: 4/5)
  10. The Long Cosmos by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter (400 pages | 6/25 – 7/10 | My rating: 4/5)
  11. ** Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters (336 pages | 7/10 – 7/18 | My rating: 4/5)
  12. Star Wars: Life Debt by Chuck Wendig (448 pages | 7/18 – 8/7 | My rating: 4/5)
  13. Written in Fire by Marcus Sakey (348 pages | 8/8 – 8/15 | My rating: 4/5)
  14. Join by Steve Toutonghi (336 pages | 8/24 – 9/17 | My rating: 4/5)
  15. Death Wave by Ben Bova (414 pages | 9/17 – 10/9 | My rating: 3/5)
  16. ** One Second After by William R. Forstchen (351 pages | 10/10 – 11/27 | My rating: 5/5)
  17. Star Wars: Catalyst by James Luceno (352 pages | 11/27 – 12/9 | My rating: 4/5)
  18. Star Wars: Ahsoka by E.K. Johnston (400 pages | 12/10 – 12/15 | My rating: 4/5)
  19. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story by Alexander Freed (352 pages | 12/19 – 12/31 | My rating: 4/5)
    ** Denotes highly recommended titles

Looking forward to the new year, I suppose I should set myself a new reading goal for 2017. Considering I shot for (and missed) just 20 books this year, I will endeavor to read at least that many next year. Therefore, if I can finish 20 books in 2017, I’ll be very happy.

What I Read in 2015: The Year In Review

For the condensed, graphically pretty version of this that Goodreads provides, click here.

While my reading rates continue to decline, my to-read list certainly hasn’t kept pace; it has grown by a full 20 books this year, which means nearly every book I read got immediately replaced by another added to my list–not the trend I was hoping for.

Still, I read some great books in 2015, and some that were just mediocre. I’ve been using Goodreads to track this data for a while now, and I really like it. In fact, the site really makes this review almost unnecessary. However, I still like to force myself to ponder what I’ve read, and what I plan to read, and this review does that nicely.

So looking back at 2015, I did manage to exceed my reading goal of 25 books. I actually ended at precisely 30 books finished.

I ended 2014 with 62 books on my to-read list, and have added 22 more so my list stands at 84 books. This is actually conservative, as a couple are the first of a series, that might entail more books, should I enjoy the introductory volume. Factoring in the less ‘captive’ time I have to listen to or read books, it might be a very long time before I make my way through this list–in fact, if I ever do.

All books this year were eBooks, though I have some physical novels lying around, I’ve yet to read them. I even managed to collect some of my past reading list into electronic form, and have a pretty complete catalog of them. While I certainly don’t have everything I’ve ever read in eBook form, I’ve got a large percentage of it that I’ve been tracking for the past several years.

So let’s break down the year, using Goodreads’ metrics:

Books

Books Read: 30
Pages Read: 10, 208 (27.96 pages/day)
Average Length: 352 pages
Shortest Book: 60 pages (Star Wars: The Perfect Weapon)
Longest Book: 880 pages (Seveneves)
My Average Rating for 2015: 3.6

  1. Golden Son by Pierce Brown (464 pages | 1/1 – 1/8 | My rating: 5/5)
  2. Final Days by Gary Gibson (384 pages | 1/9 – 1/19 | My rating: 3/5)
  3. Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer (200 pages | 1/19 – 1/23 | My rating: 2/5)
  4. A Murder of Clones by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (362 pages | 1/23 – 2/2 | My rating: 3/5)
  5. Brilliance by Marcus Sakey (434 pages | 2/2 – 2/9 | My rating: 4/5)
  6. A Better World by Marcus Sakey (390 pages | 2/9 – 2/13 | My rating: 3/5)
  7. * Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (393 pages | 2/14 – 2/24 | My rating: 5/5)
  8. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn (349 pages | 2/25 – 3/6 | My rating: 3/5)
  9. K-PAX V: The Coming of the Bullocks by Gene Brewer (195 pages | 3/6 – 3/11 | My rating: 2/5)
  10. Search and Recovery by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (221 pages | 3/17 – 3/24 | My rating: 3/5)
  11. The Peyti Crisis by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (351 pages | 3/24 – 4/4 | My rating: 3/5)
  12. Star Wars: Tarkin by James Luceno (228 pages | 4/4 – 4/10 | My rating: 3/5)
  13. Star Wars: Heir to the Jedi by Kevin Hearne (305 pages | 4/10 – 4/21 | My rating: 4/5)
  14. Yesterday’s Kin by Nancy Kress (192 pages | 4/21 – 4/23 | My rating: 4/5)
  15. * The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu (640 pages | 4/23 – 5/8 | My rating: 5/5)
  16. Star Wars: Lords of the Sith by Paul S. Kemp (320 pages | 5/9 – 5/20 | My rating: 4/5)
  17. The Affinities by Robert Charles Wilson (304 pages | 5/21 – 6/3 | My rating: 5/5)
  18. The Hercules Text by Jack McDevitt (354 pages | 6/3 – 6/20 | My rating: 3/5)
  19. Depth by Lev A.C. Rosen (304 pages | 6/20 – 6/25 | My rating: 4/5)
  20. * Seveneves by Neal Stephenson (880 pages | 6/25 – 7/27 | My rating: 5/5)
  21. Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson (480 pages | 7/28 – 8/12 | My rating: 4/5)
  22. The Long Utopia by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter (368 pages | 8/13 – 9/5 | My rating: 3/5)
  23. Star Wars: Aftermath by Chuck Wendig (346 pages | 9/5 – 9/18 | My rating: 2/5)
  24. Power Surge by Ben Bova (368 pages | 9/18 – 10/5 | My rating: 3/5)
  25. Vigilantes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (262 pages | 10/7 – 10/24 | My rating: 3/5)
  26. Starbase Human by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (338 pages | 10/25 – 11/16 | My rating: 3/5)
  27. Masterminds by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (384 pages | 11/16 – 12/6 | My rating: 4/5)
  28. Star Wars: The Perfect Weapon by Delilah S. Dawson (60 pages | 12/8 – 12/8 | My rating: 4/5)
  29. Future Visions: Original Science Fiction Inspired by Microsoft by Multiple Authors (12/9 – 12-24 | My rating: 4/5)
  30. Star Wars: The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster (272 pages  | 12/24 – 12/29 | My rating: 4/5)
  • Highly recommended titles.

Looking back, I’m also a little bit surprised how many books I read were ‘series’ books, in one form or another. Looking toward 2016, while there are some really good standalone books I’m interested in, there are also a lot of series books in my list, many of which will get prioritized. While I have a few that are a little bit off my beaten path, most are straight down the science fiction path that I tend to adhere to. For yet another year, the Culture series remains on my list, as well as Orson Scott Card’s Shadow series.

At last it’s time for predictions. My 2016 reading goal is for 20 books, which is by far a very small goal for me. However, considering my reading pace had slowed drastically, and I don’t envision a lot of extra time spent reading over the next year, I feel it’s a realistic expectation for how much reading I can get done.

What I Read in 2014: The Year In Review

Here we are in 2015, what should be the ‘future’, and yet it’s still very much the present. As I look back at the previous year, and all the books I read, it’s interesting to see where we are in regards to the fictional version of 2015–the things we have, and the technology that hasn’t shown up. “Where’s my flying car?” people ask. And while the flying car does technically exist (though not for purchase yet), something far more practical is on the verge of becoming reality: the self-driving car.

But I digress, this is supposed to be a review of what I read last year, not the state of technology, or science fiction. But speaking of science fiction, I tend to read the genre almost exclusively. While that’s still true in 2014, I made a couple picks that were far from my usual, with choices like The Girl With All The Gifts, and  The Silkworm. There were also a couple standout novels that introduced me to new authors whom I will be looking at far more closely in the future.

Some things truly never change, however. I started the year with a goal of reading 35 books. I did, in fact, exceed that goal by reading 38 books. This was actually one of my highest years in both books and page count. Prior to 2014 (and 2013 before that), you’d have to go back to 2007 to find higher totals; I’m rather impressed with myself.

I ended 2013 with 62 books on my to-read list, and at the end of 2014, still have 62 books on my to-read list; I fear it’s a never-shortening list. It seems the more things change, the more they stay the same.

A couple other tidbits of note: This was yet another year in that I read 100% eBooks (with the exception of one audiobook that I also had as an eBook.) It was also my 2nd full year without reading a Star Wars book. While some may see this as unremarkable, for me, it’s far from it.

So without further ado, here’s what I read in 2014:

Books

Books Read: 38
Pages Read: 14,324 (39.35 pages/day)

  1. The Road by Cormac McCarthy (306 pages | 1/1 – 1/6 | My rating: 4/5)
  2. Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay (304 pages | 1/7 – 1/10 | My rating: 3/5)
  3. On the Steel Breeze by Alastair Reynolds (492 pages | 1/12 – 1/23 | My rating: 4/5)
  4. Proxima by Stephen Baxter (464 pages | 1/23 – 1/31 | My rating: 5/5)
  5. Home Fires by Gene Wolfe (305 pages | 2/1 – 2/11 | My rating: 2/5)
  6. Dark Eden by Chris Beckett (448 pages | 2/11 – 2/23 | My rating: 4/5)
  7. *The Martian by Andy Weir (385 pages | 2/23 – 2/27 | My rating: 4/5)
  8. Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (512 pages | 2/28 – 3/14 | My rating: 3/5)
  9. *Red Rising by Pierce Brown (401 pages | 3/14 – 3/21 | My rating: 5/5)
  10. Influx by Daniel Suarez (417 pages | 3/22 – 3/28 | My rating: 3/5)
  11. Archetype by M.D. Waters (384 pages | 3/30 – 4/12 | My rating: 4/5)
  12. Great North Road by Peter F. Hamilton (946 pages | 4/13 – 5/14 | My rating: 3/5 | My Review)
  13. Transhuman by Ben Bova (368 pages | 5/15 – 5/20 | My rating: 3/5)
  14. Power Play by Ben Bova (353 pages | 5/20 – 5/28 | My rating: 3/5)
  15. Mars, Inc: The Billionaire’s Club by Ben Bova (319 pages | 5/29 – 6/7 | My rating: 3/5)
  16. Last and First Contacts by Stephen Baxter (149 pages | 6/7 – 6/11 | My rating: 3/5)
  17. While We Run by Karen Healey (333 pages | 6/12 – 6/20 | My rating: 3/5)
  18. Shipstar by Gregory Benford and Larry Niven (416 pages | 6/20 – 7/2 | My rating: 3/5)
  19. The Long Mars by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter (373 pages | 7/2 – 7/14 | My rating: 4/5)
  20. **The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey (408 pages | 7/15 – 7/25 | My rating: 4/5)
  21. World of Trouble by Ben H. Winters (322 pages | 7/26 – 7/29 | My rating: 4/5)
  22. The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (455 pages | 7/30 – 8/10 | My rating: 4/5)
  23. *Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas by John Scalzi (318 pages | 8/10 – 8/13 | My rating: 5/5)
  24. The Maze Runner by James Dashner (386 pages | 8/13 – 8/18 | My rating: 4/5)
  25. The Scorch Trials by James Dashner (370 pages | 8/19 – 8/26 | My rating: 3/5)
  26. The Death Cure by James Dashner (370 pages | 8/26 – 8/31 | My rating: 4/5)
  27. *Lock In by John Scalzi (337 pages | 8/31 – 9/5 | My rating: 5/5)
  28. Frameshift by Robert J. Sawyer (352 pages | 9/6 – 9/11 | My rating: 4/5)
  29. Starplex by Robert J. Sawyer (304 pages | 9/12 – 9/18 | My rating: 4/5)
  30. The Revisionists by Thomas Mullen (407 pages | 9/18 – 9/30 | My rating: 4/5)
  31. The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey (300 pages | 10/1 – 10/8 | My rating: 3/5)
  32. *Replay by Ken Grimwood (320 pages | 10/9 – 10/11 | My rating: 5/5)
  33. The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North (424 pages | 10/12 – 10/28 | My rating: 4/5)
  34. The Stars, Like Dust by Isaac Asimov (252 pages | 10/29 – 11/6 | My rating: 3/5)
  35. The Currents of Space by Isaac Asimov (252 pages | 11/6 – 11/19 | My rating: 3/5)
  36. Pebble in the Sky by Isaac Asimov (256 pages | 11/20 – 12/5 | My rating: 3/5)
  37. Coming Home by Jack McDevitt (368 pages | 12/5 – 12/11 | My rating: 3/5)
  38. Ultima by Stephen Baxter (464 pages | 12/12 – 12/30 | My rating: 4/5)
  • Highly recommended titles.
    ** Odd choice for me, as this is a zombie novel.

To see this list (and accompanying details) on Goodreads, click here.

In 2015, those 62 books on my to-read list still contain the Culture series, which I’ve yet to start reading. There’s a series by John Scalzi that I’m interested in, now that I’m familiar with his work. I’ve still got Orson Scott Card’s Shadow series to dip into, and I’ll likely spend a good chunk of the year delving into the return of the Retrieval Artist series, as there are several of those novels due out this year. Some of my most anticipated novels of the year are Golden Son, which is due early in January, and The Long Utopia.

While most of my list is still made up of science fiction, I’m still willing to try books outside of my comfort zone. Some of the better books I’ve read have been from there.

So now for predictions: I’m going to shoot for 25 books in 2015–why so low? Two reasons: I’m not sure that I’ll have a commute to work anymore (where I do a lot of my ‘reading’), and because some of the books on my list are quite lengthy in page count. I figure if I manage to read 25 this year, I’m doing quite nicely.

What I Read in 2013: The Year In Review

Each new year, I take a look back at what I’ve read during those previous twelve months. It never ceases to amaze me how many good books I’ve read–and how many books I was interested in that turned out to be less-than-stellar. 2013 was no exception, but also saw some deviations from my typical selection of books. I worked my way through two series, including one I never thought I’d read. I also explored some genres that I don’t usually delve into, with pretty good results.

As far as goals, I set myself a goal to read 30 books in the year, and have exceeded that by a full 45%. In fact, I read more books this year, and more pages than any previous year since keeping track of it all.

In any given year, most of the books I read are relatively middle-of-the-pack regarding quality. Either my scores have changed (which is entirely possible), or the books I selected this year were better-than-average, as very few of the books I read ranked lower than 4 out of 5 stars. I consider the 3-star range ‘average’ so most of the books I read were above-average.

In November 2013, “Ender’s Game” was released to theaters. Based on the book of the same name, which I’d never read, I decided to try reading it before the film came out. I’m glad that I did, since Ender’s Game was a pretty amazing novel. I went on to read the rest of the Ender series, which were quite good. As a result of reading the book, I was very excited to see the movie, which was good, but of course not as good as the book.

2013 was also another all-electronic year. Each title I read was an eBook.

That said, 2013 was an interesting year for books. Here’s how it went for me:

Books

Books read: 43
Pages read: 16,862 (avg. 46.19 pages/day)

  1. * Reamde by Neal Stephenson ( 1,055 pages | 1/1 – 1/22 | My rating: 4/5 | My Review )
  2. * The Long Earth by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter ( 432 pages | 1/23 – 1/27 | My rating: 5/5 | My Review )
  3. Blue Remembered Earth by Alastair Reynolds ( 510 pages | 1/28 – 2/9) | My rating: 4/5 )
  4. Defending Jacob by William Landay ( 432 pages | 2/12 – 2/21 | My rating: 4/5 )
  5. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn ( 434 pages | 2/23 – 3/4 | My rating: 4/5 )
  6. Slow Apocalypse by John Varley ( 443 pages | 3/5 – 3/18 | My rating: 4/5 )
  7. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline ( 384 pages | 3/18 – 3/22 | My rating: 5/5 )
  8. The Cassandra Project by Jack McDevitt ( 401 pages | 3/27 – 4/1 | My rating: 3/5 )
  9. Apollo’s Outcasts by Allen Steele ( 317 pages | 4/2 – 4/7 | My rating: 4/5 )
  10. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan ( 305 pages | 4/8 – 4/12 | My rating: 5/5 )
  11. After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall by Nancy Kress ( 193 pages | 4/13 – 4/16 | My rating: 5/5 )
  12. Red Planet Blues by Robert J. Sawyer ( 368 pages | 4/16 – 4/21 | My rating: 4/5 )
  13. Consequences by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 368 pages | 4/22 – 5/1 | My rating: 4/5 )
  14. Buried Deep by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 386 pages | 5/1 – 5/7 | My rating: 4/5 )
  15. Paloma by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 372 pages | 5/7 – 5/15 | My rating: 4/5 )
  16. Recovery Man by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 336 pages | 5/15 – 5/23 | My rating: 4/5 )
  17. Duplicate Effort by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 370 pages | 5/23 – 6/2 | My rating: 4/5 )
  18. Anniversary Day by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 348 pages | 6/2 – 6/7 | My rating: 4/5 )
  19. Blowback by Kristine Kathryn Rusch ( 392 pages | 6/7 – 6/15 | My rating: 4/5 )
  20. Inferno by Dan Brown ( 482 pages | 6/19 – 6/29 | My rating: 4/5 )
  21. Cryptic: The Best Short Fiction of Jack McDevitt by Jack McDevitt ( 450 pages | 7/1 – 7/16 | My rating: 5/5 )
  22. The Long War by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter ( 437 pages | 7/17 – 7/24 | My rating: 4/5 )
  23. * The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes ( 384 pages | 7/25 – 8/2 | My rating: 5/5 )
  24. The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury ( 298 pages | 8/3 – 8/9 | My rating: 3/5 )
  25. When We Wake by Karen Healey ( 305 pages | 8/10 – 8/13 | My rating: 4/5 )
  26. * The Cuckoo’s Calling by J.K. Rowling [as Robert Galbraith] ( 465 pages | 8/14 – 8/23 | My rating: 5/5 )
  27. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey ( 497 pages | 8/24 – 8/27 | My rating: 4/5 )
  28. Farside by Ben Bova ( 368 pages | 9/1 – 9/7 | My rating: 2/5 )
  29. New Earth by Ben Bova ( 385 pages | 9/8 – 9/13 | My rating: 3/5 )
  30. Shaman by Kim Stanley Robinson ( 452 pages | 9/13 – 9/27 | My rating: 4/5 )
  31. * Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card ( 352 pages | 10/3 – 10/9 | My rating: 5/5 )
  32. Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card ( 419 pages | 10/9 – 10/17 | My rating: 4/5 )
  33. Xenocide by Orson Scott Card ( 608 pages | 10/17 – 10/30 | My rating: 4/5 )
  34. Children of the Mind by Orson Scott Card ( 387 pages | 10/30 – 11/7 | My rating: 4/5 )
  35. Starhawk by Jack McDevitt ( 418 pages | 11/8 – 11/14 | My rating: 3/5 )
  36. Burning Paradise by Robert Charles Wilson ( 320 pages | 11/15 – 11/19 | My rating: 4/5 )
  37. * The Circle by Dave Eggers ( 504 pages | 11/19 – 11/24 | My rating: 5/5 | My review )
  38. The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters ( 322 pages | 11/25 – 12/3 | My rating: 4/5 )
  39. Countdown City by Ben H. Winters ( 322 pages | 12/3 – 12/8 | My rating: 4/5 )
  40. The Humans by Matt Haig ( 304 pages | 12/9 – 12/12 | My rating: 4/5 )
  41. K-Pax IV: A New Visitor from the Constellation Lyra by Gene Brewer ( 168 pages | 12/12 – 12/16 | My rating: 3/5 )
  42. The Minority Report by Philip K. Dick ( 112 pages | 12/16 – 12/17 | My rating: 5/5 )
  43. Forrest Gump by Winston Groom ( 257 pages | 12/17 – 12/30 | My rating: 3/5 )

* Highly recommended titles

To see this list (and accompanying details) on Goodreads, click here.

Looking forward, 2014 looks to be a bit of a wildcard. There are (to-date) 62 books on my to-read list. A good portion of them are the Culture series, by Iain M. Banks, which I’ve been intrigued by, but never read. Whether the series will remain on my list or not after I start the first, however, I cannot say.

But other than a new series, and a few books that I want to read, I’ve got no real game-plan for the year. Most of my favorite authors have already published late this year, so likely won’t have anything coming out until late next year at the earliest. It’s not as if I don’t have enough reading material to keep me busy, but there’s nothing all that exciting on my list–nothing that I can’t wait to get to. This is the first year in a long time I can recall that being the case.

So in 2014, the question is whether I can surpass the 42 books I read last year and go the distance. I think I’ll set a reasonable goal for myself of 35 books, since some of those on my list are rather lengthy.

2013 Mid-Year Book Review

2013 marks my first year using a completely different method and system for tracking my books and what I’m reading. I’m now fully half-way through the year, and so far have no reservations about continuing down this path. It’s actually rather impressive the level of detail that GoodReads allows me to track, and it does an excellent job of keeping me up-to-date, and organizing my book collection.

So far in 2013, it’s been a somewhat a-typical choice of books for me. I haven’t read a single Star Wars book (and don’t plan to), and I’m already well ahead of the goal I set for myself to read 30 books this year. Of the 20 books I’ve read so far, there were a few standouts. I’ve notated them below.

Unfortunately, the year has seen a halt to my book reviews, which–to me–is disappointing, but I’ve had trouble focusing on writing them, so gave up trying.

Read So Far:

Books finished: 20
Pages read so far: 8,145

  1. *Reamde
  2. *The Long Earth
  3. Blue Remembered Earth
  4. Defending Jacob
  5. *Gone Girl
  6. Slow Apocalypse
  7. *Ready Player One
  8. The Cassandra Project
  9. Apollo’s Outcasts
  10. *Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore
  11. *After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall
  12. Red Planet Blues
  13. Consequences
  14. Buried Deep
  15. Paloma
  16. Recovery Man
  17. Duplicate Effort
  18. Anniversary Day
  19. Blowback
  20. Inferno

I also spent considerable effort working my way through the published Retrieval Artist series, of which I read the first and second volumes last year. The remaining seven volumes were all quite good, and I highly recommend the series.

I also took the time to read a couple books that have been on my list for a while, like Blue Remembered Earth and Reamde. So far, I’ve read three very surprising titles, namely Gone Girl, Ready Player One, and Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore; you’ll notice they’re selected as highly recommended.

I’ve been looking closely at the Ian M. Banks Culture series. I can’t seem to get away from reading about it every time I see an article about the best science fiction. Sadly, now that the author has passed away, I’m finally looking into the books he wrote. I’m not yet sure where this might fall on my reading list for the rest of 2013, but I’ll likely take a crack at the first volume of the series before the ball drops on New Year’s Eve.

There’s also a couple other books coming out by my usual favorites this year, and I look forward to reading those. Right now, there are 45 books on my to-read list, so I guess I’d better keep on plugging away.

What I Read in 2012: The Year In Review

I suppose you could call me a bookworm. For as long as I can recall, I’ve been an avid reader. Ever since I learned to read, I’ve been addicted to books. I can trace my personal collection and reading habits back to 1999, and can account for every single day of reading since January 4th, 2007. For nearly every day of the last 2,187, I have read some type of published writing, be it a book or magazine. That makes for a lot of pages.

2012 started out much like most years, though the first half of the year was filled with some strange choices of books for me, if you’re familiar with my typical reading habits. The Hunger Games trilogy was one I flew through incessantly, and new entries by favorites Kim Stanley Robinson and Robert J. Sawyer brought promise to the rest of the year, but my selections from the second-half left a bit to be desired.

(more…)