For the past three years, at the end of the year, I’ve sat down and come up with a list of the top ten books I read over the past year. This year, instead of doing that, I thought it might be more interesting to detail some of my reading stats for the year. I had a pretty great reading year, blowing past my goal to read 75 books, and I read some phenomenal titles. Let’s take a look back on 2014 in reading, shall we?
Total books read: 81
Most books read in one month: July and August (9)
Least books read in one month: December (3)
Male authors read: 6
Female authors read: 48
Books set in other countries: 15
Books written by non-white authors: 4
So, a solid year of reading with 81 books completed. I’m pretty happy with that number! But one thing I’m realizing is how much I need to diversify my reading selections – only 6 male authors and 4 non-white authors read. This was super enlightening for me, but I have a good plan for diversifying my reading selections for 2015 that I talk about below!
Chick lit: 23
YA fiction: 8
Historical fiction: 2
Middle-grade fiction: 1
No surprise here – I read a ton of romance and chick lit. These are my favorite genres to read because they’re light-hearted and make me feel good. As much as I want to diversify my reading, my selections will probably always fall heavily on the romance/chick lit side of things.
I read 11 books this year with my book club. We pick a lot of light reads because that’s what we love to read, but there were some heavier picks. This year, we read:
- January – The Rosie Project (4 stars)
- February – The Husband’s Secret (5 stars)
- March – The Girl You Left Behind (3 stars)
- April – The Storyteller (4 stars)
- May – The Interestings (3 stars)
- June – The Edge of Normal (5 stars)
- July – The Book of Bright Ideas (4.5 stars)
- August – Code Name Verity (3 stars)
- September – The Silent Wife (3 stars)
- October – Ugly Love (5 stars)
- November – Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour (4 stars)
- December – A House in the Sky (did not read)
Other Fun Stats
Book with most pages: In Her Shoes by Jennifer Weiner (560 pages)
Book with least pages: Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen and Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White (192 pages)
Book that did not live up to the hype: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
Book I think everybody should read: The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
My Top Five Books
- Two Kisses for Maddy by Matthew Logelin – This book affected me sooooo much. I almost don’t want to include it on my list because it put me in a funk for weeks after I read it. But I think that’s why I have to include it. This book touched me deeply, even though the subject matter was utterly heart-wrenching and depressing. It’s not a book for the faint of heart, but Matthew’s writing is so raw and gutting that I’m glad I read his story.
- The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal – I wrote an entire post on my thoughts on the book, even though I could have probably written three or four more posts on how this book affected me. (I had Many Thoughts!) This book was such an interesting read, though, and I highly recommend it to anyone.
- The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini – Hosseini can do no wrong, in my opinion. His books are so engaging, even if they aren’t the type of books I’d normally pick up. I’m never disappointed by him!
- Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell – I’m so glad I discovered Rainbow Rowell this year. Her books make me so happy. This was the first novel of hers I read, and I’m so glad I started with this one. I read the majority of this book in one afternoon because I couldn’t put it down for anything.
- The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom – If you haven’t read this book yet, just stop everything you’re doing, go buy the book, and read it. Please. It is such a great read, and it gave me all of the happy feels.
Final Thoughts & 2015 Goals
So, I’m pretty happy with my reading accomplishments this year! I didn’t read nearly as many books this year as I did last year, but 102 books read in one year is fairly nuts and I don’t think I’ll ever come close to that number again. Which I’m fine with – quality over quantity, right? I’d rather read fewer books that really speak to me, than many books that I rush through just to say I’ve read them. But still – 81 books is a huge number! I’m proud of that number. I’m proud I still made time to read, and that I read some phenomenal books that stuck with me for a long time.
In 2015, I’m lowering the total number of books I want to read because I really want to be more intentional about what I read. I’m still planning to read my romance novels and fun chick lit books, but I decided to take on the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. I’ve already started perusing book lists and making a category on my Goodreads page of the books I might read to fulfill all the different challenges posed, and I’m excited to diversify my reading selections this year. Some of the best books I’ve read in my life are because I took a chance on a book that wasn’t in my reading comfort zone, and I’m hoping to find more favorite reads thanks to this challenge.
How many books did you read in 2014? Have you set any reading goals for 2015?