Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: The Best of the Best and the Year in Review


2012 Ten Best of the Best: (in order from most favored) To access my reviews for those books for which I wrote them, click on the title.

Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides (nonfiction)
Games without Rules by Tamim Ansary (nonfiction)
Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas 
Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
The Poisonwoood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
11/22/63 by Stephen King (I cannot believe I never reviewed it!)
Night by Elie Wiesel (nonfiction)
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

2012 Honorable Mentions: (Five star books that missed the cut-I only had sixteen five star reads this year, but it was hard to weed out my top ten! I only let one reread go into my top list-Count of Monte Cristo-and so the other two, Pride and Prejudice and The Hobbit are here by force, otherwise they would most likely have bumped the bottom two books off the above list.)

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Private Life by Jane Smiley
Thirteen Moons by Charles Frazier
Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

2012 Best Audio:

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, narrated by the incomparable Ruby Dee.

11/22/63 by Stephen King, narrated by Craig Wasson, is also worth mentioning as a good one to listen to on audio-it is not for the faint of heart, as it is 31 hours long, but it is a good production.  Another that I greatly enjoyed on audio was Edward Herrmann's reading of David McCullough's The Greater Journey.  They did not win my award for the year, but they are worthy of honorable mentions.

The 2012 Challenge and Stats Report:

I think I learned something about myself and challenges this year-I made way too many challenge lists at the beginning of the year to ever be able to read that many books in the time I have available! However, it was OK, because it gave me a great place to go from which to select my books when the tags come up each month on Play Book Tag, an online reading group that I belong to which, instead of selecting one single book which everyone in the group reads, selects a “Tag”, or theme, around which everyone centers their reading for the month, with each member trying to read at least one book which they can then review and discuss with other members in the group. So, rather than viewing them as "challenges", I really should just view them as "selection" lists. That said, here are my stats for what I was able to accomplish for all the many challenges that I so ambitiously set last January (and no doubt will do again):

Challenges:

Pick a Year Challenge: 10/12
Trim the TBR Challenge:
9/12
Play Book Tag-Read One Book for Every Tag:
12/12 Challenge Complete!
Classics Group-Do All Six Group Reads:
6/6 Challenge Complete!
Long Book Challenge-4000 pages in books 600 pages or longer:
Challenge Complete!
Five and Five Challenge:
6/10
Randomizer Challenge:
6/10

Overall Stats:

77
books total
19
nonfiction (all time low! Usually I read somewhere between a third and half of my total in nonfiction-I was really surprised by this number.)
58
fiction
11
classics (My goal was to read at least 8 this year, so I am happy with this one!)
48 print
29
audio (way less this year, as my migraines have been better-yay!)

All total: 19,033 of pages read in print and 375.5 hours of audio heard.

My overall total of 77 is six books less than last year, but I actually "read" six more books in print than I did last year, and a little more than 4,200 more pages than last year's total page count, as last year I did a lot more of my reading via audio books as I was really struggling with migraines. It was one of my goals to beat my page count and to read more on the page, so those numbers make me happy! :-)


1 comment:

  1. You had a great reading year, Care! I see some wonderful books on your list of favourites. Of those I've read, only 11/22/63 didn't appeal to me, which is strange as I'm generally a fan of King's work.

    All the best to you and your family in 2013.

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