Reading challenge: 139/75
So back when I first began this blog, one of the challenges I wanted to do was set a goal in Goodreads, and then NOT CHANGE IT! I set my goal of 75 books based on how I did in 2016, and I ended up reading 139.
It felt strange to me after I hit the 75 goal mark to keep adding to my challenge without changing the number, but I did. Maybe it seems strange, but keeping the goal the same was a reminder of how different this year was compared to the last, and continued to remind me that it isn’t about the number, but about focusing on the reading itself.
Favorite reads by month:
There were some amazing books in 2017. And some not so amazing. I also reviewed a majority of the books I read, and that experience was better than I expected. Reviewing books changed the way I read. Rather than simply zoning out into the book, I became a more active reader. I payed attention to the things I was enjoying and the things I wasn’t. It made me notice writing techniques in a different way, and I think it made me not just a better reader, but a better writer as well.
This discovery was surprising, as I didn’t expect writing reviews to change the way or read or the way I write. It was a pleasant discovery. And while reading books I don’t enjoy wasn’t exactly a pleasurable experience, I also found value in completing those books. Again, it made me focus more on why I wasn’t enjoying it. Which helped make me aware of things to avoid in my own writing.
So whether I loved a book, or felt blah about a book, each one was an experience worth having. Here’s a breakdown of my favorite read by month, and some notables. I couldn’t just choose one!!! I’ve also linked each title to my review, if you’re interested.
January – 9 books read
Notables: Girl on a Train, Tony & Susan
February – 6 books read
Notables: Red Queen
March – 6 books
Notables: All The Ugly & Wonderful Things, Carve The Mark
April – 11 books
Notables: Me Before You, Simon vs The Homosapien Agenda
May – 15 books
Notables: Follow Me Back, The Last Neanderthal, 10 Things I can See From Here
June – 15 books
Notables: Block 46, Lost Boy, Women No 17, Crowns of Croswold
July – 14 books
The People We Hate At The Wedding
Notables: Spoonbenders, Arena, The Address
August – 13 books
Notables: Fitness Junkie, Emma in the Night, Afterlife
September – 16 books
Notables: The Salt Line, Good Me Bad Me, Mask of Shadows, Final Girls
October – 19 books
Notables: The Creswell Plot, Beneath the Trees, Blades Edge, Daughter 4254
November – 12 books read
Notables: Turtles All The Way Down, The Nine, Exquisite
December – 14 books read
Notables: Godsgrave, The Wife Between Us, Gunslinger Girl, The Wolves of Winter
The other reading challenge I signed up for was the Book Riot Read Harder challenge. This one I didn’t do so well at.
Of the 24 challenges, which range from “read a book about sports” to “read a book published by a micro press”, I completed 10 of those challenges. Which is disappointing, so I will be trying this one again in 2018.
It wasn’t listed in my goals, but I did sign up for a few other challenges throughout the year and several read-a-thons. They were a lot of fun and got me into different reading patterns.
For 2018 I want to do several things with my reading.
First, I plan on doing another Goodreads challenge, which I will update once I’ve set it in stone.
Second, do another challenge like BookRiot’s, to add more diversity to my reading.
Third, read more of what is on my shelves, and only request what I really want to read. Mediocre books have taught me a lot, but they are also a chore to get through. I need less of that this year.
Fourth, review everything, even if it is a book just for me.
Of course, I will have other goals, namely in writing, and hope to get more writing posts into this space, but that will be another post in the New Year!
I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year!!! Tomorrow the entire year opens up to us, blank with enormous possibility. Let’s cheer each other on and make it the best one yet!!!
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