Wednesday, 23 December 2015

My Year of Reading (2015)

Hello again, my dear readers :) Since 2015 is about to end I thought I'd include a list of all of the books that I read this year just like I did last year (click here if you want to read the 2014 post). I've also included a few "stats" in this post. Some of you might be thinking that it's still a bit too early to be putting this post up but I'm very unlikely to read any other books this year since I've just started Tolstoy's War and Peace. So without any further ado here are the books that I read in 2015:

  1. Regency Buck by Georgette Heyer (1935)
  2. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (1892)
  3. A Room with a View by E.M. Forster (1908)
  4. N A Short History of England by Simon Jenkins (2011)
  5. Richard III by William Shakespeare (1600)
  6. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain (2012)
  7. An Old-Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott (1870)
  8. A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin (2011)
  9. City of Thieves by David Benioff (2008)
  10. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton (1920)
  11. R The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (1894)
  12. An Infamous Army by Georgette Heyer (1937)
  13. R Persuasion by Jane Austen (1818)
  14. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss (2007)
  15. The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss (2011)
  16. Summer by Edith Wharton (1917)
  17. The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle (1902)
  18. Paper Towns by John Green (2008)
  19. The Talisman Ring by Georgette Heyer (1936)
  20. Sylvester by Georgette Heyer (1957) *abridged audiobook read by Richard Armitage*
  21. Cinder by Marissa Meyer (2012)
  22. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J.K. Rowling (2001)
  23. Quidditch Through the Ages by J.K. Rowling (2001)
  24. DNF Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens (1857)
  25. R The Return of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (1905)
  26. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953)
  27. The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton (1905)
  28. William Shakespeare's Star Wars: The Jedi Doth Return by Ian Doescher (2014)
  29. Star Wars: Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn (1991)
  30. DNF Star Wars: Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn (1992)
  31. The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery (1926)
  32. The Valley of Fear by Arthur Conan Doyle (1914)
  33. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer (2013)
  34. The Queen's Army by Marissa Meyer (2012)
  35. R Mansfield Park by Jane Austen (1814)
  36. His Last Bow by Arthur Conan Doyle (1917)
  37. The Odyssey by Homer (c. 750BC)
  38. R Emma by Jane Austen (1815)
  39. DNF The Martian by Andy Weir (2011)
  40. The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (1927)
  41. The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz (2011)
  42. The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King (1994)
  43. Cress by Marissa Meyer (2014)
  44. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (2008)
  45. Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers (1923)
  46. The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde (2001)
  47. The Little Android by Marissa Meyer (2014)
  48. Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones (1986)
  49. Fairest by Marissa Meyer (2015)
  50. R Lady Susan, The Watsons and Sanditon by Jane Austen (1871)
  51. Sylvester by Georgette Heyer (1957) *unabridged paperback*
  52. Castle in the Air by Diana Wynne Jones (1990)
  53. House of Many Ways by Diana Wynne Jones (2008)
  54. R And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie (1939)

R = Re-read
N = Non-fiction
DNF = Did not finish

Amount of books read
As you can see I read 54 books this year. I didn't reach my target of 60 books but I did manage to beat my total of last year which was 52. Of the books I read this year there were 43 new reads and 11 re-reads.

Amount of DNF books
I'm not quite sure if I should put books on my list that I didn't finish so I might not include them next year (what do you guys think?) There were three books that I gave up on this year though: Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens, Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn, and The Martian by Andy Weir. Little Dorrit wasn't bad at all but looking back I think I was really after something lighter at the time and wasn't in quite the right mood for the book. I loved the 2008 BBC adaptation of the book so I do plan on going back to it at some point. Dark Force Rising is the second book in the Thrawn Thilogy (a Star Wars tie-in series): I found the first book in that series extremely boring and overrated and gave up on the second when it didn't look as though it was going to be any better. And finally I started The Martian because I wanted to read it before the film came out but then gave up on the book, because I got so fed up of all of the in-depth science and maths which made me feel like I was back at school. There's only so much potato counting that I'm willing to take in a story! I still saw the film and found it a lot more enjoyable than the book although I didn't think it was quite the sci-fi masterpiece that it had been hyped up to be. *shrugs*

Most-read author
Arthur Conan Doyle. I read seven of his books this year: all of his Sherlock Holmes books from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes onwards. I read A Study in Scarlet and The Sign of Four last year.

Most-read genre(s)
I understand that Goodreads has a handy tool that you can use to work this out but I haven't updated my account in years so this was a bit tricky. I think the genres that I read the most of were Adventure, Romance and Fantasy.

Oldest book read
The Odyssey by Homer which is believed to have been written at around the year 750BC. The classics don't come much older than that.

Newest book read
Fairest by Marissa Meyer which was released in January this year.

Longest book read
A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin. The hardback version of this book has 1040 pages.

Shortest book read
Summer by Edith Wharton at a scanty 127 pages (and it was one of the best books I read this year). Marissa Meyer's The Queen's Army and The Little Android were both shorter than this (they came in at 18 and 35 pages respectively) but since they're short stories I'm not sure if I should count them.

Best books read
See this Top Ten Tuesday post :)

Worst books read
There were a few books I read this year that didn't live up to their hype and a few books that I just didn't like very much but thankfully there weren't any books that I really, truly hated. I guess the top three worst books that I read this year (and actually finished) were...

A Dance with Dragons - The last two books in the A Song of Ice and Fire series have been lacklustre and unsatisfying to say the least. I did find some parts of this book interesting and enjoyable (the Jon Snow, Bran Stark and Davos Seaworth chapters) but I really missed Sansa Stark and Jaime Lannister's characters, the Tyrion Lannister and Daenerys Targaryen chapters bored me beyond belief, and the new characters and storylines that were introduced in this book have made this already complex series far too unwieldy. I'll only read The Winds of Winter if I'm told that the pacing has significantly picked up and that some of the storylines have actually been resolved.

The Odyssey - I didn't hate this book as much as The Iliad (which I read last year) because I did enjoy some of the more adventurous parts of the story. However, I then completely lost all interest in this book once Odysseus got back to Ithaca. In terms of their overall contribution to literature The Iliad and The Odyssey are obviously completely deserving of their classic status but when it comes to my own personal enjoyment, well, Homer and I just don't get on!

Paper Towns - I was really looking forward to this book because John Green's The Fault in Our Stars was one of my favourite books from last year. But sadly I found all of the characters in this one extremely annoying :(
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And that's that! This post will also be my last of 2015 because I've decided to take a little hiatus over the Christmas holidays. I will definitely, definitely be returning in January 2016 though and there are a few posts that I'm working on in the meantime. I just want to wish all of my readers a truly wonderful Christmas and I hope you'll all find and read fantastic books in 2016! Thank you all so much for reading my posts, guys! It means so much to me that people might actually enjoy reading all of my various thoughts on books! :) xxx

One more thing, to close this last post of the year I thought I'd include some literary-themed Christmas images. Aren't they lovely?! You can find them all here on this Etsy page.

The Bronte Sisters' Parsonage

Jane Austen's Chawton

John Keats' house in Hampstead


Mònica said...

Aw, those pictures are so cute! I want those on cards. :)
My sister is looking forward to reading and watching the Martian because she is HUGE on math and science, so I guess it's a matter of preference. I find the idea appealing because of all the 'survivor with an optimistic can-do attitude' thing.
Out of curiosity, what's your favorite Shakespeare play?
I hope you have a wonderful Christmas! :D

Lianne @ said...

Those Christmas images are gorgeous! Thanks for sharing these with us :)

Looks like you had a wonderful year in reading Hannah! Sorry to hear about The Martian and Little Dorrit being DNF, but I understand; I realise with Dickens you really have to be in the mood to read his books given their length. I think this was the case with Bleak House for me a few years ago; loved the adaptation but yeah, I don't think I was quite in the mood to tackle the book at the time.

Wishing you all the best for 2016!

Hannah said...

Monica - I did, thank you! And that's a good question! 'Hamlet' and 'Othello' are my two favourite Shakespeare plays. Overall I much prefer the tragedies over the comedies (I prefer the drama and the meatier themes) although I have a huge soft spot for 'Much Ado About Nothing' :)

Lianne - You're welcome!

I've got three Dickens novels on my Classics Club list (Bleak House, Little Dorrit and Our Mutual Friend) but I think I'm going to put those aside for a while and re-read 'David Copperfield' this year. It was my first Dickens novel (and is still my favourite) so I think if I go back to that it will, I don't know, get me back into the mood for Dickens or something.

Wishing you a great 2016 as well :)