Anyway, on to boks I read in 2011. They numbered 83 altogether. That's about as many as I've ever read in one year and as many as I *could* read I think. It would be pointless me going for 100 as I'm certain I wouldn't get there! I'm a bit of an eclectic reader so the 83 covers all kinds of books - much more crime than I ever used to read, some fantasy, sci-fi, horror, general fiction, classics, and all of 11 non-fiction which is exactly the same as last year and really not good enough in my opinion.
A favourite book? Well. I'm not sure I can choose a favourite exactly so I'll go for a top ten:
1. Barchester Towers - Anthony Trollope
2. Track of the Cat - Nevada Bar
3. Body Double - Tess Gerritsen
4. The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman
5. City of Pearl - Karen Traviss
6. Dark Fire - C.J. Sansom
7. The House at Sea's End - Elly Griffiths
8. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie - Alan Bradley
9. The Little House on the Prairie - Laura Ingalls Wilder
10. These is My Words - Nancy Turner
And if I really *really* had to choose a favourite? Nope... I can't... but the top three would be, These is My Words, Barchester Towers and Track of the Cat.
1. I Can't Stay Long - Laurie Lee (Beautiful essays)
2. The Magic Apple Tree - Susan Hill (A year in an Oxford village)
3. Garlic and Sapphires - Ruth Reichl (Food critic experiences)
Last year I took part in and finished four separate challenges and also Carls' Sci-fi experience. Very pleased with my results on those. I discovered, or was introduced to (you culprits know who you are!), several new series including the Anna Pigeon books by Nevada Barr, the Merrily Watkins series by Phil Rickman and the Flavia de Luce books by Alan Bradley. I also managed to finish three series, or will when my first read of this year is complete.
So, it was quite a good reading year and yet... I don't feel all that thrilled by it. I feel like I concentrated too much on rushing from one book to another without stopping to consider and also... not really learning very much. So I plan to slow down a bit in 2012... savour what I read a bit more, read more classics (Dickens, Wilkie Collins, Trollope etc.) and especially try to read more non-fiction so that I learn something. Of course, reading around the USA will help with that and the last couple of months of 2011 when I started that personal challenge were actually pure joy. And so, if I find at the end of 2012 that, instead of reading 80+ books, I've read maybe 50 - 60 I will not be at all disappointed. I know that sounds a bit mad but reading is not a competition to see who can read the most books and I really need to absorb that fact and act on it. The other thing I *really* need to act on is to stop borrowing so much from the library and to read from my own tbr pile. I have a feeling that's going to be a bit more tricky.
Happy New Year to all and I hope everyone has the kind of reading year they wish to have. Can't wait to read all your thoughts and ramblings as I'm not sure I don't prefer those to proper reviews. LOL. Happy reading!