Sunday, December 31, 2017

2017 Wrap-up: Thoughts and Stats


And so we close the book on 2017...

This hasn't been the most productive year in terms of reading or blogging, but it has certainly been the most stress-free.

  • I did not accept any books for review in 2017. 
  • I did not join any challenges - not even the goodreads challenge. 
  • I participated in only a handful of events and readalongs.
  • I mostly abandoned book reviews, opting instead for one paragraph reaction/ratings included with my weekly wrap-up posts.
  • I pretty much read what I wanted, when I wanted.

Number Of Books Read
51 - same as last year. One book per week is a comfortable pace.

Fiction/Nonfiction
56% / 44%
A nonfiction record... due, in part, to the realization that nonfiction cures my reading slumps!

Female/Male authors 
64% / 36%
about average for me

New authors/ tried-and-true authors
68% / 32%

In translation
5 - same as last year, but dramatically lower than previous years

Classics
only 7, but enough to complete my Classics Club 50 list and begin another

Audiobooks
24 - 11 as audio only, 13 were read/listen combinations
nearly 50% of my reading included an audio component

Shortest & longest book:
How Reading Changed My Life  by Anna Quindlen, 96 pages
The Eustace Diamonds  by Anthony Trollope, 804 pages

Most popular & least popular book: 
(based on number of goodreads ratings)
Sense and Sensibility  by Jane Austen - 1,198,837 other readers
Nagasaki  by Éric Faye - 1,078 other readers

Most surprising book (in a good way):
The People in the Photo by Hélène Gestern
A book I'd never heard of, read on a whim (thanks to a goodreads suggestion) turned out to be a favorite of 2017.

Most beautifully written book read in 2017:
A Gentleman in Moscow  by Amor Towles


2017 bookish highlights:



Plans for 2018:
No major changes...

  • continue reading literary fiction, classics, and nonfiction
  • post weekly updates
  • join a few fun events (like Nonfiction November)
  • participate in some readalongs (Did I really not do one with Care this year??)
  • finish the Palliser series with Audrey
  • celebrate Lakeside Musing's 10th anniversary


Thank you all for reading and talking about books with me again this year.
Happy 2018!
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52 comments:

  1. 10th anniversary?!!! We'll be celebrating with you! I'm glad you've figured out the right pace and process for you, and especially happy about the #PalliserParty. :) Happy new year, my friend!

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    1. Audrey - Yes, hard to believe it's been ten years. I've enjoyed #6Barsets and our #PalliserParty so much... we'll have to come up with another project for 2019 :)

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  2. I love your play with 'words' in your opening paragraph. I also love statistics. Congratulations on 10 years this year! I always enjoy your posts. Happy New Year!

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    1. Pat I was afraid that word play might be a little too much, but it made me smile so I went with it. Can't believe I've been doing this for almost ten years. Happy 2018!

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  3. Good for you for not letting all this stress you out this year! I never participate in Challenges other than the Goodreads one...hems in my reading too much!

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Sarah - A few years ago I was way too stressed about review commitments, schedules, challenges, etc. Don't think I would have stuck around without this new no-pressure approach to blogging.

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  4. We are quite similar, averaging one book a week which is indeed a comfortable pace. And, like you, I want to continue in qualify literature. But, you always have me beat both in audio and nonfiction. :)

    Happy New Year, JoAnn!

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    1. Bellezza - And you always beat me with translated literature! I'm glad for that because you help me tailor my own choices :) Happy New Year, my friend... it's been wonderful being in this book blogging community with you for all these years.

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  5. I read a little over 50 books, mostly audiobooks. I was terrible about reviewing books and didn't get get them all reviewed.

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    1. Vicki - Reviews were getting to be a problem for me, too. I sometimes feel bad not doing many full, official reviews these days, but this new style seems more sustainable.

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  6. Wow, 10th anniversary? That’s amazing. It looks like you had a good reading year. Happy New Year!

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. AJ - Yes, 10 years. I can't believe it myself sometime, but overall it's been a great experience. Happy New Year.

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  7. I changed to one paragraph reactions too and it's taken much of the stress of blogging away. I keep saying I'm going to keep better stats - male/female, etc, but I never do. Happy New Year!

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    1. Kathy - I've seen several bloggers adopt this approach to reviews and it's definitely working for me. If I'm inclined to write more, I will... but this sure takes the pressure off. Happy New Year!

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  8. Wow, 10 years! It's great that you've found a system that works for you, that you blog the way you want to, and it's stress-free!

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    1. Angela - Yes, I've been evolving here for almost ten years now. For a while I got too caught up in reviews and deadlines, but now I keep reminding myself that this is what I do for fun ;-)

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  9. I think that reading what you want when you want is the way to go. Too many challenges and reading events can really restrict ones's reading. As you know, I am also making my my through the Palliser books. I am reading the unabridged version of The Duke's Children right now. should be finished in a week or so.

    Happy New Year's!

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    1. Brian - Reading what I wanted, when I wanted is what made me a reader in the first place, so this new approach is almost like returning to my roots... and it's made me much happier.

      I hope The Duke's Children will provide a satisfying conclusion to the Palliser series. At this point I prefer the Barsetshire books, but we'll see what the last three books have to offer.

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  10. Happy 10th Anniversary! I'll have my tenth anniversary in blogging in April...but the blog I started with got merged into some other blogs after I went through my blog-crazy time (with LOTS of blogs).

    I like the idea of reading what you want...and my only challenge was Read the Books You Buy...which helped keep me on track...a little.

    I gave up on the Goodreads one a couple of years ago.

    I only accept review books from NetGalley (or Vine)...and the occasional well-known-to-me author. Life is simpler that way.

    Happy New Year, and thanks for visiting my blog.

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    1. Laurel-Rain Snow - We started blogging at almost the same time...my first post was in the fall of 2008. Hard to believe it's been almost ten years. Blogging has enriched my reading life in so many ways. Before that I was active in several Yahoo book groups, and even owned a couple. Happy New Year!

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  11. I think you have the perfect formula for reading, reviewing and blogging!

    Have a wonderful New Year!

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    1. Patty - I used to keep reminding myself that I'm blogging for myself, for fun, asa hobby.... seems like it's finally sunk in! Happy New Year to you and Den and the girls :)

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  12. Sounds like a great way to keep your life stress free. I look forward to your weekly updates! Good luck this next year!

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    1. Heather - This approach keep blogging doable and fun for me. Think I'll stick with it for a while longer... Happy New Year!

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  13. Here's wishing you and your family a very happy new year, JoAnn! Loved hearing about your 2017 and plans for the future. I'm back to blogging tomorrow. :-)

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    1. Kay - Happy New Year to you, Kay! I'll stop by tomorrow to catch up... can't wait to hear what you've been up to :)

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  14. I keep hearing great things about A Gentleman in Moscow. I really must add it to my wish list. I am glad you enjoyed it, JoAnn! There's something to say for not taking part in challenges or accepting books for review, isn't there? I hope you have a great 2018, JoAnn!

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    1. Wendy - A Gentleman in Moscow was a little slow at times, but so beautifully written that it didn't matter. Hope you get a chance to try it.

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  15. YAY for A Gentleman in Moscow; it's so beautiful and I think of it often! Happy New Year, JoAnn!

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    1. Tara - I still think about the Count, too. Amor Towles will be speaking at our library in FL later this month and I'm hoping to get tickets through the lottery system they use.

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  16. I am not doing any review books or lengthy book reviews. I decided I 'talk' about books not review them seriously. I like blogs where I feel I am sharing a coffee and a chat. Yours always does that. Enjoy 2018

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    1. Pam - Yes, that's exactly it! I'd much rather just chat about books than do a formal review. Hope 2018 is good to you :)

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  17. Oh wow, you are coming up on a milestone blogging anniversary. Yay! I think this is going to be a great year. Can't wait to read about your book discoveries throughout the year!

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    1. Iliana - Thanks you. It's hard to believe I've kept at it this long, but I can't imagine not having this space either.

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  18. I always refer to you as “my book blogger”. So nice to see your stats. I may start to record my reading for a sense of accomplishment after seeing what I’ve read. My bookclub is restarting here in England. We are reading The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom. Statistically that is book one for the year when I finish. I read a nice novella on the plane back to Virginia .The Season for Second Chances, a Cornish Christmas Novella. The descriptions match my surroundings here and made me apprecative of this 2 year adventure. Happy New Year!

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    1. Lorriane - How nice to be thought of as "your book blogger"... that makes me smile! Once you start keeping a reading journal, you may even decide to give blogging a try. Who Knows? ;-) The Cornish Christmas novella sounds like fun. I always enjoy reading a book where the setting matches my own. Safe travels back to England. Have you been there a year already?

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  19. Stress Free reading/blogging is how it should be. I did feel like a bad blogger this year, but "who cares", I loved not feeling self imposed pressure to post and review.
    Here's to a Happy, Healthy New Year for all - happy reading as well.

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  20. Diane - Maybe we should form a "Bad Blogger" club... it's great keeping up my with my book-loving friends without added stress or pressure. Wishing you and yours a happy and healthy 2018, with plenty of good books, too!

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  21. I love the idea of not accepting review books but am not sure I have the willpower for it. I am going to try to be more stress free and concentrate on the books that I want to read. Happy 2018!

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    1. Katherine - It took me a couple of years to get there, but I'm happy not reading ARCs and review books any more.

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  22. Great to hear you have a enjoyable and the most stress-free year of reading. Also I have found non-fiction helps me in reading slumps too!

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    1. Jessica - That was actually my most surprising discovery this year... who knew nonfiction could cure reading slumps??

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  23. So agree about the writing in A Gentleman In Moscow!

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    1. Lisa - Towles writing is so beautiful! He'll be speaking at our FL library later this month and I'm hoping to get tickets through the lottery.

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  24. I like reading one book a week too -- it's a nice pace. Sometimes I do one audio and one read per week. You finished strong and read some great nonfiction. Way to go. Have a great reading year in 2018!

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    1. Susan - A book a week seems like so little in comparison to other bloggers, but that's what works for me. I like having one book and one audio, but lately I seem to be selecting both editions of the same book - total immersion, lol!

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  25. 2017 was 10 years for me as well, but my blog has always been rather random. Thanks for the inspiration to make some changes in 2018!

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    1. Ann - I'm a firm believe in the 'whatever works for you' style of blogging...if you've been around for 10 years, it obviously works. Congratulations!

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  26. Can I join your Bad Blogger Club?! I only read 28 books in 2017 and couldn't even manage to review more than a couple before the end of the year. I really do like keeping track of my books (here and on Goodreads) and it shouldn't be so difficult to post a couple of thoughts and move on. My one and only goal for 2018 is to draft and publish my thoughts on a book within a week of finishing. Gotta stay on top of these things, right? :) Meanwhile, I hope to read more and step away from the computer. The beautiful outdoors is calling!

    Happy, happy New Year (a week late!) my dear friend.

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    1. Les - It's hard to blog with the beautiful outdoors beckoning... and I'm all for more reading and less blogging! Getting your thoughts down within a week of finishing a book sounds reasonable, especially for one paragraph impressions like mine. You're very welcome to join the Bad Blogger Club! ;-)

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  27. What a wonderful wrap up of your reading year, JoAnn. Short little summary and if you liked it or not is plenty for each book. I love reading those beautiful long reviews, and always felt like I must be a terrible reviewer since I just couldn’t seem to do it. Sometimes though too much info is given and then I don’t even need to read the book! Simple is always best. 10 years! That’s a long time. CongrAtulations early.

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    1. Thanks, Peggy. I seem to have lost all desire to write real book reviews, but a few sentences is doable and I still enjoy blogging... even after all these years!

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