Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 Wrap-up: Stats and thoughts

It's a wrap... 

2016 has not been my most productive year in terms of reading or blogging, but it certainly has been fun. I tried to remove pressure and stress from my hobby  this year and, for the most part, succeeded:

  • I accepted my last review book ten months ago and have remained commitment-free ever since. 
  • I didn't join any challenges in 2016, not even the goodreads challenge. No more avoiding long books!
  • I joined fewer events and readalongs, carefully selecting those that truly interested me.
  • I wrote fewer book reviews, opting instead for shorter 'book briefs'.
  • I mostly read what I wanted, when I wanted... free-range reading!

Number Of Books Read
51 - one book per week is a comfortable pace

70% / 30%
Nonfiction is down slightly from last year, but I'm still happy with 30%.

Female/Male authors 
66% / 34%

New authors/ tried-and-true authors
26 / 22

In translation
5 - down 50% from last year

7 - not as many as last year, but I have read 46/50 from my Classics Club list

22 - 8 as audio only, 14 were read/listen combinations

Shortest & longest book:
Ten Days in a Mad House by Nellie Bly - 101 pages
City on Fire by Garth Risk Hallberg - 944 pages

Most popular & least popular book: 
(based on number of goodreads ratings)
The Nightingale by Kristin Hanna  - 521,084 ratings
Kings of Queens: Life Beyond Baseball with the '86 Mets by Erik Sherman - 19 ratings

Favorite Books Read In 2016:
Fiction: The Emperor's Children  by Claire Messud
Classic: Germinal by Emile Zola
Nonfiction: Just Mercy  by Bryan Stevenson
(my full list of 2016 favorites is here)

Most surprising book (in a good way):
City on Fire by Garth Risk Hallberg
My first, and longest, book of 2016... I waded through 900+ pages/nearly 24 hours of audio of this debut novel, only to be disappointed by the non-ending. Now, nearly a year later,  I'm still thinking about the characters and excellent writing. (my review)

2016 bookish highlights:
Germinal readalong
Nonfiction November
The Classics Club/Classics Club Spins
Litsy... have you joined yet?

Plans for 2017:
I don't anticipate any major changes at Lakeside Musing... more free-range reading, readalongs with friends, blogging events, and continued bookish chatter.

Thank you for reading and talking about books with me this year.
Happy 2017!



  1. I'd call that a good reading year!

  2. So would I! I was given The Nightingale for Christmas, and have heard good things about it. (PS Do read Bewildering Cares...I think you'll like it. More Trollope than Thirkell, in the best possible way.) Happy new year, JoAnn!

    1. Audrey - It took me a while to get into The Nightingale, but then I tore through the second half in a day... a read/listen combo for me. I downloaded the sample of Bewildering Cares, but can't deliver it to my kindle until I turn off airplane mode. Must finish LaRose so it doesn't disappear, lol.

  3. I definitely read fewer books this year than in previous years. Too many distractions in the news!

    1. Jill - Don'e even get me started on the news... ;-)

  4. I've tried to take a more relaxed approach too, which is great for the blog, but I haven't been able to keep up with blogging friends. That's what I'm hoping to get better this year!

    1. Stacy - It's so hard to do it all, but we all do what we can. Good luck and Happy New Year!

  5. It sounds like you've had a great reading year, and that the changes you've made have done a world of good. I wish you much the same for 2017! Happy reading!

    1. Jade - I had to keep reminding myself that reading and blogging is for fun and relaxation... no stress allowed, lol. Happy reading in 2017 to you, too.

  6. Thank you and happy 2017 to you too JoAnn :-)

  7. Nice reading year Joann. Wishing you a Happy 2017.

  8. Great year! I'm glad the free range route is working for you. I'm trying to find the right balance for me...I'm still requesting ARCs but trying to be more selective and leave more time for free range reading. I also didn't write any book reviews during December and just started writing them again...and I'm not sure I'm psyched up starting up again. Will have to figure out a solution to that.

    Happy New Year!

    1. Sarah - I've been much happier this year letting you tell me which new books I should read ;-)

  9. I like the pace of a book a week... although several of my 2016 books were skimmed non-fiction books. In 2017 I want to read more fiction, including classics.

    I love how you analyzed your yearly reading. I think I might try to do the same :)

    Happy New Year, JoAnn!!

    1. Molly - I sometimes feel like a slacker compared to those who read over a hundred books, but just keep reminding myself that I'm doing this for fun, relaxation, and the bookish conversation with all my blogging friends!

  10. This sounds perfect to me! It's what I am trying to do, too!

  11. Loving your idea of "free-range reading" -- as you said, this whole reading/blogging thing is a hobby and there's no need to stress yourself out about it. And you're almost done with your Classics Club list! Woohoo!

    1. looloolooweez - I have a feeling I'll start right up with another Classics Club list. It's been such a great project!

  12. You had a great reading year & highlights! How you got thru City on Fire is really admirable. It should be counted as 2 books, right? You have pointed me to a lot of excellent books, and have me thinking about reading Zola all over again.

    1. Susan - City on Fire is the equivalent of at least two books! I never would have started 2016 with a book like that if I'd been concerned about numbers and stats, lol. I'd been away from Zola for at least a couple of years before reading Germinal, but I'd like to keep reading him in 2017.

  13. Free-range reading - I love that! I do participate in challenges even if I don't complete them but oh well, good intentions and all that. Sounds like you had a great reading year and how great that you were able to read quite a few classics. That's one area I really want to improve in my reading. Here's to a great 2017!

    1. Iliana - I wish I could remember where I first came across free-range reading... I'm certain it was on another blog. Loved the idea so much I adopted it for myself :)

  14. Replies
    1. Care - So am I!! Thanks for the extra push to finally read it... still thinking about that riot scene ;-)

  15. This is a fantastic summary. I have not been nearly so organized this past year. Congratulations on reading 46 of your Classics Club books. That's really amazing. I just signed up this year. Although I was reading classics before, it was in drabs and dribbles. I am hoping for more motivation now that I have a plan.
    Loving your goal for 2017! Freestyle reading is pretty much what I do too. Happy 2017, and happy reading.

    1. Toady - I really enjoy reading classics... even co-owned a classics reading group back in the days of yahoo groups. The Classics Club has helped motivate me to keep reading them and it's introduced me to other bloggers with similar goals.Good luck with your classics plan!


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