Sunday, January 07, 2007

2006 in Review

Before I started blogging last February, I never kept any sort of record of what I read. That was actually one of the reasons I started blogging--to keep a reading log for myself. So I would never have to rack my brain over the name of that author I read six months ago and loved/hated/whatever. It's probably not the reason that I've actually kept it up for almost a year. (I can't believe it's been that long!) The reason I keep blogging is because I have so much fun reading other people's blogs and getting book recommendations. And I like being able to chat with other people who are as crazy about their books as I am about mine. Twin will only take so much blathering about the books I read before she'll just stop listening and start saying "mmm-hmmm" whenever I pause.

But now I'm really glad that I kept track because it is a lot of fun to look back on all the books you've read in a year. I've kept a spreadsheet too and it satisfies the compulsive geek in me to sort by all the categories and make some judgments about the year. I've read and blogged about 86 books. I thought this was a lot, but not compared to some. I don't know how all you people who read 200-300 books a year do it. You're making me feel insufficient in some way. :p I think I must be a slower reader than you. Ah, well. I can still feel better read and superior to the average person.

Here's how the ratings break down:
10: 1
9: 7
8: 14
7: 24
6: 23
5: 9
4: 5
3: 2
1-2: 0 (If I was hating a book that much, why on earth would I ever keep reading to the end? So I doubt you'll ever see me give a 1 or 2.)

Yes, only one 10. I think of a 10 as perfection. I'll probably only ever give 10s to re-reads of old beloved favorites. Because getting better with each subsequent reading is the ultimate test for books. The 10 for 2006 was The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery. Probably my favorite book of all time. And my first blog post, which completely does not do it justice. But my writing, no matter how gushing, could never do it justice.

The seven books that got 9s are:
Civil Campaign, by Lois McMaster Bujold
Poison Study and Magic Study, by Maria V. Snyder
Lord of Danger, by Anne Stuart
Venetia, by Georgette Heyer
Mrs. Drew Plays Her Hand, by Carla Kelly
The Shadowy Horses, by Susanna Kearsley

Some 8s that I especially liked (and looking back, maybe deserve 9s)
Here Be Dragons, by Sharon Kay Penman
Lord of Scoundrels and Mr. Impossible, by Loretta Chase
Bridal Favors, by Connie Brockway

Oh, so many good discoveries this year. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. :p Here's hoping 2007 will be even better.


Rosario said...

I loved most of your 9s (well, except Venetia, which you already know *g*), so I'm putting all the rest in my wish list. Do you think I can read A Civil Campaign without having read the rest of the series? I've only read Shards of Honor so far.

dancechica said...

Oh I totally agree, I don't know how some people read 200 books in a year! I mean, wow. I wish I had that kind of focus! Guess I'm just a very slow reader. lol.

Jennie said...

Rosario--Yes, you'll be fine reading A Civil Campaign out of order. I did it--the only other ones I've read are Shards of Honor and Barrayar. Bujold does a very good job of making A Civil Campaign stand alone. There are some references that I didn't really get, but it didn't bother me at all or detract from the story.

I loved it. It's got everything--love story, action, lots of humor. Ah, I'm gushing. :) Anyway, if you get to it and the others, I hope you like them!

DanceChica--I wish I could read 200 books a year! Oh well. I read for pleasure, and I wouldn't ever try to rush through anything just to "keep up"! We all go at our own pace. :)

Dev said...

Lord of Scoundrels I gave a 10 ~ I think it was one of my favorite reads of 2006.

CindyS said...

I could probably safely say that Mr. Impossible was a 10 for me - oh wait, maybe it needs to be knocked down to a nine because of the beginning which was boring.

Anyways, I know I'm a much slower reader than most people. I've been shocked many times when I am reading something someone else is at the same time and they go to flip the page and I'm only half way down. Ugh. I always thought I was an average reader but since it takes me about 8 solid hours to read an average book (was a Julie Garwood at the time) I now know there are readers who could read three books in that time.

So, I'll take your take your 86 and divide by 3 - 28 ish - still didn't read enough ;)


Kristie (J) said...

Although I've been keeping track of my books for quite a while now, I only started tracking how many I've read in a year in the last couple of years so I don't have that accurate a picture of the average number I read a year. I know my reading was way down this year.
And I'm so glad you've kept on blogging. Isn't it great getting to know fellow readers better? And knowing that we are all romance-mad. And I can relate to sisters that kind of zone out when you talk "romance books" *g*

Mailyn said...

A book graded a 1 is like a train wreck, you can't walk away no matter how much you know you should. Sometimes they are SO bad you just need to know how in the hell the author tries to make sense of it all at the last minute. LOL.

Jennie said...

Devonna--LoS was excellent. Maybe I'll re-read it and bump it up. :) I often seem to like books even better the second time!

Cindy--That's why it's so hard to give a 10, because there's usually some tiny little thing that bothered you, or you thought could have been better. Perfection is pretty impossible to achieve, ya know?! And I agree with you on the reading slow. People so often say that they read a book in 2 hours. And I'm like, you read the whole book in 2 hours?! No way could I do it!

Kristie--Blogging is great fun. And we have such a nice community of readers here, which makes it even better!!

Mailyn--See, reading books that bad is just painful to me, so I don't think I'll ever be able to do it! But it's fun to read your train-wreck reviews. :p