Mid-year Book Update

This is the post where I dramatically reveal to the hero that I am not a villain, I am… a statistics nerd! If you want to see what I read this month, go here.

In 2015, I started doing reviews of books at the halfway point of the year, so happy one-year book reviewing anniversary to me!

Thus far in 2016, I have read:

  • 27 books
  • 8 were non-fiction
  • 8 were tagged fantasy, but at least 4 more could be reasonably described as fantasy
  • Totaling 10,153 pages
  • At an average of 376.04 pages
  • With a standard deviation of 317.94
  • By 31 unique authors (some repeats, some collaborations)
  • 13 of whom were female (42%)
  • All but six of whom were American (4x English, 1x Australian, 1x French)

Last year, at this time, I had read:

  • 24 books
  • 1 non-fiction
  • 13 fantasy
  • Totaling 9987 pages
  • At an average of 416.15 pages
  • With a standard deviation of 243.78

By the categories so far:

  • Favorite standalone fiction: tie between Redshirts and The Ragwitch
  • Favorite series fiction: Beka Cooper, represented in 2016 by Mastiff. Close second to the extended Outlander universe including the main series and Lord John’s spinoffs. (Dresden Files ruled ineligible as I read no in-series books, only a short story collection.)
  • Favorite nonfiction: tie between Gulp and Best American Science and Nature Writing 2015
  • Favorite other-format (graphic novel/play/etc): Nimona
  • Oldest: if you count only the words, Manga Much Ado About Nothing (1612), but since that’s not really fair as the pictures are the selling point, Count of Monte Cristo (1845)
  • Newest: The Road to Little Dribbling (2016)
  • Longest: SURPRISE! It’s NOT the Count, it’s The Fiery Cross, Outlander book 5 (1456), edging out the Count (1312). The pair, along with Outlander book 4, are the longest books I’ve ever read. (I can say this with confidence, as I had not ever read a book over 1000 before I read any of the Outlanders.) Note, I don’t include the Couunt’s copious explanatory footnotes, which I read, in that total.
  • Shortest: Bob’s Burgers, at 96. If you’re of the camp that graphic novels Do Not Count when it comes to page numbers, novella collection Working for Bigfoot,  at 128.
  • Weirdest: The Skin of Our Teeth, and how
  • Dark horse favorites (that I did not expect to like as much as I did): Redshirts, The Ragwitch, Best American Science and Nature Writing 2015, Bob’s Burgers: Medium Rare, Skin of Our Teeth
  • Disappointments (that I expected to like more than I did): Road to Little Dribbling, Cleaning the Kingdom

Also of note, the average rating so far was 2.55 – which basically reflects that I doled out 2s and 3s evenly, because I have only bestowed one 1 so far this year. I would interpret this as me doing a good job vetting my book choices since I very rarely end up with something I dislike. That said, I might also be vetting a little too harshly and missing books out of my normal range that seem too risky. Alas, the travails of being too busy to read everything. I doubt I’ll ever get this balance right.

I recently rearranged my bookshelf and prioritized my to-read shelf. (No more impulsive late-night line jumping… for now…) I’m focusing my attention on books that either I borrowed from someone or someone has asked to borrow from me. My kindle to-read stack is an entirely separate and extremely messy matter, but nobody borrows those, so that realm of irresponsible reading habits is my own problem. I have determined that I will re-read all of Harry Potter when (if?) I ever get my to read stack down to less than one shelf. Prepare yourself for book-by-book Potter-nerding.

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