What I read in 2012

I ‘read’ something like 30 books in 2012 (as far as I can remember). This isn’t a huge total, but it’s quite a few more than I suspected. ‘Not reading’ was one of my huge frustrations last year — I couldn’t seem to fit it in!

Thank all the gods for audiobooks. Around two-thirds of the books I enjoyed last year were played to me in the car during my horrible work commute. This completely justifies my car-purchasing criterion of a USB media input for the car stereo system. Without audiobooks, I would have been tearing my hair out.

So what did I read?

In the car:

Robin Hobb marathon (8) — A friend lent me the audiobooks of pretty much all Robin Hobb’s works and I listened to The Liveship Traders trilogy, the first two of the Rain Wild Chronicles, and the complete Soldier Son trilogy. My favourites are definitely the Liveship books, but the Soldier Son books included some very interesting aspects… I always intended to blog about them but never got around to it.

Two by Kate Morton (2) — This year I listened to The Shifting Fog and The Distant Hours. I enjoyed both these modern/historical sprawling tales in Morton’s unique style, but not as much as The Forgotten Garden, which I loved a few years ago.

Several by Jasper Fforde (4) — I’ve just completed the first four of the Thursday Next books. The first, The Eyre Affair, is the best by a long way. These are not my usual reading, but they’ve been some light entertainment in the car.

Several by Kerry Greenwood (~4) — I’ve listened to about four of the Phryne Fisher 1920s detective novels. These are a lot of fun, and a fascinating view of Melbourne in the 1920s.

1984 (1) — I had never actually read George Orwell’s 1984, sad but true. I think it’s one of those books whose magnificence is revealed by the time you finish it. I’m not sure I liked it, but I appreciated it for sure.

That’s 19 audiobooks (at least)

In paperback:

The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins (3) — I had to read these to see what all the fuss was about, and enjoyed the first one in particular. They are very well written, although probably a bit grim and dark for my usual tastes. (Please NOTE: There are some other books I have not read, despite all the hype…)

Necklace of the Gods (aka Eona) by Alison Goodman (1) — I have just now completed the stunning sequel to The Two Pearls of Wisdom (aka Eon), after attending the launch nearly two years ago. This is writing and plotting and storytelling I can only aspire to… I might have to focus on this duology in some more depth at a later date.

Two Nightrunner novels by Lynn Flewelling (2) — I have a soft spot for this fantasy series, although I don’t think the later ones (The White Road and Casket of Souls) match the first three. Nonetheless, a good fantasy romp in a traditional style.

That’s a mere 6 paperbacks! I can’t think of any others…

On the kindle:

My kindle reading hasn’t been too much more voluminous, and has consisted mainly of a few releases by some of my online WANA buddies (once again, I haven’t gotten around to posting about any of them yet…). The most notable are:

Wicked Sense by Fabio Bueno — This is a YA paranormal, which is evidently selling VERY well indeed.

A Vampire’s Deadly Delight by Liv Rancourt — A novella about a woman who harbours a vampire-slaying superhero within. Very entertaining and original.

The Love of her Lives by Sharon Clare — Sharon’s first paranormal romance publication.

In addition to the above:

Perfections by Kirstyn McDermott — I was a beta reader early this year for this recently released novel by my very good friend. It’s a modern gothic fairy tale about two sisters and their not-so-imaginary friend. The prose is lyrical and this fairy tale goes to a very dark place (as do most of Kirstyn”s works). I hope to have Kirstyn on the blog in a few weeks to tell you more about it.

Forever and Ever, Amen by Liv Rancourt — I was lucky enough to score an advanced readers copy of Liv’s forthcoming paranormal romance publication. I will post more detailed thoughts closer to its release date!

That’s another 5 on the kindle, plus possibly a few more…

I’m not especially happy with this tally, especially as there are so few recent releases on there. And especially given how few I actually read as words on the ‘page’… PATHETIC!

One of my missions for 2013 is to allocate more dedicated time for reading the old fashioned way (and here I count the kindle!). I’m not going to set myself a target number, but I would like to get back into the habit of reading in the evenings.

After all, reading is one of the cornerstones of being able to write well.

Moreover, I have this PILE of paper backs I want to read… actually, multiple piles. And then there are all the titles I wrote down throughout the year as other bloggers wrote posts or answered questions — on this blog or theirs — about their favourite books. Aaargh!

Of course, there is the risk that I commence reading at around 11pm and then find myself propping my eyes open with toothpicks at 2 or 3am… As has been happening this week. Somehow I need to find a happy medium.

How did everyone else go with their reading this year?

 

9 comments

  1. Thanks for the mention, Ellen. Glad you liked Deadly Delight! FYI for your readers, Kerry Greenwood’s first Phryne Fisher book is free right now on Amazon – the kindle version, anyway. It looks like a whole lotta fun.
    And I hear the heat is on in Melbourne. Keep cool!

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  2. Hear, hear for the audio book on commutes! As I was reading your list, I naturally starting thinking of all that I read this year between audio books, my kindle, and actual books. I may have to create my own post to list them all out. I’ve found that the more I write and blog, the less time I allocate to reading. I’m not happy with that arrangement and plan to do more actual reading in 2013. There’s so much good stuff out there not to. 🙂

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    1. Exactly. I think reading and writing blog posts are the main culprits for squeezing out my reading time. And it’s been worse since I got an iPhone, because now I take it all (including FB) to bed with me! I’d love to see your reading list, Tami…

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