Tag Archive | book list

The Books I Read in 2018

In 2018, I read 74 books, 4 more than in 2017. That’s the first increase in number of books read since 2015, but I’m still way down compared to the early years of grad school. (I also mentioned last year that I was reading more short fiction online and tracking the short stories I read; I did so again in 2018, and I think I read many more short stories than in 2017.)

Here are the books I read in 2018, rereads bolded, with links to (sometimes just barely) related blog posts:

The Starlit Wood edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
The Bear and the Nightingale Katherine Arden
La Petite Sirène suivi de Conte du Vent Hans Christian Andersen, translated by Louis Moland
La Reine des Neiges Hans Christian Andersen, translated by Louis Moland
The Language of Thorns Leigh Bardugo
The Best We Could Do Thi Bui
The Chosen Chaim Potok
Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence Nick Bantock
Sabine’s Notebook: In Which The Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Continues Nick Bantock
The Golden Mean: In Which The Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Concludes Nick Bantock
The Gryphon: In Which the Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Is Rediscovered Nick Bantock
Dubliners James Joyce
Alexandria: In Which the Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Unfolds Nick Bantock
The Morning Star: In Which the Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Is Illuminated Nick Bantock
The Pharos Gate: Griffin & Sabine’s Lost Correspondence Nick Bantock
Seven Surrenders Ada Palmer
Soie Alessandro Baricco, translated by Françoise Brun
The Honey Month Amal El-Mohtar
Lucy and Linh Alice Pung
Fans of the Impossible Life Kate Scelsa
Saints and Misfits S. K. Ali
Tess of the Road Rachel Hartman
All Out edited by Saundra Mitchell
All American Boys Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
This Savage Song Victoria Schwab
That Inevitable Victorian Thing E. K. Johnston
Let’s Talk About Love Claire Kann
Tash Hearts Tolstoy Kathryn Ormsbee
Raven Stratagem Yoon Ha Lee
Giant Pumpkin Suite Melanie Heuiser Hill
I love this part Tillie Walden
The End of Summer Tillie Walden
Jane, Unlimited Kristin Cashore
Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk David Sedaris
Sky Blue Water edited by Jay D. Peterson and Collette A. Morgan
The Poet X Elizabeth Acevedo
Dreadful Young Ladies and Other Stories Kelly Barnhill
Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire Susan Tan
It’s Not Like It’s a Secret Misa Sugiura
Forest of a Thousand Lanterns Julie C. Dao
My Name Is Red Orhan Pamuk, translated by Erdağ M. Göknar
Wink Poppy Midnight April Genevieve Tucholke
The Art of Starving Sam J. Miller
The Small Rain Madeleine L’Engle
Amitié amoureuse Hermine Lecomte du Nouÿ
Picture Us in the Light Kelly Loy Gilbert
Somewhere Among Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu
The Tea Dragon Society Katie O’Neill
Original Fake Kirstin Cronn-Mills & E. Eero Johnson
Wild Beauty Anna-Marie McLemore
La Jeune Épouse Alessandro Baricco, translated by Vincent Raynaud
The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories Ken Liu
Weird Things Customers Say in Bookstores Jen Campbell
Smoke Dan Vyleta
S. J. J. Abrams & Doug Dorst
Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day Joan Bolker, Ed.D.
Till We Have Faces C. S. Lewis
Monstress Volume Three: Haven Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
And The Ocean Was Our Sky Patrick Ness and Rovina Cai
Bats of the Republic Zachary Thomas Dodson
The Drawing Lesson Mark Crilley
Feux Marguerite Yourcenar
Little Black Book of Stories A. S. Byatt
The Astonishing Color of After Emily X.R. Pan
Inkmistress Audrey Coulthurst
Another Phase Eloise Klein Healy
An Absolutely Remarkable Thing Hank Green
Puddin’ Julie Murphy
340 mps Léa Silhol
Girl Made of Stars Ashley Herring Blake
We’ll Fly Away Bryan Bliss
A Skinful of Shadows Frances Hardinge
The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy Mackenzi Lee
Darius the Great Is Not Okay Adib Khorram

The Numbers:

  • Total books read: 74
  • Books in French: 7 (9%)
  • Books that were not novels: 30 (41%) (Well, this proportion leaps up every year! Non-fiction/miscellaneous: 2 (funny how weird things customers say in bookstores and a guide to dissertation writing wind up in the same  category); Short story/poetry collections: 13 (I think about one and a half were poetry); Graphic novels/comics: 6; Shorter works: 9 (includes fairy tales and Nick Bantock’s books)
  • Books read in translation: 3 (4%) (Italian to French: 2; Turkish to English: 1)
  • Books read for the first time: 71 (96%)
  • Books read not for the first time: 3 (4%)
  • Books written by women (where at least one co-author, co-editor, or contributor is a woman): 46 (62%)
  • Books by authors of color (obviously, how someone identifies can’t always be deduced from a name and an author photo, so this isn’t guaranteed to be 100% accurate): 17 (23%)
  • Books by category (as decided by me): Adult: 34 (46%); Young Adult: 31 (42%); Middle Grade or Younger: 6 (8%); Indeterminate: 3 (4%)

Finally, my favorite books of 2018 (no rereads, I didn’t set out to choose a certain number of books, and some of these choices are because the book made me think, even if I didn’t necessarily love the whole thing):

  • The Starlit Wood edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
  • The Language of Thorns Leigh Bardugo
  • Soie Alessandro Baricco, translated by Françoise Brun
  • That Inevitable Victorian Thing E. K. Johnston
  • Jane, Unlimited Kristin Cashore
  • The Small Rain Madeleine L’Engle
  • Amitié amoureuse Hermine Lecomte du Nouÿ
  • S. J. J. Abrams & Doug Dorst
  • Till We Have Faces C. S. Lewis
  • A Skinful of Shadows Frances Hardinge
  • The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy Mackenzi Lee

The Books I Read in 2017

In 2017, I read 70 books, 18 fewer than in 2016. That’s not as big a drop as from 2015 to 2016, but I was pretty sure my book count was going to come out lower this year, and I was right. Perhaps I could graph the decline over the course of grad school. I’m simply not spending as much time reading as I used to, but I still read some great books this year. (Also this year I kept track of the short stories I read, since I continued the new habit of reading more short fiction online, but I don’t think I’m going to do a Short Stories I Read in 2017 post.)

Anyway, here are the books, rereads bolded, with links for books I blogged about:

To Hold the Bridge Garth Nix
The Braided Path Donna Glee Williams
The Stuff of Thought Steven Pinker
Océan Mer Alessandro Baricco, translated by Françoise Brun
Difficult Women Roxane Gay
Possession A. S. Byatt
Breath, Eyes, Memory Edwidge Danticat
Krik? Krak! Edwidge Danticat
Stories of Your Life and Others Ted Chiang
Every Heart A Doorway Seanan McGuire
Some Kind of Happiness Claire Legrand
Gemina Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Of Fire and Stars Audrey Coulthurst
The Passion of Dolssa Julie Berry
La cantatrice chauve suivi de La leçon Eugène Ionesco
Électre Jean Giraudoux
Caligula suivi de Le Malentendu Albert Camus
Maisons de la colère P. M. J. Plouvier
La chanson de Roland translated by Joseph Bédier
Song for the Basilisk Patricia A. McKillip
Alcools suivi de Le Bestiaire et de Vitam impendere amori Guillaume Apollinaire
Midnight Is a Place Joan Aiken
We Are Okay Nina LaCour
Wolf Hollow Lauren Wolk
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe Benjamin Alire Sáenz
The Queen of Attolia Megan Whalen Turner
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street Natasha Pulley
Blindness José Saramago translated by Giovanni Pontiero
On a Sunbeam Tillie Walden
The Waking Land Callie Bates
The Hate U Give Angie Thomas
L’absence Anna Boulanger
Ninefox Gambit Yoon Ha Lee
Footnotes* from the World’s Greatest Bookstores Bob Eckstein
Symptoms of Being Human Jeff Garvin
Crooked Kingdom Leigh Bardugo
Sunday in the Park with Boys Jane Mai
I, Coriander Sally Gardner
Beautiful Music for Ugly Children Kirstin Cronn-Miller
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet Becky Chambers
The Thorn and the Blossom: A Two-Sided Love Story Theodora Goss
The White Snake Mary Zimmerman
The Serpent King Jeff Zentner
A Closed and Common Orbit Becky Chambers
everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too jomny sun
Shadowshaper Daniel José Older
For Today I Am a Boy Kim Fu
The Walled City Ryan Graudin
The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley Shaun David Hutchinson
Code Name Verity Elizabeth Wein
Rose Under Fire Elizabeth Wein
Tess of the Road Rachel Hartman
Burial Rites Hannah Kent
Phyla of Joy Karen An-Hwei Lee
Too Like the Lightning Ada Palmer
The Swan Riders Erin Bow
Scythe Neal Shusterman
Monstress Volume One: Awakening Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
Monstress Volume Two: The Blood Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
The Book of Dust Volume One: La Belle Sauvage Philip Pullman
The Pearl Thief Elizabeth Wein
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue Mackenzi Lee
Updraft Fran Wilde
Spinning Tillie Walden
A Line in the Dark Malinda Lo
The Secret in the Wings Mary Zimmerman
Juliet Takes a Breath Gabby Rivera
A Universal History of Iniquity Jorge Luis Borges, translated by Andrew Hurley
Musiques de la frontière Léa Silhol
Fairy Tales Hans Christian Andersen (translated–and adapted?–by somebody…)

The Numbers:

  • Total books read: 70
  • Books in French: 9 (13%) (the good influence of Isabelle continues–also there was that French book sale on campus)
  • Books that were not novels: 19 (27%) (Goodness! Non-fiction: 2; Short story/fairy tale collections: 7; Poetry: 2; Plays: 5; Not easily categorized: 3; also Monstress Volumes 1 and 2 and everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too are graphic novels and On a Sunbeam is a webcomic)
  • Books read in translation: 5 (7%) (Italian to French: 1; Old French to Modern French: 1; Portuguese to English: 1; Spanish to English: 1; Danish to English: 1)
  • Books read for the first time: 63 (90%)
  • Books read not for the first time: 7 (10%)
  • Books written by women (where at least one co-author is a woman): 48 (69%)
  • Books by authors of color (obviously, how someone identifies can’t always be deduced from a name and an author photo, so this isn’t guaranteed to be 100% accurate): 17 (24%)
  • Books by category (as decided by me): Adult: 35 (50%–Wow!); Young Adult: 27 (39%); Middle Grade or Younger: 6 (9%); Indeterminate: 2 (3%)

And finally, my favorite books of 2017 (I did not include rereads, and I didn’t set out to choose a certain number of books):

  • The Braided Path Donna Glee Williams
  • Océan Mer Alessandro Baricco, translated by Françoise Brun
  • Possession A. S. Byatt
  • Wolf Hollow Lauren Wolk
  • On a Sunbeam Tillie Walden
  • Ninefox Gambit Yoon Ha Lee
  • Sunday in the Park with Boys Jane Mai
  • The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet Becky Chambers
  • Tess of the Road Rachel Hartman
  • Too Like the Lightning Ada Palmer
  • The Book of Dust Volume One: La Belle Sauvage Philip Pullman
  • The Pearl Thief Elizabeth Wein

Twelve! That’s an auspicious number. May your 2018 be filled with wonderful books!

The Books I Read in 2016

In 2016, I read 88 books, 25 fewer than in 2015. I’m going to blame that on 紅樓夢 (A Dream of Red Mansions), which took forever to read. So here are the books. As usual, bolded titles are rereads, and there are links for the rare books I blogged about during the year. Oh, and this year, I’ve included the names of the translators for books I read in translation, since translators deserve recognition. Also, I read a lot more short fiction this year than I think I have in the past. More on that after the list of books.

The Hollow Boy Jonathan Stroud
My Brilliant Friend Elena Ferrante, translated by Ann Goldstein
Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages Gaston Dorren
Illuminae Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
The Story of a New Name Elena Ferrante, translated by Ann Goldstein
The Sparrow Mary Doria Russell
The Blackthorn Key Kevin Sands
The Goblin Emperor Katherine Addison
Children of God Mary Doria Russell
Bone Gap Laura Ruby
Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay Elena Ferrante, translated by Ann Goldstein
This Is Where It Ends Marieke Nijkamp
Serafina and the Black Cloak Robert Beatty
The Young Elites Marie Lu
The Rose Society Marie Lu
Sorcerer to the Crown Zen Cho
Goodbye Stranger Rebecca Stead
The Rest of Us Just Live Here Patrick Ness
The Story of the Lost Child Elena Ferrante, translated by Ann Goldstein
The Game of Love and Death Martha Brockenbrough
Pax Sara Pennypacker
Contes de la Tisseuse suivi de Voix de Fées Léa Silhol
Full Cicada Moon Marilyn Hilton
Nest Esther Ehrlich
The Dark Is Rising Susan Cooper
The Golden Specific S. E. Grove
The Perilous Gard Elizabeth Marie Pope
The Curse of Chalion Lois McMaster Bujold
A Study in Charlotte Brittany Cavallaro
The Scorpion Rules Erin Bow
Six of Crows Leigh Bardugo
Nimona Noelle Stevenson
A Madness So Discreet Mindy McGinnis
The Raven King Maggie Stiefvater
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street Natasha Pulley
Une vie à refaire: Mary MacDonald, fille de Loyaliste Karleen Bradford, translated by Martine Faubert
The Magician’s Land Lev Grossman
The Fifth Season N. K. Jemisin
A Bestiary Lily Hoang
A Long Stay in a Distant Land Chieh Chieng
The Blood Between Us Zac Brewer
The Girl Who Fell From the Sky Heidi Durrow
Carry On Rainbow Rowell
The Lie Tree Frances Hardinge
Flexible Wings Veda Stamps
Novecento: pianiste Alessandro Baricco, translated by Françoise Brun
Sacra: Parfums d’Isenne et d’ailleurs, Opus I–Aucun cœur inhumain Léa Silhol
Exit, Pursued by a Bear E. K. Johnston
Summerlost Ally Condie
Court of Fives Kate Elliott
Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out Susan Kuklin
Anna and the Swallow Man Gavriel Savit
The Girls at the Kingfisher Club Genevieve Valentine
The Girl from Everywhere Heidi Heilig
How to Say Goodbye in Robot Natalie Standiford
Guardian of the Dead Karen Healey
Dark Metropolis Jaclyn Dolamore
A Strangeness in My Mind Orhan Pamuk, translated by Ekin Oklap
Glittering Shadows Jaclyn Dolamore
Future Shock Elizabeth Briggs
The Steep & Thorny Way Cat Winters
Girl in Reverse Barbara Stuber
The Golden Compass Philip Pullman
Conversations avec la Mort Léa Silhol
Horseradish: Bitter Truths You Can’t Avoid Lemony Snicket
I Think I Am In Friend-Love With You Yumi Sakugawa
Flora Segunda Ysabeau S. Wilce
A Dream of Red Mansions Cao Xueqin and Gao E, translated by Yang Xianyi and Gladys Yang
Monstress Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
Seasonal Velocities Ryka Aoki
The Crimson Skew S. E. Grove
The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog Adam Gidwitz and Hatem Aly
The Reader Traci Chee
The Story of Owen E. K. Johnston
Prairie Fire E. K. Johnston
Why Dust Shall Never Settle Upon This Soul Ryka Aoki
Journey Aaron Becker
Quest Aaron Becker
Return Aaron Becker
Murder Is Bad Manners Robin Stevens
Poison Is Not Polite Robin Stevens
Ondine Jean Giraudoux
A Darker Shade of Magic V. E. Schwab
None of the Above I. W. Gregorio
Scarlett Undercover Jennifer Latham
The Smaller Evil Stephanie Kuehn
The Creeping Shadow Jonathan Stroud
Lost in Translation: An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words from Around the World Ella Frances Sanders

The Numbers:

  • Total books read: 88
  • Books in French: 6 (principally due to the good influence of Isabelle)
  • Books that were not novels: 18 (20%) (Wow, I seem to be diversifying! Non-fiction: 2; Short story collections: 3; Essay collections: 1; Poetry: 1; Picture books: 3; Plays: 1; Not easily categorized: 5; also Nimona and Monstress are graphic novels)
  • Books read in translation: 8 (9%) (Italian to English: 4; English to French: 1; Italian to French: 1; Turkish to English: 1; Chinese to English: 1)
  • Books read for the first time: 84 (95%)
  • Books read not for the first time: 4 (5%)
  • Books written by women (where at least one co-author is a woman): 68 (77%)
  • Books by authors of color (obviously, how someone identifies can’t always be deduced from a name and an author photo, so this isn’t guaranteed to be 100% accurate): 18 (20%)
  • Books by category (as decided by me): Adult: 30 (34%); Young Adult: 34 (39%); Middle Grade: 21 (24%); Picture Book: 3 (3%)

A note on short stories: For many years, I haven’t read much short fiction, spending almost all my reading hours on novels. (When I was younger and subscribed to Cricket magazine, I read a lot more short stories.) This year, though, I started reading more short stories, probably again thanks to the influence of Isabelle, who recommended half of the titles on the list below to me. Sometime in the latter half of the year, I started keeping a record of the short stories I was reading. Hence this list, in case you’re curious.

“The Uncarved Heart” Evan Dicken
“Cat Pictures Please” Naomi Kritzer
“Taste the Singularity at the Food Truck Circus” Jeremiah Tolbert
“Her Sacred Spirit Soars” S. Qiouyi Lu
“Limits” Donna Glee Williams
“The Circle Harp” Donna Glee Williams
“Almost Days” D.K. Mok
“Made of Cats: A Love Story” Judith Tarr
“Selkie Stories Are For Losers” Sofia Samatar
“A Fist of Permutations in Lightning and Wildflowers” Alyssa Wong
“Without Faith, Without Law, Without Joy” Saladin Ahmed
“Where We Live” Heidi Heilig
“Hurricane Heels” Isabel Yap
“White Lie Sympathy” Isabel Yap
“Boat in Shadows, Crossing” Tori Truslow
“Fist With A Kiss” Isabel Yap
“Only Fools Fall” Isabel Yap
“Kaleidoscope Heart” Isabel Yap
“Water Finds Its Level” M. Bennardo
“RedChip BlueChip” Effie Seiberg
“Makeisha in Time” Rachael K. Jones
“On the Acquisition of Phoenix Eggs (Variant)” Marissa Lingen
“Razorback” Ursula Vernon
“Laws of Night and Silk” Seth Dickinson
“The Traitor Baru Cormorant, Her Field-General, and Their Wounds” Seth Dickinson
“Samantha’s Diary” Diana Wynne Jones
“The Fisher Queen” Alyssa Wong
“Santos de Sampaguitas” Alyssa Wong
“Dragon Brides” Nghi Vo

And finally, my favorite books of 2016 (in chronological order)! I didn’t let myself include rereads. And I didn’t set out to choose a certain number of books.

  • Illuminae Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  • The Sparrow Mary Doria Russell (I think I owe this one to Andrew!)
  • The Goblin Emperor Katherine Addison
  • Sorcerer to the Crown Zen Cho
  • The Watchmaker of Filigree Street Natasha Pulley
  • The Fifth Season N. K. Jemisin
  • The Lie Tree Frances Hardinge
  • Anna and the Swallow Man Gavriel Savit
  • The Girls at the Kingfisher Club Genevieve Valentine
  • I Think I Am In Friend-Love With You Yumi Sakugawa
  • Seasonal Velocities Ryka Aoki
  • The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog Adam Gidwitz and Hatem Aly
  • A Darker Shade of Magic V. E. Schwab

Lucky thirteen, I guess!

The Books I Read in 2015

Last year, I read 113 books (more or less). Not quite as many as in 2013, but 20 more than in 2014. It’s true I spent the last week or so of 2015 reading a lot. The books are listed below (bolded titles were rereads–yes, I did read Shadow Scale twice with only five books between reads–and books I’ve blogged about have links):

The Story Girl L. M. Montgomery
Lirael Garth Nix
Embroideries Marjane Satrapi
El Deafo Cece Bell
Dirty Wings Sarah McCarry
Scarlet Marissa Meyer
Ancillary Sword Ann Leckie
The Language of Food Dan Jurafsky
The Witch’s Boy Kelly Barnhill
Otherbound Corinne Duyvis
A Creature of Moonlight Rebecca Hahn
The Story of Owen E. K. Johnston
Greenglass House Kate Milford
The Three-Body Problem Liu Cixin
How Many Languages Do We Need? Victor Ginsburgh and Shlomo Weber (did not finish)
The Secret Sky Atia Abawi
Mermaid in Chelsea Creek Michelle Tea
Dark Triumph Robin LaFevers
Six Feet Over It Jennifer Longo
A Corner of White Jaclyn Moriarty
Conversion Katherine Howe
Some Oscar Wilde plays
Shadow Scale Rachel Hartman
La peau de chagrin Honoré de Balzac
I’ll Give You The Sun Jandy Nelson
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces Isabel Quintero
A Mad, Wicked Folly Sharon Biggs Waller
This One Summer Jillian and Mariko Tamaki
Shadow Scale Rachel Hartman
Brown Girl Dreaming Jacqueline Woodson
Heap House Edward Carey
Abhorsen Garth Nix
How It Went Down Kekla Magoon
The Shadow Cabinet Maureen Johnson
Mortal Heart Robin LaFevers
Last Night at the Blue Angel Rebecca Rotert
The Mathematician’s Shiva Stuart Rojstaczer
Trouble Non Pratt
Clariel Garth Nix
Days of Blood and Starlight Laini Taylor
Dreams of Gods and Monsters Laini Taylor
Rivals in the City Y. S. Lee
The Riverman Aaron Starmer
The Whisper Aaron Starmer
Prairie Fire E. K. Johnston
Fat Angie e. E. Charlton-Trujillo
Everything I Never Told You Celeste Ng
Wildlife Fiona Wood
Songs of Willow Frost Jamie Ford
A Discovery of Witches Deborah Harkness
Hild Nicola Griffith
Egg & Spoon Gregory Maguire
Frog Mo Yan
Under a Painted Sky Stacey Lee
Americanah Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
All the Truth That’s in Me Julie Berry
The Darkest Part of the Forest Holly Black
The Reeducation of Cherry Truong Aimee Phan
I Love I Hate I Miss My Sister Amélie Sarn
Out of the Easy Ruta Sepetys
Mambo in Chinatown Jean Kwok
Birthmarked Caragh O’Brien
Prized Caragh O’Brien
Promised Caragh O’Brien
The Winner’s Curse Marie Rutkoski
Prisoner of Night and Fog Anne Blankman
Behind the Scenes at the Museum Kate Atkinson
The Whispering Skull Jonathan Stroud
The Winner’s Crime Marie Rutkoski
Cuckoo Song Frances Hardinge
Black Dove White Raven Elizabeth Wein
The Shadow Behind the Stars Rebecca Hahn
Uprooted Naomi Novik
Magic Under Glass Jaclyn Dolamore
100 Sideways Miles Andrew Smith
I’ll Meet You There Heather Demetrios
Serpentine Cindy Pon
Aurora Kim Stanley Robinson
The Turn of the Screw and Other Short Fiction Henry James
The Tight-Rope Walkers David Almond
Fangirl Rainbow Rowell
The Cure for Dreaming Cat Winters
The Uninvited Cat Winters
The Book of Unknown Americans Cristina Henríquez
Brutal Youth Anthony Breznican
Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few Robert B. Reich
Archivist Wasp Nicole Kornher-Stace
Promise of Shadows Justina Ireland
Cruel Beauty Rosamund Hodge
Dumplin’ Julie Murphy
The House of Dies Drear Virginia Hamilton
The Silver Crown Robert C. O’Brien
The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner’s Dilemma Trenton Lee Stewart
Out of Darkness Ashley Hope Pérez
Invisible Cities Italo Calvino
The Traitor Baru Cormorant Seth Dickinson
A Thousand Nights E. K. Johnston
The Hollow Land Jane Gardam
Alif the Unseen G. Willow Wilson
Ancillary Mercy Ann Leckie
Soundless Richelle Mead
Honor Girl Maggie Thrash
Lumberjanes: Beware the Kitten Holy Noelle Stevenson, Brooke A. Allen, Shannon Watters, and Grace Ellis
The Trilogy of Two Juman Malouf
More Happy Than Not Adam Silvera
West of the Moon Margi Preus
Delicate Monsters Stephanie Kuehn
The Awesome Eva Darrows
The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly Stephanie Oakes
The Night Gardener Jonathan Auxier
Razorhurst Justine Larbalestier
Lizard Radio Pat Schmatz
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma

The Numbers:

  • Total books read: 113
  • Books in French: 1 (and it was reaaaallly boring)
  • Books that were not novels: 4 (4%) (Non-fiction: 3; Plays: 1; also Embroideries, El Deafo, This One Summer, Honor Girl, and Lumberjanes are graphic novels)
  • Books read in translation: 5 (4%) (French: 2; Chinese: 2; Italian: 1)
  • Books read for the first time: 110 (97%)
  • Books read not for the first time: 3 (3%)
  • Books by female authors: 85 (75%)
  • Books by male authors: 28 (25%)
  • Books by authors of color (obviously, how someone identifies can’t always be deduced from a name and an author photo, so this isn’t guaranteed to be 100% accurate): 24 (21%)
  • Books by category (as decided by me): Adult: 29 (26%); Young Adult: 67 (59%); Middle Grade: 16 (14%); Indeterminate: 1 (1%) (The Hollow Land)

And lastly, my favorite books of 2015. I made myself choose 15, and it was actually tough. On a different day, the list might’ve been different. With that caveat in mind…

  • Ancillary Sword Ann Leckie
  • The Story of Owen E. K. Johnston
  • Greenglass House Kate Milford
  • Shadow Scale Rachel Hartman
  • Abhorsen Garth Nix
  • Prairie Fire E. K. Johnston
  • Hild Nicola Griffith
  • Americanah Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • Out of the Easy Ruta Sepetys
  • Cuckoo Song Frances Hardinge
  • Uprooted Naomi Novik
  • The Traitor Baru Cormorant Seth Dickinson
  • The Hollow Land Jane Gardam
  • Alif the Unseen G. Willow Wilson
  • Ancillary Mercy Ann Leckie

Honorary mentions to:

  • West of the Moon Margi Preus
  • The Night Gardener Jonathan Auxier

The Books I Read in 2014

Reprising last year’s exercise, I’ve compiled the list of books I read in 2014. These titles were again collected from my journals, since I’ve refused to keep track of my reading in a more systematic fashion. A year ago, I hinted that I expected to read fewer books in 2014 than in 2013 (my total for 2013 was 119). This turned out to be true, though not by as much as I would have predicted. I read 93 books in 2014. They are listed below (titles I was rereading are in bold, titles I’ve blogged about on other occasions have links):

Rebel Heart Moira Young
Rose Under Fire Elizabeth Wein
Spell It Out David Crystal (did not finish)
The Merlin Conspiracy Diana Wynne Jones
The Fault in Our Stars John Green
Sorrow’s Knot Erin Bow
Eleanor & Park Rainbow Rowell
Pantomime Laura Lam
The Diviners Libba Bray
The Book of Salt Monique Truong
The Night Circus Erin Morgenstern
Silent House Orhan Pamuk
Uses for Boys Erica Lorraine Scheidt
The School for Good and Evil Soman Chainani
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Interrupted Tale Maryrose Wood
Flygirl Sherri L. Smith
Reckless Cornelia Funke
Fearless Cornelia Funke
Charm & Strange Stephanie Kuehn
Saving Francesca Melina Marchetta
The Piper’s Son Melina Marchetta
Defy Sara B. Larson
All the Wrong Questions: When Did You See Her Last? Lemony Snicket
The Final Descent Rick Yancey
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making Catherynne M. Valente
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There Catherynne M. Valente
The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two Catherynne M. Valente
The Nethergrim Matthew Jobin
A World Without Princes Soman Chainani
The Magicians Lev Grossman
The Girl of Fire and Thorns Rae Carson
Midnight for Charlie Bone Jenny Nimmo
Grimm Tales Philip Pullman
The Magician King Lev Grossman
The Crown of Embers Rae Carson
The Bitter Kingdom Rae Carson
Tell the Wolves I’m Home Carol Rifka Brunt
All Our Pretty Songs Sarah McCarry
Raging Star Moira Young
Wildwood Imperium Colin Meloy
I Am The Clay Chaim Potok
Girl in Translation Jean Kwok
Bitter Melon Cara Chow
Sex & Violence Carrie Mesrobian
Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea April Genevieve Tucholke
In the Shadow of Blackbirds Cat Winters
Winger Andrew Smith
This Song Will Save Your Life Leila Sales
Breadcrumbs Anne Ursu
The Real Boy Anne Ursu
The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf Ambelin Kwaymullina
The Year of Shadows Claire Legrand
Ancillary Justice Ann Leckie
Where the Streets Had a Name Randa Abdel-Fattah
Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock Matthew Quick
Persepolis Marjane Satrapi
Persepolis 2 Marjane Satrapi
The Bells Richard Harvell
To Live Yu Hua
Chronicle of a Blood Merchant Yu Hua
The Eyre Affair Jasper Fforde
A Spy in the House Y. S. Lee
The Body at the Tower Y. S. Lee
Witchlanders Lena Coakley
The Traitor in the Tunnel Y. S. Lee
Rooftoppers Katherine Rundell
The Impossible Knife of Memory Laurie Halse Anderson
Daughter of Smoke and Bone Laini Taylor
Lost in a Good Book Jasper Fforde
The Well of Lost Plots Jasper Fforde
We Were Liars E. Lockhart
Complicit Stephanie Kuehn
Girls Like Us Gail Giles
Like No Other Una LaMarche
Something Rotten Jasper Fforde
The Screaming Staircase Jonathan Stroud
A Wrinkle in Time Madeleine L’Engle
The Left Hand of Darkness Ursula K. Le Guin
First Among Sequels Jasper Fforde
One of Our Thursdays Is Missing Jasper Fforde
The Dream Thieves Maggie Stiefvater
The Shadow Hero Gene Luen Yang and Sonny Liew
Blue Lily, Lily Blue Maggie Stiefvater
The Woman Who Died A Lot Jasper Fforde
Days of Little Texas R. A. Nelson
Sabriel Garth Nix
Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets Evan Roskos
The Falconer Elizabeth May
Five Flavors of Dumb Antony John
Lies We Tell Ourselves Robin Talley
The Glass Sentence S. E. Grove
Feynman Jim Ottaviani and Leland Myrick
I Work at a Public Library Gina Sheridan

A few remarks:

  • As in 2013, I did some series reading in 2014. The Thursday Next binge is probably most notable.
  • I didn’t dislike Spell It Out; it’s just hard for a non-fiction book to keep my attention when so many novels are beckoning. Also, the non-technical way Crystal threw around the terms “long vowel” and “short vowel” started to drive me batty.
  • I think I just might not be a Diana Wynne Jones person. She’s a fantasy giant, but I’ve never been able to enjoy a book of hers. A quote from my journal about this year’s attempt to read her: “I’m still slogging through this interminable Merlin Conspiracy which I swear has no plot (or at least the plot’s structure is very odd; I’m three quarters through and we don’t seem to have advanced much from the inciting incident, and there are all sorts of random side adventures involving cricket stadiums in France and circus elephants and contraband salamanders that seem to have no relation to the central conflict).” If you can recommend a Diana Wynne Jones book you think I’ll like, please do, but don’t say Howl’s Moving Castle.

Some number crunching for 2014:

  • Total books read: 93
  • Books in French: Um, zero
  • Books that were not novels: 4 (4%) (Non-fiction: 1 (did not finish); Fairy tale collection: 1; Graphic biography: 1; Humor: 1; also Persepolis, Persepolis 2, and The Shadow Hero are graphic novels)
  • Books read in translation: 7 (8%) (Turkish: 1; German: 2; French: 2; Chinese: 2)
  • Books read for the first time: 86 (92%)
  • Books read not for the first time: 7 (8%)
  • Books by female authors: 61 (66%)
  • Books by male authors: 32 (34%)
  • Books by authors of color (some authors appear more than once; also, how someone identifies can’t always be deduced from a name and an author photo, and I tried to be conservative): 17 (18%) (hmm, this is lower than I expected and represents a lot fewer than 17 authors…)
  • Books by category (as decided by me): Adult: 23 (25%); Young Adult: 51 (55%); Middle Grade: 16 (17%); Indeterminate: 3 (3%) (the two Persepolises and Grimm Tales)

Finally, my top books of 2014 (last year I picked 13 because it was 2013, so rightfully I should’ve picked 14 this year, but instead I rather arbitrarily chose 12–and if I’d drawn up this list on a different day it might’ve been a different 12):

  • Rose Under Fire Elizabeth Wein
  • Sorrow’s Knot Erin Bow
  • Eleanor & Park Rainbow Rowell
  • The Diviners Libba Bray
  • The Night Circus Erin Morgenstern
  • Tell the Wolves I’m Home Carol Rifka Brunt
  • In the Shadow of Blackbirds Cat Winters
  • Ancillary Justice Ann Leckie
  • The Eyre Affair Jasper Fforde
  • Witchlanders Lena Coakley
  • Complicit Stephanie Kuehn
  • The Glass Sentence S. E. Grove