Reading 2019: A review

Posted 31. December, 2019 by Vildea in Books / 0 Comments

Last year I wrote this post which lists my reading goals for 2019. I figure that a good way to wrap up the year (as well as get back to this blog) would be to go over the points I made and how it all went.

I do plan on doing somewhat of a wrap-up of 2019 and what I liked as far as books go, but I’m not doing anything related to the turn of a decade. Don’t get me wrong, I get the excitement, but I’ve been through the change from 1999 to 2000 and from 2000 to 2010 and so I’m just not as invested.

That and frankly this decade has been a lot for me in a lot of ways and though I’m not even 30 yet I feel like it nearly broke me. So rather than look back on books I read during the decade and potentially remembering stuff I’d rather not. I’m just going to leave it all behind me.

As I mentioned, this decade has done a bit of a number on me and 2018 and 2019 each did plenty which I think you can see in how updated this blog has been this year.

That said, I did rather like going back in time and seeing what my goals were and thinking about whether they were good ones and if I succeeded so I’m looking forward to making new ones.

No picking up or starting series that aren’t already finished.

  • This includes new series that releases in 2019 or ongoing series that aren’t finished.
    Exceptions: Series that I have already started that are coming out with a new book in 2019, series that conclude in 2019 and series that were originally finished but got spin-offs/additional books added but were at one point concluded.

This is a goal that I really did attempt to keep and I did for the most part stick to it. The reason I say for the most part is that towards the end of the year (last three months I think?) I did start feeling like reading again after a massive slump and I did let myself read some new series that have just started.

That said, I still like this goal because not “having to” read series has felt pretty freeing and I did start to see the way I picked up books changing and how I started appreciating standalones more.

I’m not sure if I’ll do this exact goal next year, but, I might attempt something similar.

Drop books, and especially, series that you don’t enjoy.

  • I have way too many series that I just haven’t gotten into that I sort of planned on continuing, but rather than doing that I’m just going to drop them.

This is one that I’ve been doing a little bit better with overall. That said, I feel like January 2020 will be a month of me going through my “on-hold” shelf on GoodReads and adding them to my DNF shelf instead. Because right now I have 27 books on hold and that’s way too many to not make some kind of decision on.

Try to read at least 52 books.

  • I tried to achieve this last year, but didn’t quite make it so I’m going to try again. I do have a goodreads list with books I’m especially interested in that I hope will help me along.

Yeah… No. I had probably one of the worst reading slumps I’ve ever had this year so my total came to 31 books. Which includes re-reads and books on writing which while both obviously books was not what I wanted the majority of my read books to be in the end.

Try to read at least 6 books that have more than 500 pages.

  • This is inspired by Books With Emily Fox‘s challenge over on Youtube and I’ll be making a post with the books I’m hoping to get to later.

Nope. I read two books that were over 500 pages, one that was 3 pages less than 500 and several that were in the 400-page range.

This was something I mostly added for fun and as my reading slump and year got worse it was the first thing I decided not to care about. Which I’m still happy about. I won’t be doing this again for a while (unless it’s specifically for Tome Topple I guess) but I might consider doing another kind of mini-challenge but it won’t be based on page numbers.

Avoid picking up books that are part of a series.

  • This might seems similar to the first goal, but I’m having a pretty bad case of series burnout and I’m not quite ready to ban them altogether, but I would like to try and avoid picking up any books that are part of a series unless I’m really invested in them. Exception: Series I’ve already begun are obviously not part of this, but if I’m feeling meh or underwhelmed I need to drop them.

I 100% understand why I added this goal and I am 100% pleased with the fact that I did. I was, an am still to a degree, suffering from a rather horrific case of series-burnout and not having them be the focus on my reading has been very pleasant.

I don’t think I’ll be doing this exact goal next year, but I do think I’ll draw some inspiration from it!

Read more “adult” fiction regardless of genre.

  • I suspect that part of the reason why I almost wince at the thought of reading anything part of a series is the way series are done in Young Adult and how practically any book that could be split into more than one, is, even though some would work better either as a longer standalone or should just be edited down to one book. And with the exception of young adult contemporary I haven’t felt that good about any young adult book in a while so I’m hoping a little break and a focus on something else might work. 

I’d give this one a pretty big fail although I did read some. This is partly because I’ve mostly been reading things I already own which was for the most part in the YA genre.

I do have a bit more adult fiction now as well as more books I’m interested in that are coming out so I might attempt this one again next year.

What I do agree with my past-self about is that a big reason why the sound of series fatigue me is the way they are handled in YA and how that’s basically made me feel minimally inclined to pick up any series regardless of age bracket.

This year I read mostly books/series that I’ve read before and wanted to re-read or read the latest release in, standalone books by authors I know I enjoy, contemporary novels and about 2 series by authors I’m not overly familiar with but had heard enough about to know what I was getting myself into.

Read more books in genres outside Fantasy.

  • I love fantasy and in no way is this meant to be read as “read less fantasy” it simply means that in addition to treading fantasy I’d also like to pick up books from other genres. I do like historical novels, detective novels, I like some literary novels and I’d just like to explore some other genres in addition to fantasy. 

Well, if we count the books on writing I’ve been reading then yeah, I have actually read quite a bit outside of fantasy. If we’re looking to the actual fiction books I’ve read this year then 8 of them are non-fantasy vs. 12 fantasy books which is not all that bad all things considered.

I also did say that it wasn’t so much in order to read less fantasy as much as it was about reading more varied, which I’m pretty happy with all things considered and I’ll probably do something very similar this year too.

Read more non-fiction.

  • I enjoy reading non-fiction and I’d like to read some more than what I have done as of late. I’m probably not going to be reviewing them, but they will be part of any wrap-ups I feel like doing.

If we’re counting the books on writing (spoiler: we are) I nailed this challenge. Otherwise? Uh… Not so much no.

That said, this is one of the goals that I’m reading now and wondering why I thought I needed to add. I’ll pick up non-fiction if I feel like it. I know that. So why I felt like I needed it to be a goal I’m not 100% sure of.

However, as you might be able to guess, this is a goal I won’t be attempting for 2020.

So there you have my review of my reading goals for 2019. The goals didn’t go terrible, even if my reading year as essentially dreadful.

Like I mentioned I’ll be doing reading goals for 2020 as well. I’m also doing a few wrap-up posts for 2019 (or one, we’ll see) and a few posts about books and things I’m looking forward to in 2020. I’m trying to phase them out a little though so that it won’t be too overwhelming.

Did you have any goals for 2019? Did you succeed? What did you learn? And are you thinking of having any specific goals for 2020? If so, what are they?

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