On a positive note, I have been happily blogging and posting book reviews at The Itinerant Librarian blog. I have turned that blog into a small but nice book blog. I am making plans to add some additional reading related content in 2018, so stay tuned for that. A big reason I do it, besides the fact I enjoy reading and sharing what I read, is to serve in some small way as form of reader's advisory. By the way, if you are an author, editor, or publisher, and you think you have a book I may want to read and review, check out my book review statement, then let me know. I'd be happy to consider it if fits with my review statement and reading interests.
On another positive note, I recently came to my five years anniversary working at Berea College. I even got a small letter from the college president about it. Deity of choice allowing, I hope to stay here for a while longer (let's see if we can make at least another five, you know, start small and work our way up).
Getting to the reading part, even without reviewing my list of books for 2017, I could already feel I read less when compared to last year. The "Hard Times" we are living in the U.S. have wreaked havoc on my reading mood. I often read in the evening before bedtime, and I am often too tired to read, or I just tune out. In November, when I was reading some political/social issues books, I just finally burned out, and I declared a self-imposed moratorium on reading anything related to politics, social issues, activist topics, and/or most current events. In addition, I trimmed my feeds on social media to minimize my exposure to that kind of stuff because in the end it boiled down I need to do some self care and keep some sanity. In fact, I have a politics, social issues, activist, and/or current events moratorium on social media, with the penance that if I slip and post something on those topics, I have to post something about kittens to atone. A few kittens have made my feeds, but the number is dwindling. I am just done with the overall stupidity, selfishness, and bullshit at large. Thus I am doing my best to read more escapist and recreational things. Despite all that, I managed to read some good stuff, and that is always a good thing.
So for 2018 pretty much, this is where I stand:
A small reason I have read less in 2017 is that in my effort to escape the reality of the "Hard Times" I have been binging on watching DVDs for films and specially for old television series. I have gotten some of those from my local public library. I will probably make a separate post to list some of the things I have enjoyed on video.
|The Six of Pentacles, from The Modern Spellcaster's Tarot Deck.|
- Becky Diamond, The Thousand Dollar Dinner.
- Inazo Nitobe, Bushido: The Soul of the Samurai (graphic novel adaptation).
- Scott Jerry, Zits Sketchbook 1.
- The Usual Gang of Idiots, The Mad Bathroom Companion: Gushing Fourth Edition.
- Mark Kurlansky, Paper: Paging Through History.
- Kaelan Rhywiol, Nera's Need.
- Mike Barr, et.al., Star Trek Archives Volume 4: The Best of Deep Space Nine.*
- P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast, Marked (House of Night, Book 1).
- Lee Hammock, Halo Graphic Novel.
- Rebecca Hankins and Miguel Suarez, Where are all the Librarians of Color.
- Mario Benedetti, Biografia para encontrarme.
- John Lewis, March: Book Three.
- C.S. Goto, Blood Ravens: the Dawn of War Omnibus (Warhammer 40,000).*
- Yoav Ben-Dov, The Marseille Tarot Revealed.
- Artisan Press, Why We March.
- John Palfrey, BiblioTech (audiobook edition).
- Colette Baron-Reid, The Enchanted Map oracle cards (oracle deck kit with book).
- Jennifer Worick, Things I Want to Punch in the Face (audiobook edition).
- Tommy Dades, Friends of the Family.
- Jay Fonseca, Banquete Total.
- Scott Martin, Bringing the Tarot to Life.
- Jen Mann, People I Want to Punch in the Throat (audiobook edition).
- Anthony Bourdain, Kitchen Confidential (audiobook edition).
- Leeza Robertson, Tarot Court Cards for Beginners.
- Yankee Magazine, Living Well on a Shoestring.
- Melissa Cynova, Kitchen Table Tarot.
- Josh Katz, Speaking American.
- Jason Aaron, Showdown on the Smugglers' Moon (Star Wars comics).
- Penelope Bagieu, California Dreamin'.
- Ray Garton, Live Girls.
- Eileen Kaur Alden, Super Sikh, Issue 1.
- Matt Kindt, Divinity III: Stalinverse.
- Colin Dickey, Ghostland.
- P.J. O'Rourke, How the Hell Did This Happen?
- Sideshow Collectibles, Figure Fantasy: The Pop Culture Photography of Daniel Picard.
- Jancis Robinson, The 24-Hour Wine Expert.
- Serafin Mendez Mendez, Puerto Rico Past and Present: an Encyclopedia.
- Michael Eric Dyson, Tears We Cannot Stop.
- Clay Cane, Live Through This.
- Cullen Bunn, Battlestar Galactica: Folly of the Gods.
- Kathryn Petras, The Stupidest Things Ever Said Book of Top Ten Lists.
- Roger Langridge, Betty Boop.
- Jennifer Adams, Emma: a BabyLit Emotions Book.
- Jennifer Adams, Treasure Island: a BabyLit Shapes Primer.
- Andy Diggle, James Bond: Hammerhead.
- Vincent Terrace, Television Series of the 1960s.
- Michael Ruhlman, Grocery.
- Andy Schmidt, G.I. Joe: Future Noir, Volume 1.
- Sybille Titieux de la Croix, Muhammad Ali.
- Alana Fairchild, The Isis Oracle (oracle cards deck with book kit).
- Gerard Way, Doom Patrol, Volume 1: Brick by Brick.
- Joanna Powell Colbert, The Gaian Tarot (Tarot cards deck with book kit).
- Sarah Vaughn, Deadman: Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love.
- Leonardo Lucarelli, Mincemeat.
- Matt Kindt, X-O Manowar, Volume 1: Soldier.
- David Gonzales, Homies.
- Suzanne J.E. Tourtillott, 500 Ceramic Sculptures.
- Norman Ohler, Blitzed: Drugs in the Third Reich.
- E.K. Johnston, Ahsoka (Star Wars YA novel).
- Jimmy Palmiotti, Harley Quinn, Volume 2: Joker Loves Harley.
- Graham Masterton, Figures of Fear.
- Vesa Lehtimäki, LEGO Star Wars: Small Scenes From a Big Galaxy.
- Lesley Anne Ivory, Home is Where the Cat Is.
- Ryan Mecum, Vampire Haiku.
- Stan Sakai, Usagi Yojimbo, Vol. 31: The Hell Screen.
- Michael Laitman, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Kabbalah.
- Jonathan J. Moore, Dreadful Diseases and Terrible Treatments.
- Timothy Zahn, Thrawn (Star Wars novel).
- Richard McGuire, Sequential Drawings.
- Neil Gaiman, Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Secret House of the Night of Dread Desire.
- Isabella Alston, Tarot Cards.*
- Ben Jacobs, The Quotable Book Lover.*
- Richard Benson, F in Exams: Complete Failure Edition.
- Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, Batman: The Long Halloween.*
- Matt Groening, Will and Abe's Guide to the Universe.
- Trae Crowder, et.al., The Liberal Redneck Manifesto.
- Yago S. Cura and Max Macias, eds., Librarians With Spines.
- Nancy Isenberg, White Trash.
- Barbara A. Radnofsky, A Citizen's Guide to Impeachment.
- Walt Disney Company. Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion (a Cinestory Comic).
- Clive Barker, Clive Barker's Hellraiser, Volume 1.
- Tony Worobiec and Eva Worobiec, Icons of the Highway.
- Mark Kindt, X-O Manowar, Volume 2: General.
- Eileen Kaur Alden, et.al., Super Sikh, Issue 2: Viva Las Vegas.
Here are the numbers:
Number of books read in 2017: 84
Number of books read in 2016: 92, including re-reads (the 2016 list).
Number of books read in 2015: 123, including 2 re-reads (the 2015 list).
Number of books read in 2014: 152, including 2 re-reads (the 2014 list).
Number of books read in 2013: 173, including 2 re-reads (the 2013 list).
Number of books read in 2012: 117, with 6 re-reads (the 2012 list).
Number of books read in 2011: 119, with 3 re-reads (the 2011 list).
Number of books read in 2010: 119, with 6 rereads (the 2010 list).
Number of books read in 2009: 98, with 5 rereads. I believe this is the first time I started to actively track rereads. (the 2009 list).
Number of books read in 2008: 111 (the 2008 list).
Number of books read in 2007: 85 (the 2007 list).
Number of books read in 2006: 106 (the 2006 list).
Number of books read in 2005: 73
- Tracking books this year got a little tricky. I left GoodReads mostly after it got acquired by the online book retail behemoth. I discovered BookLikes, which is a bit of a hybrid between GoodReads and Tumblr, and I was using that to keep track of books as well as another place to post my reviews. Well, last year BL had some serious clusterfuck where they were down for almost two months with no response whatsoever. A few of us thought the site was gone for good. They hobbled back online, but I have not gone back since. I may in the future; I have not decided yet. So, I reluctantly went back to GoodReads for tracking, where I just record I read something and rate it. I do not post reviews in GR unless requested. What this highlighted for me is there is no real reliable and free tool for readers to track and share what they read overall. Still GR works well enough just to track, and I write my reviews here anyhow.
- I re-read five books in 2017. One of them was the Blood Ravens omnibus, which while I enjoyed it, it did take me some time to read. I am getting in the mood for more comfort reads, so odds are good I will do at least five rereads if not a few more in 2018. I may even do the "Read it again, Sam" challenge this year again just to do a few re-reads. I am currently re-reading Mario Puzo's The Godfather, and I am getting the feeling it may be time to take another trip to Macondo, so I may be re-reading One Hundred Years of Solitude too. Naturally, as I did this year, and have done before, I am planning to re-read The Long Halloween in October.
- You can learn about the reading challenges I did for 2017 here. I did 9 challenges this year, and while they were fun, it was a bit of a struggle at times. I did manage to complete all the initial commitments for every challenge. I upgraded the level on two challenges, the graphic novels one and the NetGalley/Edelweiss, and I sadly fell short by two or three titles for each. It was close going at the end. As I said, the initial commitments got done. Next year, as I select challenges, I will likely pick a small number of challenges. Stay tuned as I start posting the new challenges this month.
- Best reading month: July with 12 books. I was a bit amazed I got that many in.
- Worst month of reading: October with 3 books.
- I read 58 books in print.
- I read 22 books as e-books. Most of these were e-galleys.
- NetGalley: 18
- Edelweiss: 0. I just do not use Edelweiss as much. NetGalley is just easier to use.
- Audiobooks: 4.
- Fiction: 11 books. This does not included graphic novels, comics, and manga, which can be either fiction or nonfiction.
- Nonfiction: 47.
- Graphic novels (including comics, graphic novels, but not manga): 26. Manga: 1. For manga, I have quite a few titles waiting to be read. I just often get distracted by other things. Plus a lot of my graphic novel titles come from NetGalley, so I usually have to get those first before they expire.
- Library books read:
- Public library (Madison County, KY): 39
- Hutchins Library (Berea College, where I work): 3
- Via ILL: 1. The book, Banquete Total, came from UC Berkeley Libraries.
- Books read that I own (or we, since I read some the Better Half 's books she owns): 17.
- Other numbers of interest:
- Erotica (which includes fiction as well nonfiction in sexuality topics): 2. This was a very bad year for me reading in this genre. The "Hard Times" are basically terrible for reading in this area, and they often ruined my mood. I hope I can get back to reading more of this in 2018, but I am not optimistic at the moment.
- LIS, including reference works for the library: 4.
- Tarot and oracle: 7
- Pagan/other beliefs/spirituality/esoterica: 2.
- Books offered for review (i.e. not from NetGalley or Edelweiss). I got these from a publisher, author, so on either because I requested them or they were offered for review to me: 3.
- Books in Spanish language: 2.
- Library of Congress, The Card Catalog.
- Mario Puzo, The Godfather.*
- Agatha Christie, Masterpieces of Murder (collection of four of her novels).
- Joe Strike, Furry Nation.
- Stephen Jones, ed., The Mammoth Book of Dracula.
- Rose Caraway, ed., For the Men and the Women Who Love Them.
- Delilah S. Dawson, Phasma (Star Wars. Part of the Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi novels).
- Hannah Dolan, The LEGO Movie: The Essential Guide. (I recently watched and enjoyed the movie, so I picked up this cute book at my public library).
Selection of other people (mainly blogs I follow) who post their end of year book reports:
- Alexia at Pretty Deadly Reviews' end of year book survey. This is interesting as she is answering a specific set of questions. I may do it myself with some modification. Bekka at the same blog also did an end of year book haul. I thought that was interesting too. I may try it as I did get a few new books over the holiday season.
- PhiloBiblos' end of year report.
- Live to Read. Live to Read has a list of their best for 2017, which are books they rated 5/5 stars.
- Books, Movies, Reviews! Oh My! also did that end of year survey.
- Based on a True Story has their 2017 in review post for reading. They also list their foodie books for 2017, part of the Foodies Read book challenge. I did that challenge too, though my goal was a bit lower.
- Angel's Guilty Pleasures did an end of year tag.
- Jessamyn West made her 2017 reading list.
- Librarian Shipwreck offers their favorites of 2017.
- Here is Meredith Farkas' year in books for 2017.
- Joshua Kim of Inside Higher Ed tells us what he read in 2017.
- Here is Mark Lindner's report. Much like me, he finds it hard to get reviews in for reading challenges. I am ok reviewing books; it's the having to submit them by certain times, so on that irks me. This is also part of why I am getting more selective on reading challenges to do. Life indeed is too short.