After four years of successfully completing (and occasionally exceeding) a 60 book goal for my annual Goodreads Challenge, I upped my goal for 2019 to…wait for it…SIXTY-FIVE books. Dare to dream the impossible dream, amirite?
This slight increase notwithstanding, I resolved in January to try ramping up my reading rigor by improving my consistency and completing at least five books a month. In the past, my monthly reading volume has varied greatly—some months, I’d finish only a single book; other months (I’m looking at you, December ’18), I’d crush eighteen.
In addition, I decided that 2019 would be the year I got my financial ish together, so I created a line item in my budget specifically for book purchases. This meant that 1) I attempted to utilize my local library/Libby app to supplement my personal library and 2) I tried to shop my shelf a bit more.
So…how successful was I?
Reviewing my own snazzy infographic, I’m pleasantly surprised to see that between checking out books from the library on the Libby app and reading books I already owned, almost 50% of the books I read this year were “free.” I’ve never really kept track of how much I spend on books, but I can assure you, it was a lot, so this looks like progress to me!
What strikes me as crazy is how few physical books I read in 2019—only around 15, which is honestly shocking. I used to save my Kindle reading almost exclusively for when I was traveling, and my library is one of my greatest treasures (I think I’ve got somewhere between 400-500 titles on my shelves and I was in tears when I thought they might have all been damaged during Harvey). But between checking out ebooks on the Libby app and choosing to buy the Kindle version to help myself stay within budget, this, it seems, is the result.
I didn’t include it on the infographic, but I reread ten books this year—the entire Harry Potter series on Audible, as well as Bardugo’s Six of Crows and Shadow and Bone Trilogy to try and get myself reacquainted with Ravka before I read King of Scars.
Sidebar: Trying to remember what the heck happened in the previous books in a series never ceases to be a struggle. I long for the days when I actually remembered everything I read, but alas, those days are looooong gone.
I’ve reread the HP series more times than I can count (see my post on the Books That Built Me here), but I have to say, it was a slog to finish it this year. I normally zip through them all in about three months, but it took closer to EIGHT this year. After prepping for my 2nd Annual Very Harry Christmas Party and relistening to Binge Mode: Harry Potter on top of my reread, the burnout was real. Think I may skip it for 2020…
What wasn’t shocking was that I did not end up achieving my goal to read at least 5 books a month for the whole year. I don’t know what it is, but I always seem to have at least one dip where I just don’t read very much. I honestly don’t even know what I’m doing instead. Watching hours of “Epicurious: Four Levels” videos on YouTube, most likely.
Also not shocking—I again failed to complete the Popsugar Reading Challenge. I always start with the best of intentions, but I have a mental block when it comes to any kind of reading that feels assigned. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
All in all, it was a pretty good reading year. I even managed to squish in some non-fiction at the end of the year (Parkland by Dave Cullen was one of my favorite books of the year!).
Stay tuned for my 2020 reading goals!
Such a great analysis! I’m always impressed by your numbers. I need to catch up. 😉
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