Reading Roundup for 2019 and 2018

I’ve been chronically late posting updates of what I read in the previous year so this post is kind of ironic this year that it’s the earliest I’ve posted a round up for the previous year (2019) and the latest I’ve post a rounded up for an earlier year (2018).

I don’t do these summaries to brag or to be performative. I do them largely for myself as a means of documenting when I read something and to take stock in what types of authors & stories I’ve been reading. I never go into the year with the plan to read more of a certain genre or specific author’s books. I may have a vague idea that I want to check out an author that I haven’t read before, but I certainly don’t have a checklist or score card going into the year.

Having said that I do like to mix it up and read Science Fiction, Fantasy, and non-Fiction in varying amounts. I will read the occasion mainstream literature, but speculative fiction has kind of broken my brain for those type of stories. I have been trying to include more poetry and graphic novels in my reading lists.

So let’s jump in the Wayback machine and go back to 2018 when I pledged to read 36 books on my Goodreads challenge that year, an increase of 6 books over the 2017 goal. I fell short reading 30, which was the same number I read in 2017. Below is a quilt of covers laid out in approximately the order I read them in.

Grid of book covers from 2018
Covers of Books Read in 2018

I “discovered” a lot of new authors in 2018 that I hadn’t read before. 15/30 books were by authors I hadn’t previously read. My reading choices were pretty evenly split between Science Fiction and Fantasy with a couple of non-fiction, poetry, and graphic novels thrown in for good measure. More than half the authors I read were female in 2018. Most of the books I read came out in the last few years or at least post 2011. With 3 being from the 1990s. As in previous years, I won’t get into reviewing the books I read here. 2018 was definitely a good year of reading for me with the majority of the books being memorable reads that I would heartily recommend to friends.

2018 Breakdown of Andy’s Reading List

Moving on to 2019 my pace was a lot slower than I had anticipated. For starters I began ride-sharing with a co-worker which cut into my audio book listening. That compounded by health issues in the second half of 2019 really put a damper on my target of 36 books. In the end I read 13 books.

2019 Reading List in Book Covers

2019’s reading selection tended to skew towards Science Fiction with 8/13 being SF related and only 3 books had Fantasy elements in it. Usually I am split a lot more evenly. More than half the books I read were by female authors. I also read 3 books with Time Travel elements in them this year – The Light Brigade by Kameron Hurley, Here and Now and Then by Mike Chen, and Alice Payne Rides by Kate Heartfield. I read 2 non-fiction books both of which were actual physical books as opposed to e-books or audio books.

2019 Breakdown of Andy’s Reading List

So that’s my reading habits in a nutshell. I am aiming for 36 books again in 2020. I’ll see what happens. I’ve already went through my back log of books I bought in the last couple of years and I have over 50 books to choose from and that doesn’t include the audio books and e-books I have on my electronic TBR piles. Plus I know of a few authors with debut novels coming out in 2020 that I hope to add to my reading list. Going to be a busy reading year.

What are you looking forward to reading in 2020?