2019 In Books

Tomorrow is the last day of 2019, so today I thought would be the perfect time to reflect on my bookish habits of this past year. What did I read? What did I buy?

So first of all, I reached my reading goal. I planned on reading 20 books this years, so a little less than 2 books a month, and I reached that goal in November and even surpassed that by 1 book in December. I’d say that’s pretty good. According to Goodreads I read a total of 5287 pages across 21 books, with the shortest book being 54 pages and the longest one 464. The average length of my books is 251 pages, and my average rating is about 3.8. Thanks for the stats, Goodreads!

I thought I’d first have a look at all the books I read in 2019, with the rating I gave them and the start and finish date. If you look at the “books” tab here on the blog, you can find a review of pretty much all of them.

What I’ve Read in 2019

  • Ghost Stories – M.R. James: 5 stars. Started October 31, 2018. Finished January 13, 2019
  • The Osiris Ritual – George Mann: 3 stars. Started January 14, 2019. Finished January 28, 2019
  • Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief – Rick Riordan: 4 stars. Started February 2, 2019. Finished February 10, 2019
  • Percy Jackson and the Sea Of Monsters – Rick Riordan: 3 stars. Started February 10, 2019. Finished February 17, 2019
  • Percy Jackson and the Titan’s Curse – Rick Riordan: 4 stars. Started February 18, 2019. Finished February 28, 2019
  • Percy Jackson and the Battle Of The Labyrinth – Rick Riordan: 4 stars. Started March 2, 2019. Finished March 16, 2019
  • Percy Jackson and the Last Olympian – Rick Riordan: 5 stars. Started March 16, 2019. Finished March 17, 2019
  • Lies Sleeping – Ben Aaronovitch: 5 stars. Started November 8 2018. Finished March 25, 2019
  • At the Mountains Of Madness – H.P. Lovecraft: 3 stars. Started July 12, 2018. Finished April 16, 2019
  • The Furthest Station – Ben Aaronovitch: 5 stars. Started and finished April 20, 2019
  • The Sea Raiders – H.G. Wells: 3 stars. Started April 22, 2019. Finished April 26, 2019
  • Save The Date – Morgan Matson: 3 stars. Started Apr 17, 2019. Finished May 14, 2019
  • Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman: 4 stars. Started January 8, 2019. Finished June 25, 2019
  • The October Man – Ben Aaronovitch: 5 stars. Started July 16, 2019. Finished July 27, 2019
  • The Lovecraft Compendium – H.P. Lovecraft: 3 stars. Started June 25, 2019. Finished August 10, 2019
  • The Visitors Book – Sophie Hannah: 3 stars. Started and finished August 11, 2019
  • Murder in Midsummer – Cecily Gayford: 4 stars. Started August 13, 2019. Finished August 31, 2019
  • The Figure In The Carpet – Henry James: 2 stars. Started September 23, 2019. Finished September 25, 2019
  • Classic Ghost Stories: 4 stars. Started October 22, 2019. Finished November 16, 2019
  • A Short History Of Drunkenness – Mark Forsyth: 4 stars. Started October 26, 2019. Finished November 25, 2019
  • Mrs. Rosie and the Priest – Giovanni Boccaccio: 4 stars. Started November 30, 2019. Finished December 24, 2019.

So the first thing that is pretty obvious, is my Percy Jackson binge in February and March. I remember that I had such a craving for those books, and I flew through them as soon as I started reading, especially that last one. I also remember not really knowing what I wanted to read afterwards, so diving back into a book I knew I’d love. I feel like I read quite a few books I really enjoyed, especially those Aaronovitch ones with the 5 star ratings, but I also feel like I tend to not really give very low ratings, even though maybe I didn’t really like a book as much as the rating suggests. Definitely something I need to work on in 2020. Another thing I am noticing is that 2019 was the year I really got into short stories. I read a total of 10 short story collections or novellas, and I have a feeling that this will continue into 2020 as well. I just really enjoyed the shorter reads this year. Like every year I ended up in a bit of a reading rut, this time around summer and autumn. I feel like this had a lot to with the fact that work just got really busy and I couldn’t really focus on reading anymore. Which is okay, as I still read a good amount. 2019 was alto the read that I dipped my toe into the non-fiction pool, another thing I would love to try more of in 2020.

What I bought and got in 2019

Yes, I did a book buying ban in 2019, for the last 4 months. But somehow I still ended up with 33 new books in my collection which is ridiculous. Fun, but ridiculous. In fact, I managed to collect 11 new books during the ban, 5 of which I bought myself (which was allowed during the ban, just FYI). I love getting books so I’m not complaining, but it is interesting to see how many books I still managed to get.

  • The Haunting Of Hill House – Shirley Jackson
  • Rules Of Magic – Alice Hoffman
  • Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman
  • Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief – Rick Riordan
  • Percy Jackson and the Sea Of Monsters – Rick Riordan
  • The Figure In The Carpet – Henry James
  • The Great Winglebury Duel – Charles Dickens
  • The Sea Raiders – H.G. Wells
  • The Furthest Station – Ben Aaronovitch
  • Bitten – Kelley Armstrong
  • The Big Four – Agatha Christie
  • The Lovecraft Compendium – H.P. Lovecraft
  • Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan
  • Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
  • The Visitors Book – Sophie Hannah
  • Murder In Midsummer
  • The Muse – Jessie Burton
  • Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
  • The Invisible Library – Genevieve Cogman
  • The Pharaoh Key – Preston & Child
  • Classic Ghost Stories
  • The October Man – Ben Aaronovitch
  • Never Let Me Go – Kazuo Ishiguro
  • A Treasury Of Irish Fairy And Folk Tales
  • A Short History Of Drunkenness – Mark Forsyth
  • The Song Of Achilles – Madeleine Miller
  • Circe – Madeleine Miller
  • The Idiot Brain – Dean Burnett
  • Flush – Virginia Woolf
  • The Madness Of Cambyses – Herodatus
  • Stancliffe’s Hotel – Charlotte Brönte
  • Mrs. Rosie And The Priest – Giovanni Boccaccio
  • Practical Magic – Alice Hoffman

Damn, that is a long list. Out of the 33 books I got this year, I read 13. Meaning I have about 20 books that I haven’t read yet, that I did get this year. I am definitely adding some of those books to my 2020 TBR, because I need to work my way through this pile. I am happy with all the books I got though, I feel like I branched out a bit in genres which is one of my 2020 reading goals. I again got a bunch of short stories that I plan on reading soon, as well as those non-fiction books. What I have noticed over the last few years is that, aside from those Percy Jackson books, I am moving further away from Young Adult books. I definitely read them every once in a while and I do have a few more in my collection that I want to read, but overall I am moving on towards the classics, the adult books. I read lots of creepy stories, both natural and supernatural, I just really enjoy the genre for some reason. I am definitely noticing though that I am lacking a little in lighthearted quick reads, so that is something I am going to keep my eye out for over the next year.

The Big Book Buying Ban review

The last thing I wanted to look back on today is my book buying ban. I started it in September of this year, and my goal was to stick with it until at least the end of the year, which is now. I did set a few exceptions for myself, like I was obviously allowed to receive books as gifts, and if I visited Bookstor in The Hague I was also allowed to pick up some books there. I bought 5 in total during my visit to that store in November, and the other 6 books I got as gifts. Honestly, maybe it was because of the many books I received, but I didn’t really struggle at all during the ban. I found it pretty easy to not buy any books and only read the ones I already owned. To be honest though, I also didn’t read a whole bunch over the last few months, so maybe that also made it easier not to buy any new books? The one goal I didn’t reach that I had set during the ban was to read as many books as I had collected this year, I read over 10 less than that I got. But that’s okay, as it was just kind of a side goal I set for myself, something that would be fun to reach but that wasn’t a priority. Overall, I feel like the book buying ban was a success.

That was a pretty good long review of 2019 in books. A very long review. I feel like overall I am happy with my bookish year, although I would like to read a little more still next year.

Speaking of next year, if you want to know my bookish goals for 2020 as well as my TBR, come back to the blog this Friday, as it will all be here 🙂

Thanks for stopping by and happy 2020!