Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year! 2015!

Happy 2015!  

I am so pleased that it is the new year.  I took a few days off work and I feel very refreshed and ready for all of the new challenges and joys that 2015 will bring.  

I also love reflecting on all of the books that I read in 2015, so here goes! 

In 2015, I read 60 books and a total of 21,392 pages. This was 10 books short of my reading goal and I attribute this to watching more TV and having zero reading time on the weekends because we got a new kitchen!   That means that we spent 6 months of weekends working on the house instead of reading. 

Longest Book:  NOS4A2 by Joe Hill. Honestly, not great, it was a long 642 pages. 

Shortest Book:  The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin at 132 pages. 

Most Disappointing Book:  Revival by Stephen King.  I always have super high expectations for Stephen King and Revival just didn't do it for me.  It was loose, felt like it was written too quickly and was a long rambling novel that I just couldn't get behind.  Still, I gave it 3/5 stars.

Also disappointing was The Auschwitz Escape by Joel C. Rosenberg.  This was rated one of the best books of the year on Goodreads, but my god, it was awful.  So much passive voice in this book.  This is my biggest pet peeve.  I wanted to edit this book for Mr. Rosenberg and I was highly disappointed. 

Most Rewarding Book:   Soy Sauce for Beginners by Kirstin Chen.  This book was beautiful.  It sent me on a search for real-brewed soy sauce and it made me crave good Asian food. 

Worst Book:  The Last Town (Wayward Pines #3) by Blake Crouch.  This was the last book in the Wayward Pines series and it was incredibly disappointing.  I hated the ending and hated how Blake kept us all waiting for a crap book.   It is very highly rated on Goodreads, a full 4.14 points, but I gave it 1/5 stars.  

Best Non-Fiction:    The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown.  I recommend this book to almost everyone I know.  It was by far the best non-fiction book that I've read in years.  The tension was palpable and I loved learning about crew and rowing. 

Funniest Book:  This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper.  This book was relatively funny, but after reviewing my books for 2014, I realized that I didn't read very many memorable funny books this year.  I definitely need to change this in 2015.  

Favorite Book:   Toss up between The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters and Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown.  I have been recommending these books to people all year, or in the case of The Paying Guests, since I finished it in early December.  They are both outstanding reads.  

Best Rated on Goodreads:  The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.   This was not the best book that I read this year, but it was certainly a five star. 

Worst Rated on Goodreads:  The Hit by Melvin Burgess.  Not surprising.  This book was so so bad. See my review here.

I set some goals for 2014 and here's how they panned out:

1.  Read 70 books.  I fell short by 10 books!   Yikes! 

2.  Alternatively, read 30,000 pages.  I needed about 10,000 pages to fulfill this goal.  Whoops!  

3. Post to this blog 30 times.  Let's get out of this 27 slump nice and easy.  Eek.  Also a fail.  I posted exactly 6 times.  

4.  Continue my One-Line a day journal.  I love keeping records of my day to day and I hope this journal will help me do it.   I did this until approximately May.  That's pretty good for a NY Resolution! 

5.  Actually read the books that I buy.  My to-read shelf is bigger than the shelves of books that I've read.  I am going to try to buy fewer books this year, get more books from the library (FREE), and make a dent in the to-read pile.   I mostly achieved this goal too!  I stopped buying books on the Kindle Daily Deal because they became sort of a toss up, and got more books from the library.  Nothing beats holding (and smelling) a physical book! 

I love making goals and I try to do them yearly, monthly, and on my birthday.  I am turning 30 this year, so I'm also working on my "Before I'm 30 Bucket List." 

My goals for 2015 are varied.   My hubs and I have several financial goals that I will not bore you with here, but one includes a trip to Italy for our 30th birthdays!  I want to run a 5k with my mother.  I want to work hard to make my billable hours at work.  I want to landscape my yard in the spring, build a dining room table (amish style), and finish the last remaining kitchen projects. 

My reading goals are: 

1.  Update this blog!  I'm certain I've lost loads of readership due to my general lack of updating, but I should at least be able to double my 2014 entries.  12 seems doable! 

2. Continue to rent books from the library.  

3. Read 62 Books - See what I did there?  I upped my 2014 total by two!  I hope to crush this goal.  

Do you have any reading goals for 2015?

Happy 2015!!  I hope your year is full of life, love, laughter and fabulous books.