Saturday, December 23, 2017

The year that was, 2017 is over!!

Politics and the world at large are a mess. No one can ever convince me it's not because of the orange menace in the Oval Office. I have to hope 2018 will be better. Until that day, I'm going to focus on the positive. As in the many good books I read in 2017.

My goal for 2017 was to read 50 books. As of December 23, I read 38 books. I think I can make it to 40 books before the final minutes of 2017 come to a close. Either way, that's still more than 2016. Perhaps I would have read more if I hadn't started and stopped 13 additional books. Yes, life is too short to read books I'm not really interested in. Sooooo....lets get to it. The best books of the year!

Best Books of 2017
(Please note, not all of these books were published in 2017. I just happened to read them in 2017)

1. The Hike by Drew Magary: If not for my office book club, I don't think I ever would have picked this one up. This was one of the weirdest and funniest books I've ever read.

2. The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee: Youtube videos turned me on to this gem! A funny historical romp through Europe.

3. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty: Loved the book and the loved the HBO adaptation. But....HBO why are you doing a season 2? I think one season was enough.

4. Shine by Lauren Myracle: I should have read this sooner. This was a page-turner. A horrific crime rocks a small town to its core.

5. Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter: This one surprised me. I was expecting a formulaic crime thriller, and got so much more.

6. Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen: This was my first foray into a Sarah Dessen book and I loved it. This reminded me of a Jodi Picoult book.

7. On Writing by Stephen King: I didn't review this on my blog. I read it for inspiration. Like a lot of people I have aspirations about writing professionally. I'm a looooonnnnnnggg way from doing that, but I got a lot more confidence just by reading this book.

8. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas: Given the current political climate, Angie Thomas' book came at the right time. This book shines a light on a hot-button issue, police brutality.

9. The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins: This was one of the strangest books I've ever read. It took me two tries before I could make it all the way through. The second time was the charm.

10. The Bookshop at Water's End by Patti Callahan Henry: A book about people who love books!

The not so good books of 2017
(Please note, not all of these books were published in 2017. I just happened to read them in 2017)

1. Exit West by Mohsin Hamid: I didn't review this on my blog, but I did read it for my office book club. I know this book is on a lot of "best o 2017" lists but it's not on mine! This is a book you either love or you hate. I hate it. I found it incredibly BORING!!

2. Night Film by Marisha Pessl: I invested 600-plus pages into a book that was a big load of nothing. It was a book without an identity. It was trying to be literary, magical realism, thrilling and it didn't work for me.

3. The Mothers by Britt Bennett: Another office book club pick that just wasn't for me. It had potential but I didn't like the narrative style. It was supposed to be told by a group of mothers, but the voice was too inconsistent for my taste.

4. Pond by Claire-Louise Bennett: Yes, yet another office book club pick that I didn't review on my blog. Sensing a theme? Perhaps I need to stick to reading books that I pick?

How did I do with my reading resolutions in 2017?
I think I did okay. My goal was to read 50 books. I've currently read 38 books, but I think I can get to 40. What were my other resolutions for the year? Keep a reading journal: Done, I plan to continue doing that. Finish the Lunar Chronicles: Yeah that didn't happen and I don't know if it will happen in 2018 but I will try. Read a book I assume I will hate: Not yet!

Reading resolutions for 2018
So what am I going to do for 2018? No. 1 goal? Have fun reading!! I want to try for 50 books again, but I want to have fun doing it and not get caught up in the number. What else? Read more of my own books. Read more non-fiction. Read out of my comfort zone; I rarely read fantasy, horror, or sci-fi and it's time for a change! Finally finish It by Stephen King!