Goodreads makes it extremely easy to track one’s reading. But it’s mostly just titles and ratings. Sure you can do a little more, but I go above and beyond on my own. I have a spreadsheet for my reading. I track all kinds of things:
- Reading time
- Page count
- How long it was on my TBR pile
- Ranking for the year
- Ranking all-time
I guess it seems like way more in the document, but that’s still a lot! I didn’t even realize it until I opened an old document and saw everything.
What do you track for your reading!?
When I wrote recently about a book that somehow managed to become one of my personal top 5 reads ever, I came up with the idea to create a page here to keep an up-to-the-minute list of the best books I’ve ever read. It took me a bit longer to figure out exactly how I wanted to do it, but I ultimately settled on a list of the top 15 books I’ve started and finished. When I look at my list there are a couple of things that surprise me. 1) How far down Harper Lee’s masterpiece is (she’s barely hanging on for a spot!) and 2) Michael Connelly DOES NOT WRITE METIOCRE BOOKS.
I thought of just sharing the list in this post, but the page has links to everything I said about some of those books immediately after I read them. Now go and take a look for yourself and tell me what you think! Or, tell me some of the best books you’ve read? Maybe we have some in common!
I’m probably the only person who has read just *one* of his books. Outliers. It was assigned by my university to all incoming freshman when I started there and there was a bit of a discussion afterward.
Now he’s releasing a book titled Talking to Strangers and I’ve just read a little about it. It sounds excellent. Because who of us really has any idea what to do when we’re talking with or interacting with someone we don’t know at all? Not me!
Have you read any of his previous books?
Guys, early this morning I finished my sixth book of the year. To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. I have so many thoughts on it I’m making it my next video. But that’ll be for later. I have to talk about something else.
This was my sixth book of 2019, yes. But it was really my sixth in less than three weeks. I’ve already surpassed my entire 2018 of reading. In three weeks. I’m proud of that. Very much so. But there’s more.
I wrote just a few weeks ago about some of my personal struggles I haven’t been able to get over. Some of the feelings I just can’t quite kick. And guess what? Now that I’m reading a bit I’m feeling so much better and I don’t think it’s a coincidence. I’m foolish for not realizing it sooner.
I have two literary tattoos. I own something like 250 books. I have this. My YouTube channel. My IG. All about books. And I know y’all know about all of these things, but what I’ve somehow forgotten is just how happy books make me. Not going out on the weekends or any of the “typical” things people my age are supposed to do, but books. Sure I love traveling and playing Xbox and even hanging out with friends, but books make me, me. And I absolutely love that.
Earlier this year I made it clear how disappointed I was in my reading last year. 5 books. Just saying that makes me want to hit my head on my desk. But 2019 is off to a better start! So I decided to do a little roundup of my January reading.
Two Kinds of Truth
Harry Bosch ages in real time. In this book he’s into his 60s, but I DON’T CARE. Never stop writing him, Michael Connelly. Or we’re fighting.
I hate to say it, but this was rather unremarkable. I love Spenser. And this won’t discourage me from continuing the series, but I finished the book wanting more.
I wrote about this earlier in the week here. This book was the best crime novel I’ve read! There’s no exaggeration. I gave my reasoning in my previous post. I’m still considering it, but it’s likely a top five all-time read for me. And I have the next four in the series awaiting my curious eyes.
I said I’d stay with crime novels for a bit, and I mostly did. But this was the lone exception last month. It didn’t have hardly any laugh out loud moments, whereas the first in the series was full of them.
The Second Life of Nick Mason
This was the first in a new series written by Steve Hamilton. He’s also one of my favorite authors and it was my first time reading one of his books in several years. It’s well below 300 pages and I felt it. It went way too fast and lacked much depth throughout. But still had a number of exciting moments, which kept it at the above rating.
I count 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 books for the month! It was really in the last two weeks, but shh. I matched my entire 2018 in the first month of 2019 and I’m still going! I know there will be some down months ahead, but I’m happy with and encouraged by my start to the year.
How was your month of reading!?
There once was a time in which I only tried to find standalone novels to read. I didn’t want to be sucked into a long series that would take forever to get through.
At some point that philosophy went right out the window. Though I do currently have quite a few standalone novels, I’m looking for more. Why? Because I don’t think it’s necessary for an author to devote multiple books to the same character in order to write quality stories.
I think a good mix of standalone and series books helps equalize one’s reading. So tell me, tell me! No genre or author limitations.
Over the weekend I finished my first TWO books of the year! Remember guys, I read a grand total of 5 throughout ALL of 2018! It’d take a monumental disaster to not fly right past that number in the coming weeks.
But how is this back to being myself? Well I’ll tell ya. I was in college from August, 2010 until May, 2013. During those four calendar years I read 123 books. In the five calendar years ending in 2018 I read 51. For some reason I’ve gotten away from being me. I love books more than anyone I’ve ever met in person. I have two book-related tattoos and want more. I have my YouTube channel, about books. I have my IG, about books. This blog.
So I’m saying fuck it. I am who I am. I remember those years. I don’t know if happy is the best word, but I was happy. Happy to be reading quite a bit. Happy to be building this blog. And happy to be me.
What’s all this mean? More reading (as evidenced by this previous weekend). And consistent online. Here. IG (posted twice yesterday after almost two years). YouTube. So follow me everywhere at those links!