2009 in (Book) Statistics

I totally blew by my reading goal for 2009, but to be fair over half of these were books written for Children or Teens, many of which were graphic novels (which are generally a quicker read). It’s good to have met this goal at least since I failed in all, but one (paying off the student loan debt) of the others. Maybe I do better without goals.

The high numbers of children’s and teen books skewed my statistics somewhat (never, since I have been keeping track, have a read so little non-fiction, or so many male authors). Usually I vow every year to read more male authors in the year ahead, but I don’t think I’m going to worry about that this year! I do certainly hope that I read more non-fiction next year. I really do enjoy it, even if it takes me longer to get through.

Total Books Read in 2009: 200

  • Number Read in Best Month: 23 (June)
  • Number Read in Worst Month: 6 (January)

Total Books Read in 2008: 80

Total Books Read in 2007: 122

Total Books Read in 2006: 70

Fiction/Non-fiction Split:

2009: 84%/16%

2008: 63%/37%

2007: 50%/50%

2006: 59%/41%

Percentage of Books by Women (Overall/Fiction/Non-fiction):

2009: 44%/44%/ 42%

2008: 68%/70%/67%

2007: 60%/57%/68%

2006: 74%/88%/55%

Five Star Books of 2009:

A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld
A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering American on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson
Admission by Jean Hanff Korelitz
American Dream: Three Women, Ten Kids, and Nation’s Drive to End Welfare by Jason DeParle
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
Bayou, Volume 1 by Jeremy Love
The Color of Earth by Dong Hwa Kim
The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
Lunch Lady and the Cyborg Substitute by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
The Professor’s House by Willa Cather
The Secret Science Alliance and the Copycat Crook by Eleanor Davis
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

2009 in (Book) Statistics

Our Famous Hound

Snowy Basset Hound

We had quite the snowy weekend here in DC. Charles was in heaven; he loves being a snowy explorer. And now he’s famous for it – he’s the first pet pictured on this post from Prince of Petworth. Be sure to keep scrolling, our friends’ cat, Monty is the 7th picture down.

Walter quite agrees with Monty. He is not all about the snow. In fact, he much prefers warm weather as you can see here:

Walter at the window

Our Famous Hound

1% Well Read!

I’ve finally done it – read 10 new books on the 1,001 Books to Read Before You Die list. These were my final three:

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Their Eyes Were Watching God reminded me of The Awakening in the way that they both focused on women who acted against society’s expectations in pursuits of their own happiness. Or maybe not happiness, maybe more satisfaction and freedom. They were both great. Highly recommended.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

This was another one of those mystery “cheats”, set at a small liberal arts college in New England and focused on a close-knit group of friends. It reminded me of The Likeness a lot, to the extent that I wondered if Tana French, who wrote The Likeness had read The Secret History. Both are good. Tartt has another book – the Little Friend that I haven’t read, but would definitely pick up someday.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Jane Eyre is one of those classics that I read on DailyLit and thoroughly enjoyed. I wonder if I would have liked these Classics as much if I had read them for school. I think I wouldn’t have, that it would have felt too forced, but I’m glad that I’m reading them now. It bothered me that Eyre called Mr. Rochester her “master”, but otherwise I was hooked – and surprisingly unspoiled when it came to plot. It surprised me to discover that I didn’t really know what was going to happen, which seems so unlikely with such a well known book.

So it only it only took me a year and a half, but I managed to finish the challenge (albeit only having read 2 of the books on my original list). Now I’ll need to find another one. I’d liked that this pushed me to read things I wouldn’t normally have tried and I’d like something else that does that in the year ahead.

1% Well Read!

Save the Date!


So… as may be assumed by our “engaged” status, we’re getting married! This is exciting and momentous and occasionally stressful. We’ve had over a year to get used to that “engaged” idea, and now it seems that the wedding is just around the corner – May 1st to be exact. After picking the location (and finding a photographer, yay!) this summer, we were able to push-off pretty much all other wedding-related tasks because it was so far off. But the wedding powers-that-be seems to all say that Save-the-Date announcements should go out 5-6 months before the big event and that meant we needed to get our list finished and our announcements designed, printed and out.

I had this idea to do a history of our relationship in book titles as our Save-the-Date (from Shy Single to Happily Ever After, with some other milestones like Cross Country, Living in Small Spaces, and The Fire in between). Jami and I are both librarians after all, and good readers to boot, and it seemed a little more personal than the ubiquitous Save-the-Date Magnets that are so popular these days. In the end that didn’t make for a very good image, but luckily Jami has a good eye for photography and came up with the image above. We ordered the Save-the-Dates from Snapfish and I was super happy with how they turned out.

We sent them out last week while in New England, and today DC gave us an early wedding present. See, so far, we can’t actually get legally married in the District of Columbia, but we are hoping it will be legal by our wedding. The DC Council today voted to pass the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Equality Amendment Act which would make same-sex marriage legal in the District of Columbia. The bill has to get voted on again once more for final passage (and then has to go through a 30 day Congressional review period. Boo!), but things are heading in the right direction. Fingers crossed.

Save the Date!