Not bad.  Not bad at all.  With roughly twelve reading days left in 2018, my goal of 365 books (Yes, a book a day) looks well within reach.  Granted, roughly 25% of those books were graphic novels so purists could argue I attained a much less impressive 275 titles on the year but still – I’ll take it.

As I prepare for my annual Best Of rundown, I took a closer look at my glorious reading year and discovered…

Over half the books I read were 2018 releases.

Of the 365+ books read on the year, I rated roughly 250 titles average (mostly) to poor.

Over 100 of the books I read this year I gave a rating of good (mostly) to excellent (all of 11).

I read across all genres, but noted General Fiction was far and away my most popular reading category followed my thrillers/mystery/suspense, sci-fi, non-fiction, horror, and fantasy (in that order).

Recommendations from established sites and award nominees and winners offered an very mixed bag – a few excellent reads but a lot of unimpressive offerings and even a few shockingly bad books.  Still, I suppose it beats twitter.

I’m thinking that this time around, instead of posting my annual all-encompassing countdown, I would offer up my top picks across various categories including my selections for Best of Not 2018, books I read this past year that were published prior to 2018.

Would love to hear what 2018 releases made YOUR best of list.  There still may be time for me to hunt down a copy!


12 thoughts on “December 14, 2018: My Glorious Reading Year!

  1. Just finished THE WITCH OF WILLOW HALL by Hester Fox. It was surprisingly good, considering it was a free or low-cost Kindle purchase. I almost want to recommend it for a TV movie.

  2. Actually I had a suck reading year. I’ve been too busy with new business, new ventures and occasionally too distracted with twitter. It’s funny this blog post kind of confirmed a before-new-year resolution, after meeting up with a few awesome readers last night, this morning I piled all my unread books conspicuously on the corner of my table and I trello-ed come hell or high water I’m getting through them all. It’s a mix, navigation books, science fictions, history, philosophy, novels, software development and education books.

    I have only read about 20 books this 2018. And feel dumber for it. I forgot the deep joy of wondering – that good books leave me with. I DID discover an awesome podcast and LOVED the good journalism and storytelling. Absolutely the best thing for me in terms of storytelling out of this whole year.

  3. I usually follow your recommendations so I can’t suggest anything you haven’t read… except I am making my way through The Three Body Problem trilogy by Cixin Liu. At 30 minutes per night, 1500 pages, divide by sleepy and carry the one… I might finish by February. It’s strong on interesting concepts around alien encounters and physics, but very thin on character development… Still I can’t seem to give up on it.

  4. Damn. You’re a machine. I don’t even know if I’ve read 20 books this year, comics included… >__<
    I guess when you make them, you don’t read them… A bit like you with TV shows.

  5. Don’t know how you can read that many……so impressive! The most memorable novel I read this year was “Under a Scarlet Sky”.

    1. One of my 2018 reads. It was a WWII Italian version of Forrest Gump! Apparently, there’s a movie in the works.

  6. I’ve been reading Robert Crais lately. “Suspect” was a good one.

    Have you read Scalzi’s “The Interdependency” series? My hubby didn’t care for it but I thought some of the story line and characters were very entertaining. I didn’t care for “Redshirts” but it won a Hugo, so what do I know.

    Have you read any of James Rollins? His “Sigma Force” series is full of action, history, adventure and great characters.

    My reading has been escapism lately, so our taste in fiction might not coincide. Ya never know, so I threw a few out.

    I’m looking forward to your “best fiction” list, as always.

  7. Congratulations on your reading acomplishment! That is pretty impressive. Do you realize you will have to one-up yourself and read even more next year? Your best of 2018 list should be interesting.

  8. Barrow’s Boys by Ferguson Fleming. By far the best book I read this year. First time a nonfiction book has held the honours. I wish history class had been taught like this.

    All books by Lou Berney: The Long and Faraway Gone; November Road; etc. I discovered him this year and read everything. One of the great unheralded American writers. Winner of the Edgar, Anthony, Barry, and Macavity awards and while this makes him sound like a mystery writer, he’s more than that.

    The Alice Madison series by Valentina Giambanco. First book started off rather ho-hum, but by the time I hit chapter 5, I was hooked. Absolutely love love these characters. Giambanco nails Seattle, forensics, and the police procedural all in one go. Read the entire series this year. Can’t wait for the next book.

    Two Girls Down by Louisa Luna. Her first mystery. I sincerely hopes she makes it a series. This one is gripping. Really liked that after some initial posturing between the cops and the private detectives, the cops put aside their egos, recognize that time is of the essence with two young girls missing and the private detectives can get places without warrants, etc., that they can’t so they need to work together.

    Barbed Wire Heart by Tess Sharpe. I know you didn’t care for the ending, Joe, because it seemed to come out of left field, but I figure Harley was a planner who kept things close to her chest, so I can live with it.

    Adrift by Rob Boffard. Again, I know you didn’t care for this one, but I liked that he took stereotypical characters in a stereotypical situation and did different things with them, e.g., the 12 year old who knew the ships specs did not end up flying it.

    Bannerless series by Carrie Vaughn. This is the mystery series you didn’t know you needed. Winner of a Phillip K Dick science fiction award. I actually read the second book, Wild Dead, first and probably liked it better for the zen qualities of Enid’s approach to investigation, but the first book sets up the world in its entirety.

    Plus I am pleased to report I am three books over my reading goal of 50 books this year, even surpassing to my surprise the one book a week goal, and not a graphic novel among them. And there are still a couple of weeks left in the year.

  9. Hi Joe,

    Have you ever read the commonwealth saga by Peter Hamilton? It’s a fantastic series and might be one for your 2019 (although…it’s a trilogy so may affect your ability to get to 365 next year)


  10. 213 Books so far this year. In dealing with a back injury I had a lot of time to read. And I read a lot. The standouts this year were The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, it’s definitely gimmicky but was very well done and I didn’t have a hard time following along with all the shifts because I read it over a few days. Lies Sleeping, the latest PC Grant book, tied up the ongoing problem of the Faceless Man well and leaves us ready for Peter dealing with new challenges in life and work as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice. I also finally picked up Robert Jackson Bennet. WOW! his trilogy ripped my heart out, in a good way!!

    Hmm, I also enjoyed the latest Galbraith (Lethal White was a nice change after Career of Evil), A Gentleman’s Murder (waiting anxiously for the next Peterkin novel now) and a fair amount of rereads – rereading Pratchett’s City Watch books. That’s my favorite Discworld series and it’s been a while since I hung out with Sam and the gang.

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