Saturday, January 12, 2013

2012 Book Review Roundup / Year in Reading

I know that we're a bit far into January for a 2012 Roundup, but oh well. You still like pie graphs, right? Of course. For 2011, I did a similar roundup breaking down the gender of each author read and how I obtained the books. I also mentioned my favorite books of that year. For 2012, I was more timely in that respect. You can see my favorites read here and here.

Now, let's get to it. Here's the overall gender breakdown of Books Read 2012:

Compared to the year before, I had a much more even split between male and female authors, and I do admit to being more conscious of my reading choices, gender-wise. The "Both" category refers to books or journals with multiple contributors.

When it comes to how I acquired my books, here's how it shakes out:

As expected, since I started reviewing books, review copies make up the largest percentage. However, I requested fewer books (instead of having publishers/authors/etc. seek me out) in 2012 than in year's past, and I bought a lot of books this year too. I may still have stacks of review copies sitting here that I plan on reading eventually, but that doesn't stop me from becoming smitten with a book and needing right now.

When it comes to gender and method acquired, here are the figures:

I do like that the reviews copies have more equitable numbers with the different gender categories. As far as the higher amount of male authors in the purchased/library category goes, several of these were picks for the book club I am in, and that's just how it happened to shake out. In 2012, we read:

  • Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger
  • Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
  • Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
  • Little Children by Tom Perrotta
  • The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne

When it comes to how many books I bought or already owned versus library books, here are the numbers:

Two of those library books were for book club, but the others were me being unable to resist the siren call of the "new books" shelf while my kids were getting their own pile of things to read.

If you are interested in the full list of what books I read and where they came from, I've made a handy PDF for your perusal. It's color-coded like the graphs. You'll note that a few of the review copies haven't yet been reviewed -- I'm working on it. I'd intended to get all caught up by the end of the year, but business mixed with brain fog slowed me down. They're coming, I promise.

As far as reading goals for 2013 go, I hope to read more books, continue to give every one I start a fair shake, continue to be more or less equitable when it comes to gender, and to be more diverse when it comes to race. I didn't keep track of those figures this year, but even just a glance at what I read shows that I could do better with my not-white authors. We all could, I imagine. If you'd like to follow along with my progress, here's the link to my Goodreads page.

If you've got any particular reading goals, do let me know in the comments.

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