2016 in Review

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Well, that year turned out a bit differently than we all thought, didn’t it? Oh well, I guess now that we’ve rolled over to a new arbitrary calendar year EVERYTHING WILL BE FINE. Donald Trump will definitely not start a war over Twitter and all of our favourite celebrities will stop dying. I can’t wait!

The Weblog

Nearly six years I’ve been keeping this weblog now, and I’m still enjoying it. I love being able to look back on what I’ve read, and I feel like taking an hour or two to write about a book really helps me get more out of my reading. If you had told fifteen-year-old me that I would voluntarily write fifty book reports a year, I would have told you to get lost in a very 90s way, possibly by using a sarcastic phrase punctuated with a “NOT!” at the end.

I would like to put a bit of work into the design here, which I say every year, but I can really feel it this time. 2017 is the year I write an About page. I’ve also been toying with the idea of maybe doing expanded reviews in the form of podcasts or booktube videos. I can’t promise I’ll ever post one, but my plan is to at least go through the steps of recording something this year and see how it goes. I may need to undergo some sort of vocal cord surgery to make my voice acceptable for the general public first.

The Stats

Overall books read: 51

Format
Graphic novels and trade paperback collections: 9
Audio books: 25
E-Books: 1
Poetry compilations: 2
Short story or essay complications: 2
Plays: 0
Non-fiction: 10
Classics: 10

Country (of author)
America: 31
England: 8
Scotland: 4
Canada: 2
Russia: 2
Brazil: 1
Ireland: 1
South Korea: 1
South Africa: 1

Other
Most novels by same author: 2 (John Scalzi and Eddie Huang)
New authors (to me): 17
Female authors: 9
Re-reads: 2

Observations

  • For two years in a row now I haven’t read a single play, so I need to make a point to change that this year.
  • I doubled the amount of women writers I read this year. Still only 18% of my overall reading, but still an improvement.
  • This was something I wanted to change last year and it didn’t happen, but I’d like to get that New Authors number down and start reading more novels from authors I know I love.
  • This next year I’d like to read at least one graphic novel a month. It’s such a cool medium, and I often forget how much I enjoy comics.
  • Over half the books I read this year were audiobooks. That’s partly because I tackled some larger physical novels, but mainly because I’ve gotten quite bad at dedicating time to sit down and read.
  • I’d like to read more from countries outside of America and England this year.

The Challenges

The Classics Club: I finished this last spring! I decided to keep adding books to the list until my five year mark, next March, before wrapping it up.

Back to the Classics Challenge 2016: I read nine out of a possible twelve novels and really enjoyed participating. I even managed to win the draw at the end of the year!

Foodies Read 2016: I read four novels for this, just squeezing in to the four to eight category.

The Top Fives/Threes

These are all lists of media that were new to me this year, not necessarily released this year.

Fiction

  1. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
  2. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  3. Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb
  4. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
  5. Bream Gives Me Hiccups by Jesse Eisenberg

Non-Fiction

  1. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  2. The Lost City of Z by David Grann
  3. Heat by Bill Buford
  4. The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
  5. Quiet by Susan Cain

Comic

  1. Saga: Volume 6 by Brian K. Vaughan
  2. Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant by Tony Cliff
  3. We Stand On Guard by Brian K. Vaughan
  4. Sex Criminals: Volume Three by Matt Fraction
  5. The Sculptor by Scott McCloud

Audiobook Narration

  1. Dylan Baker narrating The Grapes of Wrath
  2. Tim Gerard Reynolds narrating Golden Son
  3. Patricia Rodriguez narrating The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet
  4. Trevor Noah narrating Born a Crime
  5. Dan Stevens narrating Frankenstein

Video Game

  1. Uncharted 4
  2. Tales from the Borderlands
  3. Firewatch
  4. Tom Clancy’s The Division
  5. Destiny

Movie

  1. What We Do In The Shadows (2014)
  2. The Fundamentals of Caring (2016)
  3. Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)
  4. * Didn’t watch many movies this year, so this turned into a weird top 3.

Movie – Non-Fiction

  1. Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made (2016)
  2. What Happened, Miss Simone (2015)
  3. The Resurrection of Jake the Snake (2015)

Television series – Fiction

  1. House of Cards, seasons 1 – 4
  2. Stranger Things, season 1
  3. BoJack Horseman, season 3

Television series – Non-Fiction

  1. Chef’s Table: France, season 1
  2. Chef’s Table, season 2
  3. Rick Stein’s Long Weekends, season 1

6 thoughts on “2016 in Review

    1. Rob Post author

      I came to the horrible realization some time ago. How did I end up here??

      (I hate to think how I would be graded. It wouldn’t be pretty…)

      Reply
  1. Knowledge Lost

    I have a similar problem with American authors, I have been working hard to reduce the number of American books I read. Hopefully 2017 will continue. I don’t think I have a top games of 2016 list, I spent too much time playing EU4 and Civ5 and 6.

    Reply
    1. Rob Post author

      I think you’ve got your top three right there! Love the Civ games, should probably play them more, but haven’t tried any of the EU games.

      Reply
  2. looloolooweez

    Whew, you had a super busy bookish 2016.

    “If you had told fifteen-year-old me that I would voluntarily write fifty book reports a year, I would have told you to get lost in a very 90s way, possibly by using a sarcastic phrase punctuated with a “NOT!” at the end.”

    Haha, same! I probably would have done the “Whatever, LOSER” with forehead-finger signs for punctuation.

    Reply

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