2017 reads ranked by book size

I have read a few bigger books this year, but also a few novellas and small books and I thought it would be interesting to see the various sizes of books I have read this year.  These are for the most part the editions I read (or a close approximation for the audiobooks, generally the paperback version which I tend to read more). 

663 Pages      Gemina

645 Pages      The Way of Shadows

640 Pages      Games Wizards Play

576 Pages      Bitterblue

547 Pages      Eve: the Awakening

502 Pages      The Night Circus

470 Pages      Working Stiff

448 Pages      Queen of the Tearling

464 Pages      Lirael

416 Pages      Failure is not an Option

416 Pages      Lady Knight

400 Pages      Squire

396 Pages      Beauty Queens

388 Pages      Remembrance

372 Pages      Ready Player One

369 Pages      The Martian

369 Pages      Tortall and Other Lands

368 Pages      I Contain Multitudes

359 Pages      Demonglass

346 Pages      Learning to Swear in America

336 Pages      Famous in Love

323 Pages      Hex Hall

311 Pages      Sabriel

304 Pages      Nerve

304 Pages      Truly, Madly, Famously

290 Pages      Page

288 Pages      The Gods Themselves

240 Pages      First Test

233 Pages      Matilda

189 Pages      Down Among the Sticks and Bones

144 Pages      Proposal

118 Pages      Dancing Barefoot

12 Pages        Every Girl’s Dream

Average number of pages: 11 858*

Average number of pages per day: 58*

Average pages per book: 359*

369 was the mode book, with 50% of the books having more the 369 pages. If the 12 page book was removed from the data set the average jumps up to 370, which is the same as the mode. 

A few surprises in the book size, I didn’t think some of them were as big as they were and didn’t realize I had read as many 500+ page books this year.  Also there were a few books I had forgotten I had read.  The first book I finished this year has remained the longest so far, I kinda want to try and kick it off that spot, but I’m not sure which book I would read that would supersede it.  

Now I need to stop, otherwise I will be trying to stats the crap out of this list, and graphs might start happening.  Overall, interesting to see half of a reading year organized like this. 

*101 Dalmations was a special BBC audiobook presentation of the book that was an abridged edition.  An accurate page count could not be done and it was not included in the list or the stats, but it was approx. 180 pages.   

2017 Goals Check-in

It’s about midway through the year, which is a good time to check in on how things are progressing, goals-wise.  Perhaps make adjustments as needed.  Plus I honestly didn’t know what half my goals for this year were until I looked back at them.

1. Continue on with this Book Blogging thing 

I had a bit of a blog post slump in the second quarter (new job has me thinking in quarters now…) but I seem to be back on track.  I’m not forcing myself to post and have been posting less then previously, but there is new content on my blog.  Overall, doing good here.

2. Clear out my drafts file  

My drafts file is still a mess, even though I deleted a few posts I wasn’t going to get to last night.  But I’m thinking on how to push some out now that I’m back into the swing of things with this blog.  There’s still time for this one. 

3. Keep the number of books on my Goodreads ‘To-read’ list under the number of books in my ‘Read’ list

This goal was basically a mess to start with, but I’m still achieving it?  Basically I want to try and manage the number of books I have listed in my to-read list on Goodreads.  I have become a bit bored with BookTube and more fussy with what I add to my to-read.  Coupled with a good, steady reading mojo and periodic purging of that list and my to-read list has been fairly steady this year, sitting at just over 200, which is where I would ideally like it to be.  

4. Make better reviews 

I never specified whether this was strictly blog reviews or both blog and Goodreads, so I’m not sure if I’m achieving this goal.  My Goodreads reviews are about the same or worse and I haven’t really posted any reviews on this blog this year.  However, I have made a conscious effort to review audiobooks whenever I listen to one, as I feel this is needed in the community, so in that aspect I am doing well.  Otherwise, I need to reassess this goal and work more actively on it.  

5. Reduce the number of unread books on my bookshelf by half (of the total number I started the year with; aka have 6 or fewer unread books by year end)

If you have seen my TBR check-in posts I have gone through how I’m doing with this goal.  In sum: I’ve read a bunch of my owned, unread books but have also bought more.  Thus overall I’m at the same spot that I started and still have 6 more books to read by year end.  

6. A tough one: Stop feeling so guilty about not reading.  Conversely, stop feeling so guilty about reading.  

Funny enough, this goal is not needed anymore.  My Big Life Change TM at the beginning of the year (that messed with my blogging ability for a while) cleared away my reading guilt.  Since then I have increased my reading to a steady 5 or 6 books a month and not been guilty about reading or not!  I’m very happy about this.

There was no specific Goodreads goalbut I’m killing it anyway.  I wanted to read around 50 books in the year but wasn’t going to force myself to meet that goal.  So far I’ve read 32 and on track to read over 60 this year, something that is mind boggling to me!  The past 7 years I was in university where I wasn’t able to read and school and now I can read, guilt free, to the tune of over 60 books in a year!

Some goals I’m achieving without really thinking and committing to it:

a) More varied books:  I have read several non-fiction books this year and have enjoyed them.  I plan to continue this.  Also, I haven’t snubbed contemporary as much and read books I typically would not consider. 

b) Reviewing and empathising audiobooks.  

c) Attempting to read more and acknowledge indy and self-published books.

Overall, I’m doing well but need to reassess and commit more energy to a few goals.  One thing I want to commit to by the end of the year is finding some new favourites.  I have rated most of the books highly this year but overall have felt the books I have read were average as none have really grabbed me and I would have trouble making a list of my favourite books, something I do at the end of each year.  

TBR Pile Accounting #3

Part 2! Here and here are the other posts in the series if you want to learn more about what is happening.

Now onto the second chunk of books and how many of them are read. 

Books discovered while moving:

1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

I snagged this one while I was abroad in Scotland, but not from a book store.  A friend didn’t want to bring it with her when she was leaving for home so I grabbed.  it sounded interesting enough that I brought it back with me even though I hadn’t yet read it.  

After about 5 years on my shelf, I finally read it!  Again, starting off good here. 

2. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie and 3. The Gods Themsleves by Isaac Asimov

These books were gifted to me by a friend recentlyish and I rediscovered them when I was moving.  They are outside of my normal reads but do sound interesting (and I hate getting ride of books other people have given me) so I took them with me. 

Both are unread and I honestly am not sure how much longer they will stay on my shelves.  But at the same time I don’t really want to donate?

There were other books I discovered while moving but I donated them.  Yay less baggage and more bookshelf space!

Books I have bought this year:

4. and 5. Night Study and Dawn Study by Maria V Snyder

I read Night Study last year and was buying it because it was sooooo good (and I have the first 4 in the series).  At the time I absolutely needed Dawn Study.  Now I have it, but I haven’t read it.  For the same reasons as I mentioned previously.  I’m terrible at this reading thing at times. 

6. Remembrance by Meg Cabot

I never even realized this was a thing until I saw it in the bargain section of the bookstore and I had to pick it up.  And read it.

7. and 8. Illuminae and Gemina by Kaufman and Kristoff

Both books are fantastic and both need a re-read soon!

9. Games Wizards Play by Diane Duane

Read!  And honestly I think about this one a lot, it might be a favourite of mine, even though I did have a few issues with this book went I was reading it. 

10. Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith

This is my second physical copy and third total copy of a book that is one of my absolute favourites. 

Books Read: 7

Unread Books: 3

Total number of Unread Books: 12

As you can see, I started the year with 12 unread books and after reading, donating, and accumulating more books I’m still where I started.  Six more books in the next 6 months.  Totally doable.  However, looking at the list I can guarantee at least 3 that I’m unlikely to get to which doesn’t leave much space left over for others I might not get to (of which I think I can predict 2 more).  

Also there are three books on my shelves that are mostly unread and are not on this list.  Two I bought recently and one from Scotland.  These are more ‘coffee table’ style books and I consider them outside the scope of this goal as they are the type of books you read a bit at a time and never really fully read in their entirety.  

Finally, I just realized that I have about a handful of ebooks I have bought or received over the past 2 years that are not on this list and were never really factored into this goal.  Perhaps I will consider them for next year! 

TBR Pile Accounting #2

At the beginning of the year I made a goal to reduce the number of unread books on my shelves to half of the total at that point in time.  In February I did an official accounting of the number of books (there were 12 at the time) and clarified that if I bought new unread books I still had to hit 6 or less by the end of December  

It’s been several months, half the year is over and things have happened since then so I thought I’d do a follow-up on how I’m doing.  Read on if you are curious!

1. & 2. & 3. Sabriel, Lirael, Abhorsen (Abhorsen trilogy) by Garth Nix

Sabriel and Lirael have been read!  I’m off to a good start! I did, however, read most of these two books by audiobook and not actually reading the copy I own, but that’s another story.  Abhorsen’s audiobook is on hold and I’m in the middle of a contemporary kick so I’m not in the mood to pick up the physical book while I wait so it’ll be a bit longer before I get to it.  

4. The Diviner by Melanie Rawn

Book that has been on my shelf the longest and will likely stay unread for a while more.  I just can’t seem to toss or read this one.

5. Brimstone (Pendergast #5) by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child 

This one will be a matter of timing, honestly.  I do want to read, but just not gotten to it yet.

6. The Crimson Crown (Seven Realms #4) by Cinda Willams Chima 

Despite two friends trying to talk me into this one it is not yet read.  Again, I feel it’s only a matter of time and maybe audiobook.

7. The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood

I knew I was never going to read this so even though it was a signed first edition from a friend and I feel bad about it, I donated this. 

8. Snow like Ashes by Sara Raasch and 11. Half Bad by Sally Green

Both of these I had wanted to read in the past but have been not so interested in the now.  Who knows what will happen to these ones.

9. Kiss of Deception by Mary E Pearson and 10. Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J Maas

Both books I’m really excited about but have yet to read.  I’m becoming a but less excited about them but still interested.  Funny enough the odds are Snow like Ashes or Half Bad are more likely to be read then these even though I’m more interested in these ones because I don’t have to commit to ones I’m less interested in reading and what if I don’t like a book I’m really excited about?

12. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Same as above, but also this one is a bit more complex so will need more of my time and attention. 

Books read: 2

Books donated: 1

Unread books: 9

It would seem as though I am doing well, having only 3 more books to read in 6 months to reach my goal, but there are more additions to my shelves which changes the numbers.  In an effort not to make this a ridiculously long post, I’m going to talk about those books in the next post.  Stay tuned if you are curious (and for a sneak peak at the books I have bought recently). 

Middling Ten

Books read:

21. Learning to Swear in America by Katie Kennedy     4.5/5 Stars

22. Every Girl’s Dream by Meg Cabot     4/5 Stars

23. Games Wizards Play by Diane Duane     4/5 Stars

24. Tortall and Other Lands by Tamora Pierce (various narrators)     5/5 Stars

25. Proposal by Meg Cabot     4.5/5 Stars

26. Lireal by Garth Nix (Tim Curry)     4/5 Stars

27. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern    2.5/5 Stars

28. Remembrance by Meg Cabot    4/5 Stars

29. Famous in Love by Rebecca Serle     4.5/5 Stars

30. Matilda by Roald Dahl (Kate Winslet)    5/5 Stars

Average Rating: 4.2

Audiobooks: 3

Re-reads: 2

Indy/self-published: 0

Reviewed on Blog: 0

Bookshelf TBR: 4

Comments:

Fewer audiobooks in this section for a few reasons.  I’ve wanted to enjoy the walk and my thoughts more in the past few weeks so I haven’t been listening to them as much.  There are several that I want to read right now but they have long waiting lists.  Also, now that I’m a bit more adjusted to my new work schedule I have been reading more physical books and wanting to read more books off my shelf, which leads to fewer audiobooks.

That being said, I have bought many more books that I have not read which affects my goal to reduce by unread bookshelf books to under 6.  There are 2 posts coming up that are an update to said goal.  

I’m doing really well with the amount of books I have read so far this year.  I’m averaging more then a book a week, which I’m pleased with.  Looking at the numbers, since I started working my new job I’ve been reading 5 or 6 books a month, whereas the first 3 months I read maybe 3 books a month.  A great improvement and it means I should read well over 50 books this year!  I’m so happy about this. 

Blog-wise things were slow while I was adjusting to life but have picked up the past few weeks.  I’ll see how this thing goes but I want to keep it going but with fewer blog posts out a month.  I do want to post more reviews on this blog but the books I have been reading recently I haven’t had too much interesting to say and have not bothered with a lengthy review.  However, if you want to know what I’m up to in the book world and read shorter reviews of the books I read, you are more then welcome to friend or follow my Goodreads, which I keep pretty up-to-date.  

Finally, while it does look like I’ve had a great reading month with most of the books being 4 stars or higher, I feel like many of the books I have read are meh and that nothing has really gripped my this year.  Perhaps I need to start picking different types of books or maybe I’m just really picky lately.  

The Martian by Andy Weir

I read this book and a few weeks later I watched the movie, so I will be commenting on both because I found that the movie influenced how I felt about the book.  I also listened to part of the audiobook and will comment briefly on that.  

The Book

Reviews on this book consistently talk about how it is very technical and most didn’t like that aspect of it.  Being a scientist I thought I wouldn’t mind this as much as non-scientists would.  However, I did find it very technical which slowed down reading.  I found the technical parts interesting as it made it vary clear the types of problems Mark had to face and how smart he was and how he had to think things through if he was going to survive, but there was one part where NASA spent an age describing what they wouldn’t do because it wouldn’t work before going into what they would do.  This does not seem like a thing NASA would do because they have a limited time to talk to Mark and they need to get to the point quickly.  Also my science brain wanted to look over all the calculations to see if they were right as I was reading them.  

Talking about how things would go talking to NASA, I found a lot of the questions asked (on both sides) were not very intelligent and would not have been asked as they did not add to the what you need to know right now to fix the situation.  That being said, I do like that there was a ‘daily Mark update’ news show in the book and that NASA was a part of it.  It is easy to imagine that this sort of thing would happen if it was real life.

I loved the characters, but did find Mark a bit too ‘happens to know the exact right thing every time he gets into a bind’.  He always seemed to know the exact right stats and information to figure out any problem.  Astronauts do need to be smart and train for this sort of thing, but it seemed a stretch with the sheer amount of knowledge he just knew without looking it up.  I did appreciate that Mark was allowed to be emotional about his situation.  He was allowed to cry when he got into contact with earth again.  At the time of reading the book I felt he was a little to unprofessional to be an astronaut, but reading ‘Failure is not an Option’ after I read this book, I am relenting on this a little.  The rest of the cast was surprisingly large and diverse, which I liked.  You also got to see some of the side characters develop over time.  Additionally, the way the characters react to the situation is very realistic.  

Just thinking about the amount of money that was spent to get him back is staggering, yet at the same time, it’s not too hard to image that money being spent.  Perhaps not being forked out by the government, but being raised by private citizens?  I can imagine that. 

This book was super funny and had great ‘comedic timing’.  The book would switch between PoV when a polar opposite then what was expected thing was happening.   The writing was not the most sophisticated, but I got over that quickly and learned to love it. The book did drag in the middle and follow a trend of ‘something went wrong, Mark fixed it, something went wrong, Mark fixed it’ a bit too much for my taste, but again, realistic. I do think there were a few inconsistencies in the book, but nothing that really dragged the text down.  Finally, for the first third of the book everyone pinched their chin constantly, which was a great irritation to me.   

The Audiobook

I didn’t listen to much of the audiobook, but the main two things I have to comment on, was that the audiobook I listened to (I’m not sure if there is a different English version) did not match the text of the book.  That is the main reason I didn’t stick with the audiobook.  Finally, I did like the narrator of the audiobook, even if I didn’t listen to much of the book. 

The Movie

Weirdly, while I found the book too technical, the movie was not technical at all and that irritated me.  I felt the lack of the constant calculations and considerations in the movie didn’t show how dire the situation was and how much needed to be considered and how smart Mark was.  Also, while for the most part the movie followed the book, towards the end when they needed to cut things out for time they cut some of my favourite parts!  I wanted to see Mark deal with the sand storm among other things.  However, the final scene they added to the movie was lovely.  

Overall

I loved the book and I liked the movie.  The only thing I would have changed is to see how Mark’s parents dealt with certain critical situations.  

Reader Life

Facebook informed me of a past comment I made back in 2014 that sums up the life of a read nicely:

My favourite character in the book I am currently reading is a talking door knocker named Mort whom has only appeared in 2 chapters….I think I have issues

I’m not 100% certain what this book is, but I have a feeling it’s one of Garth Nix’s Keys to the Kingdom books.