Happy (belated) Independence Day, bookworms, and welcome to the second half of 2012. With June officially over, we are now half way through the year and I thought it was a good time to check in with my reading goals.
In 2011, I succeeded in reaching my goal of reading 100 books, but when it came time to set a goal for 2012, I decided to scale back and aim for 75. Though I made it to 100 (103, actually) last year, I often felt like I was rushing from book to book without giving myself the time to really savor each story. 75 feels more manageable, but it’s still ambitious as it’s more than the 50 I started with so many years ago.
Here at the half-year mark, I’ve read 39 books so far, putting me right on track and just slightly over 50% completion of my goal. I’ve have no complaints about this – I’m right where I’m supposed to be at this point in the year, so I’m pleased. There are days when I do struggle to fit in all the reading I want to do (though, really, there never are enough hours for me to do all the reading I want to do, so that’s not going to ever change), but my new commute to work, just started just before 2012, includes a half-hour on Boston’s T (the subway, essentially) and I always bring a book or my Kindle with me.
Looking back at the books I’ve read so far, I do think I’ve leaned fairly heavily on the historical romance genre. There’s nothing wrong with this, but since I’m always trying to balance my reading diet, I probably should try a bit harder to read all things in moderation. I have read more nonfiction this winter and spring, which I’m happy about. I’ve discovered that I prefer my nonfiction in essay format, making it easy to swallow small portions of it at a time (much like eating vegetables as a child). I’ve also been lucky enough to receive advanced copies of a few highly anticipated books (such as Julia Quinn’s A Night Like This and Katharine Ashe’s How to Be a Proper Lady). Though it usually means delaying my reviews until closer to the official release date, I’ve been quite fortunate.
Among my favorites for the first half of the year were Sarah MacLean’s A Rogue By Any Other Name, Eloisa James’ Paris in Love and Ally Carter’s Out of Sight, Out of Time. I also quite enjoyed reading Julia Child’s My Life in France and I finally tackled A Game of Thrones after watching the first season of the television show. Oddly enough, there weren’t any books I hated. I certainly didn’t write any scathing reviews. Maybe I’m just getting better at picking the good ones?
Going forward, I’m still trying to find a good chunk of time to read Melina Marchetta’s Froi of the Exiles – I have a strong feeling it will leap to #1 status once I finish it, but it’s also the kind of book I don’t want to read in bits and pieces; Marchetta’s epic fantasy deserves my undivided attention. I also plan to read Lev Grossman’s The Magician King as well as a few other eagerly awaited upcoming novels: another Eloisa James revisionist fairy tale, The Ugly Duchess; the final book in Cate Tiernan’s Immortal Beloved series, Eternally Yours; the next book in Sarah MacLean’s Scoundrels series, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover; the first book in Kieran Kramer’s new series based on the Brady Bunch (!), Loving Lady Marcia; and Courtney Milan’s Brothers Sinister series.
What has the first six months of 2012 looked like for you? What are you looking forward to in this second half?
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