Wrapping up 2015

wrapping-up-2015

I set so many challenges for myself this year! What was I thinking? Arggh, not so much for the challenges themselves, but because that leaves me so much to cover now. I guess the only thing to do is dive in.

GoodReads Challenge

goodreadsThis was my primary challenge in 2015. I set a goal of 200 books on Goodreads, not including short stories, and I succeeded. Good old Goodreads did a cool graphic this year. Feel free to click on it and explore mine.

I read a solid 200 books, but (as I’ve mentioned in previous posts) on December 16th I broke my wrist and since then I’ve been reading only short stories and novelettes, which skews me GR number toward more like 250 ‘books.’

I don’t use stars here on the blog, but if you’re curious, 2015 breaks down like this when I cross post to sites that do. Plus, 55,363 pages isn’t too shabby, though it’s about 20k short of last year. But I managed a lot more writing this year than last year. So, I’m not disappointed.

all books

I appear to have what statisticians would likely call a central tendency bias (at least if this was a true likert scale). But I also read a lot of pretty middle of the road books this year and this is one of those moments when a picture is worth so much. It really brings that point home.

Blogger Challenges

I did an Author Alphabet Soup challenge and succeeded. OK, X got read on Dec 30th, but that counts. So, at least one author for every letter of the alphabet, success. You can double check me here, if you really want to.

I also challenged myself to clear off some of the books that had been on my To Be Read list for more than two years, not including shorts. This last bit was added in two weeks ago, when (again) I broke my arm and concentrated solely on short stories and novelettes in order to avoid having to type anything longer than a sentence or two in review. (Like this post.) A lot of the short stories had been on my shelves for a long time, but they weren’t counted in the challenge. Several reads this year were close to qualifying for this challenge, but short by a mere month or so. I didn’t count them either, though they’d be 2+ years old now (in Dec.).

I wasn’t great about going back and checking in with the Evie-Bookish blog, where the challenge originated, but I feel like I was quite successful in this challenge.

tbr challenge

I signed up for the Mad Reviewers review challenge to read & review at least 104 books (not counting audiobooks). I finished with more than 150, so I’ll call that a success.

Lastly, I signed up for two challenges with  book r3vi3ws: Indiefever and Firstreads. I was good about tagging these, but failed miserably at keeping the list on book r3vi3ws up to date. I did however, succeed at both challenges, reading indie books and authors new to me. In fact, the vast majority of the books I read were either indie or self-published.

Requests

I’m a bit disappointed in the number of requests I got to this year, though I shouldn’t be. I started the year with a goal of 3 a month (36 total), but later opted to concentrate more on my own writing (which I did) and cut it back to one a month. I read 25 books sent to me by authors. There were a couple that I didn’t finish and not everyone was reviewed on the blog, or at least not in an individual post. I tend to cluster shorter works. But here is the list.

2015 requests

Sorry the list and pictures aren’t in the same order. I couldn’t be bothered to redo it all.

Netgalley

It addition to the books I took on request, I also accepted a number of books from Netgalley, meaning publishers offered them free in exchange for a review but I had to request them. This wasn’t a challenge per se, but it didn’t feel quite right to include them with the requested reviews either. There were and additional 19 books here.

Netgalley 2015

Pop-up Challenges

I like to mix things up on occation and sometimes mini-challenges grab my attention. I did two this year. In March, I noticed that I had 4 books titled Blood Lust. So I opted to read them all back to back. It did not go well. The average star rating didn’t even reach 2! But here they are. I just basically find it amusing to see four of the same titles in a row.

Blood lust coll

Then, later that same month, I noticed that I kept scrolling past the same unattractive picture in my TBR list on Goodreads and realized that I had four books with essentially the same cover. Thus was born the Annoying Close-up Guy Challenge. I read all four of them back to back. It went a bit better than the previous challenge and seeing four almost identical covers in a row really tickles me. (I Know, I’m easily amused.)

Annoying closeup guy

Top Picks

Lastly, and I think most importantly, what were my favorite books of the year? This is a difficult choice. After agonizing and hair pulling, I chose the following as my stand-outs of 2015:

They are in no particular order and I did a list of six, rather than the standard top-five, just because it makes a better box. See?

I would eagerly recommend any of these books to fellow readers. In fact, I do. Go, go forworth and read them.

Edit: You guys! You guys, I owe the Mad Reviewer a huge thank you. I forgot to report back to the challenge page at the end of the year and she went above and beyond to track me down for my final review count so that I could be entered in the drawing for a prize. And in the end, I won a $50 Amazon gift card and paperback copy of The Carnelian Legacy by Cheryl Koevoet, an ebook of The Carnelian Tyranny by Cheryl Koevoet and an ebook copy of Aranya by Marc Secchia. That is super cool. Thank you!

 

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2 thoughts on “Wrapping up 2015

  1. Carrie

    Hey Sadie! It’s Carrie from The Mad Reviewer and way back in the beginning of last year you signed up for the Mad Reviewer Reading & Reviewing Challenge. If you still want to have me enter your name in the draw, just give me your final review count and a link to where I can find those reviews so I can verify your entry. 🙂 (If you need a reminder of the challenge you can go here to see the various levels: https://carrieslager.wordpress.com/2015/01/02/the-mad-reviewer-reading-and-reviewing-challenge-2015-sign-up/)

    Reply
    1. Sadie Post author

      Oh geez, thank you for chasing me down and so sorry for making you. I’ll do a final count now, it’s 150+ but there are a couple audios in there and I don’t count shorts, and send you and email.

      Reply

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