I think it’s time to take a mathematical look back at this year’s reading. I’m anticipating finishing a book I’m in the middle of right now; I’m going to count it in this year’s numbers because I’ll most likely finish it by December 31st, or I will have read most of it in 2009 so it should count for this year anyway.
Books read: 69 (plus 6 audio books, which I’m not including in the numbers below)
Fiction (of any genre or length): 52
Short story collections: 1
Essay collections: 4
Nonfiction books about books, reading, and writers: 8
Female authors: 34
Male authors: 34
Multiple authors, men and women: 1
Books in translation: 5 (France , Austria , Mexico)
Books by authors from England: 29 and Scotland: 1
Books by authors from Ireland: 2
Books by Americans: 29
Books by Canadians: 1 (L.M. Montgomery)
Books by Russians: 1 (Nabokov, written in English)
Books from the 19th century: 7
Books from the 20th century: 41 (first half: 18; second half: 23)
Books from the 21st century: 21
Books re-read: 3
Books by authors I’d never read before: 42
So there it is. I usually read more books from pre-19C times, but I didn’t this year, although I did read a bunch of essays by Montaigne. I have read only 700 pages of the 1,200-page complete essays, so I can’t count that one. And as usual, unfortunately, I haven’t read many books in translation, although I am up one from last year (but down from the year before where I read 15). I swear I don’t try to get the gender ratio so evenly balanced; it just worked out that way. I didn’t try to get the balance between English and American authors so even either.
I think I have a decent amount of variety in my reading, but I’d like to have even more — more poetry, more books in translation, more short stories, more books from earlier times.