Reading review of the year, 2006

I haven’t read as much this year as I did last year – I’ve been seriously distracted for the last couple of months and my reading as well as my writing has suffered. Having said that, my total for the year is still averaging out at over a book a week. The grand total for the year is eighty-two, with another two that I started and never finished, although I will eventually, I promise. There was only one I threw away in disgust after the first few pages, and that was Labyrinth by Kate Mosse. Sixty-six of the books were fiction, and of the rest, as with last year, the vast majority were history. There were even fewer re-reads than there were last year – only nine.

I discovered a rich seam of writing in a collection of early twentieth century romance fiction owned by my great grandmother. I also started to read books my mother had owned as a child, plus some other, related books, and in all, these comprised twenty-four of the novels. By far and away the largest novel category is historical fiction, with a fairly even split among other categories.

Adventure – 9
Crime – 8
Fantasy – 10
Historical – 25
Thriller – 4
Literary – 3
Romance – 12
YA – 12

Of course some books are in more than one category.

Best book of the year was The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, John Boyne’s wrenching tale of innocence in wartime.

Worst book of the year was The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. Over-rated, overwritten and overlong.

Most unexpected read was Ulysses, something I confess I never expected to read. I suppose technically, I still haven’t read it as it was an audio CD, but it still takes some listening to.

Out of print book that shouldn’t be – Barnaby by Rina Ramage.


4 responses to “Reading review of the year, 2006

  1. Happy 2007! I hope you are OK.

    2006 was a bit of a disappointing year for me reading-wise too. Not only was my time limited but I seemed to have the uncanny knack of choosing dud books.

    I was interested to see your best and worst choices for 2006. I borrowed The Boy In Striped Pyjamas from the library but didn’t get chance to read it. I’ll have to see if I can borrow it again.

    Let’s hope 2007 is a good year for books!

  2. Happy new year to you too! There’s nothing worse than realising you’ve committed time to reading the start of a book that you know you won’t finish. I gave up on Labyrinth surprisingly quickly for me.

    I hope you have more luck with books in 2007

  3. I remember seeing the deal report for The Historian way back when and thought the concept was very cool…of course, I thought the same about Jonathan Strange and had to put the book down in defeat 2/3 of the way through. I was amazed that a book about magic could be so dull. Was this the case with The Historian – an interesting concept ploddingly realized?

  4. It was far too long, and contained a Russian doll series of narratives, starting with the 50-odd year old heroine remembering what happened when she was a teenager. We could have done without several of these. And as for the denouement! Vampires are so overdone.

    I thoroughly enjoyed Jonathan Strange, I have to say.

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