My Year in Books 2017

As this is only my second end of calendar year as a book blogger, I’m still finding it fun to look back over the year and review what I achieved. Last year at this time, I’d only been blogging for just over a month. In fact, it was interesting to look back at my reflections then and the bold plans I had for 2017.  Click here if you want to take a look too.

Bookish Statistics (courtesy of Goodreads)

Longest bookAnd The Birds Kept On Singing by Simon Bourke (642 pages)

Shortest bookTremarnock Summer by Emma Burstall (Goodreads insists this was 12 pages although it was actually 384 pages). Not sure what my actual shortest book was.

Most Popular BookLittle Women by Louisa M Alcott which another 1,422,028 have read. Published in 1862, this was also the oldest book I read.

Least Popular BookA Countess in Limbo: Diaries in War and Revolution by Olga Hendrikoff and Sue Carscallen which no-one else has read (see also Hidden Gems below)

Favourite Genre – Historical fiction (no surprise there)

Average rating – 4.2 (Hmm, I’m more generous than I thought or I’ve just read a ton of good books this year…)

Top rated books – I gave forty-three 5-star ratings although some of those would actually have been 4.5 star ratings rounded up.  My lowest rating was 3 stars (given to 19 books).

Hidden Gems

Here is a list of books to which I gave 5 stars on Goodreads but which fewer than 100 people have rated/reviewed on Goodreads. I’ve ignored books published after 1st October 2017 as they simply may not have had enough time to acquire many reviews. I am frankly astonished at some of them…. Click on the titles to read my review.

A Countess in Limbo: Diaries in War and Revolution by Olga Hendrikoff and Sue Carscallen
Miss Boston and Miss Hargreaves by Rachel Malik
Shelter by Sarah Franklin
Ares Road by James L Weaver
Crimson & Bone by Marina Fiorato
A Reluctant Warrior by Kelly Brooke Nicholls
The Watch House by Bernie McGill
Catherine Dickens: Outside the Magic Circle by Heera Datta
The Wardrobe Mistress by Patrick McGrath
A Dangerous Woman From Nowhere by Kris Radish
And The Birds Kept On Singing by Simon Bourke
The Crows of Beara by Julie Christine Johnson
Fortune’s Wheel by Carolyn Hughes
The Last Train by Michael Pronko

Outside My Comfort Zone

Here are a few books I read – some for blog tours, some in response to review requests from authors – that were outside my usual genres but I still enjoyed. As always, click on the titles to read my review.

Zenka by Alison Brodie (humour)
The Summer Springsteen’s Songs Saved Me by Barbara Quinn (women’s fiction)
The Smallest Thing by Lisa Manterfield (YA)
The Thirteenth Gate by Kat Ross (fantasy element)
And The Birds Kept On Singing by Simon Bourke (long book!)

Reading Challenges

Goodreads – I read 160 books (including two I’ll finish before tomorrow not showing in my total currently) against a target of 156. More than double the 70 books I read in 2016 which goes to show what book blogging does for you!

From Page to Screen – I haven’t managed to read all the books on which the films I’ve seen are based. I need to apply myself to this more next year.

Classics Club – Talking of which, I’ve only managed to read 7 of the 50 books on my list. I’m really going to have to go some to get through the list by the end of 2018 but I’ve included as many as I can in other reading challenges I’m signed up for in 2018.

NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge – I achieved the 25 books for Silver level that I originally set as my target but was aiming for Gold level – 50 books. I’m going to fall a few books short of that.


Top 5 Most Viewed Book Reviews

These Dividing Walls by Fran Cooper
Miss Boston and Miss Hargreaves by Rachel Malik
Vindolanda by Adrian Goldsworthy
Mussolini’s Island by Sarah Day
Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor

Top 5 Most Viewed Other Posts

What Does You Book Blog Say About You?
Temptations of a Book Blogger
Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Favourite Books of 2017
Should Bloggers Act as Proofreaders?
10 Book Blogs I Love

Reading & Blogging Goals for 2018

You can read about the challenges I’ve set myself next year here.

However, there is one thing I’d like to see less of in 2018 – the word ‘unputdownable’ (if it even is a word) when used to describe a book.  You mean you literally did not put it down during all the time you were reading it? Not even to make a cup of tea or coffee, go to the bathroom or make yourself a snack?   If you did indeed not put it down whilst doing any of those things, then hats off to you. If you didn’t actually, then please think up a new word to encapsulate your admiration for a book.  Rant over.

I don’t want to end the year on a grumpy note, so I’d like to thank everyone who has followed my blog this year and read, liked, commented on or shared my posts.  Thank you also to the publishers, tour organisers and authors I’ve worked with this year who have contributed to such a satisfying and rewarding Year In Books.

Happy New Year!    


13 thoughts on “My Year in Books 2017

  1. This post was simply unputdownable! As a result I dropped my laptop on the kitchen floor while attempting to open the Hogmanay champagne and now I have no computer, no champagne and a sticky floor…

    Haha! I agree – the word should be banned! But otherwise it looks like you’ve had a great reading year. Hope 2018 is just as good! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol! You’re the only one to pick up on my little rant so far. Although I’m sure I saw on Twitter yesterday that a book had been described by Stephen King (yes, the Stephen King) as…you guessed it, unputdownable! (My tablet keeps wanting to change that blessed word to unobtainable, much better.)

      Liked by 1 person

    1. The whole world is right. It’s rather special and fascinating, being loosely based on the author’s family history. It’s out in paperback in February. I know because I’m on the blog tour and doing a Q&A with the lovely author, Rachel Malik.


  2. You had a great reading year this year! I wish I had paid attention to what year my books came out in … it would be interesting to see what the oldest one was! I only read a handful of classics, maybe a dozen, but Little Women was definitely a favourite. Good luck with 2018!

    Liked by 1 person

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