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2020 Reading in Review

I really enjoy doing this blog post each year. 2020 has been quite a year: pandemic, online school and work, and lots of time at home with my college-age daughter and my parents. And we all still like each other... bonus!

Here's a wrap up of my reading in 2020:

This survey is put out by Jamie at Perpetual Page Turner. I've done my best to answer her questions, but I skipped some and have also added in a few of my own. Since my first stats in this post are from Goodreads, I am also participating in Esther of Bite into Books' Goodreads-style Year of Books activity.

Total books read: 108 books (33,276 pages)

Number of re-reads: 1

Female authors: 71 (65%) and 
Male authors: 37 (35%)

Non-fiction: 13 (12%) (this is WAY down from previous years)--change this to include work books and Fiction: 95 (88%)

Adult books: 62 (58%) and YA books: 46 (42%)

Shortest book: 48 pages The Journey by Francesca Sanna and Longest book: 512 pages Fountains of Silence by Reta Sepetys and Average pages per book: 310 pages

Most popular on Goodreads: Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates (599,017) and Least popular on Goodreads: Cat Life by Eric J. White (6)

Countries visited through reading: 30. I didn't do as well at this during 2020. You can see where I read at my 2020 Google Map.
Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Fiji, France, Germany, Ghana, Guatemala, Ireland, Japan, South Korea, Mexico Morocco, Netherlands, Nigeria, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Syria, Tanzania, Turkey, United Kingdom, USA, Vietnam, Zimbabwe.

US states visited through reading: 29. Again, I did not do as well at this as I did last year. You can see where I read at my 2020 Google Map.
Alabama, Alaska, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Washington, DC.
Best book of 2020?
I have never been good at picking one favorite book so this year I choose my favorites in a few categories. I am not sure if it's the pandemic, but there was no one book that stood out as in years past.
Book you were excited about but didn't love as much as you expected?
I was really looking forward to reading Women Talking by Miriam Toews, but it just didn't work for me. just couldn't do it. 

Most surprising (in a good way) book of 2020?
I really enjoyed Yaa Gayasi's Homegoing, which I had trouble getting into when I first picked it up. I was also a bit intimidated by it before I started reading it and by the end I thought it was really fabulous.

Book you pushed most people to read in 2020?
I will admit that the books I read this year didn't live up to the amazingness of last year. But, the book I recommended most to people this year is probably The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeze Emezi, which was really good.

Favorite new author you discovered in 2020?
I think I'll choose Kim Johnson, author of This is My America. This novel is her debut so I hope she comes out with more.

Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2020?
Hmmm. This is a tough one. There were many books that kept me up past my bedtime this year: Grown by Tiffany Jackson, The Night Swim by Megan Goldin, and Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Center.

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2020?
I am all about covers and am definitely a visual person when it comes to choosing books. The covers I liked the most this year were...

Most thought provoking or life-changing book of 2020?
The books that got me thinking the most in 2020 were non-fiction books that furthered my work on learning about myself, my privilege, education, and so much more. I read How to Be Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi three times (once on my own and twice with education groups). The other book is Grading for Equity by Joe Feldman, which I read just a couple weeks ago and has really gotten me thinking about grading in education and how much trauma we cause students through our practices. 

Book that put a smile on your face?
I am going to put two books in this category. Furia by Yamile Saied Méndez made me smile as I read about a young woman becoming empowered through playing soccer in a patriarchal family and society while Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler just made me smile with its sense of humor and romance.

Book that made you cry in 2020?
It is not difficult to get me to cry while reading a book. And I usually cry about the good stuff, the touching stuff. This year the book that made me cry the most was The Only Plane in the Sky: an Oral History of 9/11 by Garrett M. Graff. This event is still so clear in my memory that reading personal stories got me crying.

New favorite book blog that you discovered in 2020?
Danielle at Pretty Messy Reading is one of the new blogs that I recently discovered that I enjoy.

Best bookish photo you took in 2020?
My favorite bookish photo that I took this year has to be my rainbow/color organized TBR shelf after I watched the full season of Home Edit and I went into an organizing frenzy. :-)

Best event you participated in?
I didn't go to any author readings or book events this year, obviously, so I am going to go with participating as a round 2 judge for the CYBILS Awards (again). I am really looking forward to doing this again next month in the YA fiction and YA speculative fiction category.

Reading challenges completed in 2020? Here's a link to my challenges page and while I didn't necessarily complete them all, I did pretty well.

  • Big Summer Book Challenge--5 books total (completed)
  • Literary Escapes Challenge--29 states and 30 countries total
  • Mount TBR Challenge--83 books total (completed)
  • Popsugar reading challenge--38 books total
  • Social Justice Challenge--15 books total (completed)
  • YA Award Winners--10 books total
Book you feel you should read in 2021?
I feel like I should read Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens and The Testaments by Margaret Atwood. This is the exact same sentence that I listed a year ago. Pretty pathetic. But, I do hope I read both these books in 2021.

Book you are most anticipating in 2021?
I don't have one particular book that I am anticipating the most for 2021. My shelves are filled with potentially wonderful books and I want to get a bunch of them read in the upcoming year. 

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