My favorite reads of the year, in alphabetical order by title. I read some damned good shit this year with one re-read in the list (Run)
The Art of Asking Your Boss for a Raise by Georges Perec
Bloodchild and Other Stories by Octavia Butler
Cake Time by Siel Ju
Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
Fountain of Age: Stories by Nancy Kress
Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich
Lies of the Saints by Erin McGraw
Night to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier
Run by Ann Patchett
Saints for All Occasions by J. Courtney Sullivan
Sex, Class & Culture by Lillian S. Robinson
This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen by Tadeusz Borowski
The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti
My diversity report for the year: Women authors 50.8% (up from 48%) last year). Non-white authors were 16.3% of my reading (essentially flat from last year’s 16.4%). I chose a book different from what I might have read ordinarily to hit my diversity target 24% of the time, down slightly from last year’s 25%. Between my being careful about what gets into my to-read lists/piles and perhaps improved diversity coming from my filters, this is a continued good sign. My Dead White Men number meanwhile somehow continues to climb, up to 20.1% from 14.4% which goes to show that diversity doesn’t necessarily entail the death of the Canon. Non-US authors were 39.8% of my reading essentially flat from last year’s 39.9%. Translations were up at 14.1% compared to last year’s 10%. Books in Spanish were down to 1.3% from 3.8% courtesy of not taking a Spanish class this year and the fact that I’ve still not finished the long-ass but magnificent 2666.
The authors I’ve met number was up a fair amount at 7.2% vs 2.5% last year to which I attribute a few friends having new books out this year. Re-reads were down to 2.8% from 5.4% (my Salinger re-read project having come to an end), authors new to me were down to 68% from 71.8% last year. Fiction and Poetry were both up slightly at 56.1% and 2.6% respectively, compared to last year’s 47.5% and 1.3%. One new stat this year: books read as research for my novel accounted for 22.7% of my reading this year. I expect that will be down next year as my research winds down, but it is up from last year’s 20% which would be higher had I started work on the novel earlier in the year.