Monday, December 20, 2010

The Year In Books- The Statistical Roundup

I did this meme last year and it was really fun to take a data-driven look at my reading. 

How many books read in 2010? 84 as of December 17. (Down 3 books from last year. Thanks, The Passage and To the End of the Land- you chunksters should count as 3 book each!)

How many fiction and non fiction?
79 fiction versus 5 nonfiction. I think my preference is clear! (Last year I read 14 nonfiction books!)

Male/Female author ratio? 
Split down the middle- 42 male, 42 female. I don't pay attention to the demographic distribution of the authors I read so believe me, I did not plan this!

Favorite book of 2010?
My favorite 2010 release was Eddie Signwriter, by Adam Schwartzman, and my favorite backlister was Disgrace, by J.M. Coetzee. South African writers FTW!

Least favorite?
Ugh. Something I didn't finish and have forgotten about.

Any that you simply couldn’t finish and why?
Several. The Sacred Book of the Werewolf. Just didn't hold my attention. Parrot and Olivier in America, a picaresque and I don't care for picaresques. Sorry Peter Carey- I love you!

Oldest book read?
Vivant Denon's No Tomorrow, originally published in the 18th century.

To The End of the Land, by David Grossman.

Longest and shortest book titles?
Longest: How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone by Sasa Stanisic. Shortest: Solar, by Ian McEwan.

Longest and shortest books?
Longest: To the End of the Land or The Passage. Shortest: No Tomorrow or The Dacha Husband.

How many books from the library?
None! Sad but true.

Any translated books?
The Halfway House (Spanish), No Tomorrow (French), How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone (German), The Patience Stone (French), Broken Glass Park (German), Earth & Ashes (Dari), The Wedding of Zein (Arabic), The Wrong Blood (Spanish), The Door (Hungarian), Death's Dark Abyss (Italian), The Ladies from St. Petersburg (Russian), The Shadows of Berlin (Yiddish), The Dacha Husband (Russian), There Once Lived a Woman Who Tried to Kill Her Neighbor's Baby (Russian), The Accompanist (Russian), Ruts and Gullies (French), Moscow 2042 (Russian), Doctor Zhivago (Russian), Madame Bovary (French), From the Land of the Moon (Italian), To the End of the Land (Hebrew).

Most read author of the year, and how many books by that author?
It's a tie, two each from Nina Berberova (The Ladies from St. Petersburg and The Accompanist) and Atiq Rahimi (The Patience Stone and Earth & Ashes).

Any re-reads?
Doctor Zhivago, by Boris Pasternak, if the new translation counts.

Favorite character of the year?
Major Pettigrew of Major Pettigrew's Last Stand. I just loved him, contradictions and all.

Which countries did you go to through the page in your year of reading?
Ireland, Germany, Russia, Sudan, England, France, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Spain, Afghanistan, China, Cuba, South Africa, Bosnia, Iran, Canada, and Jordan. And the United States!

Which book wouldn’t you have read without someone’s specific recommendation?
Any Human Heart, by William Boyd, recommended by Michael Kindness of Books on the Nightstand.

Which author was new to you in 2010 that you now want to read the entire works of?
Howard Jacobson. His The Finkler Question was great and made me want to read everything else he's written.

Which books are you annoyed you didn’t read?
I wish I'd gotten to The Outside Boy, by Jeanine Cummins. But it's tops on my list for Irish Month in March.

Did you read any books you have always been meaning to read?
Yes. Madame Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert, finally!

Paul Auster in Cambridge, Mass.
2010 TOP TEN Book Events in Marie's Book Life - in no particular order:
10. BEA and Book Blogger Con! So. Much. Fun.
9. Other conferences- NEIBA, ALA Midwinter.
8. ReaderCon. Love ReaderCon.
7. Any time I'm honored to interview a favorite author, which I did a lot this year.
6. Visiting great bookstores in Seattle, Philadelphia and South Carolina.
5.Seeing my interview with Chandler Burr published in the paperback of his novel, You or Someone Like You.
4. Meeting authors Adam Schwartzman, Peter Carey, Salman Rushdie, Justin Cronin and Paul Auster, among many others, at readings and events.
3. The Boston Antiquarian Book Fair.
2. Being mentioned in Professional Blogging for Dummies.
1. Reading all of your blogs & comments!