cloudsinvenice: Medieval art: illuminated manuscript with a knight in gold leaf (semyaza illuminated)
[personal profile] cloudsinvenice
Here's [personal profile] schemingreader's meme about the past year's reading! I tried to do it on Tumblr, planning to cross-post here, but got the dreaded "something went wrong" message, so it's happening here instead.


1.  How many books did you read this year? 


55, give or take. My numbering system changed this year because I read so many digital issues of comics. I used to mostly read them as trade paperbacks, and then I'd count the tpb as a book, but at some point this year I gave up. 


2. Fiction to Non-Fiction Ratio?


Nine were non-fiction, though several others were anthologies that included both fiction and non-fiction. And then there was poetry. 


3. Male/Female authors?


Again, anthologies complicate things, as do collaborative works like graphic novels, but for sole authors, 15 were female and 22 male. 


4. Books by People of Color?


Two novels that I know of, plus some works within anthologies. 


5. Books in translation/a second language?


Just the one, to my knowledge - The Fetishist, and other stories by Michel Tournier was originally in French. I liked most of the stories a lot. 


6. How many were borrowed from the library?


Two. I didn't go to the library much, and when I did it was mostly for non-fiction to browse or research in. Then our local library closed for renovations anyway. 


7. Oldest book?


I'm still reading The Hunchback of Notre Dame (well, there's another work in translation!) by Victor Hugo, at a glacial pace. I'd planned to spend a couple of days just reading it between Christmas and New Year, so I could add it to my "books read in 2013" list, but it'll have to be a book finished in January 2014 instead. 


8. Newest book?


I don't think I read anything published in 2013. Oh wait - the Hyperbole and a Half book I got for Christmas!


9. Longest book title?


Are we counting in characters or words? If words, then two books are tied with eight-word titles: Hallowe'en, and Other Festivals of Death and Life, edited by Jack Santino (currently affordable secondhand on Amazon UK - get it while you can; I had to order it from America); and This is Not the End of the Book, by Umberto Eco and Jean-Claude Carrière. The latter is the clear winner if you include "a conversation curated by Jean-Philipe de Tonnac". Both are recommended. OH WAIT. I went to add Amazon links for these books, and it would appear that the full title of Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem and Other Things That Happened renders it the winner of this section. You go, Allie Brosh. 


10. Shortest book title?


Gone, by Nigel Auchterlounie. It's a graphic novel about time travel and time paradoxes, and it's hard to find reviews online, so here's his blog instead


11. Most by any one author?


George R.R. Martin - everything but the first book of A Song of Ice and Fire (I read the first one in 2012). Also, a fuckload of comics by Matt Fraction. 


12. Favorites?


A Song of Ice and Fire (particularly A Storm of Swords), This is Not the End of the Book, The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters, Oscar Wilde and the Ring of Death by Gyles Brandreth, and The Bride of Frankenstein: Pandora's Bride by Elizabeth Hand (which reads like fanfic, in the very best possible way - avoid the reviews on Amazon where men complain about female authors turning it into a feminist parable; that's part of what makes it GOOD). 


13. Least Favorite?


If I disliked something I generally stopped reading it, and it didn't make it onto my list of 55, where I only include books I finished. 


14. How many were rereads?


None, as I also don't include re-reads on this list, though I could swear I re-read something. Definitely Blankets, by Craig Thompson. 


15. Favorite character?


This has been an outright battle between several ASOIAF characters. I love Jaime and Arya in particular, and Tyrion, though he really began to try my patience in A Dance with Dragons. 


16. Favorite scene?


Without giving too much away, the siege towards the end of A Storm of Swords.


17. Favourite quote?


"Creativity is on the side of health - it isn't the thing that drives us mad; it is the capacity in us that tries to save us from madness." - Jeanette Winterson. 


18. Most inspirational in terms of your own writing?


The Broken Sword by Poul Anderson, which I read at R's suggestion re: style and atmosphere. It's mythically depressing, and awfully good. Also, The Bride of Frankenstein: Pandora's Bride,  because it's a reminder that if you write what you love and write characters people can love, you won't go far wrong. 


19. Which would you read again?


Definitely ASOIAF, and I think most of the ones I've mentioned here will be re-read at some point. 


Date: 2014-01-01 07:48 pm (UTC)
pretty_panther: (st: chekov)
From: [personal profile] pretty_panther
Love this meme. How was the hyperbole book? I can't decide whether it is worth getting or not.

Date: 2014-01-01 08:27 pm (UTC)
birke: (Default)
From: [personal profile] birke
Now I wish I'd been better about recording the books I read this year. Thank you for the (implicit) recommendations.

Date: 2014-01-01 09:05 pm (UTC)
birke: (Default)
From: [personal profile] birke
WANT

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