As I roll into the last quarter of the year, I’m pausing to take stock of how well I’m doing on my own personal book-related challenges.
As expected, I have had no trouble actually reading, but a bit less success powering through some of the denser works that have been sitting by the side of my bed for years. Of the books I’ve read this year, just over half have been from the public library, and quite a few more have been books I’ve acquired this year. Only about 20% of what I’ve read have been books I’ve had kicking around my shelves for years. Which means, oh math whizzes, that on the order of a quarter of the books were books I acquired this year in one way or another.
I think I’ve done pretty well at not buying books. There are a few measures for ‘pretty well.’ I purchased very few new books at full price (the works of China Miéville that I didn’t already own in order to get them signed because I’m a geek that way; Barbara Kingsolver’s most recent book; the new books in two fantasy series that we read; two books by Canadian authors; and Sherman Alexie’s new novel for young adults). I purchased several books from the bargain table that I’d been wanting to read for some time or couldn’t resist once I’d read the cover (The Big Year is solidly in this last category). And, I obtained quite a few used books during the time I volunteered at the bookshop (many of these are cookbooks, actually, although a good few were ones I subsequently read for this challenge). Oh, and: I purchased at least one exhibition catalogue new.
I’m not sure what this says about me beyond the obvious: I like books.
Looking ahead to the next 10 weeks, my goal for the end of the year is to write reviews for the books I’ve already read. I trickled off with this at about book 20, so that means 30 or so reviews, which is roughly 3 per week for those following along at home. I’m on it.