All of the data that follows was collected by me using a combination of Google Sheets and Google Calendar. Once again, I elected not to track pages read—too much discrepancy between formats to generate meaningful comparisons.
A complete list of all the books I read in 2015 is at the bottom of this post.
I read 66 books in 2015. Fiction titles outnumbered nonfiction by 2-to-1:
- 44 ficiton
- 22 nonfiction
The year was top heavy with nonfiction: I read 15 nonfiction titles in January–June, but only 7 in July–December.
It follows naturally that my fiction reading displayed the opposite pattern: 17 fiction titles in January–June, and 27 in July–December.
On average, it took me 3.7 days to read a book:
- 3.95 days for fiction titles
- 3.23 days for nonfiction titles
Only 2 books took me more than a week to read: The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Eight edited by Jonathan Strahan, and Scattered Suns by Kevin J. Anderson. At 8 days each, they tie for the longest it took me to read a book.
My longest uninterrupted stretch of reading was 14 days from February 20–March 5.
My longest stretch without reading was 8 days from September 24–October 1.
My seasonal reading falls out fairly evenly:
- 16 books in the winter (December-January-February)
- 19 books in the spring (March-April-May)
- 15 books in the summer (June-July-August)
- 16 books in the fall (September-October-November)
I read 7 titles in May, July, and November, the most of any months. The lowest month was June, during which I only read 3. I averaged 5.5 books per month.
My favorites of the year were a mix of fiction and non: The Martian, Trespassing on Einstein’s Lawn, Seveneves, Saga, Chasing the Scream, Part of Our Lives, The Magicians series, Wendell Berry’s essays, Encounters at the Heart of the World, The Water Knife.
There were a few disappointments this year: I read books from Ernest Cline, Dan Simmons, and Kim Stanley Robinson which I found disappointing. I expected stronger work from all of them. I also found myself questioning some long-held opinions about a treasured author.
I undertook an unanticipated journey of reminiscence when I gave into the impulse to reread some of Clive Barker’s novels.
There were a couple surprises this year: I discovered the work of Nnedi Okorafor and William Sloane, and learned that I enjoy Mary Higgins Clark’s storytelling style—not something I would have anticipated.
I finally found time to dig into a series my mom has been urging me to read: Kevin J. Anderson’s The Saga of Seven Suns. I’ve completed 5 of the 7 titles in the series and plan to finish the rest in January 2016.
Last year, I set a goal of 50 books for 2015. Clearly, I exceeded that goal. For 2016 . . .
No goals. Just reading when I feel like it, or not when I don’t. And I’ll continue to make conscious effort to increase the diversity in what I read.
Books Read in 2015
I’ve linked titles which I’ve reviewed on this blog.
|1.||Trespassing on Einstein’s Lawn: A Father, a Daughter, the Meaning of Nothing, and the Beginning of Everything||Amanda Gefter||12/20/2014||1/11/2015|
|2.||The Brilliant History of Color in Art||Victoria Finlay||1/11/2015||1/13/2015|
|3.||Ancillary Justice||Ann Leckie||1/17/2015||1/20/2015|
|4.||The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume Eight||Jonathan Strahan (ed.)||1/21/2015||1/28/2015|
|5.||Data, A Love Story: How I Cracked the Online Dating Code to Meet My Match||Amy Webb||2/1/2015||2/4/2015|
|6.||Ancillary Sword||Ann Leckie||2/8/2015||2/12/2015|
|7.||Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs||Johann Hari||2/14/2015||2/15/2015|
|8.||The Age of the Vikings||Anders Winroth||2/20/2015||2/22/2015|
|9.||Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age||Cory Doctorow||2/22/2015||2/26/2015|
|10.||I Don’t Know What You Know Me From: Confessions of a Co-Star||Judy Greer||2/27/2015||2/28/2015|
|11.||The Long Mars||Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter||3/1/2015||3/5/2015|
|13.||The Science of Interstellar||Kip Thorne||3/14/2015||3/15/2015|
|14.||The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets||Simon Singh||3/15/2015||3/22/2015|
|— I started this book two days before my wife & I moved into our new house. It’s the first book I finished there.|
|15.||The Death of Caesar: The Story of History’s Most Famous Assassination||Barry Strauss||3/25/2015||3/28/2015|
|16.||The Monopolists: Obsession, Fury, and the Scandal Behind the World’s Favorite Board Game||Mary Pilon||3/29/2015||3/29/2015|
|17.||The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared||Jonas Jonasson||3/31/2015||4/2/2015|
|18.||The Magicians||Lev Grossman||4/3/2015||4/7/2015|
|19.||The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature||Daniel Levitin||4/9/2015||4/11/2015|
|20.||The Trojan War: A New History||Barry Strauss||4/12/2015||4/14/2015|
|21.||The Magician King||Lev Grossman||4/16/2015||4/19/2015|
|22.||The Magician’s Land||Lev Grossman||4/21/2015||4/24/2015|
|23.||The Long Utopia||Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter||4/25/2015||5/3/2015|
|24.||The Fractal Prince||Hannu Rajaniemi||5/8/2015||5/11/2015|
|25.||Lock In||John Scalzi||5/14/2015||5/16/2015|
|27.||Comedy at the Edge: How Stand-Up in the 1970s Changed America||Richard Zoglin||5/19/2015||5/20/2015|
|30.||The Way of Ignorance and Other Essays||Wendell Berry||5/31/2015||6/14/2015|
|32.||The Abominable||Dan Simmons||6/15/2015||6/26/2015|
|33.||Encounters at the Heart of the World: A History of the Mandan People||Elizabeth Fenn||6/28/2015||7/3/2015|
|34.||My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family’s Nazi Past||Jennifer Teege & Nikola Sellmair||7/4/2015||7/5/2015|
|35.||Who Fears Death||Nnedi Okorafor||7/5/2015||7/10/2015|
|37.||Into the Wild||Jon Krakauer||7/17/2015||7/18/2015|
|38.||The Rim of Morning: Two Tales of Cosmic Horror||William Sloane||7/19/2015||7/27/2015|
|39.||Forty Signs of Rain||Kim Stanley Robinson||7/29/2015||7/30/2015|
|41.||The Great and Secret Show||Clive Barker||8/2/2015||8/8/2015|
|42.||The Story of Alice: Lewis Carroll and the Secret History of Wonderland||Robert Douglas-Fairhurst||8/9/2015||8/16/2015|
|43.||The Windup Girl||Paolo Bacigalupi||8/17/2015||8/24/2015|
|44.||The Book of Phoenix||Nnedi Okorafor||8/26/2015||8/29/2015|
|45.||The Meaning of the Library: A Cultural History||Alice Crawford||8/30/2015||9/3/2015|
|46.||The Water Knife||Paolo Bacigalupi||9/5/2015||9/7/2015|
|47.||The Martian||Andy Weir||9/10/2015||9/12/2015|
|48.||Aurora||Kim Stanley Robinson||9/20/2015||9/23/2015|
|49.||Saga, Volumes One through Four||Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples||10/2/2015||10/18/2015|
|— I read these volumes separately throughout the date range listed above, but chose to count them as a single title with two total days of active reading time. It didn’t take me more than an hour or two to read each one. If I counted each volume as a separate title, it would put my yearly total at 69.|
|50.||The Beat Goes On: The Complete Rebus Stories||Ian Rankin||10/5/2015||10/9/2015|
|51.||Old Venus||George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois (eds.)||10/10/2015||10/17/2015|
|52.||Old Mars||George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois (eds.)||10/18/2015||10/24/2015|
|53.||Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland||Lewis Carroll||10/25/2015||10/25/2015|
|54.||The Shadow of Your Smile||Mary Higgins Clark||11/2/2015||11/8/2015|
|55.||Saga, Volume Five||Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples||11/10/2015||11/10/2015|
|56.||Cherokee Medicine, Colonial Germs: An Indigenous Nation’s Fight Against Smallpox, 1518–1824||Paul Kelton||11/11/2015||11/15/2015|
|57.||Ancillary Mercy||Ann Leckie||11/16/2015||11/18/2015|
|58.||Hidden Empire||Kevin J. Anderson||11/19/2015||11/22/2015|
|59.||The Cold Between||Elizabeth Bonesteel||11/22/2015||11/24/2015|
|60.||A Forest of Stars||Kevin J. Anderson||11/25/2015||11/29/2015|
|61.||Horizon Storms||Kevin J. Anderson||12/1/2015||12/6/2015|
|62.||Part of Our Lives: A People’s History of the American Public Library||Wayne A. Wiegand||12/6/2015||12/11/2015|
|63.||Library of Souls||Ransom Riggs||12/12/2015||12/13/2015|
|64.||Scattered Suns||Kevin J. Anderson||12/13/2015||12/25/2015|
|65.||Of Fire and Night||Kevin J. Anderson||12/25/2015||12/27/2015|
|66.||Luna: New Moon||Ian McDonald||12/27/2015||12/30/2015|