I would love to start this post by saying I read over 40 books in 2015, but that isn’t going to happen. Initially, I was a bit disappointed that I only managed to read 13 books this year (including graphic novels), but I’m not counting it as a loss. This year, my work life got pretty busy, which is great, but it also meant I put a lot of my passion projects on the back burner.
Of everything I read this year, a few titles really stood out for me. Here are my top three and why I loved them:
Twisted Dark Vol. 1-4 (5) by Neil Gibson
These graphic novels were amazing and jarring in ways few books are these days. What a testament to the genre and what it can accomplish. My review for Volume 5 will be out soon on Word of the Nerd.
The Queen of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling #1) by Ericka Johansen
While this book isn’t without it’s flaws, The Queen of the Tearling demanded my attention. I felt like I could not accomplish anything else unit I finished the book. It’s whimsical, dark, full of fantasy and is a great introduction to the genre. Amanda Hocking fans would love this book. I’m pumped to read book 2 (and 3!).
Fortune 69 by David Heath
Ever since I discovered transgressive fiction in college, I’ve been hooked on it. While I do love Chuck Palahniuk and other popular transgressive authors, I thrive on finding the lesser known transgressive works and seeing how they shine. Fortune 69 provides everything I want in a transgressive fiction novel — gritty and uncomfortable characters and scenarios with just enough realism to make everything seem realistic. Heath pulls you in from page one and when you’re done, it’s like getting off a roller coaster, you’re still able to feel the experience long after it’s ended. While my faith in reading never truly wavered, this book got me out of an awful reading funk.
While I didn’t finish as many books this year as I would have liked to, I learned an important lesson: it’s okay to be choosy about what I read. Life isn’t going to slow down, and I’m not going to stop reading books, so I need to be willing to say no to a book sometimes when I am just not feeling it. I often feel like I have to finish a book if I start it or have invested a lot of time into it, but these days, if something isn’t holding my attention, I’ll put it down for a while (or forever).
Looking ahead, I’m really excited for 2016. I am hoping to at least double what I read in 2015, but I also want to play around with having strict months with set TBR piles and others where I play a little bookshelf roulette. A friend turned me onto this 12 book challenge from Modern Mrs. Darcy that I defiantly want to incorporate into my reading goals for the new year (plus, what could be a cuter book blog title than Modern Mrs. Darcy?).
In addition to reading more books and expanding what I read, I also really need to work on chopping down my kindle TBR pile. I’ve had a kindle since 2009 and have acquired countless books thanks to sales, freebies and those late night “must buy now” impulses, and I’m ready to start reading them. There’s a healthy mix of YA, Horror/Suspense, Literary Fiction and SciFi in my Kindle library, so things should stay interesting. I also NEED to catch up on the Lunar Chronicles. I have all the currently released books, and want to catch up before Stars Above comes out in early February.
I’d love to hear about how your reading challenge went this year. Did you reach your goal? Quit? Something in the middle? What was your favorite (and least favorite) book you read this year? Tell me all the things!