Hey Happy Bookworms!
I’ve been sitting on that title for a year if you couldn’t tell 😅
So! Another year over, it’s definitely been a weird one but i’m quite excited to reflect on how my reading year went. It was meant to be the year of tackling the TBR but in a year like no other it didn’t really go to plan… I had good moments & bad. Unfortunately the last couple months have not been good on reading for me with mocks & so so so much stress but I managed my reading goal!! 81/80 books (although one of those was a DNF *gasps* I know, who am I?!)
Before we get into it, let’s just squeeze four last mini reviews in for 2020!
*All reviews will be spoiler free
*🧸 children’s 🍿 YA 💼 Adult
*🌠 means that I got an e-copy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review
🍿 This Book Is Anti-Racist by Tiffany Jewell
In lieu of recent events I wanted to learn a bit more so I borrowed this from my library.
It was just a very informational book, it lays everything out clearly & in a linear way so it’s very easy to learn & progress.
It honestly taught me a lot about words & phrases that I’d heard thrown about on social media & the likes but didn’t really understand or appreciate to their full extent.
Good for all ages, doesn’t shy away from using big words or complex subjects but explains everything in an easy & simple way.
💼 A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
“Women have served all these centuries as looking-glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size”
This book is absolutely gorgeous & although it made my brain absolutely ache with mental agility, I loved it.
I mean just the beauty of “All these infinitely obscure lives remain to be recorded”
I just felt a real connection with a lot of the ideas Woolf purposed, not even just with the ideas themselves but with the nuances that she presents them with. And all the way throughout, I just had this deep rooted sense of home.
“history is too much about wars; biography too much about great men”
💼 Midwinter Murder by Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie is a queen.
No, but really I’d read her shopping lists she’s just so entertaining & she writes so wonderfully.
It’s a great collection of short stories, I’d really recommend it.
🍿🌠 These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong
I absolutely loved this when I first started it but then I got a bit swamped & had to take a break but still kinda read it a bit patchily here & there.
Then I piled on the pressure to finish for the new year & I’m glad I did because I really enjoyed it!
I loved the darker elements, mainly in the beginning, although I thought it got a bit more typically YA-y as it went on. I really liked the Romeo & Juliette inspiration (because I would call it more inspiration than retelling) because it kept it unpredictable. With a lot of retellings you know the story already (obviously) so it looses that ‘unknowing’ which is so exciting. Yeah, it felt more like Easter eggs for the Shakespeare nerds among us.
I feel like a retelling should be able to stand up on it’s own & this certainly does.
I loved the setting & thought the Shanghai gang background was brilliant. The political climate was incredibly well handled – interesting but not too heavy.
I liked the investigation but I think the pacing could have been a bit better: it’s very slow at the beginning then all rushes in. The romance was the most predictable element & the most based on the play. I did like it but it wasn’t my favourite romance ever & I wish a bit more ~tension~ was built up (bc you can never have enough 😉)
“Even the land of dreams needs to wake up sometimes.”
Ok! Let’s wrap this!
2020 saw me read 27,212 pages over 81 books (although I don’t trust GR’s countability on audiobook pages 👀)
Shortest Book: The Lost Sisters by Holly Black (50 pages)
Longest Book: Winter by Marissa Meyer (824 pages)
Average book length: 335 pages
I completely forgot I read winter this year & am absolutely flabbergasted 😅 Must have been at the beginning because I’ve definitely been searching out short books lately. Two of the queens of YA though so definitely fitting (I got the new Cardan book for christmas though and it’s so pretty I can’t wait 🥺)
Most Popular: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (4,772,519 people also shelved)
Least Popular: Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen Children’s Stories) adapted by Gemma Barder (226 people also shelved)
How ironic! Haha I must say P&P was a big let down for me this year and I actually really liked the children’s version 😂 You got the romance feeling without having to trudge through the language (although the illustrations were a little weird).
Highest Rated on Goodreads: Heartstopper (vol 3) by Alice Oseman (4.65 average stars)
My average rating for 2020: 3.5 stars
The exact same average rating as last year, hey, at least I’m consistent! But heartstopper’s place is definitely well deserved 👏👏
My first review of the year: Gemina by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (5 Stars)
This series is so genius honestly – how could it not be a 5 star read?
And yeah, some of it is impossible to wrap my head around but it all makes sense in the end 😂
Can’t wait for the last one!
My last review of the year: These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (4 Stars)
(Review see above.)
I have definitely 100% got better at writing reviews which like go me! I guess gemina was the second in a series & so that’s kinda hard but yeah, it’s a pretty pathetic review 😅 Also yay for starting & ending on a good note!
Wow ok 17% of my 2019 books were 5 star, in 2020 32% were 5 star! I think in part that’s because of some childhood rereads but looking back on these, I really did have some cracking reads. In no particular order:
So here they are people! El’s top 2020 books – get your TBR lists out & get scribbling!
Is anyone surprised to see sourdough? 👀
WORST BOOKS: I’m ready to name & shame.
The information is in your hands now, do with it what you will 😉
And now for the thing you’ve all been waiting for…
My 2020 new years reading resolution: I have all the big exams next year (or maybe not, we’ll see 🙄) but I’m predicting very little reading time so my reading goal is a nice 50 & we’ll see what happens. As for my reading approach this year; 2021 will very much be a year for mood reading! I don’t want reading to be stressful at all so I’m really gonna focus on reading what I want, when I want (I want that 5 star percentage to rise even more!)
Thanks for sticking by me this year even though it’s been a little rocky, especially at the end, but we’ve had some pretty good times! Reaching 200 followers (we’re currently sitting on 260!) and my lovely redesign which I am still in love with! 🥳🎉
How was your year in books? Best book of 2020? Any 2021 reading resolutions?