I tried to keep track of the books I read this last year, tried.  Technology picked up where I failed (history on Apollo, OverDrive and Hoopla) and I discovered I had read 39 books in 2019. If you haven’t started keeping track, you should or just run your history and check it out.  It is a good way to reflect over what you experienced and maybe even what you gained by reading.

Things I discovered after looking over my list of reads.  First off, I should read more.  On average, I only read a little over 3 books per month.  I think I can do better!  I discovered that, even though I love YA, I actually read more adult books. I think that book club is the reason my list is slightly heavier on the adult side.  I also read only fiction this year, not even a biography, I will take care of that in 2020, or at least our book club picks will.   I read 39 books by 25 authors: one series, all of two different author’s books, and a couple of another.  I enjoyed almost everything I read, to be honest, if it doesn’t get to me in the first few chapters I don’t waste my time.

I made myself read a James Patterson.  I had read him in the past and just thought I would try again.  Nope.  Two of my most underwhelming reads were both “bestsellers.”  I guess I just want something different or maybe I really don’t enjoy crime or mystery novels anymore.  On that note, no romance was in my list, side stories, yes, but never the main theme of any book I read this year.  So, all fiction, no crime, no mystery, and no loving.

I finally read all the Harry Potter books.  I would say this was the most fun I had reading this year.  Rowling really did an amazing job on these books, they will defiantly be considered “classics” in the near future, I think they are now.

I read all of Jeff Zenter’s books.  You know how sometimes when you are reading and some lines just jump out so you write it down so you can just enjoy them over again.  The Zentner books are always this way, just so quotable.  I was amazed at this consistency in his novels, then I remembered his musical past.  Song writers are the kings of quotes, seriously they only get a few minutes to tell a story.  He ties with another author as my favorite writer of the year, he might have won it hands down, but he made me cry too much.  The other author I loved, Madeline Miller.  I read both of her books, and just like Zentner, I have mentioned her in my bookworm before.  Miller is also like a musician in that she did a cover of a previously awesome story and made it even better.  The Iliad and the Odyssey, yep, good originally, better with Miller’s spin.

I also read some other heart wrenching books, so Zenter wasn’t the only one who broke my heart.   Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, A Man Called Ove, My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, and Bang.  The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry also made my heart react, but it felt better, not broken.

Can I pick my favorite book of 2019, hmmm, it would be among the things I have mentioned in the last 3 paragraphs.  If I had to pick one for you to read out of all of those I would go with The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner.  I would also plug the book I mentioned last week, The Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini.  I did not count this book in my 39, it is very short.  Both these books speak to my ultimate goal in life, to be kind.  Not like another favorite book I read a few years back, Wonder by R.J. Palacio, but by giving you a glimpse into another person’s world.

I am excited to start my reading for the 2020 year and I have an even cooler way to keep track of what I am reading.  My great friends, JT and Michelle gave me some really cool bookmarks.  There are 25 in a pack and they have places to make note of the book you are reading.  I will be buying another pack, with the goal of using every one of them and I guess I will need to read the old-fashioned way, paper.  That will make my other friend, Bryan, happy!