Well here we are! The eve (of the eve) of 2020! My goal for this year was to read 78 books, and one of my resolutions going into 2019, as I’ve mentioned before, was to read more classics.
I finally finished my challenge a mere two days ago with A Rule Against Murder, the fourth book in the Armand Gamache series by Louise Penny, and now I’m currently reading The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa, The Glittering Hour by Iona Grey, and Miracle Creek by Angie Kim. Realistically, I’ll probably finish Miracle Creek by the end of tomorrow, and it’s *possible* I could finish Glittering Hour— there is no way I’ll finish War of the End of the World though!– but for the purposes of this post, I’ll only be looking at the 78 books included in my reading challenge.
*Fear not: I will not be going through all 78 books!*
Now with all of that said, let’s look at the highlights of 2019!
The First Book I Read
My first book of 2019 was Don Quixote, which I’ve mentioned a few times on the blog as one of the Six Books That Changed My Life. I put off reading this one for a long time and was taken on such a journey along with that Knight of the Sad Countenance and I loved it! I highly, highly recommend this to anyone who’s willing to commit to a long read, because it is incredibly enjoyable!
The Last Book I Read
I met my reading challenge with A Rule Against Murder by Louise Penny. This is the fourth installment in the Armand Gamache series, which I love revisiting from time to time because of the series’s quasi-cozy, pastoral nature with really interesting plots and suspense woven in. Check out some more complete thoughts on another Gamache book here.
My Favorite Book(s) I Read
Don Quixote is a must here, as well as The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides. I didn’t actually post a review of this one because there was no way to express how much I LOVED this book without toeing the line of sharing too much information! This was suspenseful, thrilling, and a total page-turner. DEFINITELY pick this up if you haven’t yet!
My Least Favorite Book(s) I Read
Ugh. GOD. I just. I don’t even want to talk about it. I spent WAY too much of 2019 reading Moby Dick. I know, I know, it’s “the Great American Novel” or whatever, but I just really did not like it. I appreciate the symbolism, but this is really a twenty-five sentence story that’s expanded into 700 pages with a nice little whale encyclopedia in the middle. I’ll refer you to Goodreads user Matt’s review of Moby Dick, as he sums it up perfectly. The review is long– though still far shorter and more enjoyable than Moby Dick!– so I will pull one thought for you:
I’ve never actually harpooned a whale (or anything, for that matter), but I can only assume that it is slightly easier than finishing this turgid, mammoth work of literature.Matt from Omaha
Classics from my Classics Challenge
Since most of these will be familiar to people, this one will just be a list!
- Don Quixote, Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
- Swann’s Way, Marcel Proust
- Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Anne of Avonlea, L.M. Montgomery
- Moby Dick, Herman Melville
- The Tragedie of Dido, Queen of Carthage, Kit Marlowe
- Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
- The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
- Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
The Shortest Book I Read
The shortest book I read this year was Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov. This clocked in at 76 pages, but let me tell you, those are 76 FULL pages! If you dig Russians, pick this one up for sure.
The Longest Book I Read
My longest book was Don Quixote at a whopping 1,032 pages!
Most Read Author
Unsurprisingly, my most read author of 2019 was J.K. Rowling, thanks to my annual reread of the Harry Potter books!
In 2019, I read 27,594 pages and my average rating came in at 3.9 stars. I’m pretty happy with how this year went overall, and I’m looking forward to some of my goals for 2020, so stay tuned for those!
Tell me some of your reading highs and lows of 2019 below, and I wish everyone a very Happy New Year!