Review of the Year #2 – 2022 – Time for Book Stats!

I always say this, but this post really is my favourite of the year! The master spreadsheet is still going strong. I love playing with all the data, mining it for nuggets of information that will tell me if my reading habits have changed. In truth, they bobble along generally, but there are some general trends, I think. Without further ado, here are the charts (accurate to 25 December).

Books & Pages Through the Ages

Slightly fewer books read this year, I did up my GoodReads target from 125 last year to 130 this year which I achieved with weeks to spare, and then had a sparse December – just too much going on at School which broke up a week later than usual this year, added to which, the minute term was up I succumbed to the staff bad cough/cold which I’d held off getting earlier.

Where the Books Came From

Now this one does show a change from last year. My percentage of review copies is down from 55% to 43% AND I’ve read more from my TBR at 30% vs 19% last year. The reason why is simple – two series readalongs (Narnia and The Dark is Rising) – all books I already owned. Both these figures are, however, welcome to see, and I hope to keep up reading from my TBR in 2023.

Year of Original Publication

The proportion of the shiniest new books published in 2022 has gone down by 4% this year, again influenced by those two series readalongs – all books published in the 50s, 60s and 70s, so 20th century titles were up by 8%. NB: I split the older books at 1960 – when I was born.

Book Origins

I read books by authors of 29 different nationalities this year, with first books by authors from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Guyana and Tanzania chosen from the Big Jubilee Read list for Book Group. As the first five weeks of the year were taken up with Nordic authors, all five Nordic countries feature strongly. The number of books by US authors that I read is the lowest number for years – I’ve been having so much fun reading in translation. Authors writing in English are down by 8%. I was glad to squeeze in a Ukrainian book this year.

Book Genres, Publishers and Miscellaneous

  • Author Gender: Although I’ve given up reporting these stats, you’ll be pleased to know that I read exactly 50:50 women:men authors this year.
  • Children’s Novels: Due to the two series readalongs, 11 books – and one a month for a children’s classic is a good target to aim for where possible.
  • Crime Thrillers and Spy novels up again at 31, quite a lot of Nordic Noir in there this year. Spec & SF: down – just 2 this year.
  • Graphic novels – none this year. Poetry was again down to just 2 books from a peak of 9 three years ago.
  • Non-Fiction: in total I read 31 books which is three more than last year. They made 23% of my reading, my highest NF reading total yet.
  • Memoirs were up again at 16 books from 10 last year – vs biographies at 1 book – I prefer memoirs.
  • Publishers: I’ve read a lot more indie publishers again, with new entries from Charco in particular. Faber show up well with 9 titles and Orenda with 7 (the latter being mainly due to signing up for their super blog tours), but also Pushkin Press this year with 8 titles.
  • Multiples: 6 CS Lewis; 5 Susan Cooper and 2 each for Antti Tuomainen and Daniel Klein.
  • Re-Reads: 4 plus books 2-7 of the Narnia books by CS Lewis.
  • New to Me: A full 88 authors – that’s 65%!

…And Finally

A few more fun stats for you…

And some recurring motifs in book titles…

  • Body Parts & Functions: Back, Bones, Brain, Eye x2, Face, Fever, Heart, Mind, Spine.
  • Buildings and Contents: Castle, Chair, Curtain, Home, Hotel, House x2, Kitchen, Library, Palace, Radio, Rehearsal space, Room x2,
  • Colours: Black, Blue x2, Golden, Green, Grey, Red, Silver x2, White x2.
  • Flora & Fauna: Butterflies, Cats, Dog, Fish, Flies, Hare, Horse x2, Human(ity) x2, Lions, Magpie, Moose, Octopus, Rabbit, Seals, Tree x2.
  • Forenames: Betty, Caliban, Caspian, Elvis, Halland, Lolly, Madeleine, Minna, Smilla, Susan, Valery. 
  • Occupations & Activities: Drummer, Gardener, God, Handmaid, Hangman, Healer, Intern, Judge, King, Magician, Naturalist, Prince, Stalking, Swimming, Vet, Villager, Witch.
  • Real Places: America, Battle, Bournville, Havana, Lisbon, Marzahn, River Clyde
  • Science: Atomic, Chemistry, Crystal, Glass, Half-life, Iron, Salt x2, Silver
  • States of Mind: Bliss, Chaos, Certain, Deceit, Desperation, Happiness, Homesick, Hunger, Lonely, Managing, Memory, Midlife, Misfortunate, Mischief, Pity, Recovery, Sorrow, Vicious.
  • Times, Weather & Seasons: Age, Dark(ness) x3, Dawn, Day x2, Ice, Night x2, November, Sea x2, Snow, Summer, Sunlight, Water, World x3, Year

That’s all Folks! 

Coming on Dec 31st: My Books of the Year.

7 thoughts on “Review of the Year #2 – 2022 – Time for Book Stats!

  1. Calmgrove says:

    A pretty thorough stats overview, Annabel, and I’m not surprised that most of your reading is from this year, what with all those books sent for review! I’m still mostly plodding through my TBR pile so very little so far is from this year. Like you I’m around 50/50 female to male writers, which I’m glad for even if I’m not really doing stats myself, and I’m finding female authors more suited to my taste in terms of writing style and viewpoints.

    And now may be an appropriate moment to thank you for joining in with the Narniathon and then initiating #TDiRS22 which I’ve thoroughly appreciated. It’s given me a taste for setting #LoveHain in motion, to explore Ursula Le Guin’s planetary novels in more detail!

  2. thecontentreader says:

    It seems you had a very successful year. Wonderful statistics, which I have to study a little bit more. Some inspiration for my own, which will come later, since I am still travelling. You did really well with your TBR. My aim is also to read from other language groups, and I see you have been very good there as well. Keep on the good variety for 2023.

    • AnnaBookBel says:

      Thank you! Variety in reading is really my watchword. Having read more in translation this year than any other before, I have enjoyed that so much and really hope to keep it up.

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