Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014: My year in books

I have a room in my house devoted to books and comic books. Boxes and boxes of the damn things. They've been sitting there for a few months, ever since we moved from Maine to Oregon. Some day soon I'll start to buy some new bookcases, un-box the books and spread them around the house, but for now they'll just have to sit there where the movers dumped them this past August.

Hopefully it won't take too long to dig into those boxes, because I own hundreds (if not thousands) of books and comics that I haven't had a chance to read yet. I read an average of a book or two a week, but there's never enough time to truly catch up, is there? This year's move -- not to mention my excessive work schedule and the terrible health problems that plagued my family -- also served to slow down my reading.

I know you're waiting for the total, so here it is: I read 100 books this year. That's a lot, but it's quite a bit below the 119 books that I read in 2013 and the 115 that I read in 2012. It's also a much lower number of pages: I read more short books (primarily graphic novels) than anything else this year. That's an adaptation that I needed to make. With everything going on this past year, I just didn't have the luxury of focusing on longer, more involved novels as much as I wanted to.

I did read some damned good books, though. Top of the list, "Cabinet of Curiosities" by Guillermo del Toro. If you want to read something that will inspire you and kickstart your creativity, pick this one up.

Worst book? Well, I think the most disappointing one was "To Hell You Ride," a graphic novel by actor Lance Henriksen, whose extreme right-wing politics and conspiracy theories destroy a story that had a lot of potential.

Now, looking at books alone hardly captures the true depth of my reading in 2014. I read a LOT of articles, short stories, individual comic books and essays that could never be tallied in a way like this.

Looking ahead, I'm going to work hard to get back to reading novels this year. I have a few boxes of them ready and waiting for me, after all.

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