2018: a year of reading

      12 Comments on 2018: a year of reading

With the year almost over, “everybody” is doing a recaps again. And well, to be honest, too many things happened this year and I don’t feel like sharing all of that. That’s why I decided to instead show you what I have been reading in 2018. :-)

You know I like list challenges, it’s sort of a to-do list to keep me motivated and active on something. Last year I decided to do more reading, again, and instead of “just do more reading” I chose to set myself the goal of reading 42 books in 2018. Below you can find the books that I’ve read and am still reading. It’s more than 42!

1 De donkere kamer (The dark room) by Minette Walters
2 Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett
3 Toen ik je zag (My life with Anthony) by Isa Hoes
4 Het veilige huis (The safe house) by Nicci French
5 Ontknoping in Delphi (Decision at Delphi) by Helen MacInnes
6 Het spel van de engel (The angels game) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
7 The Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross
8 Dodelijk inzicht (A deadly insight) by Robbert Goddard
9 Pogingen iets van het leven te maken (Secret diary of a 84-year old) by Hendrik Groen
10 De fruitplukker (Not in the flesh) by Ruth Rendell
11 In de tijd van de vlinders (In the Time of the Butterflies) by Julia Alvarez
12 De gevangene van de hemel (The prisonor of heaven) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
13 The Dirty Secrets Club by Meg Gardiner (NOT FINISHED)
14 Borderliner by Caroline Kraus
15 Men at Arms by Terry Pratchett
16 Alleen in Londen (Alone in London) by Hanan Al-Shaykh
17 Vector by Simon de Waal
18 De hobbit (The hobbit) by J.R.R. Tolkien
19 Spiritualiteit werkt in de dertigersdip (Spirituality in your quarterlife crisis) by Evelyn Prinsen
20 Sleeping Beauties by Stephen and Owen King
21 Gefluister (Whispers) by Dean Koontz
22 Ghost in the Wires by Kevin D. Mitnick
23 Dodelijke bijen (Kiss of the bees) by J.A. Jance
24 The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
25 Machten van Aardzee (A wizard of Earthsea) by Ursula K. Le Guin
26 Achter het raam op de wallen (My life as a prostitute) by Patricia Perquin
27 O, How the Wheel Becomes It! by Anthony Powell
28 Dans met een engel (Death angels) by Åke Edwardson
29 The Waiting Time by Gerald Seymour
30 Feet of Clay by Terry Pratchett
31 Het wonderbaarlijke voorval met de hond in de nacht (The curious incident with the dog in night-time) by Mark Haddon
32 The Couple’s Guide to Thriving with ADHD by Melissa Orlov (currently-reading)
33 Mooie meisjes (Pretty girls) by Karin Slaughter
34 De donkere kamer van Damokles (The darkroom of Damokles) by Willem Frederik Hermans
35 Mrs. Jeffries Questions the Answer by Emily Brightwell
36 Onschuld (Innocence) by Dean Koontz
37 Het labyrint der geesten (The labyrinth of spirits) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
38 The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
39 Doe nooit wat je moeder zegt (Annie M.G. Schmidt literary history) by Joke Linders (currently-reading/paused)
40 Angsten Academie (School of fear) by Gitty Daneshvari
41 Central Park by Guillaume Musso
42 Catfulness by Paolo Valentino
43 Alice in Exile by Piers Paul Read
44 De boekendief (The book thief) by Markus Zusak
45 Max Havelaar by Multatuli
46 The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
47 The talisman (The talisman) by Stephen King
48 Something Happened by Joseph Heller
49 Dertien (Thirteen) by Stuart MacBride
50 The Dalai Lama’s Cat by David Michie
51 Jingo by Terry Pratchett
52 Soulful Simplicity by Courtney Carver (currently-reading)
53 De indringer (The intruder) by Håkan Östlundh
54 The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman
55 Acqua Alta by Donna Leon
56 De eeuw van mijn vader (My fathers century) by Geert Mak (currently-reading)

Now, I could write about all of them, but that’ll make this story too long. Instead I will tell you what I noticed about my reading habits. If you have questions about any of them though, don’t hesitate to comment!

First of all, I’m noticing that I read a lot more in English instead of Dutch and actually prefer English when I read SF or Fantasy. Those genres are hard to translate properly. My favorite genres are basically the same as twenty years ago; horror, crime novels and biographies, stories from pets, but new is the SF/fantasy and soul-reading. I also try to incorporate old classics in my readings, because I never got to do read them for school and still feel like I missed out on some great amazing pieces. The classics are not always the easiest to read because of the oldfashioned writing but also because these books tend to be VERY SLOW in their plots. Another thing that’s new to me is that I’m reading multiple books at the same time. Like, one for fun-reading and one for soul-reading. And sometimes even one or two extra inbetween, so I can pause a book. This is still a bit weird to me.

Out of all of these books there has been only one that I did not finish because it was written so utterly bad I just couldn’t get past page 70. There was one that I paused for 3 or 4 months, because it was just too hard too complete. At first I wasn’t going to finish it at all, but somehow it kept resonating and therefore I did had to struggle reading it till the end. You know how it goes!

My favorite reading spots are: in bed at night or in the morning, the couch in r3boots house and my special reading chair at home (not specifically in that order). I do also read on my own couch, but it’s less comfortable after a while and I also get distracted too easily (it’s also my “laptop spot”).

Another “fun fact” is that despite reading them all intentionally, I can already not remember some of these titles. The year has been long… Others still float to mind on unexpected moments. And some I already want to read again.

I haven’t spend any of my own money on any of these books. The two purchases I did make, were gift vouchers. All the other books were found or already in my collection. Five were read before, others were books I never got to. I did buy the complete series of Stephen Kings The Dark Tower but I haven’t read these in 2018.

For 2019 I haven’t set a reading goal. I did get myself a museum card though. Next years explorations won’t be just in the mind but “out there in the real world”. Still, if you have any recommandations I would love to hear them!

12 thoughts on “2018: a year of reading

  1. Cooper

    Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (so much more plot than the film showed) and Do Androids Dream Of Electronic Sheep? by Philip K. Dick (quite dissimilar from the film).
    I’m currently reading Cryptonomicon and hope to find a copy of The Cuckoo’s Egg to read after that.

    Reply
    1. spider Post author

      Thanks for the recommendations Cooper! I’ve read Cryptonomicon. It was one of the reasons to start reading English. Maybe it’s time for a re-read next year now that I am more used to it.

      Reply
  2. Kent Peterson

    Based on your list, I think we have similar tastes. If you haven’t read it, I think you’d enjoy BOY’S LIFE by Robert McCammon. It is one of my favorite books.

    I hope you have a wonderful, book-filled 2019

    Reply
  3. Richard P

    You’re a busy reader! The only book on your list that I’ve read is The Hobbit. I recently finished Killing Commendatore by Haruki Murakami, and am reading CoDex 1962 by Sjón.
    Have a great new year!

    Reply
    1. spider Post author

      And I didn’t even like reading the Hobbit! I felt like a child sitting in a room listening to someone telling a story, instead of adventuring the story myself. Guess I’m not a Tolkien fan… I will check your recommendations. :-)

      Reply
  4. T. Munk

    The Cryptonomicon was a good re-read, I recall. The Dark Tower was something I started around the time “Drawing of the Three” came out, so I think of the books individually. Probably read the first 3 volumes a half-dozen times and like them the best, but the last 3 (4?) blur together as “a satisfactory ending”. I dread seeing the movie, despite excellent casting. I feel that I might really hate it, which would be sad, so I’m putting it off as long as I can.

    Reply
    1. spider Post author

      I was already annoyed by the trailer Ted, so I get your feeling. Some fantasy just can’t be captured in cinematic images. Whatever the mind images seems to be the best images there are.

      Reply
    2. Michiel

      Don’t go see the movie then, it has barely anything to do with the books anyway, and it might take away the joy you found reading the books (I know I enjoyed them).

      Reply
  5. Michiel

    I did not read as many books as I wanted this year, but I still enjoyed myself. I resolve to read a bunch more this year, though.

    I keep track of my reads here: https://dammit.nl/pages/books.html Maybe you’ll see something you want to read too.

    Recommendations from the top of my head are the “Ready Player One” book that’s already mentioned, the “Revelation Space” series by Alastair Reynolds (fairly hard space opera, but I really enjoyed all of them), and the Mistborn books of Brandon Sanderson. Apparently he has written quite a bunch of books, and I’m looking forward to devouring them. Oh, The Culture series by Iain M. Banks is a more light hearted sci-fi bunch, quite fun.

    Oh, as you like spiders, check out Adrian Tchaikovsky – Children of Time :)

    Reply

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