It’s that time of year where your inbox is being overwhelmed with blogging wrap up posts left right and centre. Why? Because December is a great time to reflect on goals both personal and bookish.*
*Also, analyzing your books and blogging stats is so damn satisfying.
So I’m sorry (but not sorry) that I will be joining the queue of bloggers discussing their books and blogging achievements of 2018! If you want to skip this post because you’re feeling oversaturated, I completely understand, but if not, I do hope you enjoy viewing what I’ve been up to, including the best books that I’ve read in 2018!
2018 has been a bit of a rollercoaster of a personal year. I lost two family members in Jan and Feb, and to be honest, 2018 never really recovered from that despite a lot of other amazing things such as mini breaks, theatre visits, gigs, etc.
But when it comes to books and blogging, 2018 was pretty incredible, and I’ve smashed a lot of my personal stats! I AM SO PROUD.
*Sidenote: I used Canva’s graphs feature for the first time for this post, and after I had completed everything I noticed that for some reason all my pie charts add up to 101%??? Don’t ask me why, just go with it!
I am jumping up and down with joy at these stats. Why? Because in 2018 I read more books than I have EVER managed to read before in a year!
Looking at my Goodreads, I always manage to read a couple more books every year, but in 2018 I wayyyyy exceeded that target, reading 57 books in comparison to last years 42. I know 57 books will seem like quite a small amount for a lot of bloggers, but to me it’s a mega achievement! Don’t mock the tortoise folks, they always win in the end.
I’ve been thinking a lot about how I managed to read so much more. I do think my reading speed has increased this year, but also, I now have a job where I get proper lunch breaks and I use these to read, which means I get an extra 30 mins reading time most days! WINNING.
I also discovered 18 new authors which is kind of incredible!
Types of Books Read
I’m actually quite surprised that the number of stand-alone books I read was more than the number of books in a series! :’D
I really feel like I read a lot of series in 2018, but also REALLY LONG SERIES. I read the entire Vampire Academy series and the Delirium Trilogy which were both on my backlist for starters! I also read the last 4 books in the Throne of Glass series, SO EMOTIONAL.
I read 3 books that were part of the Rory Gilmore Challenge; Little Women, The Return of the King, and Little Dorrit. Alas, this was a pretty poor attempt on my part, and I need to aim higher for 2019!
In total, I also did really well at tackling my backlist in 2018, clearing 17 books.
DO I GET A SMILEY STICKER?!?!
I also feel so privileged to have received 7 ARCs this year, which again, probably seems like a small amount to some bloggers, but it’s the most I’ve ever received!
Books by Genre
I would say the genre’s percentage I read this year was typical of my average.
Fantasy is my first love, and I always read more of this than anything else! I’m actually kind of surprised that the number of contemporary books is so high!
I read 8 classics last year and 8 classics this year, so I was pretty consistent on this front, which is good because I really find classics so rewarding and I get a lot out of the experience!
I read two non-fiction books this year – a Psychology book and one about the Ghosts of Edinburgh my parents brought me. Last year I only read one non-fiction book, so that’s a 50% improvement, albeit a pretty sad one! 😀
Books by Star Rating
These stats are also pretty typical of my reading pattern, despite reading many more books this year!
I don’t give out 5 stars lightly so they’re always quite a small percentage of my reading. My average rating is also always around 3. something each year, so I never think that reflects how well my reading has gone.
How I usually measure if I’ve had a good reading year is if the number of 4 stars outweigh the 3 stars, and I way surpassed that this year!
Now for the section where you can get extra rec’s to take into the New Year!
This novel was brilliantly creative, flipping the ‘chosen one trope’ into something highly amusing and new! It also mixed mental health with a fantasy plot line which I LOVED.
This book just made my heart explode with emotion and cuteness! I JUST WANT TO HUG THIS STORY CLOSE TO MY CHEST AND CARRY IT WITH ME EVERYWHERE FOREVER. If you can read this book without feeling emotional are you even human?
I just can’t decide between these two! Both were solid 4 star reads for me! Little Dorrit was classic Dickens full of cheeky satire and quirky characters, but Little Women was so endearing and full of family values, and it gave me to push to start blogging again after a years break because I just needed to write about it.
This installment of the Throne of Glass series followed the perspective of my least favourite character, Chaol, and I was kind of dreading reading it. Yet, I utterly adored it and shipped the romance like crazy and it ended up being a 5 star read, hurrah!
Best Book of the Entire Year
For once, this was actually a really easy question for me to answer! I absolutely ADORED Only Love Can Break Your Heart. I confess, this book wasn’t even on my radar until I received it as an ARC, so I am indebted to the publisher for sending it to me! This book SLAYED MY HEART. It squidged and bruised and punched it, and then turned it into joy confetti. This author deserves ALL THE STARS for this story about romance, expectations, grief, and family.
★★★★★ Rules of Summer | Successors Promise
★★★★☆ Kingdom of Ash | Delirium | The Loneliest Girl in the Universe | 11.22.63
2018 has also been an incredibly good blogging year for me.
For those who are new to Blogs of a Bookaholic, I’ve been doing the blogging thing since 2011, but in April 2017 I took a break which turned into an unplanned hiatus that ended up being a whole year.
At points, I didn’t think I was going to come back to this space because the creativity and drive just wasn’t there, and it felt like mourning an old friend. But in March 2018 I returned with a fresh perspective and a new take on blogging.
Since returning and implementing changes to make this a much more positive space, I can honestly say I have completely fallen in love with blogging and the book community again, and I think my blog is better for it!
Since March 2018, I’ve written 28 posts, discovered SO MANY new and amazing bloggers, and even attended a book blogger event! I’ve also made my space more creative and fun, changing up my post styles and adding my own images and graphics, and I’ve managed to do it all without stressing about how often I’m posting or looking too much at the stats. I’m kind of proud of myself. 😀 😀
Types of Blog Post I Wrote in 2018
I think I’m probably in the minority of book bloggers having the most common post as book reviews.
This tends to be because discussions and lists get more engagement, but I love writing book reviews the most, it’s what got me started and it’s what keeps me here!
I also wrote quite a few list post this year which I really enjoyed doing, and they were some of my most popular posts! I also started doing monthly wrap-ups that have been great fun!
I barely wrote any discussion posts this year which makes me sad, as they’re one of my favourite post types to read! I’m going to try and remedy this in 2019!
Let me know if there are any post types you’d like to see me write more of in 2019!
My Top 3 Posts in 2018
- The Rory Gilmore Book Challenge (This always gets the most reviews as a graphic I made for it went mini-viral on Pinterest)
- The 30 Day Book Challenge
- Review: Little Women and Good Wives by Louisa May Alcott (I’m guessing this is because of the adapted mini-series that came out this year?!)
Because I wasn’t blogging last year, I don’t actually have any 2018 goals to review! Mentally, I do remember thinking I wanted to tackle my backlist of books though, which I have certainly done successfully! As this is all my book muddled brain can remember, let’s move straight on to my 2019 goals!
I’d like to try and beat my record for my number of books read in a year, surpassing my total of 57 and reaching 60 would be amazing!
Read 5 books from the Rory Gilmore Challenge. (I slacked big time on this challenge this year!)
I want to try and read more diverse fantasy books. I’ve already started doing this over the last couple of months but I want to continue supporting diversity because everyone deserves to see themselves reflected in literature, and the more of it we read, the more will get published!
Continue to blast through by backlist books! I’d like to try and read at least 12 backlist books in 2019.
I’d like to continue blogging all the way to next year. Might seem like a strange one, but you can never take this for granted folks, you never know what the world will throw at you!
I’d like to try and write more discussion posts because I didn’t write many this year and I think they’re some of the most interesting posts you can do!
This is a bit of an ambitious one… but I’d love to try and reach 500 follows on my bookstagram. I only have 160 at the moment but hey, I’m going to aim high for once!! I love this platform and the creativity it inspires, and it would be great to have more people to talk to on there!
So that’s a wrap on 2018! I hope you enjoyed this post, I certainly enjoyed writing it and playing with the graphics. 😀 Thumbs up if you made it to the end! Alas, I was hoping to do several different wrap-up posts that time and life did not allow for, so this post ended up being rather long!
Did you have a good bookish year? Have you set any book or blogging goals?
What are you up to for New Years Eve?
Wishing you all a wonderful year of health and happiness in 2019!