Wednesday, January 4, 2017

My Year in Books | 2016

Greetings, 2017!

It is always nice to start fresh. 2016 was a big year for me. In September, I got serious about reading again. Being a parent does not make it easy to read for pleasure. All of my reading was done for and with my children. I knew I needed to change that so I made time for myself again.

To do this, I started a Goodreads account to track my reading, rate books, and make a "to-read" list. Then, to ensure that I would be able to get books for myself during our many library trips, I began reserving my books for pick-up online. We'd go to the children's library first, and as we went to checkout our books, the library scanned my card and grabbed my reserved books from the shelf. I do not always appreciate modern technology, but in this instance I do.

My favorite genre is historical fiction. Edward Rutherford's books got me hooked years ago. This time, I decided to start reading something different: biblical fiction. I started with The Centurion's Wife, and because I loved it so much, I went ahead and read the rest of the series. Once I find an author or a series that I like, I usually read every book of theirs before I move on. (My goal for 2017 is to not do this, and to take my time reading books from many different authors). This led into another genre: romance. I always avoided this genre because I assumed it was all garbage. I was surprised to discover that there was such a thing as Christian romance novels. I appreciate authors that can keep their books clean.

My 2016 Reading List:

1. The Centurion's Wife by Davis Bunn and Janette Oke
2. The Hidden Flame by Davis Bunn and Janette Oke
3. The Damascus Way by Davis Bunn and Janette Oke
4. The Crimson Cord by Jill Eileen Smith
5. Serafina and the Black Cloak by Robert Beatty
6. Lady of Milkweed Manor by Julie Klassen
7. The Prophetess by Jill Eileen Smith
8. The Apothecary's Daughter by Julie Klassen
9. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
10. Michal by Jill Eileen Smith
11. Abigail by Jill Eileen Smith
12. Bathsheba by Jill Eileen Smith
13. The Painter's Daughter by Julie Klassen

Serafina and the Black Cloak and The Nightingale were both books I read for a local book club (one of them I started before it had been assigned). I enjoyed them both, even though one was very dark and creepy and one was of a difficult subject matter. All of the other books were of my own choosing. If I didn't enjoy a book, I stopped reading it, and therefore did not include it in my list.

My favorite book of 2016 was The Painter's Daughter. It was the last book I read and as soon as I finished reading it, I wanted to read it again. It was very obvious to me at the very beginning how the book would end, but I very much enjoyed reading the in-between. Julie Klassen does a fabulous job with her writing and research of the regency era.

Reviews for each book will be published sometime in the near future. Keeping my thoughts about a book in a journal help me to remember them and save them, but because I don't want to keep up with a hard-copy reading journal anymore, I will share them here.

What's coming up in 2017?

The new year only recently begun, and I have already finished a book, started another, and have also been reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, as it was the selection in my local book club for this month. These types of books take me a bit longer to get through, as I like to fully study them, as opposed to the books I read for fun.

Feel free to keep up with me on Goodreads or check back at the end of the month!

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