State of the Shelf 2020: Hits, Misses, & Everything in Between

2020 did a number on a lot of people. But, honestly, despite its ups and downs, I ended up a lot better off than when I started the year. And I’m NOT just talking about my awesome reading this year.

I set off setting my Goodreads goal for 2020 at 250, and I ended up SURPASSING that goal by a LOT! Specifically, I read 360 books in 2020. Now, I credit most of my success to a reading challenge group on Facebook called Reading Rivalry. Every month there are teams and you read a certain amount, based on prompts. This helped me both read books I had on my shelf and seek out new books that I might not have heard of. Additionally, I used my library A LOT more than ever. To the tune of saving over $3000.

ALWAYSREIDING

What Worked: Reading Rivalry on Facebook (I read about 20-30 books a month because of this, with one month being hardly any).
My Bookworm Life Weekly Planner (it let me write ALL the books I read during my binges–I’m using it again this year, and the link is NOT an Affiliate link, I just love it that much.)
Libby, Hoopla, and Overdrive (via my local library–I LOVE my local libraries.)
Virtual book clubs (check your locally, or rather in the places you like to read and then go from there.)
Reading Glasses podcast and community (I recently found them and LOVE them!)

What didn’t work:

Penpal group and Popsugar reading challenges (I didn’t update them as much as I should.)
Goodreads (I need to update it and I’m making this a goal to do it by the end of this week.)
Owlcrate (apart from the curation differences, I think I only read ONE of the books, even with a gift subscription this is too expensive.)
My current review situation (they are EVERYWHERE and some are stuck/lost in wordpress world.)

Best Books: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab (I don’t normally read fantasy–this won me over in a really surprising way. I loved it SO MUCH!)
The Duke and I (Bridgerton 1) by Julia Quinn (I met the author years ago and still had a hard time getting into regency–until I picked this up so I could watch an episode of the show–this is fab!)
Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon by James Hibberd (I am STILL in love with Game of Thrones on TV. It was GREAT to hear the stories about behind the scenes.)

Worst Books: Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson (The plot wasn’t as interesting as I’d hoped. Author came across with a verbose, overly-complicated system of magic that could have been figured out in a better way in future books with no issues/problems in the first book.)
Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline (I can’t believe how much of a jerk Wade is in this book. The women in this book are a HUGE plotpoint, but they are treated SO poorly and I feel like the reader is the one who really misses out.)
Fortune and Glory by Janet Evanovich (besides a disappointing author interview, the book fell flat. I felt like the author has some really promising other projects, but didn’t devote the time that she did in the past to this character and storyline.)

Notable:
I read romance this year. Which is hilarious if you know me because I’m not into fantasy or romance. That made me happy.
I talked about books more with people (yay!).

What about you, how did 2020 end up for you in books?

Author: gothamgal

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