I’ve been sharing my Favorite Books in this space since 2010. Back then, I had no idea how much my reading life would change because of this space. In 2010, I read 22 books. That’s a lot of books for some people and was a lot of books for me at that time with 3 kids under 10. But, look at my reading now!
My stats for 2022 show that I read 200 total books including 120 children’s books and 80 middle-grade to adult books. That’s a lot of reading and I’ve shared every single book somewhere on this blog. I think that is also pretty incredible.
The biggest changes that have affected my reading life are:
- adding children’s books to my regular book reviews
- listening to audiobooks nearly every single day
- honing in on what I genuinely like reading and what I don’t
- being willing to give up on a book if it isn’t working for me
- saying no to book requests that really aren’t for me
Of the 80 books I read this year, 67 had 4 or 5 stars with 26 of them getting a 5-star review. That stat blew me away because I am finally into my reading niche. I know what I like and what I don’t like. There are too many books waiting to be read and I’m going to spend my time reading the books I want to read. I also only gave 1 book 2 stars and that was one I really thought I would like but after listening to it was really disappointed in the direction it went. This is one of the reasons that narrowing down my list of Favorite Books to just 10 was so hard because I read so many really great books this year.
I’ve also realized that it’s ok to step out of my usual genres and try something different. I actually read several romance/chic-lit novels this year and enjoyed all of them. I’m still pretty picky in that genre, but the ones I read I really liked…think Emily Henry and Abby Jiminez novels.
The Libby app through my library has been a game changer for my reading life. Of the 80 books I read, 36 of them were on audio. These are books I probably never would have read if I couldn’t listen to them because of the ability to do other things while I listening like getting ready in the morning, driving, puzzling, walking, or doing household tasks. Libby allows me to listen for FREE and even though not every book is available, I still have over 200 in my tagged list on Libby to move to my holds list. That’s a lot of audiobooks I have on my list.
Because I’m nerdy, I like all the stats including the 120 children’s books and 80 adult books I read…
27 Books were read off of my own to be read shelves with 24 being removed from the house and sent off to new readers or donated to my library.
127 Fiction and 73 Non-Fiction books were read including 15 historical fiction and 6 memoirs. These two are my favorite genres so I was surprised that the numbers were so low.
148 physical books, 16 eBooks, and 36 audiobooks. The majority of the physical books were children’s picture books.
183 of the books I read were published from 2020-2022.
162 books were written by female authors, 38 by males, and 29 books were written by diverse authors.
Because of the large number of children’s books, 150 of the books I read were for review purposes (including all 120 children’s books). But, I did read 50 books for my own enjoyment.
I really love keeping these stats and comparing them to previous years. This is where I can find my biggest changes and learn more about what clicks and what doesn’t with my reading life. What do I plan for this year?
I like the goal of 80 books for my own reading (not counting the children’s books). It was definitely manageable for me. I know this year ahead will look a little different and my reading will be limited this spring as we prepare for our daughter to graduate. But, next fall my schedule will be wide open as we will no longer have any kids at home or activities to cheer them on. So, that could ramp up my reading life and make up for less time in the spring. Who knows?
I just hope to keep reading what I want to read and sharing all the great books with you.
Now…on to my Favorite Books of 2022
These ten books are ones I couldn’t stop talking about, recommending to others, or thinking about. Each one has left an impression on me and I love every single one. This list includes 8 fiction, 1 middle-grade fiction, and 1 non-fiction. There are coming-of-age stories, women’s friendship stories, and a few historical fiction novels that absolutely wowed me. I even have two books from the same author on this list. Only four of these books were ones that came my way for review purposes. But, I love when a favorite book is one that wasn’t even on my radar until it ended up in my mailbox. I hope you find something to add to your own reading list.
Links in the titles will take you to my review post
- The People We Keep by Allison Larkin – a coming-of-age story of a girl who comes from nothing and just wants to be loved.
- Love and Saffron by Kim Fay – a friendship told through letters
- Carrie Soto is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid – a fierce story of following your dreams
- The Unsinkable Greta James by Jennifer E. Smith – a famous musician reconnects with her father and finds herself on the journey.
- The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes – a historical fiction about packhorse librarians and their fight for the freedom to read
- The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles – historical fiction and a coming-of-age story
- When We Had Wings by Ariel Lawhon, Kristina McMorris, and Susan Meissner – historical fiction during WWII in the Philippines
- Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid – a family drama full of page-turning chaos
- A Place to Hang the Moon by Kate Albus – middle-grade WWII fiction
- All the Living and the Dead by Hayley Campbell – An in-depth and honest look at those who work in the death industry.
I could have added so many other great books to this list, but I wanted to keep the list to just 10 books. There were still 16 other 5-star books that I absolutely loved this year.
I hope you take a minute to reflect on your year of reading and narrow down what kind of books make you happy. I hope you spend some time reading in 2023 whether you read 1 book or 100, I just want you to read!
Thanks for joining along in my book journey throughout the years. Be sure to leave a comment here or on my social media channels and tell me what books were YOUR favorites last year!
Posted Under Allison Larkin, Amor Towles, Ariel Lawhon, Book Review, coming of age, Favorite Books, fiction, Friendship, Hayley Campbell, historical fiction, Jennifer E. Smith, Jojo Moyes, Kate Albus, Kim Fay, Kristina McMorris, middle-grade, non-fiction, reading, reading challenge, Susan Meissner, Taylor Jenkins Reid, WWII
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