The semi-obligatory “I Still Read Books” post

I started keeping a spreadsheet of books I’d read three or four years ago (OK: January 6, 2011–make that “five years ago”)  because I was starting to use the excellent local public library a lot more and, being old, didn’t want to accidentally pick up the same book twice.

As a side-effect, the spreadsheet lets me know how many books I’ve actually read each year.

My target is 39. To wit: The library’s check-out period is four weeks; I always take out three books (one “general” fiction, one nonfiction, one alternating between mystery and fantasy/science fiction). So: 13 four-week periods times three books.

This year, as last year, I managed to pass the target by a comfortable margin: 62(!) books read, assuming I don’t finish the current book before January 1. Or, rather, looking at the spreadsheet more carefully, I started 62 books and finished 59. Three (The Book of Lost Books, The Bite in the Apple, and William Safire’s Take My Word for It) I abandoned partway through.

So: Here are the books I thoroughly enjoyed, giving them full honors:

Thief of Time Terry Pratchett
Pale Kings and Princes Robert B. Parker
Night Watch Terry Pratchett
Monstrous Regiment Terry Pratchett
The Lake, The River & The Other Lake Steve Amick
This Case Is Gonna Kill Me Phillipa Bornikova
Hugger Mugger Robert B. Parker
The Pleasure of My Company Steve Martin
An Object of Beauty Steve Martin
Potshot Robert Parker
The Professional Robert B. Parker
Rough Weather Robert B. Parker
1634: The Ram Rebellion Eric Flint
Night Passage Robert B. Parker
Paper Doll Robert B. Parker
A Blink of the Screen Terry Pratchett
The Bromeliad Trilogy Terry Pratchett

and a few others that I enjoyed, but didn’t rate quite as high (A- rather than the A for those above)

Waiter Rant The Waiter
The Truth Terry Pratchett
Turtle Recall: the Discworld Companion Terry Pratchett & S. Briggs
Crimson Joy Robert Parker
Box Office Poison Phillipa Bornikova
1632 Eric Flint
1633 Eric Flint & David Weber
1634: The Bavarian Crisis Eric Flint & Virginia DeMarce
Now & Then Robert B. Parker
1634: The Baltic War Eric Flint & David Weber
Ring of Fire Eric Flint
Big Trouble Dave Barry
1635: The Eastern Front Eric Flint
True History of the Kelly Gang Peter Carey
Widow’s Walk Robert B. Parker

For those of you saying “Crawford’s got no Serious Literary Taste, he’s in there reading them Robert B. Parker and Terry Pratchett and Eric Flint genre pieces of crap,” I can only say phbttb. I’ve been a sucker for Pratchett since I first encountered Discworld (on a cruise ship, as it happens), and I’m pretty sure I’ve read all the adult Discworld novels and a couple of the nonfiction works (I’ll seek out the rest of the juveniles, and while I’m too damn old to start rereading stuff, it’s hard to let go of the Discworld folks). I’ve always been a fan of Robert B. Parker’s books, except for the fact that they’re so fluid and fast-moving that I finish one in at most three brief evening reading sessions. I’ve been captured by the 1632 alternate history told from the ground up, and that’s the way it is. I’m sure there are a few “serious” books in there. Somewhere.


3 Responses to “The semi-obligatory “I Still Read Books” post”

  1. Maybe worth moving to GoodReads or similar? Less data entry. Some suggestions on what else you might like?

  2. Walt Crawford says:

    I have a Goodreads account, but don’t use it much. There’s almost no data entry–and since I don’t have a smartphone, such an account wouldn’t provide me with the handy printed list of what I’ve already read, so I don’t pick up something twice. (Maybe there’s a way to create such a list, but at this point that would be a *lot* of extra data entry!)

  3. Angel says:

    “For those of you saying ‘Crawford’s got no Serious Literary Taste, he’s in there reading them Robert B. Parker and Terry Pratchett and Eric Flint genre pieces of crap,’ I can only say phbttb.”

    That is right. Read on friend. If what you read is not “serious literary taste,” they should see some of the stuff I read. For instance, though I did not get any in this year, I do like Hercule Poirot novels; that is influence from my mother who used to read Agatha Christie (in Spanish translation, in the old Oveja Negra paperbacks, which are now considered rare by some collectors, who knew? I remember going to the bookstore as a child with dad to go find her one of the titles, making sure it was not one she had already, but that is another story).

    BTW, I will have my end of year reading report out soon. Anyhow, read away.

    Hope you have a great new 2016. Best, and keep on blogging.