Wednesday, December 31, 2008

My "Best of..." Post

There are a lot of "Best of 2008" posts turning up around the blogsphere at the moment (hardly suprising since today is the last day of 2008), so I thought it might be interesting to play along.

I rated 15 books as 10/10 this year. Looking back at them, they seem to fall naturally into four categories.
  1. Old (and one new) favourites that prove still to be great reads.
    • The Blue Sword - Robin McKinley
    • The Changeling Sea - Patricia A. McKillip
    • Emergence - David R. Palmer
    • A Company of Swans - Eva Ibbotson
    • The Secret Countess (aka A Countess Below Stairs) - Eva Ibbotson
    • Alpha and Omega (in On the Prowl anthology) - Patricia Briggs

  2. Trusted favourite authors that deliver yet again
  3. New Discoveries
    • Grimspace - Ann Aguirre
    • Rhapsody: Child of Blood - Elizabeth Haydon
    • The Uncommon Reader - Alan Bennett

  4. Well, I loved it at the time (but I might debate the quality with you now)
For all that there are fifteen books here, looking over the list I'm inclined to think that 2008 wasn't the most stellar of years in my reading. After all, the largest category is rereads of old favourites, while the second is from authors I already know I like. As for that last category, I could also have called it "Guilty Pleasures", so they kind of fall into that second list of tried and true authors.

Only three new books/authors that really blew me away this year. That's kind of sad. That, or an indication that I haven't been very adventurous in my reading this year. Hmmm, yes, probably the latter. Health wise, it is still hard work for me to read (or at least, harder than it was before I got sick), so I'm less inclined to take risks on things that might be brilliant but may also be hard to read.

I did really enjoy Rhapsody and do want to continue with the series, but each time I looked at the second one, the size (700 pages) would put me off and I'd pick something else instead. Similarly, for all that it fell into my favourite authors category, it took me six months to get up the courage to read The Ruby Dice because I knew parts of it were going to be unpleasant to read (when you're an empath surrounded by human barracudas who want to soak up your pain, some of it's got to be nasty). And there are other books that I think look interesting, but I chicken out on, usally because of one or other of those two factors - large size or possible nastiness in the book. I'm not sure if I have always been an reading wimp, but I readily admit that I am one now.

I think perhaps I need to set two personal goals for my 2009 reading. First, to conquer my reading fear, and secondly, to keep up with posting book comments here. After all, it's always great fun to share one's reading (whether anyone else reads what I write or not). How I go with either remains to be seen, but it's always good to have goals!

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