It's time once again for my 2014 Reading Year in Review! All new and improved! Now with cat gifs! I know you're super excited, but try to contain yourself.
Oh, internet, you are a weird and wonderful place. Now, if you can tear yourself away from Shaq dancing with a kitty, let's get started.
Here is the breakdown. This is one of my favorite parts of this exercise because who doesn't love a good breakdown of data on a subject your love?
Total books read: 107! This is actually 29 fewer books than I read in 2013, but I'm ok with that. I think I pushed myself too far last year and got a little stressed. 107 is a much more relaxing number.
Middle School Books: 77 It shouldn't be a surprise that the vast majority of the books I read are for middle school. That includes anything we have in our library here at Campbell. I enjoy middle school and YA books, and I especially like being able to recommend them to you. :)
High School Books: 11 Most of the "high school" books I read are recommended by high school librarians or have a lot of buzz. There have been a few great ones this year including Rose Under Fire which had me curled in the fetal position and weeping. Books=emotional catharsis. I also read Dreams of Gods and Monsters to finish out Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy. Middle school readers, you can enjoy those later. Everyone else, what are you waiting for?!
Books written for Adults: 19 I am pleased with this relatively high number. It was one of my goals this year to read more books about grown ups like Where'd You Go Bernadette? by Maria Semple. I highly recommend this one to the adult readers of this blog!
Historical Fiction: 13
Realistic Fiction: 16
Science Fiction: 27
Sports: 5 (What the heck! This is a shockingly high number!)
Nonfiction/Science: 0 (What happened here!?)
I tried not to count anything twice, but I might have. I enjoy the analysis, but I'm not too crazy strict in the process. I like looking at the genre distribution because it helps me to be more conscious of my book selections. For example, I usually read my more nonfiction and not nearly so many sports books.
Here are the books broken down by rating with an explanation of what I mean when I give a book that rating.
Five Stars: 16 (Awesome! Perfection!)
Four Stars: 51 (Really Good! Almost Perfect!)
Three Stars: 38 (Good, but not not special)
Two Stars: 5 (Eh, tolerable)
The good news for 2014 is I didn't have any one star or abandoned books. That means it was a pretty good reading year! Plus, 77 of my 107 books were excellent reads!
I want to give credit to Goodreads for helping track my reading every year. I love this site because it connects me with friends, tracks my books, and has better tools every years for helping with my yearly analysis. If you click on the widget on the right side of your screen, you will be redirected to my shelf. I accept friend requests from pretty much everyone including students on Goodreads because I only use it for cataloging and discussing books. :)
And now, the moment you've all been waiting for, my top ten books of 2014! Woohoo! So excited!
Just to clarify, these are all books from the Campbell Middle School library. While the rest of this post includes all the books I read in 2014, the following concerns the 77 middle school books on the list.
Here they are in no particular order:
On the last day of school, her English teacher passes out empty notebooks and encourages the students to write over the summer. Most of the kids throw them away, but Sarah begins writing letters to Atticus Finch as she tries to figure our who she is and how she fits into the word.
I love this book!
Then her beautiful home is destroyed by an earthquake while she is away from her family. Stranded and alone, Serafina must find a way to survive and help those struggling around her. Will she be able to keep the promise she made to herself to go to school?
This is a beautiful story of tragedy and hope.
Felicity has her own kind of magic. She's a word collector. Everywhere she looks, she sees words and emotions. She also believes there is still magic to be found in Midnight Gulch if she can find a way to break the curse.
This is a charming and beautiful book about friendship, family, and love.
Josh Bell, AKA Filthy McNasty, is a basketball phenom, and when he and his twin brother JB are on the court together, they are unstoppable, but their perfect little world is about to be shattered. Things get tense when a girl comes between the two brothers, and it may take a terrible tragedy to bring them back together.
This is a joyful verse novel about life, love, and basketball.
I absolutely love this book and the masterful way the author weaves folktales into the narrative. Sometimes it is difficult to tell what is real and what is imagined.
Wow! What a fast-paced, action-packed thriller! This is a great series opener, and I can't wait to find out what happens next.
After their house burns down, Nick and his family move into a dilapidated Victorian home full of junk which turns out to be the former home of genius, Nikola Tesla. And all the junk turns out to be Tesla inventions that are more powerful than they appear. Don't forget the dangerous secret society that shows up to cause trouble.
This book has great action and adventure, but it is the relationships between the characters that make it great.
This leaves Ophelia to wander the museum alone until the day she finds a strange boy locked in a room. He says he's been there for hundreds of years, and his clothes are certainly old fashioned, but Ophelia's logical mind won't accept it. Despite this, she listens to his story and quickly becomes drawn into his world. To save the boy and herself, Ophelia will have to face terrible creatures as well as her own fear and grief.
This is a beautiful story about love and courage.
I know that was ten, but in keeping with tradition, I'm listing the nonfiction separately below.
Plus there is plenty of action while Greitens outlines his SEAL training.
And last but not least, I always like to do a short section on the series books I am still reading. With so many books in my "to read" pile, a series has to be pretty good for me to continue reading it.
Well, I guess that does it for 2014. Stay tuned for more reviews and book news because