Hello, it’s been a while, and you likely don’t remember me. I was your resident queer book blogger up until uni consumed all of my time. It’s the last week of winter break, and I’ve been feeling this itch to come back, to talk to people about books!
My stats differ across various platforms, maybe because of DNFs, maybe because I’ve read fanfics that aren’t listed, maybe because I mismarked the date read on GR. According to my notebook, I’ve read 51 books, GR thinks I’ve read 54, and Storygraph thinks I’ve read 34 books… I’m going to go with an official count of 51.75, since I don’t count DNFs in my notes, while also counting fanfics. The .75 comes from reading the bulk of The Secret History throughout the semester, but ultimately finished it on New Year’s Day. That averages to a book a week, which I’m pretty happy with considering my uni workload.
All in all, I much prefer shorter books (obviously) because they’re less likely to drag on, and since I can finish them in a shorter amount of time, I’m less likely to forget what happens in between sit-downs. My fave short books included No Exit by Sartre, The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy, Maurice by EM Forster and Some Things I Still Can’t Tell You by the wonderful and beautiful Misha Collins. And I’m surprised this this is listed as a “short” book, but my absolute favourite of the Year was Never Let Me Go at a staggering 388 pages. So it really should be on the medium shelf…
The “longer” books I liked were The Anthropocene Reviewed, Boyfriends (A queer polyam webcomic) and Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo.
Two major stats that Storygraph neglects are the gender and race/ethnicity of the authors. While I recognize that getting that info would be tricky unless the authors self-ID, it doesn’t address that the majority of “The Canon” is comprised of white allocishet men. Yes, there are loads of queer BIPOC books that are there for those who seek them out, but that can be difficult for the well-intentioned college student stuck with their ill-stocked college library.
Now, I did read majority queer authors as always, but white and BIPOC were evenly split- like it’s half white and half everything else. Five were Black and five were Asian, two were Latinx, plus 11 that were unable to be ID’d, most of which was fanfic. I’s not my best year in terms of racial diversity, and I could blame the uni library, but I’ll likely try to see if they have classics from nonwhite countries or from the more popular BIPOC authors.
Men were also dominant this year, but there were a few trans male authors that would still be classified as a marginalized gender. Still, I cannot easily find books by trans women on the same scale; one of the books I want to read is in french! I don’t know french! (crying emoji) Enbies are at a weak 2 books, pitiful. I hate myself so much that I don’t want to see myself in books ig.
I am NOT strict on my reading goals, as I am heading into senior year and have to pass all classes so I don’t have to pay for an extra semester. So although my ideal reading goal is 52, I set GR to 36, half of that. I am also attempting Storygraph’s Reads The World challenge, which is 10 books set in nonwestern countries. But you can’t just read ANY country, the set countries are Brazil, New Zealand, India, Palestine, Russia, South Korea, Turkey, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe.
I am also attempting to make progress on the Rory Gilmore Reading List. I picked out a couple of books, namely The Devil In The White City, The Art Of Fiction, Eudora Welty, The Kitchen Boy, The Manticore, Monsieur Proust, My Sister’s Keeper, Peyton Place, A Room With A View, Shadow Of The Wind, Tuesdays With Morrie, Punk Planet, and The Year Of Magical Thinking.
I already have The Devil In The White City checked out, but it’s HUGE. It’s also in large print, which wasn’t my intention, but since my perscription is long expired I’ll gladly take it. It’s just. Massive. I’m also looking forward to reading Joan Didion, who I’ve heard lots heard the Good Things about, but somehow in all my 23 years never read. It’s time to change that!
What are your goals for 2022? Have you read any of the books I’ve mentioned?