Sunday, January 08, 2023

A Year in Reading: 2022 Edition


Shame on me. Just as you think you're finished with all the end of the year lists, here comes mine. I'm wasting no further time with pleasantries. I'm consulting my spreadsheets, going to ChartGo to make my graphs, and throwing all sorts of reading statistics at you. If you're a glutton for punishment and would like to see previous years' statistics, feel free.

Let's get this show on the road!

Best Reads of 2022

Yesterday, I posted about my fifteen Best Reads of 2022, complete with links to each review. Today, I'll just show them to you again and make myself pick my favorites at the end.

Someone always tries to make me choose Just One. I refuse. If I am forced to break this list down any further, here's how I would do it: Best Non-Fiction: The Woman They Could Not Silence; Best Mystery: Murder on the Red River; and Best Fiction: Remarkably Bright Creatures.

2022 Book Travels

Setting is important to me as I read. I love to learn about other parts of the world, especially those which I will never visit. I keep track of the setting of each book that I read on an online map service. If you go to Book Travels by City 2022, you can follow my travels around the globe. You can enlarge the map, move it all around, click on the red markers to see the books I read that were set in that location.... It's something fun for me to do, and it can help me focus my reading.
If you don't feel like heading over there, I'll do a few breakdowns for you.
Most Visited Countries in 2022
1. England
2. Australia
3. France
4. Scotland
Australia supplanted Italy from the previous year. 

Most Visited States in 2022

1. California
2. Ohio
3. North Dakota
4. New York
5. Minnesota
6. Florida

Thanks to Marcie Rendon's Cash Blackbear and Linda Castillo's Kate Burkholder, I spent a lot of time in North Dakota, Minnesota, and Ohio. I really need to get back to reading books set in Arizona and New Mexico.

Most Visited Cities in 2022

1. London
2.Los Angeles
3.Washington, D.C.
4. New York City
5. Boston
6. Chicago

Not much change here either with the exception of Paris being replaced by Washington, D.C. I'd love to see a completely new city somewhere in the world break into this list for 2023!

Online Graphing  
It saddens me to see the numbers of books read shrinking, but at least I think I had some valid reasons why they did in 2022. Just too much to occupy my mind and not enough space to cram it all in. And some little voice is telling me that those halcyon days of 200+ books per year are gone with the wind.

I already knew how convenient eBook readers were, and it doesn't take much effort at all to make sure one doesn't run out of charge, for cryin' out loud, but once I started experiencing eye problems, my affection for my Kindle grew. It's also how I get 98% of my Advance Reading Copies. For any purists who snootily proclaim that they will never ever deign to touch an eBook, I have only this to say: You'd better pray that you never have serious eye problems!

This is my first year sharing my audiobook stats because 2021 was the first year I finally figured out how to read one without falling asleep 45 seconds after the book started. I can see them playing a larger part in my reading if I can figure out how to make them a natural part of my daily routine. As it is, Denis seems to know exactly when I've started listening to one, and that's when he needs to tell me something important. (Am I hearing murmurs of agreement?)

This graph proves that I am a literary magpie who's constantly seduced by the new and shiny. I keep telling myself I'm going to do something about this, but

Oh, look at that bright, shiny cover! Have I read that one?

This graph used to show towering stacks of books read in May, June, July, August, and September when I would sit in the pool and read the afternoons away. I'm determined to get back in that pool!

Nothing much changed here from the previous year with the exception of short stories. With my attention span under attack, sometimes a short story was the only thing I could enjoy, so the number of them being consumed surged.

This graph is consistent from year to year, too. I tend to be a good judge of choosing books I will enjoy, and I hope that never changes!

I have friends who primarily read either male or female authors, but I've always tended to read widely among both. Does it have anything to do with me spending most of my free time as a child in jeans and climbing trees so I could read my books in peace? Who knows? 

I always want a healthy percentage of "new blood" in this graph, perhaps because I'm a literary magpie, but I love discovering new writers. In 2022, I found several by reading Akashic short story anthologies.

This has remained consistent over the years, too. I did manage to do a little work on reducing the number of Advance Reading Copies that I obtained last year, and I want to continue to do so this year. I also need to work on those physical books sitting on my To Be Read shelves because most of those are from Paperback Swap!

This is another area that has remained consistent over the years. I love series books. Me? Only child. Only grandchild. Cousins were few and far between. I think I grabbed hold of series books at a very young age to bulk up the size of my family, and it's true that I consider the characters in my favorite series (Vera Stanhope, Ruth Galloway, Anna Pigeon, Gemma Doyle, Duncan Kincaid, Gemma James, Alafair Tucker, Lena Jones, Walt Longmire...) to be a sort of fictional family to this day. (It's not as pathetic as it sounds!)

You've reached the end of another graph-pocalypse. Sit back, pick up your book, take a sip of your favorite beverage, and do a little work on your own reading statistics of 2023. That's what I'm going to do!


  1. Wow, Cathy! You're so thorough! You keep really good track of what you've been reading - I'm really impressed. I think that sort of meta post can really help a reader reflect, and choose wisely. I give you so much credit for doing this sort of analysis.

  2. Love how you broke down your year of reading into so many categories. And graphs? Very impressive! What kind of e-reader do you have?

    1. A Kindle Paperwhite that Amazon probably thinks I should upgrade. ;-)

  3. That is quite a definitive and impressive breakdown of your reading year. I don't really do lists but I see several of my favorites from the year among your list.

    1. Yes, I think we've done a fairly good job of adding to each other's reading lists.

  4. Love seeing the charts and maps! And Minnesota! ☺ I think I need to pick up one of Rendon's books! Here's to lots of pool floating this year!

  5. Here's hoping you do make it back into that pool this year!

  6. Great charts, love to see them. This reminds me of how much I miss Anna Pigeon. On to good health and excellent books and reading in the pool.

  7. What fun, Cathy! So many interesting details. I've tried to break down my reading data like this in the past but I lose the plot halfway because I start overthinking which genre category a book belongs in. So my data collection tends to start and end with looking at all the pretty cover images collected on my Goodreads 'Your Year in Books' page. Definitely magpie behaviour!

    However, I was intrigued by your map of book settings so I've started one to track my reading adventures this year; so far, my books have taken me to Kent, UK; California and Papua New Guinea.

    Regarding getting a new city on that list...Edinburgh? Though I'm sure you've read your way through Ian Rankin's 'Inspector Rebus' series. How about another European city like Prague or Berlin? Or even Tokyo or Seoul? I guess if you keep reading organically and don't force it, the magic will happen by itself. Here's to another wonderful year of reading!

    1. Yes, I can sit and look at my Goodreads book cover collection, too. We're definitely magpies.

      The trick is finding several books set in the same city (that I want to read all in the same year). That's much easier done with cities like London, New York, and Los Angeles than it is for many other places, at least for me. Sometimes I think Mumbai might make the cut. We shall see because I don't like forcing the issue.

  8. I love graph-pocalypse! I can totally relate to being a magpie when it comes to books. This is why I have such a hard time reading the books on my shelves. I would rather pick up something shiny from the library shelves. I also have been a series reader since a child. It is really interesting to look back at what you read as a child and see how it is similar to what you read as an adult. I used to keep a small printed map and color in the states and countries when I read a book there. I enjoyed, but haven't moved it into the digital age. Hoping you are able to get back to floating in the pool soon!

  9. Lots of books set in Glasgow and Edinburgh. I love Glasgow, all of its idiosyncracies, zany signs in front of pubs, even naked people bike riding through the main street on a particular date. And the Garnet Hill which Denise Mina set her first trilogy in. There is a video tour on You Tube of her touring the hill area, and discussion of the first women's bookstore there.


Thank you for taking the time to make a comment. I really appreciate it!