read_warbler (read_warbler) wrote,

Books read in 2014

Time now to think about the sort of reading year I had in 2014. In some ways, it has to be said, it was a hugely successful year for me. For the first time ever - at least since I've been keeping a record - I've managed to read 100 books in one year. I'm quite a slow reader so, to be honest, I never previously thought it was possible for me to do this. The point at which I realised it might be possible was in June when I saw that I'd read 57 books already and that if I carried on that way I would wind up with a total of 100 or more. I started to run out of steam in September. It was inevitable really, 10 books a month is hard to keep up. And the last couple of weeks with Christmas and so on it's been really hard to concentrate on reading. 'But' I got there.

So what now? Well, nothing. I have absolutely no intention of ever trying to do it again. Why? Because it's a pretty pointless exercise really. I read because I love reading and books. Not to clock up numbers. It's a bit like the differance between Twitchers and Bird-watchers. The former have lists and collect birds to fill their lists. The latter just go out and watch any bird because they love them and that's the way I feel. Next year I will read less. Not necessarily less words and pages but probably less books. It seems like a peculiar thing for a book lover to say, but it is so. But that speculation is for another post. In the meantime these are the books I read in 2014:


1. Spilling the Beans – Clarissa Dickson Wright
2. The Long Winter – Laura Ingalls Wilder
3. Space Plague – Zac Harrison
4. Consider Phelbas – Iain M. Banks
5. The Yellow Dog – Georges Simenon
6. Darke – Angie Sage
7. Strictly Ann – Ann Widecombe
8. Shards of Honour – Lois McMaster Bojold
9. Tentacles – Roland Smith
10. The Talisman Ring – Georgette Heyer


11. Have His Carcase – Dorothy L. Sayers
12. Lock 14 – Georges Simenon
13. Letters from the Horn of Africa – Sandy Curle, ed. By Christian Curle
14. The Mad Hatter Mystery – John Dickson Carr
15. Sundiver – David Brin
16. A Voyage Long and Strange – Tony Horwitz
17. Good Evening Mrs. Craven – Mollie Panter-Downes
18. Maigret in Holland – Georges Simenon
19. A Moment of Silence – Anna Dean
20. A Greedy Man in a Hungry World – Jay Rayner


21. The Nine Tailors – Dorothy L. Sayers
22. Touch Not the Cat – Mary Stewart
23. Sisters of Sinai – Janet Soskice
24. West with the Night – Beryl Markham
25. Fer-de-Lance – Rex Stout
26. The Middle-Aged Mountaineer – Jim Curran
27. A Gentleman of Fortune – Anna Dean
28. A Woman of Consequence – Anna Dean
29. Among Others – Jo Walton
30. Madame Maigret’s Own Case – Georges Simenon


31. Thirtheenth Child – Patricia Wrede
32. Huntingtower – John Buchan
33. The Red House Mystery – A.A. Milne
34. The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman
35. Lost Things – Jo Graham and Melissa Scott
36. What Makes this Book so Great – Jo Walton


37. Cuckoo’s Egg – C.J. Cherryh
38. The Man in the Queue – Josephine Tey
39. A Fete Worse than Death – Delores Gordon-Smith
40. Death by Silver – Melissa Scott & Amy Griswold
41. The Outcast Dead – Elly Griffiths
42. The Last Continent – Terry Pratchett
43. Detective Stories from the Strand – ed. Jack Adrian
44. The River of Adventure – Enid Blyton
45. Demon in the House – Angela Thirkell


46. Alanna: The First Adventure – Tamora Pierce
47. The Moving Toyshop – Edmund Crispin
48. Death in the Clouds – Agatha Christie
49. The Fair Miss Fortune – D.E. Stevenson
50. More than Love Letters – Rosy Thornton
51. The Turkish Embassy Letters – Lady Mary Wortley Montagu
52. Buried for Pleasure – Edmund Crispin
53. The Sixth Lamentation – William Brodrick
54. The Burning Soul – John Connolly
55. Out of the Deep I Cry – Julia Spencer-Fleming
56. Up with the Larks – Tessa Hainsworth
57. Holy Disorders – Edmund Crispin


58. Sovereign – C.J. Sansom
59. Charlotte Fairlie – D.E. Stevenson
60. The Rendezvous and other stories – Daphne du Maurier
61. The Library Book – Ed. Rebecca Gray
62. Sanctus – Simon Toyne
63. The Overloaded Ark – Gerald Durrell
64. Helliconia Summer – Brian W. Aldiss
65. Lorraine Kelly’s Scotland – Lorraine Kelly
66. The Dead in their Vaulted Arches – Alan Bradley
67. A Shilling for Candles – Josephine Tey
68. For the Time Being – Dirk Bogarde


69. Tea Time for the Traditionally Built – Alexander McCall Smith
70. Wild Strawberries – Angela Thirkell
71. Fangirl – Rainbow Rowell
72. Anthem for Doomed Youth – Carola Dunn
73. Letters from Skye – Jessica Brockmole
74. Elizabeth and her German Garden – Elizabeth von Arnim
75. Watson’s Choice – Gladys Mitchell
76. They Came to Baghdad – Agatha Christie
77. Fortunately, the Milk – Neil Gaiman
78. Come, Tell Me How You Live – Agatha Christie Malloran


79. Hag’s Nook – John Dickson Carr
80. Silver Borne – Patricia Briggs
81. The Twenty-third Man – Gladys Mitchell
82. Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls – David Sedaris
83. A Coven of Vampires – Brian Lumley
84. Night of the Living Deed – E.J. Cpperman


85. Love Lies Bleeding – Edmund Crispin
86. The Unburied – Charles Palliser
87. A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush – Eric Newby
88. Clouds of Witness – Dorothy L. Sayers
89. The Sittaford Mystery – Agatha Christie


90. The Hills is Lonely – Lillian Beckwith
91. Laurels are Poison – Gladys Mitchell
92. Surgically Enhanced – Pam Ayres
93. Murder on the Links – Agatha Christie
94. Point of Hopes – Melissa Scott and Lisa Barnett


95. Point of Knives – Melissa Scott and Lisa Barnett
96. Recipe for Love – Katie Fforde
97. Once Upon a Christmas – Sarah Morgan
98. A Christmas Hope – Anne Perry
99. Gone West – Carola Dunn
100. A Christmas Grace – Anne Perry

Basically, for me, 2014 was the year of the vintage mystery. I had a 'lot' of fun with Bev's Vintage Mystery Bingo challenge, (reading 25 books for it in all) and while I'll not be doing it in 2015 I will certainly return to it another year. I discovered authors I'd never even heard of and the experience definitely enriched my reading for 2014.

I didn't do brilliantly with non-fiction - 21 this year - but then I never seem to. I fancy I did slightly better in 2013 but not much. On the other hand, the 21 I did read were all pretty good.

In no particular order, here're my top 5 non-fiction:

1. A Voyage Long and Strange - Tony Horwitz
2. Sisters of Sinai - Janet Soskice
3. What Makes this Book so Great - Jo Walton
4. Come, Tell me How You Live - Agatha Christie Malloran
5. The Hills is Lonely - Lillian Beckwith

I'll do a top 12 for fiction.

1. The Long Winter - Laura Ingalls Wilder
2. Have His Carcase - Dorothy L. Sayers
3. Among Others - Jo Walton
4. The Outcast Dead - Elly Griffiths
5. Charlotte Fairlie - D.E. Stevenson
6. Nine Tailors - Dorothy L. Sayers.
7. Helliconia Summer - Brian W. Aldiss
8. Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell
9. Letters From Skye - Jessica Brockmole
10. Point of Hopes - Melissa Scott and Lisa Barnett
11. Out of the Deep I Cry - Julia Spencer-Fleming
12. The Sittaford Mystery - Agatha Christie

I'm not going to choose favourites. This is partly because there was no stand-out fabulous book this year. And secondly, I liked all of these books for different reasons.

And just to whet my own appetite for next year's reading, here's a shelf of books I hope to get through next year:

bookshelf 012x2

If I get to the end of the year and have read most of these and nothing else, I shall still be a happy bunny.

Happy New Year and Happy Reading in 2015 to all those who pop in and read my ramblings whether you comment or not.
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