2019 In Review

Reading by the Window


2019 Reading Stats:


Number Of Books You Read: 25  (more than in the last two years but not nearly enough)


Number of Re-Reads: 12 


Genre You Read The Most From: Classics


Best in Books

Best book you read in 2019: The Divine Comedy.  The House of Mirth is a close second.

Book you were excited about & thought you were going to love more but didn’tThe Professor by Charlotte Brontë.  I had a similar reaction to Villette but fortunately not as strong this time.  Boy, William, the main character, was annoying.  Everyone was under scrutiny, examination and judgement by him.  Again, I could not believe this was the same author who had written the wonderful Jane Eyre, one of my favourite novels!

Most surprising (in a good or bad way) book you read in 2019: In a good way, Elizabeth and her German Garden by Elizabeth von Arnim It was a delightful book and I could relate to Elizabeth completely.  In a bad way, The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford. If you want to read about messed up people having affairs and then making excuses for their behaviour, read this book.  I did not like it one bit.  I could see Ford had talent, but I thought he wasted it.


Book you “pushed” the most people to read (and they did) in 2019: Definitely, The House of Mirth.  Between my blog and Instagram (and Twitter) I think I had about 50 people express interest.  The discussion on the blog was amazing.  I was so grateful to all those who contributed to make the read so special.

Best series you started in 2019? Best Sequel? Best Series Ender:  Well, this was kind of a year for series.  I started a perpetual Agatha Christie read and the one I enjoyed most …. so hard to pick but probably  The Murder of Roger Ackroyd.  I also began to read Josephine Tey’s mysteries.  And an honourable mention goes to The 39 Steps and Midshipman Hornblower, both first books in a series.  It wasn’t planned; it just happened.  I just wish I had the time to continue with them all!

Favorite new author you discovered in 2019:  Well, probably Elizabeth von Arnim, if one book is anything to go off of.  Also, Josephine Tey, who is a wonderful writer!

Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/ out of your comfort zone:
  Midshipman Hornblower.  I haven’t read many books about sailing and war and the sea but this one was quite an enjoyable read.

Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year: The Secret Adversary, but The House of Mirth, although not action-packed, was pretty unputdownable too!

Book you read in 2019 that you are most likley to reread next year:  The Divine Comedy.  I love Ciardi’s translation so much that I keep sticking to it.  I need to read Alan Mandelbaum’s translation next.  He apparently gets the most balance between form and meaning, but Ciardi sounds the most like Dante, even though he takes liberties with the text.

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2019: I don’t have alot to choose from but I kind of liked this one from Phantastes.  It’s very moody.

Phantastes George MacDonald


Most memorable characters of 2019:  Lily Bart from  The House of Mirth absolutely!!  Wharton’s crafting of her character is exemplary!!  She’s probably one of my top favourite characters of all time.

Most beautifully written book read in 2019: 
  The Divine Comedy. I wish I could read Italian as I’m told that Dante is a genius.

Most-thought provoking/ life-changing book of 2019: Ah, this is easy!  Both The Art of Loving and C.S. Lewis’ The Four Loves. I did read-alongs of both and it really helped me (and I hope others) to explore the true meaning of love and the actions that rightly build this emotion.  They were both just awesome!

Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2019 to finally read:  Yikes!  Hard to say but I’ll put Elizabeth and her German Garden only because I’ve had von Arnim on my radar for awhile.

Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2019: Oooo, I love quotes!, Phantastes has a number of excellent quotes in it, as this one: “It is by loving, and not by being loved, that one can come nearest the soul of another; yea, that, where two love, it is the loving of each other, that originates and perfects and assures their blessedness. I knew that love gives to him that loveth, power over over any soul be loved, even if that soul know him not, bringing him inwardly close to that spirit; a power that cannot be but for good; for in proportion as selfishness intrudes, the love ceases, and the power which springs therefrom dies. Yet all love will, one day, meet with its return.”  ~~ George MacDonald

Shortest/longest book you read in 2019: The 39 Steps by John Buchan (100 pgs.) & The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri (895 pgs.) 

Book that shocked you the most: The Good Soldier.  I don’t think I’m a prude but I do have standards.  Aimless meandering without a job or purpose, fooling around with people other than your spouse and making a joke of it, all while deliberately denying the tragedy of your actions, is not something I would want to read about.  But I did.  And I do feel like I wasted my time.  Live and learn, I guess.

OTP of the year: Oh, definitely Ann Beddingfeld and The Man in the Brown Suit!

Favorite non-romantic relationship: Dante and Beatrice from The Divine Comedy (Paradiso).

Favorite book you read in 2019 from an author you’ve read previously:  Ugh, this is difficult because I had so many re-reads.  Probably The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis

Best book you read in 2019 that you read based solely on a recommendation from someone else: The Man in the Queue by Josephine Tey.  A little of a cheat because the book wasn’t recommended but the author was!

Best world-building/most vivid setting you read this year: The Divine Comedy.  No one can compare to Dante!

Book that put a smile on your face/was the most fun to read: Elizabeth and her German Garden by Elizabeth von Arnim.  Delightful!

Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2019: The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton.  Poor Lily!

Hidden gem of the year:  This is a difficult choice.  I had gems but I’d read them before so the second time around, the gem turns into something else.  Again I would have to say Elizabeth and her German Garden for lack of a better choice.

Most unique book you read in 2019: The Art of Loving by Erich Fromm.  He’s a psychoanalyst who looks at love from a practical perspective.  A nice complement to Lewis who, in his The Four Loves, looks at love from an emotional and spiritual perspective.

Book that made you the most mad: The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford.  See above.  I have no more to say about it.

Your Blogging/Bookish Life

New favorite book blog you discovered in 2019:  Good grief!  I’d have to choose three wonderful blogs that I just discovered this year:  The Simply Blog  Karen does wonderful, insightful reviews and what’s even better, she’s curious and experimental. Love her blog!  Silvia Cachia: Silvia not only writes excellent reviews but she also comments on life, and her thoughtful, warm, educational writing never fails to challenge me to examine things or look at them from a different perspective.  Brava!;  and finally Typings: Reese has probably read every book I can name so the information and insights I gain from him are invaluable.  
 Of course, all my top favourite blogs are on my blog roll HERE, as I still can’t figure out how to move them over to this blog.  A task for 2020!

Favorite review that you wrote in 2019:
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton because I think I was able to capture her critique on society, but also the benefits she saw with a societal code and the loss of them when that code became compromised.
Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog: The House of Mirth Chapters 1 – 4.  We had so many wonderful discussions with the read-alongs, including The Four Loves and The Art of Loving.  I chose this one only because it’s showing 45 comments!

Best event that you participated in: Is it bad to choose my own event?  There aren’t as many read-alongs as there used to be, so I’m going to choose my The Four Loves Read-Along which was the first of my three read-alongs for the year.  I must say I loved The House of Mirth as well, but Lewis is always a favourite and it was my first read of this book while the two others books were re-reads.

Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2019:  I’m not sure I have a great answer for this question.  Probably the wonderful conversation and discussion we had during the read-alongs and finding like-minded readers and lovers of the classics!

Most popular post this year on your blog: The most looked at post was my Back to the Classics Challenge 2019 (262 views); my post popular review (of an essay) after that was An Apology for Idlers by Robert Louis Stevenson; and my most popular book review was The Age of Innocence which beat out The Return of the Native by one view!

Post you wished got a little more love:  
None really.

Best bookish discovery:  Well, just the other day I picked up a first edition of My Friend Flicka but my absolute score was The Chronicles of Narnia hardcover first editions that I picked up for $9.  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is missing though which was a bummer.  I think they’re U.S. editions but they still should be worth over $1,000  Would I sell them?  Never!

Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year: Nooooo!! I don’t even want to talk about it.  I got so distracted.  So let’s talk about 2020.  I’m going to sign of for the Deal-Me-In Challenge; a classics challenge if Karen at Books and Chocolate is still continuing with her excellent one; Keely at The Common Reader is going to have a Russian Lit challenge and of course, the 52 Book in 52 Weeks challenge.  That will probably be enough for me.  But if Carol continues her Christian Greats challenge, after a fail this year, I would like to try again.  Hint, hint! 😉

Looking Ahead

One book you didn’t get to in 2019 but will be your number 1 priority in 2020: I have to choose just one?  I need to finish The Last Chronicle of Barset to complete my Chronices of Barset challenge of years ago; I need to finish The Faerie Queene and also The City of God. I can think of tons more but I’m feeling faint, lol!

Book you are most anticipating for 2020 (non-debut): Hmmm … possibly a Russian book such as Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Series ending/a sequel you are most anticipating in 2020: The Last Chronicle of Barset by Anthony Trollope.  Now you’re probably seeing quadruple, as I’ve mentioned this is previous years …. more than once … *** blush ***

One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging life in 2020:  I need to become more focused.  My total books for 2019 is 25 and many of those are light books.  One year I read over 80 books and 52 didn’t used to be a problem.  However, I have been doing read-alongs which are tons of work and take away from my reading time.  On the other hand, I get so much out of them and love reading and discussing with others.  What to do?  I guess just put one book in front of the other!

Wishing everyone happy reading days and lots of them in 2020!!

A Bend in the River Oise

A Bend in the River Oise (1872) Charles-Francois Daubigny
~ source Wikiart

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2019 Book Survey

46 thoughts on “2019 In Review

  1. Awesome post.

    I have also become a Josephine Tey fan & I will be reading one of her non-Alan Grant books – Miss Pym Disposes – in January. I bought a used paperback copy from Abebooks for $3.95 and have it on my book cart, all ready to go!

    Have you read Brat Farrar or The Franchise Affair? Both are just wonderful reads!

    • I’ve seen Miss Pym Disposes in a few places. I didn’t know that she had a book that WASN’T Alan Grant. Good to know. I haven’t read those two books yet, because I’m proceeding in order but next up is The Franchise Affair unless I want to go in published order and then it’s Miss Pym. But I think I’ll read the Inspector Grant novels first.

  2. i think you do excellently considering all the things on your plate: challenges, reading, construction and probably a bunch more… look forward to your posts in 2020 very much…

    • I do quite extended and intricate posts, so you’re probably right however I’m a little all over the place sometimes. Thanks for the compliment, Mudpuddle! 🙏

  3. Oooh, I forgot we’d read The Professor! And The Divine Comedy (technically I read it late last December, not this year).

    I certainly want to read Phantastes or something else by MacDonald at some point. He sounds like an author I’ll like.

    This was really fun to read, and inspiring! Leading read-alongs is no easy task, for sure. I’m still debating whether to host one next year. 😛

    Happy New Year!

    • I kind of want to forget about The Professor; I didn’t even do a review.

      MacDonald’s writing is quite unique and might take a bit to get used to. My absolute favourite of his (so far) is At The Back of the North Wind. It’s lovely and I highly recommend it. Otherwise The Princess and the Goblin is great. Phantastes and Lilith go off into uncharted territory, lol!

      Ooo, I can’t wait to hear about the possible read-along that you’re planning (hopefully in the second half of the year so I can participate!)

      Happy New Year to you, too!

  4. Cleo, what wonderful words you wrote for me and for my friend Karen.

    You are such a deep thinker, scholar extraordinair. I can’t tell you to do less read alongs to increase your writing. I just want you to find that balance, and to convey how admired your read alongs are, and how beneficial they have been to me.

    I have The Man in the Queue. It’s just being bumped to the top of my TBR list.

    Also, you want me to read The House of Mirth, which I thought was a slow book.

    I remember well the horrible experience of that Soldier book. I’m very aware not to read it.

    Your love books read alongs were fabulous. I know you put a lot into them. We’re privileged to have you do them. I will understand if you reduce them in lieu of your serious and challenging books.

    I’m considering The Divine Comedy as well. I have a great translation in Spanish, a nice edition with notes etc.

    I cheated a bit and started to read The Iliad. I thought about deserting, but I clicked a bit, remembered what is going on, and I am determined to follow your lead and make more sense of this great book.

    It’s not traditional prose, believe me, it reads wonderful, with a lot of thus spoke, followed by the speech. It rings epic and poetic, with adjective before noun, for example, which is not the normal order in Spanish but the poetry order. The sentences, in other words, are arranged poetically. I’m loving my book and the few Greek style illustrations.

    Happy New Year and see you here!

    • Thanks for your kind words, Silvia. In spite of the work of the read-alongs, I get so much out of them. People have asked for them (these Homer epics in a Goodreads group), so I’ll do them. I always want to increase other people’s love of literature; if I can help, I will!

      I love The House of Mirth, mostly because of Lily’s isolation yet she still keeps standards and to me, tends to grow in those standards, rising above those she wanted to part of in the end. My second read wasn’t as stunning as my first, yet this book remains a favourite.

      The Divine Comedy is marvellous! I’ve read it twice (The Inferno three times) and I look forward to reading it again!

      I’m so happy that you’re enjoying The Iliad! It’s a wonderful poem! I find once I familiarized myself with the characters, I could really submerge myself in it. This is my third read and I’m enjoying it even more than the first two times!

      Happy new year to you and many blessings in 2020!

      • It’s true, this second time I think I am enjoying The Iliad more. That’s the beauty of the big classics, they open themselves more and more to us, and release more treasures every time. Well, some times, as you with The House of Mirth, the second read is less powerful.

        • I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of The Iliad, which is a big surprise for me because when I initially read it, I thought that I wouldn’t like it. But I was fortunate to read it with a very scholarly group of readers, one of which knew ancient Greek and much of the history. And then I fell in love with the poem. I’m glad to hear that you’re enjoying it more the second time around!

  5. Thank you so much for your kind words about my blog! That was so sweet of you!

    Regarding your new authors Josephine Tey and Elizabeth Von Arnim – Have you read The Enchanted April by Arnim and The Daughter of Time by Tey? Both are very good. I love The Enchanted April…I’ve read it twice. And the BBC movie production of it I love as well.

    I really like The 39 Steps. I should read more in that series. Have you seen the BBC movie production of The 39 Steps starring Rupert Penry-Jones? It’s really good. Different from the book but still very good.

    Ok. I’m moving Elizabeth and Her German Garden up on my priority reads list!

    And if you decide to re-read The Divine Comedy, let me know. I might join you!

    • Oh goodness…the beginning of my comment should have also said thank you for your kind words about me. I was typing on my tablet….
      It was so sweet of you and I appreciate it!

    • I haven’t read The Enchanted April yet but I own it. However, I’ve seen the movie years ago and just loved it. I think I own it too. Ditto for The Daughter of Time as I’m trying to read Tey’s books in order, but I’ve heard wonderful things about it.

      I’ve seen an old version of The 39 Steps but not the one you reference. I’ll have to see if my library has it.

      The Divine Comedy might be a next year thing but we’ll see. Dante keeps calling to me and I just might listen!

  6. Happy New Year, Cleo. Lovely comprehensive review, with some interesting answers. Good luck with your ‘resolutions’/plans for 2020.

    • Happy New Year to you, too, Cath! May it bring all the best to your in both your reading and personal life! Thanks for your kind words!

  7. Great post that demonstrates a true love of reading. A couple of books we share a love for are The House of Mirth, which I am overdue for another rereading; and Dante’s Divine Comedy, which was my favorite read of 2018 (in the Esolen translation).

    • Happy New Year, Jim! I wish you could have joined us for The House of Mirth read-along; the discussion was fantastic! Few can surpass, Dante. I wish I knew Italian but it’s probably too late for that,lol! I wish you much reading and peace and contentent in the new year!

  8. In regards to reading a greater number of books, I really wouldn’t stress about it. The books you do read you take some serious time to dig into them. Your posts on Wharton’s book, well, that would have been at least 10-12 reviews for me 😀 I also think that the type of books you dive into lend themselves more towards introspection than say a lot of the stuff I tend to read.

    Do you schedule posts ahead of time?

    • I thought the same, Bookstooge. Cleo, you read excellent books. My major reads are close in number to yours. It’s only a few more because I read shorter and listened to some. But it calms me down and I am glad to see your list books of excellent quality.

      • Thanks, Silvia! This year I’m going to try to read more in small bursts. I usually like to have more time but time flies and if I can read a little here and there, I might get more books read.

    • Thanks for the words of support. I keep telling myself that, but then I look at my years of reading 80 and 50 books and think, what?! But one year I believe I read both Herodotus’ Histories and The History of the Peloponnesian War and compiled posts for each book/chapter (I still don’t know how I did that!) so in that time, absolutely, I probably could have read another 5-6 books if I hadn’t done the posts.

      I never schedule my posts ahead of time but only because I don’t seem to be able to get ahead. I’ve decided that I must be the personality type that works well under pressure (not that I want to!) because things always seem to be last minute. One year I should challenge myself to stick to a schedule. But in my defence (do I need one?) life has been very unstable for the past three years, so that’s perhaps part of my problem. In any case, I’m going to try to be more organized (at heart, I really am a very organized person; I just take on too much) for 2020!

  9. With the readalongs and books like Divine Comedy and The Four Loves, 25 doesn’t seem like a bad number! (Err…especially to someone who typically only reads 25-30 books a year…) And really, other than a few duds, it sounds like you had a lot of good reads this year. I haven’t read The Professor, but I felt the same way about Villette when I read it. Almost didn’t seem the same author!

    I can’t remember if I’ve told you this, but all your Agatha Chrisite posts have been a big part of my inspiration to read more of her books, and I’ve finally decided I’m going to read all her mysteries, in order.

    Isn’t Divine Comedy wonderful? I’ve only read it once, but would like to read it again someday. The Mandelbaum translation, and I feel I’d have a hard time convincing myself to read another version–unless I somehow actually managed to improve my Italian to a Dante-reading level. (That should only take…a few decades!)

    Happy New Year and Happy 2020 reading!

    • I’m going to try to change my reading philosophy and read more sporatically, such as 5 minutes while in the kitchen, or 10 minutes while waiting for something, instead of looking for longer periods of time to read. We’ll see if that will improve my numbers.

      I’m so glad to hear that about my Agatha Chrisite posts. It’s always nice to be inspiring! 😉 I have to get back to reading her in 2020.

      I love Dante. You might also want to try his La Vita Nuova. I loved that one as well. I think I also have his “The Banquet” but I don’t even know what it’s about. I’m not sure if he’s written anything else. You’re so lucky that you know a little Italian. I would love to read it in Italian but perhaps in heaven! 😇

      Happy New Year to you too, and wishing you peace, contentment and lots of reading in 2020!

      • A couple years ago I managed to set a daily reading streak for about 5 months or so just by telling myself I only needed to read (and should read!) five minutes a day. Certainly there were many days where I read more than that, but just that little goal really helped the reading time add up. (Hmmm….maybe I should do that again.

        I’ve not read La Vita Nuova, but I will have to add that to my someday list. I was fortunate to have elective space that needed filled my second year at university that I could use for Italian (knowing I was going to spend a semester in Italy as part of my degree program). I can read a bit, but not enough to make it through all of Divine Comedy–at least not yet!

  10. I know exactly what you mean for The Good Solider…Ugh! I finally never finished it and ugh is the only term I can think of! I think Jane Eyer is the only Bronte worth reading; I cannot bring myself to like the other works; though I have yet to read Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I love Elizabeth and her German garden and so glad you liked. I am supremely tempted to pick up a copy of The Divine Comedy and I will make sure I do it this year! Wishing you the best of everything in 2020!

    • Ugh! is right!!! I don’t mind Ann Brontë’s novels. They are worth reading and enjoyable, although not even close to the masterpiece of Jane Eyre. But you know how I feel about Wuthering Heights! The Divine Comedy is a great read but perhaps for the first time better as a read-along or buddy read? In any case, however you read it, it’s worth it. A wonderful 2020 to you too!

  11. Thanks for the shout-out! That’s very kind of you. Were I to do this meme (which I might!) your blog would definitely be on my list. Your in-depth posts on things you read are amazing.

    And not every book! I definitely need to read Elizabeth von Arnim, and now it sounds like I don’t need to read The Professor. I might have liked Villette better than you did, but it’s no Jane Eyre.

    It’s been so long since I read the Divine Comedy–I picked up the Clive James translation last year when I saw it in a remaindered book store & have been thinking about it. You’re encouraging me…

    Oh, and by the way, I’m one of those rare boy-Reeses. I find it funny how it’s become much more commonly a girl’s name, and everybody who sees my name before the see me assumes I’m a girl. But, now you know…

    • You’re very welcome! And thanks the compliment …. it’s much appreciated!

      Well, The Professor is worth reading, just don’t expect too much. Much of my dislike for Villette was not so much the writing or the story, but the anger I felt from its author. It vibrated with a disappointment in people and life for me that seemed to bounce back to the reader. I felt a little bit of this with The Professor, but with it, the character was so judgemental and boring as well that it wasn’t a great read.

      Oh, don’t get me started on Dante translations! Dante and Homer have translations I feel strongly about and then come those Russians!

      Oh my goodness, thank you so much for the correction! My assumption, honestly, probably stemmed from the cute kitten avatar, lol! But I must say, I’m thrilled to find another man blogger. We women tend to outnumber the men but (shall I whisper this?) I find the men concentrate on more meaningful reads. Going to change my gender pronouns in the post now … 😉

      • Do you have an opinion on the Clive James? It’s relatively new & I’ve really only read some of his light verse, but when I glanced at it, it seemed OK. I haven’t read any reviews. I read The Divine Comedy in the Ciardi before, and one volume (Purgatorio?) in Dorothy Sayers, which is impressive in its way, but becomes dull, I thought.

        • I haven’t read Clive James and my Italian professor friend didn’t give feedback for his translation but I did some research and here are some of the comments:

          ” … Yet James fails to approximate Dante’s talent for compression ….But by expanding Dante’s concentrated original, James often dulls its effect, …. Too often in “Hell” James trusts neither Dante’s power of suggestion nor the reader’s ability to take a hint, as he shackles the poem with asides and explanations that obstruct its celebrated flow …..Some of the more dramatic moments in James’s “Hell” disappoint because his translations are not literal enough. ….”

          He seems to do better with his translations of Purgatorio and Paradiso but from some of what I’ve read, I wouldn’t choose him as a translator.

          Ciardi takes huge liberties with the text (meaning) to make the poem sound poetic in English but at least the benefit is that he sounds the most like Dante. Even with its problems, I still love reading Ciardi’s translation. Sayers apparently does well with the form, but compromises the meaning. However, the gold-standard is still Mandelbaum who gives good balance between form and meaning.

          I have notes from the Italian professor on some of the different translations and why they are adequate or not. If you want me to post them, I can. Just let me know!

          • Ouch. The reviews for the Clive James don’t sound too good! I have one volume of the Mandelbaum, which I haven’t read–I was a bit put off by his Aeneid. But I don’t mind reading classic works in different translations–generally speaking each one brings something to it.

            I also have the Italian, which I’ve dipped into, but it’s too archaic for my poor Italian, I’m afraid. And contractions. Argh! I hate contractions. I hated them in Greek, too! 😉

            I know you’ve mentioned your notes on Dante translations before and between the two comments I may have a general sense now, but it would make a very good (and useful!) post.

          • Just to encourage you, Mandelbaum’s Aeneid was supposed to be …. well, I won’t say terrible but not very good. I’m told his The Divine Comedy is much better, the best, in fact. If you can read even part of this poem in Italian, I envy you … sigh!

            I may try to compile a post. The information the professor gives is invaluable. She thought that Dante could NOT be translated properly into English but when she saw Mandelbaum’s translation she felt his was the best. That’s a good enough recommendation for me!

  12. Well, if I wasn’t encouraged about Divine Comedy before….I am now! You’re an expert on the Ancients, Medieval-ish and Classical lit, so I know it will be worthy. (I’ll be reading it when I get to my poetry section of TWEM to read it, and I am hoping by then my reading comprehension will be up to par.)

    BTW, I would have loved to join the Iliad read-along, but again, I’m waiting until the WEM poetry section. I’m looking forward to one day reading it, and I’ll be reading your posts about it. I’m familiar with the story well enough, but I’ve not read it in prose.

    Thank for hosting House of Mirth. I finished my copy right before the new year, and found a more deeper appreciation and love for it this second time. I hope to write a review, but I won’t hold my breath. I still need to read your final post, and I will do so after this.

    I know you feel a bit disappointed in your finishing number of reads, and you said most of what you did read were light, but I doubt you were sitting around doing nothing. You were busy with life. That’s how it is. Maybe 2020 will provide more time for you to dive into deeper works and new reads. You never know!

    Happy New Year!

    • Thanks, Ruth! Not quite an expert but when you read them through a few times, you gain an appreciation. I AM going to join you for the poetry section of TWEM and the plays. I’m actually irritated that I’ve dropped off after doing so well with the biographies but I must admit that Solzhenitsyn threw me off a bit.

      That’s too bad. Reading The Iliad now would give you more appreciation for it a second time *** wink, wink ***

      The House of Mirth read-along was so much fun! So many good comments and discussion!

      I do think my reading will be more prolific in 2020. More focus (even if I don’t have more time) will help to boost the numbers.

      Have a wonderful 2020 with lots of reading!

      • IMO, this history section of WEM is a really downer. Not like I anticipated, and I am so disappointed. I expect to be done w/ history by December 2021 and begin plays by January 2022.

        I agree, it would have been an advantage to read Iliad now; but I’m focused on reading down all of my unread books in these next two years, saving the WEM titles for that particular challenge.

        Glad to have you along for the plays and poetry!

        • I liked the beginning books chosen for history but then I think they kind of go off the rails. So I can feel a little better about missing out. I wonder if there’s a chronological history book list somewhere that would be more palatable?

          Yes, we all have to go with what we feel we need to read personally. I’m feeling a little guilty about having so many re-reads. I have to get on to the books I haven’t read yet!

          Plays and poetry should be fun!

          • I think it would be interesting to find a different chronological history list or even make one yourself! That would be fun.

    • Well, I’d certainly be interested in your thoughts if you decide to read The Good Soldier. I’d like to read Ford’s Parade’s End but now I’m scared. I really don’t want to waste my time.

      Silvia is wonderful. One of those special deep-thinking souls! 😇

      I love your end-of-year posts. You’ve given me ideas for next year and envy at the amount of books you read! Brava! 👏

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