YEAR IN REVIEW
2022 READING STATS
Number of Books Read: 32
Number of Re-Reads: 9
Genre You Read The Most From: Classics / Mystery
BEST IN BOOKS
Best Book You Read in 2022: Hamlet
Book You Were Excited About and Thought You Would Like More But Didn’t: The Mill on the Floss I absolutely love George Eliot but the melodrama was over-the-top. Eliot did not seem to know what to do with her characters and the plot was a hot mess. After reading Middlemarch and Daniel Deronda, it was not what I was expecting
Most Surprising (in a good or a bad way) Book You Read in 2022: The Mill on the Floss in a bad way for the reasons above.
Book You Pushed The Most People to Read (and they did!) in 2022: Unfinished Portrait by Agatha Christie. Christie said very little in public about her famous disappearance but in this novel she lays out her early life and the events leading up to her divorce including the disappearance. It’s fiction but it isn’t, and Christie paints a very sensitive and detailed portrait that deserves to be read.
Best Series You Started in 2022. Best Sequel. Best Series Ender: The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis I haven’t finished it yet but what a fun read, as Lewis weaves in Platonic philosophy and Pascal’s Wager into children’s books.
Favourite New Author You Discovered in 2022: Yikes ….. I could say Melville but I’m not sure he’s going to be a favourite author so the choice goes to Martin Luther King Jr.
Best book from a genre you don’t typically read / out of your comfort zone: Moby Dick I wouldn’t normally say it would take me out of my comfort zone but it was a smorgasbord of philosophy, Biblical allusions, whaling information, whale biology, with a sauce of revenge, obsession, friendship and other compelling treats.
Most action-packed / thrilling / unputdownable book of the year: The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare. If you can keep up, I’ll be surprised!
Book you read in 2022 that you are most likely to re-read next year: The Murder At The Vicarage. I’ve always liked this one.
Favourite cover of a book you read in 2022: Moby Dick
Most memorable characters of 2022: Sunday from The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare; Ebenezer Scrooge from A Christmas Carol; Hamlet; Moby Dick; Aslan from The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe.
Most beautifully written book you read in 2022: I would have to say Moby Dick. Melville is a poet and it shows. Some lovely writing in the novel.
Most thought-provoking / life changing book you read in 2022: I wish I read a life-changing book in 2022 but I didn’t. The closest would be A Christmas Carol but I’ve read it a number of times before.
Book you can’t believe you waited until 2022 to read: Moby Dick
Favourite passage / quote from a book you read in 2022:
“You’ve got that eternal idiotic idea that if anarchy came it would come from the poor. Why should it? The poor have been rebels, but they have never been anarchists; they have more interest than anyone else in there being some decent government. The poor man really has a stake in the country. The rich man hasn’t; he can go away to New Guinea in a yacht. The poor have sometimes objected to being governed badly; the rich have always objected to being governed at all. Aristocrats were always anarchists”
The shortest / longest book you read in 2022: Letters from A Birmingham Jail (24 pages) & Moby Dick (851 pages)
Book that shocked you the most: Devil in A Blue Dress. I just did not like the behaviour of anyone in this book. I wouldn’t want to know or be like any of the characters.
OTP of the year: Romeo and Juliet. And reading through the rest of my books for the year, I need to chose ones with a few nice romances for next year!
Favourite non-romantic relationship: Poirot and Captain Hastings.
Favourite book you read in 2022 from an author you’d read previously: The Coot Club by Arthur Ransome
Best book that you read in 2022 that you read solely on the recommendation from someone else: Carmilla
Best world-building / most vivid setting from a book you read in 2022: The Mill on the Floss. In spite of the soap opera, Eliot can write!
Book that put a smile on your face / that was the most fun to read: The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare. Never-ending fun!!
Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2022: Unfinished Portrait by Agatha Christie
Hidden gem of the year: Unfinished Portrait and a special mention to Journey From Peppermint Street.
The most unique book you read in 2022: Moby Dick
The book that made you the most mad: Toss up between The Mill on the Floss & Letters from A Birmingham Jail.
YOUR BLOGGING / BOOKISH LIFE
New favourite blog you discovered in 2022: Le Blog de Gloria: Of War and Peace. It’s in French but it gives me practice reading and her reviews are so insightful!
Favourite review that you wrote in 2022: The Mill on the Floss, but only because it was my only full length classic review that I wrote. I have so many backed up ….. Sigh!
Best discussion / non-review post you had on your blog in 2022: Really none. Because I’ve been focussing on reading, I haven’t been visiting other blogs as much as usual and because my reading has been simplified, there hasn’t been that much deep discussion. But I’ll post The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe, only because it was a re-post and has some good discussion in it from before.
Best event that you participated in: It’s hard to have good in-depth discussion but I would say The Man Who WasThursday: A Nightmare which was a buddy read on a private group on Goodreads. It’s a small group but the members really dig into what they read and I appreciate their efforts. It was a fun time had by all!!
Best moment of bookish / blogging life in 2022: Probably when I made a valiant and successful attempt to read more! And then when I passed my 12 book total from last year.
Most popular post this year on your blog: As usual, An Apology for Idlers by Robert Louis Stevenson was #1 with 1,204 views, followed by Born Again by Charles W. Colson with 423 views.
Post you wish got a little more love: If I had to choose one, perhaps Mapp and Lucia
Best bookish discovery: A lovely little bookstore in the Yukon!
Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of the year?: The only thing I can claim with no embarrassment is that I’ve continued my chronological Agatha Christie read and have been quite consistent with both reading and posting reviews. I also finally read Moby Dick which was a big accomplishment for more reasons than one!
One book you didn’t get to in 2022 but will be your number one priority in 2023: The Gulag Archipelago. I need it to finish off my Well-Educated Mind Biography project. And perhaps The Republic. I started it a few years ago and I’d like to get through it.
Book you are most anticipating for 2023: The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling. I’m going to begin it in February.
Series ending / a sequel you are most anticipating for 2023: Well, I might read another Mapp and Lucia book, but I should finish The Chronicles of Narnia.
One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading / blogging life in 2023: Read more and read more heavier classics like I used to read. The more work you put in, the more you get out of it. Also read more of my Deal Me In challenge. I’d like to get through at least ¼ of it.
I hope everyone has an excellent 2023, both personally and with their reading!
Previous Years in Review
Love all this. Specially your 32 books, Moby Dick and your exhorting us to read the classics.
It’s so sad that I’m excited about 32 books, but I am! And yes! Read more classics!!
Ohh I am not surprised that Hamlet tops your list… <3 I've been thinking about it lately and how I already want to read it again (my last encounter was the Kenneth Branagh production, which I watched last fall).
And congrats on finishing Moby-Dick! I wish I had been able to finish the re-read. My other Melville readings were hit-and-miss, but one you might appreciate is Billy Budd, Sailor. It is (refreshingly) succinct, but mind-bendy with the themes it carries.
I'll keep Unfinished Portrait on the radar… I was really into Agatha Christie as a tween, but I didn't know she wrote anything about her disappearance!
Happy New Year, and here's to great reading in 2023! 🙂
Oh yes, read Hamlet! It’s amazing! And then read C.S. Lewis’ essay, Hamlet: the Prince or the Poem.
Thanks! I’ve wanted to read Moby Dick for ages and now I have. Hopefully I’ll read it again but not for awhile. I can understand why people have a hard time getting through it. I’ll try Billy Bud on your recommendation. Melville is certainly a unique author.
The character in Unfinished Portrait is not Christie but IS Christie, if you know what I mean. It’s so interesting because you not only get the facts behind her life but how she was feeling at the time. Her first husband seemed to be a piece of work. I’m glad that she had a happy second marriage.
Happy New Year to you and I’m looking forward to reading at least a couple of books together in 2023!!
I chime in again to add I should read Hamlet again. Thanks for recommending that other Melville.
I like Tom Jones a lot. It’s tempting to reread it, but I have read for the umpteenth time pretty recently. You’ve made me want to reread The Mill on the Floss, which is likelier to happen sooner.
I really need to read the Man Who Was Thursday. I’ve downloaded it from Gutenberg & I don’t really know why I haven’t read it.
The Gulag Archipelago! I think (hope…) you have a condensed version. I read a couple hundred pages of the first volume once, and it’s very good, but how many thousands of pages of horrible prison stories can one take…
Happy New Year and good reading in 2023!
Mortimer J. Adler LOVED Tom Jones so I’m excited to learn why.
I would love to know your thoughts on The Mill on the Floss. One of the reasons I like Eliot is that her writing is more straightforward than the Brontës and there is not all the drama, which was why I was so surprised by The Mill on the Floss. I actually was thinking “Thomas Hardy” when I read it.
Oh, I hope you read The Man Who Was Thursday soon. It’s such fun and I could honestly read it again for the 4th (or is it 5th?) time. It’s a great read for the plot but, while the plot has a mystery, there is also a mystery to Chesterton’s writing. Just WHAT is he talking about? I did some research to find out after my 2nd read. It’s really all very interesting!
I’m reading the condensed version of The Gulag. I wanted to read the 3 volumes but now I’m not so sure. That much death and human suffering would be hard to take, as you say. It would be nice to get some Russian history background as well. I’ll have to track down a good book on it.
Happy reading in 2023 and all the best to your and your family in the new year!
Hi Cleo! Haven’t dropped by for a bit but, as always, I love the art work. It’s nice to find a fellow lover of Moby Dick! It took me several attempts before I got through it, then I wondered why it had taken me so long. What a masterpiece! There’s so much there and, as you say, Melville’s language can be quite poetical. By coincidence, I just finished his novella, Bartleby the Scrivener, which I also enjoyed quite a bit.
Like you, I loved Middlemarch & Daniel Deronda, but The Mill On The Floss — well, not so much. Also like you, I was surprised I didn’t like it more.
Good luck with your 2023 reading — I look forward to the reviews!
Janakay! It’s so good to hear from you!! I’ve been on your blog to read it but I’ve been so focussed on reading that I’ve been negligent with posting comments on all my friend’s blogs. For shame!
Moby Dick is great but it’s so different. I can appreciate Melville’s passion behind the writing and am happy to have finally read it. I’m glad you enjoyed Bartleby the Scrivener. Another one to try.
The Mill on the Floss, I must say, was a real disappointment. To me, you can have drama in novels but to resort to melodrama and sensationalism is …. well, it’s cheap and an immature method. I was disappointed with Eliot.
Same to you! May your reading be enriching and many blessings to you and your family in the new year!
What a great reading year! And I agree with your resolution as well on reading more classics this year. Finally as always only you and I agree on The Mill on the Floss! Omg! What is with that book????
I was happy with it and I hope next year will be much better. Yes, you haven’t been reading as many classics lately but I understand your reasons for perhaps reading some lighter, more happy books.
LOL! I cannot believe Eliot wrote that. So surprising. I still have Adam Bede, Romola and Felix Holt left to go and I hope I don’t encounter any more of THAT. I’ve heard Adam Bede is good.
Many blessings to you in 2023 😇 ….. I sent you an email a while ago but I’m not sure if you’ve been checking …..
I did not….things were kind of crazy. But I did check today and have responded. Do drop me a line when you can. Hope you are well!
I actually enjoyed Mill on the Floss…Adam Bede is my favourite though. I read Moby Dick in my mid-twenties & remembered having a conversation with a man where I was working & he raved about it. We had some good conversations about the book but it’s not one I’d read again.
A few of my kids loved Man Who was Thursday. It’s a quirky sort of read that I didn’t mind but a lot of it went over my head. 🙂
Much of my 2022 reading was on the light side & I’m keen to read more literary classics this year.
I’m glad to hear that about Adam Bede but The Mill on the Floss was just too much unnecessary drama! I think I’ll read Moby Dick again but it won’t be for awhile. The Man Who Was Thursday is a romp! If you ever want to know what it was about, let me know. I did lots of research after my second read and found interviews with Chesterton about it. Finally my curiosity was satisfied! I’m looking forward to your reviews for 2023 already! All the best!
Thanks for sharing that quote from GKC. I’ve heard much about The Man Who was Thursday, and probably own it (I have one of those Kindle collected-works-of-GKC titles), but haven’t tried it yet. Lovely portaits in your post!
As I mentioned to Carol, if you want more information on The Man Who Was Thursday after reading it, let me know. Chesterton has some interesting things to say about it. I do hope you get the chance to read it in 2023! Have a great year!