Monday, December 31, 2012

Books Read in 2012

Just the highlights:

Favorite new-to-me novelist: Megan Whalen Turner, by a landslide. Her Thief books, especially The King of Attolia, are absolutely the best new stories I found this year. 

Favorite new Christian fiction: Wish You Were Here, by Beth Vogt. Pretty as the city it's set in (Colorado Springs), and just as invigorating. A sweet, good romance.

The classics revisited: This year I reread Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy, and several of Lewis' works, including Till We Have Faces and The Great Divorce.

The classics for the first time: As far as I can recall, this year's read of Persuasion, by Jane Austen, was my first. I trust it won't be my last!

The Greeks: this year also include some research on the ancient Greeks. My world was broaded by Barry Cunliffe in The Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek and by Lord William Taylor in  The Mycenaeans.

Memoir: Margie Haack's The Exact Place: a Memoir rang a clear, pure note.

Christian non-fiction: a trio of excellence here: Mathewes-Green's The Jesus Prayer: The Ancient Desert Prayer that Tunes the Heart to God Redmond's The God of the Mundane, and Sanders'  The Deep Things of God: How the Trinity Changes Everything. Oh, and Peterson's Keeping House: the Litany of Everyday Life! The faithful are still out there providing new encouragement, folks. And that in itself is an encouragement.  

The fantastical: Moon got better and better with Echoes of Betrayal and so did Sanderson, with  The Emperor’s Soul and Legion.

Best premise: Not my favorite ever of his, but if you're a Star Trek fan, you'll enjoy the fun experiment of Scalzi's Redshirts.

Favorite romances: And a year that includes both Heyer's Sylvester and Sayers' Gaudy Night could never be a wholly bad one. These two are still the best of the best.

In all, I read 66 books in their entirety this year (not counting numerous picture books - read over and over in their entirety), which is more than last year, but not more than the year before that.

I also wrote and edited a huge amount of words, but I don't know how to go about counting those books in this tally, so I'll leave them out. All in all, it was a great year for reading. And next year, I bet, will be even better.

My Operation Read Those Books experiment ends today. Final tally? During December I added four new non-fiction books to my Currently Reading shelf and finished up five. So . . . I came out ahead? I guess?

Either way, I think it restarted the habit of regularly reading non-fiction, so I'm considering it a success.

What about you? What were your best reads of 2012?

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell


Momma said...

Thanks for posting your book list. I always wonder how you find time to read so much, write so much, and be a wonderful mother to your family. You are amazing. I posted my own list at

Happy New Year!

Amber said...

A great list with such a nice variety of books! I am very interested in reading The God of the Mundane as well as the parenting book you were blogging about recently. I wish my library would carry books like these! I also really enjoyed Keeping House - when I first read it two years ago I decided to try to read it at the beginning of the year every year. I just started it again on the 1st. It seems like a good way for me to start off my year - very grounded in the fundamentals of my life and vocation.

BTW, how did your 12 12's for 2012 go? I gave up tracking in the middle of the year when it became apparent that there was no way I was going to be able to do it. Most of my crafting time is in the late evening, and really, I'd much rather read at that time of day then dig into some knitting or sewing or whatever!

Becky Madsen said...

I've been keeping track of the books I've read since high school and it's so much fun to look back all these years later. I read Megan Whalen Turner's Thief books a couple years ago and they were awesome I couldn't put them down!

Becky from Bell & Board

Jessica Snell said...

Thanks, Alisha! I enjoyed reading your list. :)

Amber, I do love Keeping House. Peterson's so measured and thoughtful. And thanks for reminding me about my 12 12s! I'll write up a post on that this next week. (Short answer: I didn't finish all of them, but I finished a lot of them!)

Becky - I'm jealous that you have a list going back that far! I've only kept a list of my books read for the past four years or so. (But I have a journal going back to 8th grade - does that count? ;) ) btw - your blog looks fascinating - I'm glad I discovered it!

jen said...

"A Year of Biblical Womanhood" by Rachel Held Evans was amazing.