The Books of 2014

About this time last year, someone recommended that I keep track of my reading on Goodreads. I had a Goodreads account then, but I’d hardly used it.  But for whatever reason, I decided to start using it in 2014.  And I’m so glad I did!

I saw that Goodreads had a challenge where you set a numeric goal for the year.  I tend to read a lot of educational philosophy and theology, and since those can take awhile to get through, I decided that I might not read a book a week, and very cautiously chose 30 for my goal.

And then I read 84 books!

I’m kinda proud. I mean, that makes me feel pretty accomplished.

I did read a fair amount of children’s fiction.  Some of it was not long or difficult, so it’s not like I read 84 philosophy books or anything.  But still…I really enjoyed keeping track of my reading.  Goodreads is social media for nerds. 🙂 I wish more of my friends were on there. (Hint, hint.)

Goodreads gave me a tally page of all the books I read…can you see it if I link?  My 2014 Challenge Books  At one point I thought there was a widget, but I don’t see it now.

Some highlights…

1. I wanted to read more fiction in 2014, since, as I said, I lean towards non-fiction.  And I definitely did that.  I finished the Narnia series for the first time. (And then immediately started re-reading them, using the audio book versions.)  I also read the entire Lord of the Rings series for the first time.  I read a lot of children’s fiction; some I read to my kids and some I pre-read over the summer, intending one of them to read it in the fall.  I blew through The Dark is Rising series in no time, mostly while Wayne was in Texas. (Still trying to get Abby to read it.)  I got in some “grown up fiction” (“adult fiction” sounds like, um, something else) too – Jayber Crow, What Alice Forgot, The Great Gatsby, The Three Musketeers.

(If you’re wondering, I read a lot in high school – we didn’t have a tv – but I read complete fluffy garbage. My mom called them “Johnny loves Susie books.”  Not trashy in content, but not quality reading, either.  It was kind of my zone-out time between school and work or piano or church or homework. So I have a lot of catching up to do with regard to classics.)

2. I hoped to read more history and biographies, but I didn’t do too much of that.  I did – finally – finish Susan Wise Bauer’s History of the Medieval World.  I read two interesting books about the Reformation. I did read the Metaxas biography of William Wilberforce.

3. Of course, there were books about education.  The Latin-Centered Curriculum and Climbing Parnassus helped me sort out some priorities in our homeschool.  Beauty in the Word and Norms and Nobilities were, unfortunately, not as meaningful to me as I wanted them to be. They get such high billing from the classical crowd.  I suppose I have to grow more as a person before I can appreciate them. 🙂  The Book Whisperer encouraged me during the February doldrums.

Goals for 2015

I bought quite a few new books with Christmas gift money, and it’s hard not to plunge into them all at once.  I’m actually reading 7 books right now. I know.  I just want to Read All The Books.  Like, this week.  I keep having to remind myself that I plan to live another 50 years at least and that should give me time to read quite a few of them.

My goal for this year, actually, is to read more slowly.  I tend to blow through books and then forget what I read.  I decided to start a Commonplace Book this year, hoping that will help me remember important things about what I’ve read.  (See this post about reading slowly and keeping a Commonplace – or just check out the Wiki article.) I’m sure I’ll still read plenty of children’s fiction – I am homeschooling, after all – but I also want to read more classics, and take time to think about what I’m reading.

Currently reading:

1 and 2) How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth, along with How to Read the Bible Book by Book, along with…the Bible.  I’m planning to follow a two-year plan for reading through the Bible, again, hoping to take more time and think about what I’m reading.

3) Imagining the Kingdom: How Worship Works — this will be slow going whether I like it or not. Very dense.

4) The Man Who Knew Too Much – short stories by Chesterton. Accessible and delightful writing.

5) The Liberal Arts Tradition: A Philosophy of Christian Classical Education

6) The Adventures of Robin Hood – okay, haven’t touched this since the break, but I’m reading it with Abby for her lit assignment.

7) America: The Last Best Hope, Volume 1 – This has been on my list for awhile, and I picked it up at the library yesterday. It’s actually really interesting, and I can see it taking over my reading time for awhile.  It’s okay, I planned to read those other books slowly. 😉  We’re focusing on early American history in our school work this spring, so I thought it would be a good time for me to dig in as well.

If you have a Goodreads account and we’re not friends, friend me! I love to see what other people are reading!

About waymel

Navy wife. Homeschooling mom. Adoptive parent. Pianist. Introvert. One who loves quiet and beauty.
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7 Responses to The Books of 2014

  1. loveandkate says:

    I have an account, but don’t use it too much — but maybe I’ll start! I have What Alice Forgot waiting for me in my kindle right now! I’m a total fiction reader…so maybe I should add in some non- fiction. You’re inspiring me!

  2. jenhamrick says:

    Yay! I always love to know what you’re reading (since I’m still a reader in my head, if not in reality).
    I signed up for Goodreads… But I haven’t used it. Maybe I’ll start. 🙂

  3. shirley wilmoth says:

    goodreads….I decided yesterday to write down the books I read this year….maybe I should join all of you on goodreads instead of keeping a sheet of paper list! Hey, what did Alice forget?

  4. redkeeney says:

    that’s a lot of books! I picked up two this weekend and read one immediately. Perhaps I should keep a list also. Maybe it will inspire me to branch out of true crime and or crime fiction.

  5. Rebecca says:

    84 books! I feel like such a loser now! Very inspiring.

  6. jenhamrick says:

    I don’t know how to find people on Goodreads, but this is the link I’m supposed to give people so they can find me:

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