Mireille's blog
Fun things, ideas about technology, cheat sheets, data + code.

Good Reads - my year in review (2019)

Good reads sent me one of those cute emails telling me about my personalized reading stats for 2019. In those stats, there is a collage of book covers that I read. They added some statistics about the number of pages, popular/un-popular books etc…

Here is the link: https://www.goodreads.com/user/year_in_books/2019/25236549.

Somehow, I read 26 books but I ended up adding 43 books to my “want-to-read” list. Oh well… I have that sinking feeling in my heart that the books I read are not the most important out there. Some are classics that I have not had time to read before, but it was surprising how many people are reading them for the first time as well. I am also surprised that I only read 26 books, I have that feeling that some books are missing, maybe I didn't keep track accurately.

One thing I did this year is: I forced myself to write a review of each book I read. I did not do one of those reviews where I summarized the books, there are plenty of those. Instead I just wrote what I was thinking or what the book made me feel. It was like a good ritual that helped me to come to closure with the book I just finished.

This year was the first time I read a biography (I think). I read fierce attachment and fun home. I got the recommendation for those from a New York Times article called the The 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years. Fierce attachment was the first one on the list.

This year, I also started reading in Spanish. I am teaching myself Spanish through brute force. I am just reading beginner level books and I translate words that I don't know with google translate or I just guess the meaning or figure it out from french. Hopefully as I bump into the same words repeatedly, I will start to “memorize” them. For some books like “the little prince”, I am reading the book AND writing it in a little notebook. I am borrowing this technique from my school days. I always “studied” in school by just taking notes and writing stuff down. Hopefully, this will work.

As for a favorite book, I would say the “Elena Ferrante” books are a serious winner. They were recommended by a friend. The books are brutally good. I did not read the last book in the series because my friend warned me that it will be a difficult read because the last book deals with death and loss. Hopefully, I will be able to finish it up in 2020.

If you want to grab the books, here is the link to Elena Ferrante's author page on amazon: https://amzn.to/2QslmGK.