Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Sunday Salon: Same Time, Last Year

It often strikes me as amusing that, for as much as we love our words, we bloggers often tend to get caught up in our numbers.

Keeping statistics (sometimes elaborate and complicated ones) chronicling our reading is very much the norm for many book bloggers - yours truly included. The Husband refers to my doing so as "the book blogger version of Fantasy Football."

As much I try not to be concerned about things like the number of books I'm on track to read in a year or how many books I've read to meet certain challenge requirements, sometimes it's too irresistible not to do so.

Last night I finished my 50th book of the year (Marcelo in the Real World, by Francisco X. Stork).  For some reason, 50 books always seems to serve as some sort of personal threshold for me. Perhaps it comes from a time (early-parenthood) when I couldn't even fathom that there would come a day when I would be able to once again read 50 books a year.  Maybe it is tangible proof that I really do read at least one book a week - not too shoddy of an accomplishment.  Whatever it is, something gets triggered when I hit that 50 book mark.

With the calendar page turned to October, it seemed to me that this milestone came especially late in the year. Earlier this spring and summer, when we were getting the house ready for sale, my reading slowed down considerably. But it has picked up pace lately, especially in regard to my consumption of audiobooks. I decided to do what any good book blogger would do. When I went back into the vault and saw my Sunday Salon post for October 3, 2010, I discovered that I reached the 50th book milestone this same time last year.

Given that I read 79 books last year, that's encouraging.  Still, I have my doubts that I have 29 more books in me for the remainder of 2011 ... but we shall see, won't we?  

Related to all this craziness, September saw me finishing these 5 books (one of which was an audiobook).   Links take you to my reviews:

Marriage Confidential: The Post-Romantic Age of Workhorse Wives, Royal Children, Undersexed Spouses, and Rebel Couples Who Are Rewriting the Rules, by Pamela Haag

It's hard to count this one as a book I finished this month, because eagle-eyed readers may recognize this as a book I was reading just prior to our move in August.  I had to return it to the library unfinished, but I was able to get it from my new library and finish the last 100 or so pages. 

Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand 

Freedom, by Jonathan Franzen (audiobook) 

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs 

For today, I think I will be starting off the week by catching up on as many of your blogs as possible. This weekend, we're all-sports, all-the-time in this house, with football on TV today and of course, the same for baseball.  I need to catch up on some work from this week, perhaps make a soup in the crockpot (it is a rainy and cold day here, so I'm thinking along the lines of some kind of potato soup or perhaps split pea) and a dinner or two for later in the week.  Hopefully I'll also have a chance to start in on what seems to be the perfect rainy day book, Nathaniel Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables. (I'm participating in the group read being hosted by Frances and Audrey that is part of this year's R.I.P. Challenge.) I also have this on audio, so I'll be listening to this in the car during my work travels this week.   

Hope your literary travels take you to exciting places this week!

copyright 2011, Melissa, The Betty and Boo Chronicles If you are reading this on a blog or website other than The Betty and Boo Chronicles or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.


Natalie~Coffee and a Book Chick said...

It's funny - with me I deal with numbers and data all the time in my day job, so when I'm doing anything with the blog, I want to run as far away from stats as I can :) I occasionally check the stats page for Blogger to see where traffic comes from, but for the most part, I never look at any of the details.

My husband and I just moved from Florida to Virginia Beach and my reading dropped down considerably as well. I can't wait to get back into the groove of things.

christina said...

I definitely love how your hubs refers to bb stats. Best. Analogy. Ever.

JoAnn said...

Oh yes, The House of the Seven Gables is a perfect rainy day book! Your day sounds much like ours, but we'll hopefully get in some apple-picking before the TV sports marathon begins.

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Can't wait to hear what you thought of Marcelo - I totally loved it, and went on to read every other one of Stork's books, all of which I also loved!

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

I'm not near the reader you are but I love my numbers, and other people's numbers. My other hobbies of geocaching and running also involve lots of numbers.

Geocaching is really funny because it is not considered cool to be concerned about numbers but everybody knows exactly how many they have found.

Lisa said...

I can't wait to read 50 books again. I'm guessing I'll end up around 35 this year. For someone who is home all the time, I have no time to myself. (Plus I'm really pushing myself on sewing these days.) Now, I've had at least 30 library books checked out at any given time, many of which go back unread, but I need variety to choose from, ya know?

Anonymous said...

Numbers, number, numbers. Eh. I do keep track of what I'm reading but I'm not one of those bloggers or people that has to break the 100 or 200 mark (as if). I'm more with you that I feel good if I get 50...I'm getting close this year.

I wanted to see your review of Unbroken but the link didn't work :(.

The Hawthorne book you're reading is one of my favorite books. I don't know why exactly, but it is. Hope you enjoy it too.

Melissa said...

@Unfinished - there's a good reason why the link doesn't work. It doesn't exist, because the review itself doesn't exist. :)

Peppermint Ph.D. said...

I try to stay away from the numbers...I, too, am forced to work with numbers in my job and frankly I get sick of them. Especially when I'm asked to justify something with numbers that is basically unjustifiable with numbers...welcome to the world of education.
Anyhoo, I just signed up for The House of Seven Gables...sounds spooky!

Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness) said...

I think 75 books always feel like an accomplishment for me, as does 100 books. I'm not sure if I'll make that one this year, but I like to try.

Today is a sports day around here too -- yay, football! I'm hoping I'll be able to get some blogging done as well.

Cass said...

Congrats on your 50th book! I keep meticulous records of my book stats becauseeee I'm kind of ridiculous that way...fancy charts and everything. How did you feel about the audio production of Freedom? I listened to that earlier this year and really quite liked it.

Erin said...

"Book blogger Fantasy Football" -- that's perfect! I really do like numbers. I think they're fun, as long as people don't get too caught up in them. For me, they're fun to have -- I adore having a record of my reading and being able to look for trends, compare months and years, etc! But I don't let them stress me out.

Congrats on hitting 50 books! I hope you ended up enjoying Marcelo.