Final 2018 Statistics and Where My Books Came From

My most prolific year yet! (I’m sure I said the same last year, but really, this is a number I will most likely never top and shouldn’t attempt to.) People sometimes joke to me, “why not shoot for a book a day?!” but that’s not how I do things. Instead of reading one book from start to finish, I almost always have 10 to 20 books on the go at a time, and I tend to start and finish books in batches – I’m addicted to starting new books, but also to finishing them.


The breakdown:


Fiction: 44.9%

Nonfiction: 45.8%

Poetry: 9.3%

(I think this is the first time nonfiction has surpassed fiction! They’re awfully close, though. I read a bit less poetry this year than last.)


Male author: 38.1%

Female author: 61.9%

(Roughly the same thing has happened the last two years, which I find interesting because I have never consciously set out to read more books by women.)


E-books: 15.7%

Print books: 84.3%

(In 2016 I read one-third e-books; in 2017 it was one-quarter. For some reason I seem to find e-books less and less appealing. They are awfully useful for traveling. However, I’ve been cutting back on the reviewing gigs that rely on me reading only e-books.)


Works in translation: 4.8%

(Ouch – my reading in translation almost halved compared to last year. I’m going to have to make a point of reading more translated work next year.)


Where my books came from for the whole year:

  • Free print or e-copy from publisher: 28.7%
  • Public library: 20.8%
  • Secondhand purchase: 20.6%
  • Downloaded from NetGalley or Edelweiss: 14.9%
  • Gifts: 5%
  • Free (giveaways, GET Free Bookshop, Book Thing of Baltimore, etc.): 3.8%
  • University library: 3.2%
  • New purchase (usually at a bargain): 1.5%
  • Kindle purchase: 0.9%
  • Borrowed: 0.6%


Some interesting additional statistics courtesy of Goodreads:


How did 2018 turn out for you reading-wise?

Happy New Year!

20 responses

  1. Gosh, BB – you are an Olympic reader, no doubt about it! So long as you enjoyed what you read, and/or learned something, then that’s okay in my book (groan – unintended pun). Thanks for all the great reviews – wishing you a wonderful book-filled 2019. Your faithful follower from the southern-most tip of Africa.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I enjoyed much of what I read, though as always I’d like to swap out plenty of the 3-star reads for some more 5-star ones. I don’t know how I’d manage that, apart from reading more classics than new releases.


  2. Wow! I’m glad you enjoy your reading (allowing for the occasional duds). I’m with you totally – e-books just don’t give you the whole experience. Here’s to 2019 and another great year of reading for us all (with a bit more in translation perhaps 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t mind reading an e-book if it’s my only way to access a particular book (if it’s only been released in the USA, for instance), but I gravitate more towards big stacks of print books these days.


  3. I love the stats posts you do! You’ve read over 3 times as much as me, and I probably read 95% non fiction. Don’t think that figure will change much! I was quite proud to read a couple of books that only one other person had read on Goodreads, but I see you did that too with the RLS prayers book. Have a very happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, that’s a lot of nonfiction! You and Paul are my stalwart nonfiction readers and I get lots of ideas from you.

      (This wasn’t actually the edition of the RLS that I read. I couldn’t find the one I read, which included his Christmas sermon.)

      Happy new year!


    2. What was that book Penny? At the time I read it, my son’s book came into that category. I must see if anyone’s reviewed it since.


  4. I’m not a stats sort of person, so couldn’t begin to compile a list like this. Though I guess I’m about 50-50 fic, non-fic too. And Julie Orringer will be my longest read too I think, though it didn’t feel like it. I thought I read a lot. But a book a day almost? I think not. Happy reading in 2019!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Good God, 335 books! I managed 200 (personal best) and am aiming tentatively for 205 next year. That really does feel like the ceiling, at least while my life is structured the way it is. The Goodreads stats function is such fun, though; can’t find mine at the moment, but comparing longest and shortest books is especially delightful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 332 😉 But yeah, pretty crazy. I’ll set 300 as a goal for this year. Most working writers and bloggers seem to average around 80-100 books a year, so your job allows you to double that!

      If you go to your Goodreads profile page you should find it along the right side — “Your 2018 Year in Books.”


      1. Whoops. (I typed the original comment last night…late…clearly not seeing straight.) I found the stats page! Hurrah. Thank you 🙂


  6. Amazing totals! I read 2 percentage points more non-fiction than fiction and that was a first for me for years, and I also read 65% by women. I’ve got so impressed by all these stats on people’s round-up posts that Ive started a spreadsheet for 2019!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A spreadsheet would be handy; I have to count everything up manually at the end of a year and I’m sure some of my totals are off ever so slightly.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s amazing! I’ve definitely had good reading years but I don’t think I’ve ever cracked the 300-book mark! Awesome job. 🙂 Hopefully 2019 is just as good!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I count everything up manually, too. I thought I was the only one left who did it that way!

    When my friends and family go on about all the reading I do, I tell them about some of my blogging buddies. 😉

    Happy New Year!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s all relative; I have some Goodreads friends who read 400-500 books a year!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. What fun stats! I also tend to read more books by women than men without working at it and I suspect nonfiction will turn out to have been more than 50% of my reading too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh dear, I am SO late replying to this. And you were spot-on with your figuring too, posting your stats so promptly. Well done!

    Once again we’ve read a similar number of books and I am totally with you on the whole could-never-do-a-book-a-day thing. It’s a world apart. Better to dabble daily in an unwieldy stack! 🙂

    My reading in translation was really down this year too. If you have particular titles in mind, we should make plans. We also have the same % of women writers.

    But you are reading much more non-fiction than I am these days. Hopefully this year I’ll do better with that,and I did have a number of fiction-based projects in mind last year and finishing those in chunks definitely affected my selection all year. So maybe I’ll do better with non-fiction this year without really trying exactly. I hope so. Because so far I’m not really trying. Haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s exactly what I do — “dabble daily in an unwieldy stack”!


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