HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!! I hope you all had the chance to celebrate with your loved ones, with or without lockdown. I spent my evening at a friend’s house and so that was great, but we went to bed waaaay to late and so all I’m doing today is watching How I Met Your Mother for the hundredth time and writing this post. Anyways: here’s my bookish year, favorites, disappointments, and everything else that happened on this blog!
How much I read: 23 books – 9,252 pages
Well, my Goodreads goal was 50, but I guess I had it coming – it’s my senior year (we have 2 in Germany, which count as our high school graduation) and so I’ve been immensely busy with school practically every day to achieve my goal. I’m not happy that I didn’t complete the challenge, but I’m happy with my discipline in school and the work I’ve done so it’s okay.
Shortest book: 107 pages
Mario and the Magician by Thomas Mann. I had to read it for German class (in German Mario und der Zauberer) and I have to admit, it wasn’t too bad. Suspense, the question of the free will, nationalism, Le Bon’s psychology of crowds and a great style of writing. I have to admit, I was glad it’s so short but simply because I didn’t have too much time on my hands to waste…
longest book: 870 pages
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by JK Rowling. I reread the complete Harry Potter series again this year and immensely enjoyed it, as always. I think I’ll keep this a tradition because I NEVER get bored of this series. Not of almost 900 pages. No.
average book length: 440 pages
I mean, that’s perfect! My favorite length is between 350 to 450 pages so this is the PERFECT average length! I have nothing against very short books (obviously), but when it’s an awesome book I do want it to hold a little longer just so I can enjoy it over a longer period of time. A book can be as long as it can possibly get as long as I love it, but that’s very rarely the case. So this medium is perfect for me.
most popular book: Twilight
Yes, I reread Twilight this summer. And I’m happy I did: because I am completely 100% torn. On the one hand, I was super invested and couldn’t put the books down while reading and wanted more and more of the story. But on the other hand: I absolutely hated every character in the book. Bella was super shallow and I don’t think she has a very complex personality, she and Edward only EVER talked about her becoming a vampire and how it feels to live like one bla bla bla – my point, they didn’t have a lot of topics to discuss and so I don’t understand their relationship. And Jacob was simply selfish. And yet I absolutely loved it?!
Least popular: Presidential doctrines
I suppose I’m not very shocked to see that Presidential Doctrines is the least popular because it’s a non-fiction book, but more like a science paper and not one you would read for fun such as Sapiens. I read it – and analyzed it – for a school presentation and I have to say: it was truly awesome! I mean it was hard to analyze 300 pages of info on info and historical events and doctrines, but I learnt so much about the Cold War, the Iraq War, 9/11 and what really were the goals of the Presidents before being in office concerning Foreign Policy.
For the ones who are not familiar with the term doctrine (I sure as hell wasn’t): doctrines have crafted responses and directions conductive to international order to best advance American interests as a matter to set the goals of foreign affairs.
Favorite book: Chain of Gold
Chain of Gold (spoiler review here) was by FAR my favorite book of 2020 – a five star read for sure. I was doubtful at first because the plot line didn’t seem too complex, but it turned out to be far deeper and more twisted than I’d ever imagined. Cassie Clare once again managed to create immaculate characters and the best love stories – tragedies, happy endings, cliffhangers and secret feelings. There’s something for everyone. And bonus: we already know some of the characters 🙂
Least favorite book: Crooked Letter
I never, in a million years, would have read this if I didn’t have to read it for school: Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter was loooong and booooring, it had no climax and I mean, the analyzing of it all is just pure hell.
The Classics I read
- Faust by Goethe: a German classic I reread this summer for an exam. To be honest, it’s so feared by every student in Germany and I actually ended up loving it? To be fair, not after the first time through, but after we discussed all the controversies and subjects (women’s position in society in the 17/18th century, the purpose of life, marriage etc.) I realized it’s a great piece of literature. (It’s a drama btw)
- 1984 by George Orwell: I did not expect to dislike it the way I did. I expected a lot, because the intention and the general topic of the book are great and it’s a fantastic idea. But it was very slow and for me, the end message was a little too dark and pessimistic.
- An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley: a very short drama of about 100 pages. But it was great, it didn’t have any slow parts and it was twisted and we had some imagination work at the ending. I love it when there is some unfinished business and you have to interpret the missing piece.
my goal for 2021: 30 books
I did dial it back from 50 to 30 just because I am realistic: I am graduating this year and from May to July, I’ll barely have time to read. Then I’ll be (hopefully, because of covid) on a celebratory trip with my friends in summer and then uni starts in September. Full year – and then I’m studying law and that will be one hell of a ride.
That’s it – I hope you enjoyed my wrap-up! Tell me, have you read any of these books and what were your favorites? Happy reading and have a great start into 2021!