Discussions & How to

How do you count collections and volumes as part of your reading challenge?

I’ve talked before about the dilemma of whether or not to count graphic novels and audiobooks as part of my reading challenge, but recently I’ve come across another slightly tricky dilemma: how do you count something which contains potentially more than one book?

For example:
Graphic novels/Comics in trade paperback form: eg Infinity Volume 1 contains Infinity #1-3, Avengers #18-20, New Avengers 9-10. Theoretically, this could either be one book on your Goodreads challenge, or 8, depending on how you count them.
Collections of multiple books in one volume: eg This edition contains all three Lord of The Rings books – is that one book or three for challenge purposes?

This isn’t something I’ve given a lot of thought to before, since it’s only really come up with graphic novels for me so far. I read graphic novels almost exclusively in trade paperback form, and that’s the way I count them – it means I can track my progress on Goodreads properly, and I only have to have one edition on my goodreads shelves.  Counting them this way also means each is a bit longer, and a single 200 page book alters my numbers of books read/average pagecount a lot less than reading 7 or 8 short books of only 25 pages or so, so my reading challenge doesn’t get artificially inflated.

For the first time though, I’m considering a book which runs the other way around: the Definitive Sherlock Holmes collection narrated by Stephen Fry contains 71 hours of listening time, more than 1500 pages, 9 separate books. Given my average book length of 365 pages, to read all of these in one audiobook and just count it as a single book would be a big setback for my goodreads challenge.  I’m not sure what the alternative would be though – to list each volume separately on goodreads as I get to them? Which of course isn’t TRULY an accurate reflection because the edition I’ve read won’t be the one listed on goodreads.  But otherwise, with a goal of 75 books, reading 9 and counting it as 1 is pretty much ensuring I won’t hit my goal.  I’m currently thinking of listing them as separate books, because otherwise I’m worried I’ll never want to start the book – 71 hours of audiobook is a pretty intimidating prospect, especially without a nice inspiring boost to my challenge as a result.  It feels like cheating on the one hand, but on the other – it’s my challenge, and if it’s the difference between reading the books or not, surely the option that makes me want to pick them up is the right one?!

How do you count multi-book editions?

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