2013 in Review

This is my first full year review, since last year’s review was only for the six months or so since I started blogging.  Following on from my new goal to be more personal with the blog, I’ve included a new section, about my year in real life.  If you just care about the bookish numbers, feel free to skip this first bit!

My Year

This year has been a bit of a roller-coaster for me in real life!  I finished my third year at university, which was a chaotic blend of exams, dissertation work and assignments.  It was a lot of work, but mostly of the good kind, and it paid off in the end.  I graduated in the summer with a first in Zoology & Conservation, and took some time off with my other half before he headed back to start his Masters.

I did some work experience at a zoo, which taught me that it’s probably not quite what I want to go into.  It’s a bit disappointing but useful to know, since if I had loved it it wouldn’t really have been worth going on to do a Masters course.

After graduation, I chose to take a gap year to try and earn some money so that I can start my Masters in September 2014, and took a job doing admin at a local university.  It isn’t what I want to do, but it was okay, and it paid off my overdraft.  Unfortunately, that ended just before Christmas, which was a bit of a blow, and so now I’m trying to find something else!

Despite some ups and downs, it’s been a great year. I had a small surgery which has left me feeling much better, and able to eat whatever I want!  Being back at home now that university has finished means I’ve been able to catch up with school friends, which has been a lot of fun.  Matt and I celebrated our five year anniversary, and even when I was feeling down he managed to cheer me up!  I’m still enjoying blogging, and I’m really excited to see what 2014 brings (hopefully more great things!).

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Reading

My original goal was to read 100 books, but things went really well so I ended up going beyond that!

Books read: 129 (61 more than last year!)
Pages read: 42,058
Average pages per book: 326
Longest book: Blackout (659 pages)

Challenges completed:  16
Challenges not completed:  20

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On the blog

Number of Posts:  205
Reviews: 42
Most Popular posts: Too many filofaxes? | Inspired by House Stark | A guide to last minute exam revision
Most popular posts from the archives: Drinking Game: Harry Potter Ring of Fire | Filofax for studying | Recipe: Spicy Rice
Most Popular Review:  Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

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My bookshelves

Total books gained this year: 281 (!!!)

Freebies/Gifted/Library: 147 (53%)
Books bought: 58 (20%)
Review books: 76 (27%)

2012 in Review

These stats are from around May when I started the blog, so they aren’t quite a full year.  I’ve added as many books as I can remember though, so hopefully the numbers aren’t too off.

Reading

Books read: 68
Pages read: 26,666 pages
Longest book: A Feast For Crows (1,060 pages)
Favourite book read: Always & Forever

Challenges completed: 6
Challenges not completed: 3

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On the blog

Number of Posts: 168
Reviews: 21
Most Popular posts: Filofax for studying | Inspired by…Animal Print (Snake) | Drinking Game: Harry Potter Ring of Fire
Most Popular Review: The Elephant Whisperer

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Best books of 2012

 
               

Older books I loved
              

I know the addition of a Fifty Shades is controversial, but if I’m honest, I found it a great holiday read while away this year!

December Wrap-Up

Reading

Books read: 7 (up 2)
Pages read: 2759 (up 664 pages – although at least one book was started in November, so not quite that many)
Average pages per day: 91 (up 21 pages)
Favourite book read: Always & Forever

Challenges completed this month: 4 (European Reader, What’s in a name, Eclectic Reader, Mixing it up)
Total challenges completed: 6/9

Book Haul

Total Books gained (Dec. 3rd – Dec 30th): 21 (Down 6)
Books bought: 1 (down 7!)
Books for review: 7 (down 3)
Freebies/Gifts/Borrowed: 13 (up 4)

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On the blog

Number of Posts: 14 (down 9)
Reviews: 3 (up 1 but still poor)
Most Popular posts: Drinking game: Harry Potter ring of fire | Quick & Easy massaman curry | Inspired by Parajunkee: seeking originality
My favourite posts: 2012 survey part 1 & 2| Inspired by Parajunkee: seeking originality
Disappointing post: 250 word review: Always & Forever

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December

Favourite thing I did this month: Just being at home for Christmas in general
Uni Assignments this month: 1
Dissertation progress: 3000 words, 60 References
Things to focus on next month: More reviews | Scheduling | Budgeting
Challenges starting next month: I haven’t decided yet – still looking for my 2013 challenges!

November Wrap-Up

Reading

Books read: 5
Pages read: 2095 (+ one 777 page cookbook I haven’t included)
Average pages per day: 70
Favourite book read: The Scorpio Races

Challenges completed this month: 1 (NetGalley challenge)
Total challenges completed: 2/9

Book Haul

Total Books gained (Oct 28th-Dec. 2nd): 27
Books bought: 8
Books for review: 10
Freebies/Gifts/Borrowed: 9

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On the blog

Number of Posts: 23
Reviews: 2 (Oops….)
Most Popular posts: Dearly Beloved review | F&F Book Crushes | TTT Books I’d want on a deserted island
My favourite posts: TTT Tips for managing the TBR pile | How to Avoid Christmas Stress
Disappointing post: Catch up on 2012


RAK

This was my first month participating in RAK.
Books sent: 1 (The Selection to Becky)
Books received:
0

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November

Favourite thing I did this month: Went away for the weekend with my other half, ate too much, generally had a nice time.
Uni Assignments this month: 3
Dissertation progress: 2000 words, 45 References
Strange fact: Certain frogs freeze for up to 4 weeks, then go back to normal upon defrosting….but they’re diabetic!
Things to focus on next month: More reviews | Budgeting | CHRISTMAS!
Goals set: 12
Goals completed: 9 (75%)
Challenges starting next month: The Seasonal Reading Challenge

6 month fairytale challenge

I know I should learn to resist, but so many reading challenges are too good to pass up. Here’s the latest commitment!

The 6 month fairytale challenge

“November 1st – May 1st
Rules:
– Read a book that fit each item below
– To complete the challenge you need to read all items
– In case your reading speed makes it impossible for you to read every item or you cannot find the books suitable for the listed items, you can skip some.
– However, please make sure that you read at least 2 items from each category

Little Red Riding Hood
1. Read a book red cover or cover with a person wearing hoodie
2. Read a book about road trip or traveling long distance (Cross-country, outer space…)
3. Read a paranormal book (vampires, werewolves, aliens…)
4. Read a book about betrayal or cheating
5. Read a book that the character is seriously sick

Jack and the Beanstalk
1. Read a book that main character’s name starts with letter J or B
2. Read a book with trees, flowers, or green cover
3. Read a book about mythical creatures, such as Pegasus, giants, mermaids…
4. Read a book about poverty or character having financial problems
5. Read a book whose main character is having one or no parent

Three Little Pigs
1. Read a book about farmers or cowboys
2. Read a book about bullying
3. Read a book about family drama
4. Read a book with animal on the cover or whose character is a vegetarian
5. Read a dystophian book

Hansel and Gretel
1. Read a fantasy book (magic, time traveling or fallen angels)
2. Read a book with candy, cake or pie on the cover
3. Read a book about abusive relationship, whose character is being neglected or a book from a debut author
4. Read a book whose main character is brainy or nerdy or read a sci-fi book
5. Read a book about people surviving tragedy or in horror genre or a tear jerking book

The Ugly Duckling
1. Read a book with sea, river on the cover or a book with blue cover
2. Read a coming of age book
3. Read a book whose main character is being homeless or a suspense book
4. Read a book whose main character is having low self-esteem or is unattractive
5. Read a book whose main character is being adopted or having step-parent”