Thursday, December 30, 2004

SF&F-related Books Read in 2004

Exactly one year ago, people were making New Year's resolutions. I was one of those hesitant to make resolutions, thinking that most likely, I wouldn't be capable of fulfilling those promises. So why bother making resolutions, right?

Of course now, one year wiser, I realize that if I don't set goals, then that's a sure way not to grow, not to become a better person. At least if you do set goals, you'll actually attempt in, and grow as as person in the process.

Thankfully, despite my mindset, I did make one resolution at the end of that year. You know, sometimes it can be frustrating when people ask you "how long does it take you to finish a book?" or "how many books do you read in a year?".

The first is difficult to answer because books come in different packages; I mean the time it'll take me to read The Little Prince is obviously shorter than the time it'll take me to read like, say, the Bible. And paperback books might all look alike to some of you but some paperbacks have pages ranging from 300 to 1000. It also depends on a lot of factors such as the writer's writing style (Finnegans Wake might take me forever but reading through a Terry Brooks novel is a breeze). And there's also the question of my potential. I mean I could theoretically finish reading a 1000-page novel in one day. That is assuming I don't have any work to do, and I spend my next ten hours doing nothing but reading. Hey, readers like to read because it's fun; having said that, we do it at our own leisure. In the end, it doesn't matter whether it takes us a day or a week or even a month to finish reading a book. As long as it gets finished, at a pace we are comfortable with, then we're happy. Readers aren't out to set a world-record in taking the least time to finish a novel. And of course, we have our own lives to get back to. Personally, I can't stand doing the same thing for four hours straight. And that involves reading as well.

As for the second question, well, readers don't read to hold a track record. We read because we want to. We might say we want to read more books in the following year, but it's an abstract number rather than a specific amount. The only time we keep track of the number of books we read in a year is probably if we read too few of them. If you go through a lot of books, who's keeping count? So my default answer to those who ask me how many books do I read in a year, I usually tell them I get to finish a book once a week on average (although obviously, there are times when weeks go by and I haven't picked up a book, while there are days when I finish as much as two books a day). So for their benefit, I made it a goal to keep track of the books I read. And made it my goal to read at least 52 books in a year (because there are 52 weeks in a year). So did I reach my goal? Judge for yourself. It's not a list of everything that I've read in the past year, but more of the books that I've read that are related to science-fiction, fantasy, horror, mystery, philosophy, etc.:

January (9)

The One Thousand Orcs

The Black Gryphon

The White Gryphon

Descent into the Depths of the Earth

Queen of the Demonweb Pits

Golden Fool



The Other Wind

February (7)

Legends II

The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque

Over Sea, Under Stone

The Dark is Rising


The Grey King

Silver on the Tree

March (3)

Into the Darkness

Sometimes the Magic Works

The Best of H.P. Lovecraft

April (12)

High Druid of Shannara: Jarka Ruus

Ender's Game

Talon of the Silver Hawk

Science Fiction: The Best of 2003


The Minority Report and Other Classic Stories by Philip K. Dick

Speaker for the Dead


Children of the Mind

Ender's Shadow

Shadow of the Hegemon

The Color of Magic

May (4)

The Light Fantastic

Equal Rites

The Truth


June (5)

Kushiel's Avatar

Flights: Extreme Visions of Fantasy

A Century of Great Suspense Stories

A Kiss of Shadows

A Caress of Twilight

July (9)


Perdido Street Station

I, Robot

The Caves of Steel

The Naked Sun

Shadow Puppets

Thomas the Rhymer

Year's Best Fantasy 4

The Elder Gods

August (7)

The Butlerian Jihad

The Machine Crusade

Ship of Magic

Mad Ship

Ship of Destiny

The Wee Free Men

The Postman

September (4)

The Riddle-Master of Hed

Heir of Sea and Fire

Harpist in the Wind

The Complete Compleat Enchanter

October (2)

Sophie's World

The Lone Drow

November (1)

Monstrous Regiment

December (2)

Fool's Fate
Children of the Rune


Post a Comment

<< Home