It’s July. Among all the things I look forward to this month (including a well-deserved long weekend), is the book freak out tag. As much as I enjoy participating in the tag, I also enjoy reading all the posts from the book community. The graphs, the statistics, and last but not the least, the recommendations.
It has been a demanding year, both personally and professionally. As always, books have come to the rescue. I have been picky with my reading this year. Needless to say, it paid off and I read some excellent 5-star reads.
Read on as I share my reading statistics and book recommendations. A fair warning. This is going to be one long post.
I am a visual person and I love to see a graphical representation of how my reading has evolved. It is interesting to check out the genres I gravitated towards. Read on as I share the statistics of my January 2022 to June 2022 reads.
I have read 41 books this year up until now with only one DNF. My reading has been pretty balanced with no major peaks or troughs. Although the reading time did vary considerably. I have already surpassed my reading goal both at Goodreads and Blogchatter. The revised goal stands at 50 now.
One of my favorite graphs is the genres chart. It is as expected and a long shot from reading in phases a few years back. I explore more genres now, even those that are out of my comfort zone. And quite often, have been pleasantly surprised. Classics are missing this year and I hope to get back to them soon.
As always, this graph is not surprising at all. I have mostly read audiobooks this year. And some ebooks with text-to-speech for non-fiction. I don’t shy away from the digital format. Books are books, whatever the medium.
This graph was a bit surprising. I have been a moody reader this year and veered more towards new releases. Not that I mind it since there have been some excellent picks. There are quite a few backlist books on my TBR. It would be interesting to see how this looks by the year-end.
This year, I have made a conscious decision to support authors by purchasing their books, whenever possible, instead of ARCs and review copies. Due to work commitments, I have cut down on ARC requests and blog tours. The borrowed books still do make a sizable chunk since they are books from my subscriptions – Storytel ranking at the very top.
I have always attempted to diversify my reading. And although it is just below 50%, I am glad to have included more diverse books this year.
Mid-Year Freak Out Tag
The best books you’ve read so far in 2022
Although I have had limited time this year, it has been an excellent one for reading. I picked some great books that I enjoyed thoroughly. But some stood out for me and deserve all the hype. The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo By Taylor Jenkins Reid, She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan, Maybe You Should Talk To Someone By Lori Gottlieb, and Ace: What Asexuality Reveals About Desire, Society, and the Meaning of Sex by Angela Chen. Highly recommend each of them.
New releases you haven’t read yet but want to?
My TBR is bursting at the seams and there are quite a few new releases I want to read this year. At the top of my list is In the Language of Remembering: The Inheritance of Partition by Aanchal Malhotra since books around the partition always have a special place in my heart. Book Lovers by Emily Henry is another one that is highly recommended and I am keen on reading.
I have spent a lot of time second-guessing this. I rarely talk about books I do not finish. But then, this one needs to be called out.
I had been looking forward to reading Khabaar ever since I received the ARC from the publicist. But it was a major letdown. It suffered a similar “we be the best” that Onam in a Nightie did. What tipped me over the edge was the way 1984 Delhi anti-sikh riots were written in. Something so gruesome written about with such a callous manner with an utter lack of sensitivity. As someone who had lived the horrors of the genocide and lost family including a cousin who was still a teenager, I refused to continue reading or promote the book.
This is something that should never need to be spelled out. But dear authors, when you write about genocide, even in passing, please do so with sensitivity. And nothing, absolutely nothing justifies it.
The biggest surprise?
I have read a lot of retellings. And when it comes to Indian mythology, if the protagonist is the villain, the actions are often justified by the authors by painting the good all black. I expected somewhat the same from Valmiki’s Women by Anand Neelakantan but was pleasantly surprised that the author did not go the tried and tested way. Instead, we get a peek into the minds of characters such as Kaikeyi, Manthara, Surpanakha, and Tataka. And the repercussions of their actions. Do give it a read.
Favourite new author (debut or new to you)
Without a doubt, it has to be Debarati Mukhopadhyay. I recently reviewed her book Chronicles of the Lost Daughters. She has more translated books in the pipeline and I cannot wait to read them. I wish I had continued to learn to read Bengali and would have loved to read her books in the original language.
Book that made you cry
I am not an emotional reader and very rarely cry when reading a book. But The Reading List By Sara Nisha Adams left me overwhelmed. Particularly the story of Mukesh. I could relate a lot to it.
Book that made you happy
I veered towards a lot of light reads this year. And books that made me happy. All aside, Four Aunties And A Wedding By Jesse Q. Sutanto was a fun read. So were The Charm Offensive By Alison Cochrun and The Spanish Love Deception By Elena Armas. And I absolutely loved One For All By Lillie Lainoff.
What book(s) do you need to read by the end of the year?
Where do I start! There are so many books that I want to read. And the moody reader I am, I may not get to even half of them. That said, here are the books I do want to read this year.
The Stardust Thief by Chelsea Abdullah is at the top of the list. I have been hearing great things about The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri and Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao too. There are also a few non-fictions that I want to get to. False Allies by Manu S. Pillai, Read This to Get Smarter by Blair Imani, and The Story of My Life: An Afghan Girl on the Other Side of the Sky by Farah Ahmedi.
Favorite post you’ve written this year:
I have got back to writing more reviews this year. But the posts I write for the #CauseAChatter series always have my heart. I have lots more recommendations to share. Stay tuned.
- Gender Identity & India – LGBTQIA+ Memoirs and Personal Narratives
- Disability & India – Memoirs and Personal Narratives
- Gender Identity & India – Must-Read LGBTQIA+ Non-Fiction Books
It has been fun participating in the tag and sharing my favorites. What have been your favorite books this year? What are the ones you are looking forward to reading? Do share about them in the comments below.2022 Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag & Statistics @CindyAnnDSilva @nooranand #BlogaberryDazzle #BohoPonderings Click To Tweet
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