2014 Reading Challenge Completed

Completing my 2014 Goodreads Reading Challenge was not an easy feat. Of course, the name itself implies that it should be somewhat challenging. Duh.

It usually is, but this year,  I barely made it. To my defence, I had a busy year. I was running Gribook Accessories, started on a part-time job and moved half-way across the globe.

There were days – weeks? – when I barely read at all. The dry season started way back in late 2013, when I wrote about it: see The Bookworm Who Doesn’t Read. What helped is that I picked up small books, on a whim and read them. Perhaps an old classic I’ve not had the chance to read before (like Black Beauty), an Agatha Christie that kept me glued till the end or a silly romantic novel.

The main reason for catching up and completing my challenge is ridiculously simple, however. I had about a week of no internet. Works like magic, I tell you!

Now on to the list. Like I have it every year, it comes complete with my very own – ENTIRELY SUBJECTIVE – 5 star rating, with 5 stars being the best.

I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating: I read for pleasure, and my ratings reflect it. I’m well aware that there are some highly acclaimed titles on this list that I simply didn’t enjoy that much. (To illustrate just how subjective my ratings can get I need to tell you that 50% of a book’s success is determined by whether or not it has a happy ending. Yes, that shallow.)

We’re all very different as readers, so feel free to take my ratings into account or discard them.

The 60 books I read in 2014:



Agatha Christie

Non- fiction: 19 books

Fiction: 41 books

Kindle: 19 ebooks (Mostly hard copy books, second year in a row!)

Most read Author: Agatha Christie (again, with 6 books)

Book of the Year: Bread and Wine, by Shauna Niequist

Discovery of the Year: Madeleine L’Engle and P.G.Wodehouse (couldn’t decide on one)

While I have completed the challenge this year, I can’t say I’m awfully proud of it. I have had some inspiring reads, but less than most years, it seems. As for fiction, I have picked up a bunch of easy reads, and went for the comical mostly. Looking back at how stressful this past year was at times, I can see why.

I have re-read three books: To Kill a Mockingbird (3rd time!), Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage and Surrender to Love – the fact that I though it necessary to pick them up again speaks for how good they are.

The “out-of-my-comfort-zone” list this year included mostly my friend Anna’s recommendations: who is a very sophisticated and dear to my heart bookworm, and recommendations from other friends which included P.G.Wodehouse, Madeleine L’Engle and Michael Pollan (these are the authors, not the friends!)

For 2015, I aim to read 50 books and I predict that most will be on Kindle. I have a lot of great books on my Kindle and virtually no physical books with me. Already working on a list of books I must read next year, so suggestions are welcome!

How about you? What did your 2014 look like in books? 


8 thoughts on “2014 Reading Challenge Completed

  1. I won’t make my 36 books this year, but I will have read 30 until the end of the year (tomorrow, o my).

    It was a good year for reading, and I only started reading less when I began learning Korean. Then I saw my status going from “You’re one book ahead” … to “You’re on track” and then to…. “You’re five books behind”.

    Thank you for your blog. I find it inspiring! How long has it been since you began writing it?… Three years?

    Love, hubby.


    1. I’m sorry you didn’t complete your challenge, but I think that 30 years is more than most people read in a year so I’m still very proud of you. Someone needs to come up with a way to keep track of podcasts – you need it!

      love you, bestest!


  2. You are an inspiration.
    You inspire me.
    You encourage me.
    You challenge me.
    You stretch my book title list.

    Now I need to get my notebook and a pen because I have book titles to write down from your list. 😉

    And my dear, I accept the challenge this year. I may be too embarrassed to publicly publish my list (I tend to be behind on what books are new, well-read and/or on the best seller list. Smile.) but I will share it with you and some chosen others. 😉
    (Anna G., if you are reading this message, you shall be one of my “chosen others”. 🙂

    By the way, Elena, you are dearly missed.


    1. Heidi, that is great news – I look forward to hearing about the books you’re reading this year! No worries, I’m not terribly up-to-date with what’s new and hipster in the books department, and my lists always end up a chaotic kind of mix, but such is life. We’re not reading to impress!

      Curious to hear what books you added to your to read list!


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