Maira's Books

In January of 2005 I started this blog as a record of books I’ve read as I was afraid I would forget what I have read. I have often referred back to my own blog to remember a book's contents or see what I have read by an author. I have enjoyed passing my books on to friends or recommending books to read. I know I have missed recording some, but in general I try to keep up with what I have read or listened to.

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Location: Kalamazoo, MI, United States

I am a librarian at Waldo Library at Western Michigan University.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

2012 Review

This has not been the greatest reading year. The number of books I have read is down - 45 compared to an average of over 60 per year since I started keeping this blog. Partially it has been a very busy year with less time to read, especially this summer, less long distance trips when I usually listen to books, and I also believe I have recorded less of the books I actually read. I know I read a bunch of children's books in Latvia which I did not record. If I find some, I might add them. Plus I have started quite a few I haven't finished.

No book stands out as exceptional this year. I still have to read the latest books of some of my favorite authors - Kingsolver and Erdrich, but I haven't seen them in audio. When I was in Latvia over the summer, I started reading magazines and professional literature in Latvian. I actually read (or recorded) six books that I have read in Latvian this year. One of my favorite books was Anda Lice's Pateikt un pateikties, a biographical book which was made even more relevant by meeting the author and visiting the area where she grew up and now resides.

My other favorites were again mostly historical fiction books: Bliss Remembered (1936 Olympics), Dovekeepers (First century Jerusalem and Masada), Shadow of Night (1590 England and Prague)  Mission to Paris (1938 Europe), The Good Dream (Eastern Tennessee in the 1950's) and The Tenderness of Wolves (mid 19th cent Canada). Into the Beautiful North was a contemporary fiction book about Mexicans crossing the border and Home Front about a female soldier in Iraq and PTSD, while American Creation was a good non-fiction book about the first 30 years of the U.S.

I ended reading 3 books by Baldacci, because he was one of the few American authors I could find in European bookstores. Only 3 books by Nora Roberts this year (one double) and none by JD Robb. Two by Kristin Hannah.

Again, most of my reading was of recently published books - 27 from the last three years, and half of the rest were still post 2000. I did read a couple of classics - Pushkin's Eugene Onegin (in Latvian) and DuMaurier's Rebecca.

I do not apologize for my not necessarily intellectual reading choices. I read for various reasons - to relax, be entertained, live in another world for a while, to learn about other people, cultures, historical times. Sometimes I read to be aware of what others are reading. As a librarian I feel I need to understand different types of genres and to be on top of at least certain trends.

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