Discussion: 2014 Reading Update

A discussion with P.E. and Mari.

We're more than halfway through 2014 and I think it's the perfect time to look through the books we've read, and reflect on our reading experiences thus far. So, let's begin with some general thoughts: what have you thought of 2014 so far, Mari?

2014 has not been kind to me thus far when it comes to reading time. Half of it is school the other half is my obsession with the internet and tv shows. Still, I managed to read 8 books which is kind of pitiful but I enjoyed each book and have distinct memories of having sat down and read them. I think what stands out to me most this year is the variety I'm reading. For example, I found my place in One Piece the manga that I've been reading slowly for the past 5 years. I'm also slowly working my way through some adult literature. All in all I think I've slowed down and kind of found my comfortable reading niche. How about you?

I've read 18 books thus far, and I guess I'm not like you because several of them have been complete disappointments. I feel like this Goodreads screenshot of my books so far is pretty indicative. 

It's not like I've had a bad year so far, but I've had a little trouble finding above average reads. At least there haven't been too many books I despised (read: 1 star) either! Most have been about 2 stars, which says something about either my expectations and the restless feeling I get when I read, or that I need to stop going for the faster, lighter books which is pretty much all of the two star books. 

I tend to have a good sense of the books that I wont like and so I steer away but generally I end up with a few one star read every year. I've been lucky so far this year, most of the books I've read are 4 and 5 star reads but I think that has a lot to do with the fact that I will not read a book that I am not 85% sure I will like. 
I'm currently doing the 60 books challenge and am 8 books behind. I don't think completing the challenge will be a problem as I still have hope for some summer reading. Can't wait for that.

Okay, let's be more positive: what's your favourite book you've read so far this year? (You can probably guess mine fairly easily.)

Mines is definitely, Mistress of Rome. I loved every second of it (review) and it was perfect for my gladiator/history/rome craving. I plan on reading the follow up soon as well. If you love drama, history, political intrigue, romance and gladiators this book is for you. I'm guessing that it's Red Rising for you but  I'll lets you tell us yourself. Also do you have any goals for your reading?

You guessed right. I even told my mom she had to read it. Ugh I want to reread it because I think I'll enjoy it even more the second time around. I think I want to buy it. You know I only buy all time favourites. I feel like I'm over hyping it up, and then I think of what happened and my mind goes to HOLY SHIT THAT WAS AWESOME and I just bask in this beautiful cloud of Red Rising fangirlism. 

In terms of reading goals, I said 100. I don't if I'll get there, but you never know, eh? And I'm only 8 books behind! Beyond that, I really want to challenge myself with what I read. I think I'm leaning towards more thematic reads, compared to story based reads. Is that weird?

Not at all. Everyone finds their niche as they read and it's great to see that you are doing so. I think for me, I want to continue reading from a variety of books. I especially want to read some more classics, both modern and historical. The ultimate long-term goal would be to become more 'well read'.

Definitely working towards exploring the world of books as a whole and trying different types of books. I read a really cool comment a while ago that was saying publishers have clamped down on the number of formulaic books they want, and their standards for YA in particular have gotten much higher, so in a few years, we should be seeing a higher quality of YA (theoretically). What do you think of the YA 2014 releases so far? Have you read any?

I like that. I've been noticing a lot of similar trends in books and sometimes they are nice but too many of the same thing gets old pretty quickly. Hence, I'm really excited to see a higher standard of literature. As for YA 2014 releases I've read one novel and one novella, Erased by Jennifer Rush and Poison Dance by Livia Blackburne, both of which were really good. As for other YA 2014 reads I think there is definitely a huge selection. I remember a time when YA was taken over by vampires, werewolves, and angels. The book stores might as well have had shelves for each theme. That seems to have stopped and I look forward to reading many different and unique stories.

Seeing as I was an enormous fan of paranormal, I never minded that. I've read five books for 2014, one for review. Cruel Beauty, Red Rising, The Tyrant's Daughter, Salvage, and How I Got Skinny, Famous, And Fell Madly in Love. I liked the first two, didn't like the third, thought the fourth and fifth were good enough. So really, 2014 has been all over the map for me. 

How has 2014 been for you, reading wise?


  1. Cool to see snapshots of both of your reading experiences so far this year! 2014 has been pretty good to us so far (POINTE! DREAMS OF GODS AND MONSTERS!) and there's still more greatness to come (BOOK 3 IN THE RAVEN CYCLE! RUIN AND RISING!). ;D

    1. I've seen Pointe around but haven't read it yet! That should change. I'm thinking of giving Smoke & Bone another shot too. (I actually didn't like the first, but I'm reconsidering!) AND OMG I'm so psyched for the next Raven cycle book! And Ruin and Rising looks SO good too. There is still a lot to look forward to!


  2. 2014 has been pretty decent for me, reading-wise, I've read many great books, and very few I've had to postpone... and there are so many great ones still to come! (Raven Boys 3!!!).

    1. Glad you're enjoying it! And I'm always looking forward to more Gansey.



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