85 books! She read 85 books? That must be all she does day and night.
Is that what you’re thinking?
Well, you’re not entirely wrong. I did get a little obsessed with book reading last year. Here’s the story of how it happened.
How It All Began
I joined Goodreads somewhere towards the end of 2014 and really took to it. For a bookworm like me, it was fun to keep a record of my reading, watch what my friends were onto and get recommendations based on my preferences.
Soon after 2015 began, Goodreads challenged me to set a target for the year for myself. Having recently dropped my job and having moved to Africa, where time was at my disposal, for the first time in my life I could indulge myself in my favourite hobby with no holds barred. So I set myself a tough target of reading a 100 books in 2015; tough even for someone with a lot of time on hands, if you think about it as two books a week.
Aim for the Moon, You May Fall Among the Stars
That is how the saying goes. I aimed for an ambitious 100 and did manage to reach a proud 85.
Goodreads was kind to offer an analysis of my year’s reading and tells me that the 85 books I read amounted to a total of 34,918 pages. That is, an average of 411 pages per book.
What Did I Read?
I was often tempted to pick up light reads, merely to complete my target, but I would resist such urges. I instead, read a wide variety of works.
I wandered through post-apocalyptic dystopian worlds in terror and delight, was pained at the ghastly events of the Holocaust, trekked across the American wilds with a troubled hiker, lived through five generations of Moghul kings, watched the famous Julius Caesar grow from a little boy into a fearful warrior, went on a poignant journey to 17th century Scotland with a lady lost in time-travel and witnessed and solved murder mysteries. Phew! What a year!
So Am I Writer or a Reader?
I am a dreamer; and hence, both, a reader and a writer.
I started reading at a very tender age, and discovered that little gave me more happiness than being tucked away in a corner with a book in my hands. It was that initiation into the world of fantasy that eventually led me to craft my own stories in my head.
When I read, I am not just a reader, but a writer as well. I constantly seek to learn from other successful writers, to understand how they build characters, design plot, experiment with language.
Which of Those 85 Books Would I Recommend?
While some books I read let me down, some surprised me and some far surpassed my expectations. Sifting through the lot, I have put together a list of The 10 Best Books I Read in 2015. You may just find something you’d love to pick up for yourself!
“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies
The man who never reads lives only one”
-George R.R. Martin
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Piyushi Dhir is the author of 'In Search of Love', 'I'm Yours, The Next Time', 'Silent Promises' and 'Enmeshed Evermore'. She is a contributor in 'Nineteen Tales of COVID-19', a collection of short stories. A voracious reader, a keen traveler, a businesswoman and a mom, Piyushi currently resides in Canada. A nomad at heart, she loves to discover new places and capture the hues of life with her pen.