I read frequently — though not voraciously these days. About a book a week. Sometimes just two books a month. Not a crazy amount, but way more than the average American, I suppose.
I like to keep a record of what my interests are and what I do (part of why I have stuck with blogging) and I use an app called “StoryGraph” to track what I read, which I like better than Goodreads as it gives you these cool stats and pretty graphs. I apologize for not posting the graphs here. I’m feeling lazy today.
I recently looked at the graph of the average rankings I given the books I read (3.66/5 stars) and was delighted to see it was broken down by both genres and moods. I found the genre ranking very surprising and it’s a bit skewed because I had given one or two books of that genre very high rankings.
Here are the books I read most frequently.
- Historical Fiction
- Science Fiction
(There are 25 other genres I’ve read so I won’t list them all here, but the frequency in which I read Poetry, Comics, True Crime, Essays, and Middle-grade books are very low but I do occasionally read them).
Compare that to my genre ranking:
- Children’s 5.0 (for Alice in Wonderland)
- Comics 4.75 (For Hyperbole and a Half)
- Essays 4.75 (For Solutions and Other Problems)
- History 4.38 (for 21 Lessons for the 21st Century and Sapiens)
- Science 4.38 (same as above)
- Literary 4.19 (there are several as this is my second most read genre mostly to see what others think is good)
- Biography 4.13 (for Finding Me, and Solutions and other Problems)
- Dystopian 4.13 (there are several and I like this because it’s thought-provoking)
- Horror 4.08 (there are several that are very engrossing)
- Young Adult 4.08 (several that I like because they are easy to read)
This leads me to believe that if I am to get more pleasure out of reading perhaps I should start to read more of the genres that I rank highly. See my post about Why I Read. It’s not usually for pleasure.
So maybe fewer Classics (for now, though I think they are important to read), Historical Fiction, and Contemporary. I don’t think I’d like a lot of Children’s or Comics but you never know.
Definitely going to try to incorporate more non-fiction like History, Science, and Biographies. I notice when I read Dystopian, Horror, or Young Adult I fly through them. Probably the novels that I most enjoy.
Now for ranking by moods:
- Light-hearted 4.13
- Mysterious 3.88
- Dark 3.86
- Adventurous 3.8
- Tense 3.78
- Emotional 3.77
- Sad 3.75
- Funny 3.56
- Reflective 3.52
- Challenging 3.19
- Informative 3.0
- Hopeful 2.75
- Inspiring 2.75
Ha! I don’t like books that are hopeful or inspiring. That’s funny. It might be the skeptic in me.
What’s surprising to me is that I like lighthearted books so much because I rarely read them. Again, maybe a change I can make to make reading more pleasurable.
Though how do lighthearted books coincide with Dystopian and Horror? Are there lighthearted Dystopian and Horror novels? I doubt it. Though I did read “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” which I suppose was Horror, it was also hilarious.
What other stats can I include here?
My Most Read Authors (this is only the last two years): Margaret Atwood, John Steinbeck, Kazuo Ishiguro, Paulo Coehlo, Yuval Noah Harari, Collen Hoover, Jane Austen, and J.D. Salinger.
StoryGraph tells me that I mainly read “fiction books that are reflective, emotional, and dark” and typically chose medium-paced books that are 300-499 pages long.
What kind of books do you read? And which genres and moods do you like?