2020 is here and it’s already the first weekend. Well, I am still trying to figure out my reading trajectory for the year.
So, at first, let me share my journey with books in 2019 based on what Goodreads tells me…It says I completed 49 books which is good, if not momentous I suppose. ‘52 books in 52 weeks’ would have been ideal but then life isn’t that perfect!
I think apart from the numbers, the year 2019 made me a disciplined reader. Before 2019, I had a sort of hiccup when it came to certain books which I felt killed me to boredom and I would just stop mid-way. Such half-read, half-hearted attempts are still lying on my bookshelf.
So, last year, I promised to complete every book I would start. And, amazingly when I turned to the last page of ‘American Gods’ by Neil Gaiman, I felt happy. Yes, many people swear by Neil Gaiman’s writing but I had a difficult time reading ‘American Gods’ and even, ‘Neverwhere’. Probably, ‘Urban Fantasy’ is just not my genre. But, then it had also happened to me while reading ‘Godan’ by Munshi Premchand (the English translated version)! I am not sure if this is the reader’s block; sometimes I just get stuck and cannot find a way forward. Hopefully, with my fingers crossed, I can continue completing the books I pick up to read.
My Reading Goals for 2020
Reading 12 Classics in 12 months
I am dividing classics into two parts – Charles Dickens and Others.
I had stumbled upon a reading challenge in mid-2019 on Goodreads which for some reason I could not find this year. The reading challenge entailed reading 12 Charles Dickens books in the year and since then, I wished to do this in 2020. But, perhaps a shorter version with 6 books a year is more practical!!
I remember reading ‘Great Expectations’ and ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ back in school but all these years, I could never revisit. Last year when my parents shifted the house, they packed some of my old books and send it across. In that box, I found my adorably aging Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities (ofcourse, alongwith Jane Eyre and Emma which I do intend to revisit someday) and the love for re-reading Classics was kindled.
I decided to start the love affair with Charles Dickens on Christmas when I posted the write-up on ‘A Christmas Carol’. Unimaginably, before ‘A Christmas Carol’, I had tried reading ‘The Lamplighter’, the short story by Charles Dickens but couldn’t go beyond the first 2 pages. I hope ‘A Christmas Carol’ broke the jinx and now I can pursue reading Charles Dickens undisturbed.
In the others category, I have questions in place of a list.
- Will I be able to read Ulysses by James Joyce this year?
- Second, the same question on ‘A Portrait of a Lady’ by Henry James?
- And, then try 4 re-reads!
Thrillers/ Murder Mystery
Again something that I am not very fond of, yeah thrillers and murder mysteries have not been my cup of tea, exactly the way I shy away from book series. But, this year I pledge to read a lot of Agatha Christie and Stephen King. I think I have read Agatha Christie so long back that I cannot even remember the book titles. Yeah, quite shameful but that was also the time I was under pressure to read for exams!
Dan Brown fixation/ fascination
Yeah, ever since I read ‘The Lost Symbol’, I felt the urge to read as many books of Dan Brown as possible. And, then in a sprint, I went and bought Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons, Deception Point and Origin. I may be running behind my times but then 2020 makes me nostalgic, wanting me to go back to the reading stuff that excited me early in my reading journey.
I have been hearing people recommend Poonachi by Perumal Murugan and I keep it aside for some other book at the moment. Similarly, there are some really wonderful books by Indian authors that I am yet to explore, so I would like to squeeze in some of these books into my TBR.
Well, till last year, my fixation was for Booker Prize and other literary award-winning books which I think I am shedding this year. I will go by the flow, on what makes me happy and not tie myself down within a certain genre.
Do share you ‘Reading Goals’ with me in the comments section. Would love to know how you intend to fill 2020 with books!