2019: The Year in Books

Hi everyone!

Wow, can you believe that it is the end of 2019 already? I feel like the year has come and gone so quickly. It seems like just a short while ago when I was recounting my favourite books in 2018 and… now I’m already doing the same for 2019 haha.

2019 had its ups and downs when it came to reading. I had days when I inhaled book after book, and… days when I didn’t want to read a single book. Overall, I’ve come across books I enjoyed, books that taught me things and books that took me places I’ve never been before, so I would say that this year is a win!

Sign-Ups and Challenges

Goodreads Challenge

In terms of numbers, I’ve read 36 books in 2019. My original goal was 50 books this year, but I realized that I wasn’t going to meet this goal so I lowered my goal to 30 books… Which means that I met my revised goal right?? XD

Thirty-six books is the lowest number that I’ve read in the past few years (which have always been around 50 books per year) however 2019 has been a much busier year for me because of wedding and new job, so… I am going to stop beating myself up about it now haha 🙂

YARC 2019

I also participated in Year of Asian Reading Challenge, the goal of which is to read as many books as possible that are written by Asian authors!! It is hosted by the lovely CW, Lily, Shealea, and Vicky. My goal for this year was to read 10 books which would place me at the category of the Philippines Tarsier…… And I did it!! Here is my 10!

Now Time for Some Stats

As you guys know, I love spreadsheets so now’s the time for some stats haha. Looks like I’ve been gravitating towards fantasy (44%) and contemporary (28%) this year, although I occasionally dabble in graphic novels, historical fiction, and sci-fi.

Note that some books have elements of both fantasy and sci-fi (such as the Lunar Chronicles series and the Renegades series) but I’ve placed these series in the fantasy category.

I’ve read mostly young adult books (70%) despite my attempt to read some adult fiction (22%)… Hey, YA is just too addictive okay??

Looks like my favourite format is ebook (47%) although I’ve also listened to a lot of audiobooks (39%). Towards the end of the year though, I have to say that audiobooks are burning me out a bit so I’ll be reading much more ebooks going forward in 2020.

On average, I read 3 books every month. My reading is pretty variable, but safe to say in December there was a huge rush to meet my Goodreads reading goals hahaha 😛

My Top 10 Books of 2019

I also want to tell you guys about some of the most notable books from 2019. I’m finding it really difficult to rank them since they are all really different, sooo…. I’m going to choose my top picks in each genre or category.

Favourite YA Contemporary

Heartstopper was such an addictive and sweet YA romance that I read volumes 1 to 3 all in less than 24 hours haha. I am also SO impressed that Alice Oseman is not only a YA author but an artist as well??! Loved these graphic novels so much and can’t wait for more of the series to come out!!

I loved American Panda because of how relatable it was for me. Growing up as a Chinese Canadian, I went through some of the same emotional things as the MC did in this book. I really really wished that a book like this existed when I was graduating high school and entering university!

Favourite YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Cinder was a re-read that I absolutely loved. It was a fast-paced and action-packed book that I gulped down all in a few days. Loved the strong female MC and the great character chemistry!!

I loved Scythe and Thunderhead– such great world-building and MCs that I wanted to root for until the very end!

Favourite Adult Contemporary

There’s been a lot of hype about The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo but every ounce of it was worth it!!! I loved everything about this book and what it stood for. Loved Evelyn Hugo, who embodied everything I look for in a strong female MC. She was intelligent, passionate and knew what she wanted. Definitely recommended for all those who love a good contemporary read!

Favourite Adult Fantasy

I didn’t know what to expect going into this series, since I haven’t read any books by Fonda Lee before. But a few chapters into Jade City and I was hooked!! Jade War was even more epic! I loved this Asian-inspired fantasy. Although the series took place in cities and countries that were different from our own, I loved that the themes echoed some of my experiences as an Asian Canadian.

Favourite MG

This year was my first foray into the world of Middle Grade fiction. To be honest, I underestimated this category of fiction because…. well, I’m more than twice the age of the intended target audience of these books!! But still I really ended up enjoying the books that I’ve picked up.

Other Words for Home was a heartfelt contemporary story that spoke about a girl leaving war-torn Syria for America, and it was all written in verse. Usually I try to avoid books about real-life politics but I really really loved this book. There are many terrifying things going on in the world, but I loved how the simple language and beautiful poetry brought this story to life in a way that middle graders could understand.

Lintang and the Pirate Queen was a fantasy novel about magical creatures and pirate ships. When I was reading the story, I was captivated by the whimsical feel of the story and the exotic setting. It reminded me of reading Harry Potter for the first time!

How was your 2019 year in books? Which were your favourites? Did you gravitate towards one genre or book format more than others?

Photo by Dimitri Iakymuk on Unsplash

24 Replies to “2019: The Year in Books”

  1. I did the Goodreads challenge for the first time this year. I set a modest 40 books and finished 46! I think I will stick with 40 again for 2020. American Panda was one of my YA faves. All the best to you for 2020 Sophia!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hello Lisa!! That’s awesome that you’ve read 46 books!! I think I will set a goal of 40 books for 2020 🙂 Glad that you liked American Panda as well. Wishing you all the best for 2020!


  2. Ahh I’m happy you got to meet your revised goodreads goal, Sophie and I love so many of your favorites here, too! I really enjoyed American Panda, loved Heartstopper and of course Evelyn Hugo, what a stunning read, still mindblown about it, to be honest ahah.
    I hope you’ll have a fantastic reading year in 2020!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hello Sophie!! I loved hearing about your reading stats and it has been so interesting to read about!! 😊
    I think you did really well with your reading goals, especially as you had so many other things going on so you should be proud of yourself!!
    Well done on the YARC, I was making my list of books for the 2020 challenge and I’m very excited 🎉
    I’m so glad you enjoyed American Panda!! It was a beautiful story.
    I really need to read The Heartstopper books as I’ve heard nothing but good things !! 😊
    I’m so excited to pick up Jade City soon!! 😍
    I hope you have a wondeful reading year in 2020!! 💛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hope that you’ll enjoy The Heartstopper series. I literally read the first three volumes in one or two sittings haha. They are so addictive and effortless to read 🙂
      Jade City was definitely a great read for me. It is a fairly heavy read but packed with great characters and worldbuilding. Hope that you will enjoy it 🙂
      Hope that you have a wonderful 2020 too!

      Liked by 1 person

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