Wednesday, January 05, 2022

what's another year

Time for the end-of-year book and general blogging stats round-up. If asked to characterise 2021 in general terms I would probably respond by just recycling my valedictory verdict on 2020, as follows:

Well, here we are at the end of another year, one which has, on balance, sucked ass most egregiously

We weren't under quite such stringent pandemic restrictions in 2021 as we were for a good (well, not good exactly) chunk of 2020, but nonetheless slightly decreased scope for just swanning off may have led to increased opportunities for catching up on reading. That might go some way to explaining how 2021 ended up being the second-bookiest year on record, its totals of 30 books and 10359 pages both being second only to 2011 (33 and 10597 respectively), a year in which, let's not forget, I had no kids to wrangle and a three-week honeymoon ripe with opportunities for reading (yes, yes, and other stuff too, OY OY etc.).

Here are the usual charts (plus a new one):

A few highlights to savour: 
  • Longest book of the year was The Pope's Rhinoceros at 753 pages, shortest was Call For The Dead at 157 pages.
  • Average book length was just over 345 pages, second only to 2020's whopping 384. Unlike 2020 which featured six books of over 500 pages, 2021 featured only two, The Pope's Rhinoceros and The Lacuna. There were no fewer than eight of between 400 and 500 pages, though. 
  • While 2021's total of 69 blog posts was one more than 2020, and therefore the most since 2016, the number of non-book-related posts actually went down. The book-posts-as-a-percentage-of-total-posts figure was higher than it's ever been at 43.5%.
  • The new chart at the bottom is to assess the split between male and female authors, something I've been more conscious of following the ten-month gap (May 2019 to March 2020) between books by women that I observed here. 2021 turns out to be not terrible by historical standards in that regard, in that 9 out of the 30 books were by women. That 30% is the highest since 2016 and considerably better than the dark days of 2019 where only 2 out of 17 books were by women - the only year in which more than a third of the books I read were by women was 2013 (7 out of 19).

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