The 2015 Reading List

Last year, I read fifty books, but only about fifteen of those were actually from my 2014 reading list. I learned a lot about making reading lists, though.

  1. Binge reading series works for me.
  2. …but only if I actually enjoy the author.
  3. Two year intervals between the volumes of a classic is too long of a wait.
  4. My reading tastes have gotten really picky. 😥
  5. When adding really long books to the list, be sure to add some shorter books, too.
  6. Mix up the genres, or you’ll find yourself bored.
  7. Anthologies are a mixed bag, and are better when multi-theme and/or multi-author.

I had a lot of trouble with Zelazny’s Book of Amber series this year, though I think it was mostly due to expectation. It is touted so highly that I was expecting much more than a 1970s, 1980s science fiction. I think if I had read it in my teens, I would have liked it a lot more. But reading it taught me a lot about my own tastes, and also that I shouldn’t go into a book with expectations, good or bad.

I also learned that I have to give myself a lot more time for collected works, as with Poe and Zelazny, my method for reviewing took up a great deal of time, and highlighting passages in my Kindle wasn’t adequate enough for the review stage. I also had technology failure, with my Kindle erasing notes and highlights through the entire Harry Potter series and other books, which left me reading a lot without reviewing.

Finally, I also found out I like reviewing whole series, and standalone books that actually struck a chord with me in one way or another. Writing reviews for things that left me feeling lukewarm (Project Unicorn) were passed over to fit another book into the schedule, and I think that’s a policy I’ll have to pick up for the coming year as well, since I have a lot of looooong books on my list again. I did finish every book I started, though, so that was good.

In any case, here are the books I hope to get under my belt in 2015, complete with summaries in the captions:

The Reading List: 2015

What books are you looking forward to reading this year? What were your favorite books of 2014? If you end up making a blog post, use the tag #2015reads and ping me back (use this post’s URL somewhere in your own blog). I want to see what everyone else has on their shelf!

13 thoughts on “The 2015 Reading List

    • Alex Hurst says:

      I’ve read the first book and loved it. Vlad had a more charismatic narrative voice than Corwin; probably due to the humor and the slightly darker story he was immersed in. Also, there’s just a lot more character development going on in Brust’s novels, whereas Zelazny’s Amber series was very much plot-driven, with only the main characters (and Random) changing.


    • Alex Hurst says:

      I’ll be sure to check out your blog post as soon as I comment here, but I agree! I couldn’t believe how much was packed into the first volume, but I’ve honestly been afraid to continue because my teacher warned me is gets very, very sad.

      I’ll be rereading from the first volume again this year because I want to be able to do the whole series on the blog, for the sake of completion. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Martha Kennedy says:

        I didn’t find it sad. We already know from the beginning what will happen to Bao-Yu who is really a piece of the sky, anyway! It truly has the most beautifully developed characters and until you read all of it you will not know, so don’t be afraid! I look forward very much to reading your blog as you go along.


  1. strangepegs says:

    Lawhead is great, one of my favorite authors; however, he doesn’t always deliver. The Robin Hood series is one of those. Hood and Scarlet are great, but he lost his mojo when he got to Tuck, so just be prepared.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Alex Hurst says:

      I’ll keep that in mind. I put it on the list because I’ve been wanting to read a modern retelling of Robin Hood (too many classics on the list this year, and I’m pretty sure Hood started out as an oral tale, so there’s technically no ‘original’). Lowering the expectations then, haha.What is your favorite book by him?


      • strangepegs says:

        Byzantium is probably my favorite thing by him, but his Pendragon Cycle is probably the best King Arthur story I’ve read. The only problem with it is that he originally wrote it as a trilogy –the first three are great — then went back and added two more. I remember book 4 as being less than good (I think it was 4, at any rate). There’s a 6th book that’s not technically part of the cycle that deal with the reincarnation of Arthur in the future, and I really enjoyed that one, too.


  2. peakperspective says:

    Although we don’t have an identical list, Alex, I’d say that about 1/3 of your titles are either a duplicate of mine, or I’ve already read. (I adored the Drunken Botanist and Night Circus.) The exciting part, is always coming to see what you recommend. And for many of them, I look forward to your reviews. Happy reading and happy reviewing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Alex Hurst says:

      I’ve been wanting to read Stewart’s books ever since I saw them in a corner store window, and can’t wait to sink my teeth in. 😀 Night Circus had a lot of mixed reviews, so I’m glad you can recommend it… that gets me excited to read it again. Man… so many books, too little time!!!

      Happy New Year to you, and happy reading, as well!


  3. Lissa Clouser says:

    I don’t even attempt to make a reading list anymore because my tastes change all the time. But over the last few months I did sort out a giant stack of things I want to read that I already own, so I’m trying to pick from that and only occasionally get new things from the library too. I got the Drunken Botanist for a friend last year, and another friend is reading What If now. They have great things to say about both books. And I got all 5 volumes of Story of the Stone for Christmas (at last!) though I’m honestly not sure if I will read them all before year end or not. We’ll see!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Alex Hurst says:

      They’re pretty dense books. Entertaining, and lovely, but dense. I’d recommend reading a couple of light reads before tackling Stone, haha. 😉


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