I completed 2015 by reading 64 books. There were some enjoyable highlights.
Science Fiction "Forge of God" and "Anvil of Stars" by Greg Bear are in the classic science fiction mold. In addition, Arthur C. Clarke's 2001: Space Odyssey and Rendezvous with Rama were fascinating. First time reads for all of those. Spent time re-reading some old favorites. Three of Isaac Asimov's Foundation books, and two of Frank Herbert's original Dune Chronicle's book. Also read some classic Robert Heinlein, The Puppet Masters and The Red Planet. I probably read them as a teen, but don't really remember. There were both fun, but not too serious.
Finally got to read Phillip K. Dick's, Do Android Dream of Electric Sheep. Read Jurassic Park for the first time. Found the movie followed the book quite closely. Ray Bradbury's "The Martian Chronicles" did not really resonate with me, although there were parts that were good. Finally, Cloud Atlas with David Mitchell, was very good.
Classics I always try to throw in some classics on my reading list. 2015 included... Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol (had seen so many different TV versions that it was kind of ruined for me).
Alexandre Dumas - The Count of Monte Cristo. It was awesome.
Erich Maria Remarque - All Quiet on the Western Front. Sad, but good. It has piqued my interest about World War I.
Louis de Bernieres - Captain Corelli's Mandolin - highly recommend, it was great.
Louis L'Amour - Last of the Breed... not his typical western, but about a U.S. pilot downed in cold war USSR. Robert Ludlum - The Road to Gandolfo. A little bit crazy. Terry Pratchett - Raising Steam. Discworld is always amusing. Steven Manchester - The Rockin' Chair. Heart warming. C.S. Forester - Hornblower and the Hotspur. Perfect companion to the Patrick O'Brien Aubrey-Maturin novels. John Scalzi - Agent to the Stars - Hilarious.
I do read books by new unproven authors. For the most part, I give those folks a pass if the writing is not up to par since they are starting out in their writing career. The books I mark as disappointments are ones that came highly recommended or I had expectations of the book being pretty good.
H.G. Wells - The Invisible Man. It was on my long time wish list, but it didn't do anything for me. L.E. Modesitt, Jr. - The Towers Of The Sunset. I really enjoyed the first Saga of Recluce book. So, I guess my expectations were a little too high. I didn't think this one equaled the first. Gillian Flynn - Gone Girl - Good story, but so loaded with profanity that it ruined it for me.
64 books in 2015 was down from my all time 2014 high of 80 books. But, then I had more opportunities for reading in 2014, so that will probably remain a record for a while. Here are the numbers for the last five years.
- 2011 52
- 2012 57
- 2013 62
- 2014 80
- 2015 64