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The year is half over (I think everyone is breathing a huge sigh of relief — what a crappy year so far) so I thought I’d check in on my 2020 reading challenge.

In 2019 I set a goal for three books a month, 36 total. I think I ended up at 40.

This year I set a goal of 45 books. I knew my summer schedule would be a little lighter, and that open time would continue into the fall with my sabbatical from teaching. Even with more open time, I thought 48 books (4 a month, or one a week) might be a little ambitious.

*(I see the average number of books pledged in 2020 is 58. How on earth is that done!? If you read more than one book a week, please let me know how you do that!)

The year is half over and I’m at 20 books, so I’m slightly behind schedule. You’d think with a pandemic and more time at home I would have blasted through a lot of books in the past three months. But like a lot of people, I found my concentration lacking. Plus, I was finishing out a spring semester online and the semester seemed busier than ever.

My favorite book so far is…

Wait for it! Let’s take a look at a couple of stats for these 20 books:

  • 13 nonfiction/7 fiction
  • 7 print/6 audio/7 Kindle

This is in line with last year. I tend to skew more toward nonfiction, and my blend of print/audio/Kindle is pretty even.

OK, now to my favorites. I’ll choose two — one for fiction, one for nonfiction.

Hands-down my favorite novel this year is Brit Bennett’s The Vanishing Half. It will be very difficult to find a better novel this year. Perhaps Bennett’s The Mothers — that’s next on my list.

My favorite nonfiction book? This is hard to choose. It’s a slim margin, but I’ll give the prize to Hidden Valley Road. A close second is Poisoner in Chief: Sidney Gottlieb and the CIA Search for Mind Control.

How’s your reading going in 2020?