Welcome book snakes! Let’s talk about my personal reading statistics for 2021.
Before we get started, I just wanted to say that there is no set amount of books or genres or anything that a person needs to read in order to be a “real” reader.
If you feel like a reader, then you are one. Please, do not compare yourself to anyone.
Do what makes you happy.
Now, on to the book stats!
I read 45 books in 2021, including DNFs, and 38 books excluding DNFs. DNF stands for books that I Did Not Finish.
I DNF-ed 7 books, about one every other month, except for 2 in December, which was DNF December.
2 of those DNFs are books that I will come back to in the future.
I read 11,033 pages. With quite a wide range of pages read per month.
I didn’t even read in April, which is the month my baby was born.
As for how I read those 45 books. 18 or 40% were physical books. 18 or 40% were ebooks. 7 or 15.6% were a combination of formats. and 2 or 4.4% were audiobooks.
I really wasn’t in the mood for audiobooks this year, and having a baby makes physical reading quite difficult, so ebooks were my saving grace.
My top three genres read were science fiction at 33.3% or 15 books, fantasy at 24.4% or 11 books, and romance at 8.9% or 4 books.
Some other genres that I enjoyed include mythology, nonfiction, manga, paranormal, dystopia, historical fiction, and magical realism.
In 2021, I focused on shorter fiction like manga, graphic novels, and novellas. The length of book that I read the most of reflects that focus. I read 10 books that are under 100 pages and 7 books from 200 to 250 pages in length.
I am not obsessed with book length or page count, but I historically have preferred long books. 2021 was an outlier in this case. Hopefully, in the future I can get back to reading books with higher page counts. But, I am happy that I’ve been able to enjoy books of any length during a crazy year.
For being a person who tends to enjoy longer fiction more than shorter fiction, I did have a really good reading year in terms of quality despite the lack of big books.
I read 45% or 18 books that I gave 5 stars! That’s amazing. I gave the same number of books 4, 3, and 2 stars, which was 7 books or 17.5% for each. To my surprise, I only gave one book a 1 star rating this year, which is great! I don’t like giving low ratings, because like most people, I want to love every book I read. I am really happy with this year’s quality of books. I’d like to think that I’m getting better at picking up books that I am more likely to enjoy, and I’m better at avoiding books that I know I will not enjoy.
Another statistic that surprised me this year, is the intended audience of the books I read. I’m surprised that I read so much young adult in 2021, since I haven’t been enjoying YA as much in my 20s as I did in my teens. Nevertheless, I read 16 books or 36.4% YA books this year. As expected, I read majoritively adult books at 52.3% or 23 books. Additionally, I read one new adult, one children’s, and two middle grade books.
Overall, I’m very happy with that ratio. I love books despite the intended age demographic.
I am very shocked that I read so many books published within the same year I read them. I read 14 books published in 2021, which accounts for 32.6% of my reading. Usually the majority of the books I read are from the prior year, which is still my second largest category at 23.3% or 10 books. And, as expected, books published in 2019 is my third largest at 18.6% or 8 books.
Of the 45 books that I read, 24 or 53.3% were borrowed, 18 or 40% were books that I own, 2 were from Netgalley, and 1 was gifted to me by the author.
To no one’s surprise, I only reread one book, and it was The Prince and the Dressmaker. I love that graphic novel enough to reread it every year, even if I don’t usually reread books.
Speaking of graphic novels, I read 11 in 2021. I love graphic novels, so I usually read a ton, but it was a bit more difficult in 2021, since I no longer work at a library where I have access to all of the graphic novel new releases.
In 2021, I read 15 standalone novels which made up 33.3% of my reading for the year. I read from 30 series, even though I only finished 4. That is the most concerning statistic of the year, which has encouraged my loose goal for 2022 to focus more on finishing series.
I generally read any books that I’m interested in, but I am still interest in how diverse my reading tastes are. If I ever notice my reading leaning too heavily away from diversity, I will make an effort to correct it, but so far I am happy with my current trend.
It is important to note that if I couldn’t easily find information on the author or clearly define the representation in the books, I just assumed there wasn’t any. So, these statistics are not going to be super accurate.
As for LGBTQ+ representation, 31.7% or 13 of the books I read had a queer main character, 19.5% or 8 had some sort of queer representation present, and 48.8% or 20 of the books did not have any queer representation, or I wasn’t sure.
Of the queer books that I did read, 12 or 57.1% had gay rep, 5 or 23.8% had gender queer rep, 2 or 9.5% had bisexual rep, and 2 or 9.5% had asexual rep.
I am very happy with those statistics, and have found that the more diverse books I read, the better the reading year I have in terms of enjoyment and rating.
As far as the identities of the people who write the books I read, I am not great at paying attention to authors in a lot of detail. I generally remember their names, but not much else. I am not proud of this fact, so I’ve been making an effort to track information on the authors I read. I believe in reading diversely, so I am trying to be more conscious of the people who write the books I am reading.
With that said, I read 9 books by POC authors in 2021. Of those 9, 2 are Black, one is Hispanic, and 6 are Asian.
Once again, If I could not find information confirming the author’s identity, then I did not mark them as POC. Naturally, that means there are probably a few more POC authors I’ve read that I just couldn’t confirm.
Lastly, while talking about authors and diversity, it is important to talk about sexuality and gender identity. I make an active effort to read queer books by queer authors. I also avoid majoritively reading books my white male authors. I want to read more books by women and gender queer authors. And of course, I try to read books that are own voice experiences.
I read 28 books by women, 9 books by men, 5 books by a non-binary people, and 3 books by authors I could not find pronouns for. I am very happy with those numbers.
Of all the books I read, only 13 or 31.7% were by own voices authors.
I know I will get a lot of questions about what I use to track my reading statistics.
I use a spreadsheet that BookRoast creates each year. I also use her rating system called CAWPILE, which is how I structure my reviews.
Thank you so much for nerding out over reading stats with me!
How many books did you read in 2021? Did you have a good reading year?