20 Years of Book Lists and Book of the Year

As is my New Year tradition, today I select which book I read in the past year as my Book of the Year. This is a book that I read for the first time in that year, though the book did not need to be published in that year.

I realized as I was making my selection that I have been keeping my book list and selecting a Book of the Year since 1995, making this the 20th list and the 20th Book of the Year.

In a word: Wow.

I look at the lists, see what I selected for Book of the Year, and it brings me right back. Not only to the books, but to what was happening in my life at the time. Like all life, some bad things are recalled, but luckily many good things are too.

I started the lists on pieces of paper and 3 x 5 cards. I still have all of them. It’s been fun keeping this list, and motivational as well. It motivates and inspires my own writing, while also prompting me to read more (going for 40 novels read in 2015).

Last year I added novels I listened to on Audible to the list. This year I may add non-fiction books, but I am trying to decide criteria around that. For example, in 2014 I read two great books on Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects. However, they are reference books. I would consider a true non-fiction book something like Seabiscuit (which is amazing). Also, if I do include non-fiction, I don’t think I would include them in the running for my Book of the Year, though I may select a best non-fiction book separately.

A fun problem to have, and I will post again with what I decide.

Finally, my 2014 Book of the Year goes to The Peripheral by William Gibson. 2014 was a great year for books, there were fifteen nominees for Book of the Year, and it was really a toss up of which book it would be until I read The Peripheral a few weeks ago.

Please see my The Reading and Listening Lists Featuring My Selections for Book of The Year page for my thoughts on The Peripheral, my 2014 reading and listening lists, and see what the other nominees for Book of the Year were.

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