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Pete's totally going to read TBR this year

2019 Category Challenge

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Nov 2, 2018, 5:43am Top

Or at least some of it

As posted in the 2018 gorup I'm going to read 5 books off the TBR per month - I'll probably try to theme each month too but just laying this down for now and will think about it closer to the end of 2018.

Nov 2, 2018, 5:45am Top

The keeping score post

Edited: Sep 17, 2019, 4:44am Top

My TBR baseline at the start of 2018 was 473 books

252 Fiction books
1 Graphic Novel
181 Non-Fiction
4 poetry books
2 plays
33 short story collections

My TBR baseline at the start of 2019 is 337 books (not counting e-books)

211 Fiction books
0 Graphic Novel
75 Non-Fiction
2 poetry books
0 plays
48 short story collections

Dec 5, 2018, 1:52pm Top

Happy new thread! Seems like quite a few of us are making the pledge to read what we already own for 2019.

Dec 13, 2018, 4:52pm Top

I also have very big TBR list but then I have had a few decades to accumulate them.

I hope you manage to get yours down a bit next year.

Dec 17, 2018, 8:39am Top

Looking at my book buying stats i've bought more books in 2018 than I've read :-S I'm going to have to change that in 2019!

Dec 17, 2018, 6:22pm Top

Good luck! At least you will have plenty of books to choose from ;)

Dec 18, 2018, 4:33am Top

>18 psutto: Good luck with that! I fail miserably, every year. But I love knowing that I'll never run out of stuff to read!

Edited: Jan 7, 2019, 3:34pm Top

Good luck with your challenge - I've been on the 'wrong' side of that equation for a few years now...

Dec 22, 2018, 3:48am Top

I do not think there will ever be a year where my TBR is not bigger than at the beginning of the year!
As is the catch cry of all readers, too many books, too little time!
Look forward to seeing what you are reading.

Dec 27, 2018, 12:37pm Top

OK so not counting e-books (which is a bit cheaty but hey it's my challenge and the e-books don't weigh on my mind - and my shelves) My TBR stands at 337 as of today.

I'm currently reading a book I got for Xmas - so that will come off the 2018 challenge if I finish it by the 1st (which I probably will)

My birthday is at the beginning of January so I'll be adding a few books to the books I acquired this month almost immediately...

So similar to 2018 I'm going to prioritise them - Hardbacks and books by woman and BAME writers then books acquired prior to 2018

I have 17 hardbacks...

I have 48 short story books. I haven't recorded how many of the books I read n 2018 were short story books, but I shall in 2019. Usually I read 3 short stories in between books and 3 essays/chapters of 'bitty' Non-fiction books. I feel I may have some short story books on the shelves for a long time!

64 books by women - so that's not a great ratio...

Dec 27, 2018, 12:39pm Top

Good luck with your 2019 reading!

Dec 28, 2018, 12:17pm Top

>23 psutto: - I like you thinking and can relate to the idea that e-books don't weigh on your mind or your shelves like the print books do!

Dec 31, 2018, 5:35am Top

So last day of the year - just finished a book I got for Xmas (see the 2018 challenge) so I'll be starting tomorrow with a clean slate. Potentially getting another Xmas present today, seeing friends. Next time I check in I'll probably be another year older and adding January books that have been acquired...

Happy New Year! :-)

Dec 31, 2018, 6:45am Top

Happy New Year!

Dec 31, 2018, 9:07am Top

Nice to see you here and have a Happy Birthday.

Dec 31, 2018, 11:49am Top

Dec 31, 2018, 2:56pm Top

Edited: Jan 2, 2019, 2:08pm Top

You are so lucky to get books as Christmas and birthday gifts. My family never buy me books believing that I already own or have read them.

Happy New Year!

Jan 2, 2019, 6:51pm Top

Happy new year and happy birthday when it comes! :)

Jan 3, 2019, 8:43am Top

Nice stash!

Jan 3, 2019, 10:32am Top

Happy New Year and Happy Birthday! Nice haul!

Jan 3, 2019, 5:40pm Top

Happy birthday!

Jan 5, 2019, 12:25pm Top

Books read -

Tea with the black dragon

This is a delightful, but brief tale about a black dragon that has taken on human form and who decides to help a human woman find her daughter. There's some quaint 1980's computer stuff too. I really liked MacAvoy's Damiano series when I was a teenager and getting to visit another of her worlds was a delight, reminding me that I should track down more of her work. I see on Wikipedia that she has just started writing again after a long illness (talking about a 20 year hiatus here) - I hope to catch up with the rest of her early (80'2, 90's ) stuff and the newer work

The land of somewhere safe

I met Hal at an event and he kindly gave me some writerly feedback on an early draft of my own novel seven deadly swords so I returned the favour on an RPG he's been writing (I used to edit for a RPG company) in the Scruffian universe. The Scruffian tales are full of rapier wordsmithery and invention and are a lot of fun - I'd recommend them. This particular episode I picked up at FantasyCon from a NewCon Press launch and signed by the man himself. It's a WW2 tale involving a faerie kingdom, a Nazi gryphon, a dragon called spitfire and a secret seven-esque cast of scruffs and scallywags. A really fun adventure. If you'd like to explore the Scruffian 'verse I'd start with A Scruffian Primer

Jan 5, 2019, 12:58pm Top

Great to see you back for another year of the Challenge, Pete. I think many of us here are going to be working on clearing our own shelves this year. I can't put my e-books out of my mind as I am afraid that my Kindles are going to explod from the volume I have crammed on them!

Jan 6, 2019, 8:33am Top

Yeah, my Kindle books probably double the TBR! But a lot of them come from ARCs and bundled deals rather than books I was, at the point of purchase, desperate to read - so more ignorable than the ones making my bookshelves groan :-o

Another read book - the art of possibility this was recommended to me as a “good book for creativity” but really it’s full of vague aspirational self-help stuff. There’s an entire chapter on how not taking yourself seriously can improve your life and another in accepting things the way they are. So nope not for me

Jan 18, 2019, 7:55am Top

Going to do a monthly wrap up I think - have read 10 books so far this year

Feb 1, 2019, 8:23am Top

I'm currently doing a 7 day blog tour for my book Seven Deadly Swords if anyone's interested - day 3 is a nice (and balanced) review: https://mbc84blog.wordpress.com/2019/02/01/seven-deadly-swords-peter-sutton-love...

you can see the whole tour if you're on Twitter: LoveBooksGroup #SevenDeadlySwords #blogtour

Feb 1, 2019, 8:32am Top

January - 19 books read
9 of those were acquired in 2019 out of 17 books that were acquired
So first month is running to stand still - if I'd read all the books that came in I'd have reduced the TBR by 2
February - must do better!

Feb 1, 2019, 10:55am Top

Congratulations on the new book!

Feb 1, 2019, 5:50pm Top

Congrats on the new book, Pete. I picked up an e-copy today and look forward to reading it in the near future.

Feb 1, 2019, 6:43pm Top

Woo hoo, blog tour! :)

Feb 7, 2019, 8:22am Top

>46 psutto: Good to hear that the positive reviews are continuing.

Your new book was showing in the unknown section for your name so sorted that for you and combined a couple of entries for another one.

Feb 12, 2019, 3:03pm Top

>47 AHS-Wolfy: - you're a scholar and a gentleman!

Feb 21, 2019, 1:16am Top

Congratulations on the book! I liked this quote from one reviewer who said: "From Sutton’s writing I would like to think he knows his way around a sword." Fitting.

Feb 21, 2019, 10:57am Top

>49 VivienneR: - very flattering, since I've never handled a real sword more then to pick one up and go 'ooo that's heavy' ;-)

Feb 26, 2019, 11:06am Top

Hmmm not doing so well on the not acquiring new books front...

Mar 7, 2019, 10:04am Top

Blackfish city a book group book - very mixed, feels like it never had a developmental edit as it was a bit all over the place!

Seems to be a trend at the moment - I felt the same after reading Becky Chambers and Charlie Jane Anders that these books are not 'cooked' properly, that the writers imagination has been allowed to splurge without some trimming and control of plot.

Mar 13, 2019, 9:39am Top

Just catching up with your thread, and I'm happy to hear about your new book. Congratulations!

A friend at work has just recommended Blackfish City, so it's on my radar.

Apr 8, 2019, 4:54am Top

I'm going to be interviewing a few authors at Cymera festival so have received a bunch of ARCs this month which is going to skew the stats a bit :-/

Apr 8, 2019, 12:16pm Top

Exciting! Anyone we know?

Apr 15, 2019, 4:28am Top

Full disclosure - this is a review for a friend's book. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dragonfly-Jari-Moate/dp/1910089796/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?...

Dragonfly (no touchstone)

"My weapon is my story and I need to follow it"

There's a line in the book (describing a character) - "He resembles a fire started with petrol - fast burning, and who knows where it will go before it stops" and that sums up this book. If t were a drink it'd be a double espresso - maximum caffeine delivery.

Marine P has survived a sketchy situation in Syria and we follow him on a mission that takes him from a protest (sounding like the Occupy ones) to Bristol where he enters a chocolate factory, but this is no Willy Wonka trip. What follows is a full on express train of a story where P and a motley crew of secondary characters are stuck inside the factory looking for escape, through drugs, drink and the unfindable exit.

It reminded me most of Toby Litt's Hospital - the same thorough wringing out of theme and exploring every nook and cranny of it through a mestatsizing story. It has that central weird element, the building is a living beast that has swallowed, Jonah like, our heroes. It also has an essence of hauntology to it. It grips and runs and you must follow only to be discarded at the end, breathless, post-andrenalin shakes and exhaustedly exhilerated.

We are all PTSD survivors of a late capitalist, post war on terror, landscape, trapped in the defunct factory of industrialisation's ruin, searching for escape.


May 20, 2019, 7:31am Top

wow I've only managed to read two books in May so far. Admittedly one was Thirteen which is over 600 pages - but even so!

May 20, 2019, 11:47am Top

>58 psutto: Just enjoy, regardless of numbers!

May 21, 2019, 5:33am Top

>59 Tess_W: of course - I was just surprised :-)

Jun 11, 2019, 9:13am Top

If you do Facebook you can see my interview with Tade Thompson and Aliette de Bodard at Cymera festival here: https://www.facebook.com/cymerafest/?modal=admin_todo_tour

I also interviewed Richard k morgan which was interesting and cameron Johnson and Anna Stephens which was fun

I now have non-job related reading :-) So I'm moving onto reading Infinite Detail

Jun 21, 2019, 8:18am Top

Had the chance to visit Shakespeare & Co in Paris recently (so obviously I bought some books there) - I feel like I'm the last person in the world to discover John Cooper Clark and grabbed a copy of Ten years in an open necked shirt and also found a nice old Pan copy of Ring of bright water a book I remember making me cry as a child but I haven't read for at least 35 years.

As we're pretty much half way through the year (it being the longest day today) I thought I'd just check how I'm doing:

I've read 24 books from the TBR so I'm behind - supposed to be doing 5 per month (but havn't really been paying a whole lot of attention to making sure of that) - I feel the "professional" reading last month for Cymera festival where I interviewed 5 authors may have skewed the numbers

I have, to my shame, bought almost a hundred (94) books this year so far - oh how to resist the shiny allure of new books! No wonder my TBR only ever gets larger...

Jun 21, 2019, 2:28pm Top

Hi Pete, I only know John Cooper Clark from viewing some British Panel shows but I think he is fantastic so I am definitey taking a book bullet for Ten years in an open necked shirt.

Jun 27, 2019, 5:14am Top

My book club chose A natural history of dragons which I would never have picked up - I found this a very strange read, I liked the hints of worldbuilding but intensely disliked the main character and wondered at the end what the point of the story was... it seems very popular though. Being both a science nerd and a fantasy reader you'd think this would be right up my street, it really isn't though...

Edited: Jul 12, 2019, 10:17am Top

I've realised that in October I'll have been a member here for a decade. Where does time go? (it's generally lost inside good books) and the last book I published was the tenth.

In a break from the norm of buying books on my Thingversary I think I'll do a giveaway - so I'll give away 10 books (in e format) on Oct 12, 2019, 10 years to the day since I joined. If you'd like one of my books drop me a private comment with which book you'd like and an email address and the format you'd like (I may not have all formats on all books) and I'll send 10 people a book each - who doesn't like free books!?

So those books:

A Tiding of Magpies
Sick City Syndrome
Seven Deadly Swords
North by Southwest my writing group's first anthology - an eclectic mix
Dark Half of the Year
Infinite Dysmorphia
The Hotwells Horror & other stories (Mostly Horror)
Tales from the graveyard:
Former Heroes
Forever Hungry (Zombie tales)

You can see most of these books on my Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Peter-Sutton/e/B06XG1LYCN?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1&qid...

Jul 18, 2019, 5:11am Top

Read Kings of the wyld which was as much fun as everyone told me it was - also the key idea, that mercenary bands (like D&D adventuring groups) are exactly like old rock bands is so obvious it's amazing no-one else has ever done it!

I also note that like most years I seem to read a lot less in summer - almost as if cold, dark, wet months mean being inside more ;-)

Jul 18, 2019, 9:33am Top

Wow Peter - happy upcoming Thingaversary - and what a generous offer!

Jul 23, 2019, 4:03am Top

I'll be judging the British Fantasy Awards for Best Newcomer this year:


Jul 23, 2019, 1:37pm Top

>68 psutto: What a cool opportunity! I hope you'll share your thoughts on all the nominees, even if it's not till after a winner has been chosen.

Jul 25, 2019, 9:55am Top

>69 christina_reads: - all the thoughts that are fit to print anyway ;-)

Aug 20, 2019, 12:12pm Top

Just back from a week in Scotland - read surprisingly little and didn't pick up as many books at the Edinburgh book festival as usual either...

I did get to meet Raja Shehadeh though which was cool

Aug 20, 2019, 2:08pm Top

I hope you had a great time, even without a huge book haul!

Aug 23, 2019, 11:15am Top

>72 mstrust: - I certainly did! :-)

Sep 17, 2019, 4:54am Top

Traditionally I add a lot of books to my TBR in October - being that I go to FantasyCon, BristolCon and Bristol Festival of Literature - I've only read 35 books from my TBR so far this year (I'm currently reading number 36) so I'm quite far off my challenge of average of 5 per month... so I'd better just read TBR books for the rest of the year (yeah, right)

I've acquired 128 books:

7 presents
40 from second-hand shops
14 ARCs
5 from events
24 on Kindle
40 shiny and new grabbed while passing a bookshop

Sep 17, 2019, 6:01am Top

>74 psutto: LOL looks like you better take detours around bookshops!

Sep 18, 2019, 4:29am Top

>75 Tess_W: - I know, right!

Sep 19, 2019, 9:46am Top

>74 psutto: I like your statistics! I keep track of how many books I acquire each month, but it would be nice to see where they all came from. Sometimes I think they spontaneously generate!

Sep 20, 2019, 10:36am Top

>77 christina_reads: exactly what I thought last year - I know I'm bringing a lot of books in, where do they come from? So the 'where did I buy it' stat was born for this year :-)

Oct 1, 2019, 11:10am Top

It's my Thingaversary this month - & 10 years of doing the category challenge :-)

I've been trying to work out a challenge for next year which is a milestone birthday for me and I may try and do a book published in each year I've been alive...

Oct 2, 2019, 2:35am Top

Happy thingaversary!

Oct 2, 2019, 10:34am Top

Oct 3, 2019, 2:50am Top

Happy Thingaversary! That sounds like a fun way to do the challenge.

Oct 4, 2019, 4:33am Top

>79 psutto: sounds like a great idea!

Oct 4, 2019, 1:06pm Top

>79 psutto: Happy Thingaversary. That could be a cool challenge, a book per year.

Oct 9, 2019, 9:52am Top

Looks like I'm going to fail this challenge - I've read 36 off the TBR which is some way off the 60 I should have read...

and I've been adding books to the TBR at a rate of knots...


Oct 10, 2019, 3:40am Top

>85 psutto: Seems to be the way of LTers!

Oct 11, 2019, 11:49am Top

Happy Thingaversary, Pete! And yes, >85 psutto: is spoken like a true LTer!

Oct 12, 2019, 7:38am Top

Happy Thingaversary!

Oct 14, 2019, 10:32am Top


Oct 15, 2019, 10:50am Top

‪I have a milestone birthday in less than 3 months' time and I’ve been wondering what to do to mark it. And I’d like to ask for help from the community. I’d like to get to 50 reviews for Seven Deadly Swords on Amazon (there are 2 only currently).‬
If you have the skills and oomph to do that it only costs you a little time and effort and it’d be very appreciated!

Oct 28, 2019, 5:08am Top

As ever October is litfest and convention month and the month I'm most likely to add a bunch of books to my TBR, and this year I've done the same... (see comment 11)

Next year it's Stokercon in the UK - the big horror convention from the HWA and it's in the UK for the first time - I suspect my TBR will take a hit that month!

Nov 19, 2019, 8:25am Top

About to head off for a couple of weeks R&R - so am hoping to read a few books whilst I'm away :-)

Nov 19, 2019, 10:49am Top

Happy travels!

Dec 13, 2019, 5:39am Top

am back. 1 more week in work then another 2 weeks off for the Xmas period.
Read a few books :-)

Dec 31, 2019, 6:41am Top

Hope everyone had a good Xmas & has a Happy New Year. Just dropping the last books of the year in here...

Dec 31, 2019, 7:04am Top

So my goal was 5 books off the TBR per month - I totally failed to do it monthly, and it turns out failed to read 60 books off the TBF - in fact I only managed 43

So out of the 229 books I've tracked this year:


Added to the TBR 73
Read 132 (149 last year) not including the DNF (see below)

I read 10 books I received as presents - and this year I asked people to not give me books (I got 3 for Xmas - but expect will get a few for my birthday beginning of January)

I read 15 ARCs (some review copies, some for events where I was interviewing authors, some for the award I judged)

I have 34 DNF this year. I had 7 last year. So I've obviously been a lot less patient this year! 30 of the DNF I bought this year too - but at least they didn't go onto the TBR I guess...

I had 2 "Brilliant" reads this year (absolute 5 stars) - there were 3 last year. The two are:

ghosts of my life
This is how you lose the time war

I read books from 19 different countries - but no surprise that UK & USA dominated

20 books bought or read by multiple authors
50 by women
159 by men

So I'm doing atrociously on gender balance

So my 2019 report is "must do better" - to find out if I do please head on over to the 2020 challenge!

Dec 31, 2019, 2:33pm Top

I'm really glad you liked This is How You Lose the Time War -- looking forward to reading it!

Jan 1, 10:28am Top

>97 rabbitprincess: - I was very impressed with it :-)

Jan 1, 10:28am Top

My TBR is 403 this year (336 last year so added almost 70!) - head on over to the 2020 group to see how I do in reducing my TBR...

Jan 1, 2:54pm Top

>99 psutto: I'm so glad I'm not the only one whose TBR is several hundred books! I'm at about 350 right now, I think.

Jan 1, 9:52pm Top

>99 psutto: >100 christina_reads: Mine would be as well - I blame op shops!

Group: 2019 Category Challenge

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