Whew boy, book reading has taken a massive hit and we are at an all-blog low in 2016 of only 18 books read this year! I thought the slide had started much later, but looking back it all starts with the birth of my daughter in 2012. That year was my second-best year with 67, but in my wrap-up of that year, I had already noticed a huge drop-off in the last quarter and was not super optimistic for the future. The thing is, while having a child certainly has an impact on one's leisure time, I am not sure that her existence is the real issue here. I do have time to read, but I don't do it. Most of my leisure time this year was taken up in food preparation of one kind of another, watching sports and worse zoning out slackjawed on twitter for hours at a time. I don't even really participate in the online gaming community anymore, but somehow when my brain is exhausted, social media responds to some kind of short-term appetite in a way that reading books just can't compete with. If I could even cut my twitter-fritting in half with reading, I would be a long way back on track.
Anyhow, enough self-indulgent whinging. I did get a nice jolt over the xmas holidays with some fun Jack Reacher and the first of the First Law series and I have a new energy and will to read more this year. Once I do get stuck on a book, I can pretty much plow through it. It's the getting stuck part that I need to work on.
Another thing is that I did read quite a lot of comics this year. I have a hard time considering them as a book and so don't count them anymore, but it was reading (and most in french, so that's worth something). I discovered that my local library (where I have been taking my daughter a lot) has a pretty decent bande-dessinée selection. I am working my way through the works of Jodorowsky (L'Incal a classic that I never understood when it was in Heavy Metal and Les Technopères which was awesomely trippy), discovered Margeurite Abouet (first with Bienvenue but then Aya which is just great) and am also working on the managa Soil. I'm not a big manga fan (I know, I know, it's not a genre, but Japanese comics are consistently littered with certain trademarks that really take me out of the immersion) but this one is a pretty engrossing and fucked up story about a designed town that goes bad. Maybe if I finish an entire series or ouevre of one artist/author I will consider that a book and add those as write-ups this year.
My apologies for my absence to those of you with whom I used to interact in the online book reading world in the past. My relationship with the internet is getting weird, as I suspect it is for all of humanity these days. We shall see.