2016 Year in Review #1: The Stats

You may notice something different about this year’s stats, compared to other years. Let’s see how long it takes to spot it…


I smelled 0% of the paper books because that’s weird.

Books Read

  • Books read in 2016: 35, down from 69 in 2015. That was on purpose, though. And I’m not counting rereads, kids books, or books I read for work.
  • Shortest book: Bluets by Maggie Nelson (112 pages)
  • Longest book: Cecilia by Frances Burney (1,056 pages)
  • Format: 97% paper, 3% ebook, 0% audio (compared to a third of my reading on ebook and audio last year)

About the Author

  • 100% female (58% in 2015)
  • 34% person of colour (up from 20% 2015)
  • 37% Canadian (same as 2015) 38% American, 11% British, and 1 each: Korean, Japanese, French, Filipino. 
  • Three Edmonton-area authors this year, being generous with one who moved recently!

… did you catch it? Yes, I did the #readwomen thing this year, and my experience will be covered in a separate blog post. Brace yourselves: unlike many who do this sort of thing, I did not come to any shattering realizations, and I *cannot wait* to read some dudes in 2017.

The book that started it all.

The book that started it all.

Genres and Lists

  • 11% classics (same as 2015), 63% contemporary lit fic (about the same as previous years), 11% nonfiction (all memoirs), and a handful of erotica, poetry, and graphic novels.
  • 1001 Books for a total of 127 read.

Probably gonna mix it up a bit next year, say, read some nonfiction that isn’t memoir?


  • 17% were rated five stars (up from 11% last year), 49% were four stars, 23% were three stars, 14% were two stars and poor Nora Roberts gets just one.
  • The most underrated book was After Claude, which I rated a 5, compared to average 3.55 rating on Goodreads. Which I assume is due to people getting offended, which is the whole point.
  • The most overrated book was The Liar, which I rated a 1, compared to average 3.94 rating. It was just bad.
Lemme in, Something Awful! I won't stay long, I promise!

Lemme in, Something Awful! I won’t stay long, I promise!

Blog Stats

  • Headed for about 17,000 page views in 2015, down from 23,000 in 2015. And 11,000 visitors, down from 15,000.
  • I’m not panicking, because my review of The Fault in Our Stars, which amassed 7,000 views in 2013-2015, was viewed just 400 times this year. Looks like kids writing papers have moved on to another book. Similarly, my review of Sleeping Beauty is not pulling the numbers it used to (nor am I seeing as much filth in my search terms). I think a lot of my traffic in 2014/2015 was artificial due to people landing on those posts – and quickly clicking away. They were never my readers anyway. The moral is: never review YA or erotica.
  • An Oryx and Crake readalong recap from 2013 continues to perform, due to a post on a Something Awful forum which I’m sorely tempted to pay for so I can see what it is… anyone a member? Hit me up!
  • On course for 45 posts this year, up from 39 posts in 2015.
  • Most viewed post of 2016 is that mysterious Oryx and Crake one.
  • Most viewed post that was actually written in 2016: Intro post of the Cecilia readalong, likely due to a little help from CBC.
  • Least successful post in 2016: Short Story Advent Calendar Video Reviews. Same as in 2015, it’s a Booktube post. Okay, I get it, you guys don’t like the Booktube…

Stay tuned for best books, disappointing books, and 2017 plans, of which I have several!


  1. Rebecca Foster

    I like how you set up your stats here. There are categories I hadn’t thought of looking into.

    I somehow never twigged that you were reading only women this year. I don’t tend to say this because I know it will be controversial, but I think challenges like that set up false dichotomies. A good book is a good book, right? I don’t care who wrote it.

    P.S. Cecilia should surely count as 4+ books 😉

  2. Roxanne Felix-Mah

    Ha ha! I love the stats. It’s your evaluation / research side coming out! As for the #readwomen thing – I don’t think one needs to come to shattering conclusions after a year like that …. but I LOVE that you did try it out.

    • lauratfrey

      Yeah, it just seems to be a “thing”, when you do these really long reading challenges, you’re supposed to LEARN something or FEEL something and I didn’t really. Maybe a bit. We’ll see, when I write about it, I guess!

  3. Rick @ Read the North

    Something I think would be a nice addition to this post (which you can just do in a comment) is to talk a bit about how you feel about some of this stuff. Maybe this will be covered in your next post? For instance:

    1) Did you prefer reading less? Are you going to read more next year?
    2) Which parts of this list did you find rewarding? Which didn’t you? (i.e. is reading based on race/country/gender (intentionally) more rewarding?)

    I love these posts. But I don’t know why. It seems like something that shouldn’t be interesting, but it is haha. My favorite was the most underrated/overrated books. I love seeing bloggers (or just readers) who differ wildly from popular opinion. Mostly because it shows they’re making up their own mind.

    Excited to read your next one!

    • lauratfrey

      Oh yes, I’m planning a separate post about all the weird reading rules I imposed on myself this year. Although I don’t have all that much to say about reading women all year… like, it was fine? So many people seem to have religious experiences when they #readwomen. But I went in cynical! Limiting to 35 books and rereading for the past two months probably had a bigger impact. The fact that I only read paper books this year is really weird, for example. I did not plan that.

      Considering doing #readmen (??) next year, just to be fair, but I dunno, I think that will be harder??

  4. The Paperback Princess

    I`m looking forward to hearing how you felt about reading only women this year. I can imagine that there were loads of books that you didn`t get to this year because you restricted yourself. I read mostly women anyway (tends to end up around 75/25) but I don’t like any kind of reading that feels limiting.

    I so enjoyed your Cecilia Read-a-long! Can’t wait to see what you have planned for 2017!

    • lauratfrey

      There actually weren’t. There were very few moments that I felt “ugh, I wish I could read that” and even when I did, it didn’t seem like that big of a deal to wait a few months. I probably would have read the new Foer and The Underground Railroad… and probably a couple Dead White Dude classics.

      Definitely going to do a readalong next year, they are the best. Any suggestions? I’m thinking Dead White Dude for sure…

  5. Pingback: A #readwomen of one’s own | Reading in Bed
  6. Naomi

    I’ve intentionally just been reading what I want so that at the end of the year I can look at the stats to see if there are any patterns that occur each year. So far, I mostly read women automatically (it tends to land around 65-70%). Still, there are so many great books written by women that I haven’t read yet that taking a year to read only women would help to get them all read! I’m not good at limiting myself, though, so I probably won’t do it…
    It rankles me when people give low ratings to books that make them mad. I love it when books make me mad! 🙂

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