The tale of a well-read writer

This vintage typwriter is our featured image.

In the spirit of the holidays, I’ve decided to take a break from blogging about the law, animals, and animals who break the law.

Instead, I’m going to let you in on a little secret. I love to read. And I read a lot. So this January I decided to participate in a reading challenge on Since it was the first time I participated in the annual contest — and with nothing at stake except pride — I decided to go for broke. I decided to try to read 100 books in 2016.

Alexandra Bogdanovic
Founder/owner of In Brief Legal Writing Services, Alexandra Bogdanovic. Photo by N. Bogdanovic

By my calculations that meant I had to read roughly two books per week in order to complete the challenge.

Well, with less than two weeks left in the year, I can happily report… that I’ve failed. Miserably. According to the goodreads tally, I’ve read 68 books so far this year. But in the interest of full disclosure I’ve only read 66. This miscount happened because I marked one book as read (even though I didn’t finish it), and had to mark another one as read even though I accidentally clicked on the wrong title.

On one hand, 66 percent isn’t very good. In fact, it’s barely a “passing grade.” On the other hand, if you consider how much time it actually takes to read 66 book, it’s not bad. In fact, it’s not bad at all.

Here’s a closer look, “by the numbers.” So far I’ve read 66 books or:

  • Approximately 24,000 pages (give or take)
  • Shortest book 166 pages
  • Longest book 693 pages (actually this was the one I didn’t finish!)
  • Average length 386 pages
  • Average rating 3.3 (out of 5) stars

Here are my favorites:

  • An Irish Country Doctor by Patrick Taylor
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Parts One and Two) by J.K. Rowling
  • The Death Artist by Jonathan Santlofer
  • Prior Bad Acts by Tami Hoag
  • Criminal by Karin Slaughter
  • Die in Plain Sight by Elizabeth Lowell
  • State of Fear by Michael Crichton
  • One True Thing by Anna Quindlen

My least favorites:

  • The Janson Directive by Robert Ludlum (so horrible I didn’t get past the first chapter)
  • The Sigma Protocol by Robert Ludlum (not that much better)
  • A Touch of Ice by L.J. Charles
  • Once Gone by Blake Pierce
  • Before He Kills by Blake Pierce
  • Book of the Dead by Patricia Cornwell

My recommendations (for animal lovers, especially those of you who love cats):

  • Anything by Lillian Jackson Braun

So there you have it — for whatever it’s worth.