Talking about what I read in 2022 and whether or not I achieved my 2022 reading goals.
As a part of my new year’s resolutions, I set a goal to read 6 books in 2022. Maybe to some this is not an ambitious reading goal, but in past years I have really struggled to prioritize reading despite the fact that I deeply enjoy it as a pastime. So in 2021 when I managed to read 6 books, and it felt like a manageable reading pace in a busy life (I’ll admit I’m a bit of a slow reader), I decided that I would stick with that number for the next year and just see what happens.
As it turns out, in 2022 I managed to read 10 books, and I’m really really happy about that! The goal is not really about the number of books, more about making sure that I am consistently reading because it is something that brings me joy. And of course the number of books I manage to read in a year will vary depending on the length of the books and most of these were admittedly reasonably short reads. But overall, I am happy that I clearly took the time to do something I very much enjoy and that enriches my life.
So, I thought I would share with you what I read in 2022 and just a few words about each of them.
This year I also decided that I wanted to focus on reading some of the classics of the fantasy genre. I am a huge geek and love fantasy movies and games, but haven’t really delved that deeply into the world of fantasy books probably because of gender norms and whatnot. Aside from Harry Potter and the Hobbit, I was very out of the loop on most fantasy classics and wanted to change that. So you’ll notice a lot of the books I’m about to list are from the fantasy genre.
Here is the list of books I read in 2022 and a little bit of what I thought of them:
The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis
This was a surprisingly wonderful read. I would definitely recommend this one to younger readers as it reads like a bedtime story. I could see it being quite lovely to read aloud to kids too. While C.S. Lewis without a doubt has a Christian focus in his writing, and that isn’t for everyone, I liked it and found it interesting to see the biblical references.
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
Very similar in many ways to the Magician’s Nephew and overall a very cozy Christmas-y read. I would also recommend this one to parents looking for a longer book to read aloud to their kids. I do think that in some ways this one is even more religious in nature that the Magician’s Nephew and thinking about both of them, I slightly prefer the Magician’s Nephew. It was an interesting experience though reading these two classics of fantasy literature, and I could see myself reading a few more of the series later on.
Dragonlance Chronicles II: Dragons of Winter Night & Dragonlance Chronicles III: Dragons of Spring Dawning
I really enjoyed the first 3 books of the Dragonlance Chronicles. I read the first book in 2021 and was immediately drawn in by the fast paced plot and fun characters. It is a dated book in some ways but you can see how it must have inspired many in the fantasy genre and I think it still has a great story to offer current readers of the genre. Having finished the original trilogy I have moved away from Dragonlance but I could definitely see myself returning to it later on, or even doing a reread. And it was an extra sweet treat to read as an avid Dungeons and Dragons player as Dragonlance was an original setting of the game.
Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien
My husband and I during the pandemic decided we wanted to read the Lord of the Rings trilogy aloud together as a fun activity. We are both huge LOTR fans and grew up watching the movies and reading the books. I had read The Hobbit growing up but had never actually read the complete trilogy. We have been thoroughly enjoying reading together and analyzing the different characters and changes made in the movie, and really just absorbing the gorgeous descriptions in Tolkien’s writing. We are well into the third book but as we often spend a lot of time chatting in between reading we still have a little ways to go. I would recommend reading together to any couple looking for a new activity to do.
Legend of Drizzt Book I: Homeland & Legend of Drizzt Book II: Exile by R.A. Salvatore
More Dungeons & Dragons! While I’ll admit this series took me a little longer to fall in love with, it being a stark contrast to the bubbly fun of Dragonlance, I am really enjoying the world of the Underdark and the stories of Drizzt Do’Urden. I love the side characters and the exploration of the incredible world of the Underdark. And then of course there is Drizzt’s inner turmoil between his good intentions and his evil upbringing and culture. Somehow this series and its harsh setting seems to fit with the difficult times we’ve been living through and I think ultimately hits a little deeper than Dragonlance. I’m looking forward to reading the third in this trilogy in 2023 and who knows maybe more of the books later on.
Know My Name by Chanel Miller
This book was one of my favourite reads of the year despite its difficult topic. Lots of tears were shed while reading, and a few good laughs were had too, but mostly I was struck by the painful and stark realization of just how relevant this book is to our time and also to the experiences of women throughout history. This book makes you deeply angry but shines incredible light on an extremely important issue. Everyone should know Chanel Miller’s name, and everyone should read this book. (Trigger warning: This book is an in-depth analysis of the experiences of a sexual assault survivor and the legal processes surrounding sexual assault. Its content may be triggering for some survivors to read. If you are struggling as a survivor please reach out to your local crisis center for support.)
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
This one has got to be one of my new favourite books and probably one of my favourite non-series fantasy books (which can be hard to find). I thoroughly enjoyed this read. It has a diverse set of characters and is a blend of urban fantasy, almost horror, and a thriller type story. I was quickly sucked into the setting, story and characters and Gaiman’s writing is just so easy to read. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to be pulled into a dark fantasy world just below our feet. It was my first Neil Gaiman and I will definitely be back for more.
Disability Visability edited by Alice Wong
This was a very interesting book that really got me thinking. It is a compilation of different essays on disability from different disabled writers. It definitely pushed my thinking about a lot of different ideas about disability and while I didn’t agree with them all, which one can hardly expect to, I did enjoy the journey of reading through the different perspectives. Like so many other things in life, disability is not one size fits all so of course disabled writer’s ideas and opinions on disability will vary and sometimes even contradict one another. I would definitely recommend this to other disabled folk as it did bring me a sense of community and comfort, but also to those looking to learn more about disabled perspectives and struggles.
So that’s what I managed to read in 2022! As I mentioned above I’m really proud of myself for meeting and even exceeding this goal. I’ve reignited my love of reading this year and I’m really grateful for that. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my adventures in the fantasy genre and while I want to sprinkle in some non-fantasy in the year to come my adventures are by no means over. I’m in the process of writing a post to share my reading goals and TBR list for 2023 so look out for that soon.
What have you read lately? Do you set yearly reading goals? I’d love to hear in the comments below!