What Shannon Read

Wrap-up: What Shannon Read in 2022

Somehow, another year has gone by and here I am writing yet another reading wrap-up post.

It’s been a fun and eventful year, with the most notable event being the birth of my first grandchild Ames in May.

Celebrations were had, selfies were taken, and collages were made.

These pics only tell part of the story.


And how did the 2022 reading go?

Well, I read a lot of books, though not all, for the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. Here’s a challenge wrap-up if you’re interested in a looong post about that.

And, generally, here are the year’s stats.

Reading Wrap-up with Nerdy Book Stats

Total books read: 107 (25 more than last year!!)
Fiction: 64
Nonfiction: 43
Female authors: 89
Male Authors: 19
Nonbinary: 0 (Geez, must work on this ASAP.)
Non-white authors: 24
E-books: 51
Audiobooks: 40 (15 fewer than last year)
Re-reads: 24 (I leaned into the re-reads this year and re-read comfort books to my heart’s content.)

Fiction vs. Nonfiction: I’m not surprised to see that I read more fiction than nonfiction this year. I needed some serious distraction in the later half of the year, so I went on a fiction rampage, diving into all the stories I could. Sometimes, you need to be anywhere but here, amirite?

Female vs. Male authors: I am also not surprised to see the number of female vs. male authors. A couple years ago, I got decidedly tired of men telling me things, so I tend to avoid their books unless they are a person of color or happen to be writing on a subject I really want to know about (usually, it’s a nature book).

Non-white authors: I did make more of a point to read books by authors who are not white, but it’s a challenge. Like a lot of other people, I tend to want to read books written by people like me and those, of course, are white cis women. But there are more books written by people of color than ever available right now, so I want to work on getting my numbers up. How else will I learn from other perspectives?


Most-read Genres

Historical Fiction – 20 books

I really delved into this genre, one of my favorites. Here are 10 of the best historical fiction books I read this year. I really can’t pick a favorite!

Memoir/Autobiography – 16 books

No surprise that this is right below historical fiction. It’s obviously another favorite genre. Learning from other perspectives, right?

These are eight of my faves.

Classics – 15 books

Ok, almost all my classics were re-reads of Edith Wharton books. Wharton is my summer reading. I go back to her every year after having first read The Age of Innocence two summers ago.

I did sprinkle in a few others. Notably, a new Elizabeth von Arnim and a new modern classic favorite, The Women of Brewster Place.

These were my top six.

Nature – 10 books

I tend to read nature books in the spring when the world is coming back to life, but this year, I read them throughout and mostly in audiobook form. I love to listen to a soothing audiobook at bedtime or while walking or collaging. And books about nature, at least the ones I’ve chosen, are often soothing. I include books on flora and fauna in this category, as well as general books on the effects of getting out into nature.

Here are my top few from 2022. The Inner Life of Animals is a re-read.

Mystery/Thriller – 5 books

This is another favorite category, but I had trouble finding good ones this year for some reason. Does anyone have any recommendations? I usually like stories focused on women and I tend to avoid the grizzled detective (male or female) trope. Let me know if you have thoughts!

3 Outliers

I wanted to make mention of three books I didn’t categorize above as they were three of my favorites this year and include two I wouldn’t normally have picked up.

One, The Wild Iris, is an incredible book of poetry that uses flowers as metaphors. I’m re-reading it this year for sure.

Two are books of essays, which I wouldn’t normally dip into.

I read The Lonely Stories, a moving series of essays on loneliness, for the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. And I read Bad Vibes Only on a whim and enjoyed it thoroughly.

General Fiction

Another category that hit for me this year was general contemporary fiction. These are a few books I loved.


Do you pick a favorite book each year? Or a top 10 or top five?

I couldn’t pick a favorite. I tried. I could maybe be forced to pick a favorite from each category.

At any rate, that’s what I read in 2022! Overall, it was a hugely successful reading year. I enjoyed so many books, including some I wouldn’t normally choose to read thanks to the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge.

How about you? How was your year in books?

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