For the year 2021. I decided to do a Buddy readathon for the first time. My reading buddy Vivone was a friend from book club and we wanted to challenge each other to experience and see how we liked some books we would not be able to read for the book club. We decided to make a list of 10 books to read during the course of the year and we both agreed to present our suggestions for the list. From our suggestions we picked five from each list and ended up with the final list below!
Buddy Read list 2021.
Alien ( Alien Movie Novelizations #1 ) by Alan Dean Foster ★★★
Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer #1) by Laini Taylor ★★★★
Damnation Alley by Roger Zelazny ★★★
Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein ★★★
The Last Wish (The Witcher #0.5) by Andrzej Sapkowski ★★★★
All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries #1) by Martha Wells ★★★★
Proklete Hrvatice : (1&2) : Dvadeset životopisa by Milana Vuković Runjić ★★★
Serpent & Dove (Serpent & Dove #1) by Shelby Mahurin ★★★★
Castle in the Air (Howl’s Moving Castle #2) by Diana Wynne Jones ★★★★
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers #1) by Becky Chambers ★★★★
I will take few moments to reflect on the statistics of the books we chose. Out of 10 books we picked there was one genre that dominated with five books and that was science fiction. Four books were fantasy and one book was nonfiction.
Out of all those books, six were part of a series. Only one book was written by a Croatian author and all the rest of the books were translations. From nine translations only one was from a Polish author while all the rest were English native speaking authors. For me the number of books from this list that I have read in Croatian translation is much higher than usual.
Total number of pages for the ten books we read was 3188!
We each had a different book from the list as a favorite. Vivone’s favorite was Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer #1) by Laini Taylor and my favorite was All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries #1) by Martha Wells.
We both agreed on the book that was our least favorite book to read – Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein. We were not sorry for reading it but the experience was very different than we expected and that is the reason for it being dubbed the least favorite.
Our most memorable books were Damnation Alley by Roger Zelazny and Proklete Hrvatice : (1&2) : Dvadeset životopisa by Milana Vuković Runjić. And our average rating for the books differs a bit: Vivone’s average score for the books was 4 and mine 3,6. We are happy with the books we read in general and are looking forward to the books we picked for 2022.
We have decided to make some changes for the 2022. list. We decided to expand the ten books approach by each adding five books and keeping on three more sequels from the 2021. list. This gives us more pages in total since the number of books for Buddy reading challenge is now thirteen. The total number of pages we will read is 2867 for the ten books and another 1324 pages for the added three sequels. We have decided to take down the number of new book series on the list which gives us more standalone books and those have a bit less pages a piece. We have two new book series on the list and if we count the added three sequels we still have less book series than we had on 2021 list.
Again we have one dominating genre only this time it is general fantasy with five books. Other genres we have are two nonfiction only one science fiction and two contemporary genre books. All three added sequels are fantasy as well. We did not account for more diversity on the authors front. Again we have one Croatian author and nine translated titles with all those authors being from English speaking territories. We both plan to diversify with our personal plans since our tastes with those tend to go in totally different direction because Vivone really enjoys middle eastern authors and even has a growing collection of translated editions in Croatian and my tastes are more far eastern with contemporary Japanese authors and I plan to try adding Indigenous authors.
Buddy Reading list 2022
Holes (Holes #1) by Louis Sachar
Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo
The October Country by Ray Bradbury
Kraljica crne obale: i druge priče o legendarnom barbaru by Robert E. Howard
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (Blade Runner #1) by Philip K. Dick
The Last Bookaneer by Matthew Pearl
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain
Ima jedna priča… (2nd ed) by Mauro Lacovich
This Is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor by Adam Kay
Sequels from 2021. list:
House of Many Ways (Howl’s Moving Castle #3) by Diana Wynne Jones
Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2) by Shelby Mahurin
Sword of Destiny (The Witcher #0.7) by Andrzej Sapkowski
Our expectations on the 2022. list
We have both agreed that the list could have been better and we both compromised on our suggestions. Vivone is most excited for Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain and Kraljica crne obale: i druge priče o legendarnom barbaru by Robert E. Howard, which is a first Croatian collection of stories on Conan the Barabarian. I’m most excited for Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2) by Shelby Mahurin because I plan to finish up the whole trilogy and have found it difficult to restrain myself and not pick it up sooner.
The books we are most apprehensive about differ. Vivone is very unsure how Holes (Holes #1) by Louis Sachar is going to go for her and I am having mixed feelings on The Last Bookaneer by Matthew Pearl. While she is happy with the amount of new book series on the list I think we could have gone with a bit more of those and I actually had problems with finding some suggestions that were not part of a book series for the 2022. list. Because of this I was very straight forward with deciding to continue reading the sequels on some of the books that are part of a book series while Vivone was much more reserved and will have to see how the continuation will reflect on her reading plans trough the year.