Bookstooge Reviews 2021

THE STATS:

Annual Blog Stats

Posts – 319 (↑29)
Words Written – 194.8K (↓3.2K)
Views – 27K (↑2K)
Visitors – 9.5K (↓0.5K)
Followers – 419 (↑40+)
Comments – 10.7K (↑2.4K)

Book Stats

Books read – 194 (↑38)
Average Rating – 3.38 (↓0.15)
Pages read – 49,401 (↓7.5K)
Words read – 15,361.5K (15 million rounded down) (↓1.5K)

GENERAL THOUGHTS:

General Bookish Thoughts:

That increase in Books Read is ALL due to me reading individual comics. The real story can be seen in the Pages and Words, as both of those went down. But this is exactly why I keep track of all 3 metrics. When 2 out of the 3 agree, that is the real story.

My rating dropping 0.15 isn’t concerning to me at all and seems more like a typical variation than some trend. Sticking with some series longer than I should have didn’t help either (looking at you, you forsaken Spawn!)

My interest in the Crime&Mystery genre really took off this year. With Alfred Hitchcock, Lord Peter Wimsey, Father Brown and Nero Wolfe, I had quite the uptick. In 2022 I plan on adding Ellery Queen to the mix too. Here’s a little picture showing my genre breakdown (according to Librarything anyway). Clickable to be readable if it’s not to you.

Re-reads. Between my manga reading, my Wheel of Time journey and Bone, almost 25% of my reading was re-reads. That’s almost exactly the same as last year so I guess I’ve found my balance of new vs re-read.

WordPress this year was a real roller coaster. My experiment of going Dotcom and then UnDotcom’ing showed me that WP isn’t worth money. I had more problems when I was paying than I did with the free site. That is just mind boggling to me. The block editor has moved into the minor annoyance area of my life with the stupid code monkeys changing little pointless things every couple of months. Continual pin pricks of irritation all year long. Kind of like walking through a field of brambles at work.

I tried some other websites (which I didn’t blog about) and everything else was just as confusing as the block editor but with the added problem of not having a semi-decent social setup like here at WP. Coupled with me using Dropbox for my larger images (thus making space not an issue), it would appear that I’ll be at wordpress for the foreseeable future. And since my Under Construction Project is getting close to being finished, I’m just not going anywhere.

My numbers are relatively stable compared to last year and I seem to have reached the level that is comfortable. Doesn’t mean you won’t get posts from me moaning and pissing about how terrible things are on my blog, or the ones where I crow like a rooster about some accomplishment that I didn’t actually DO anything to achieve. But I am happy with my interactions here. I am looking forward to finding new bloggers in 2022 though, as The Churn has been just as active this year as in any of the past ones :-/

Blogger is my backup blog for reviews. There is no way to interact in a meaningful way as far as I can tell but I just post reviews so it doesn’t matter. Google just keeps shutting down various apps at random, so one day I’m sure blogger will get the axe too.

I still crosspost my reviews to LT. Back in June I abandoned LT as a social platform and currently have no meaningful social presence there.

Calibre continues to putter along just fine. The only news on this front this year is that the de-drm plugin has been taken over by another developer and forked into the no-drm plugin. I’m currently using Calibre 5.23 and frequently read the Calibre Forum. Having a free program that is a visual library of all my books that I’ve read over the years which stores all the data I want it to, and that can be backed up on a thumb drive or external harddrive and imported into such programs as Excel should the program ever go belly up (unlikely as that is how the creator makes his livelihood), is priceless.

THE BOOKS:

Best Book of the Year: New Evidences That Demand a Verdict by Josh McDowell.

Worst Book of the Year: Kaiju Rising: Age of Monsters edited by Tim Marquitz

PLANS FOR 2022:

Personal:

Well, our move to Georgia has been put on hold, so my immediate plans (3 months or less) have been scuttled like a russian secret submarine. So we are in a holding pattern. I’m going to start the process to acquire my Level 3 certification for the NSPS program (National Society of Professional Surveyors) and as that is self-study, it’s going to take me longer than it might take somebody else. I don’t like self-study, as buckling down is hard to do.

Work has settled down for me. It has taken 2 bleeding years, so it is about time. Mrs B starts working days again in a week or two and I am really looking forward to that. Being able to see her for more than 20minutes as she gets up and gets ready for work as I’m getting ready for bed will be nice.

Blog:

As of right now, no changes. I was considering changing how I do my reviews so I didn’t have so much text (mainly in the synopsis part) but upon reflection, I’m going to keep sticking with it for now. I might try to use the Details html code a bit more though. I’m still considering if I want to make any changes to how I title book reviews. I’ll probably think some more about it in January and make a decision by February. No sense rushing around and doing a rubbishy job.

I plan on continuing my Muppet watch. It was a fantastic success in ’21, even the less than stellar ones, so I’m going forward. The more I watch, the more I find. I think I have found enough Muppet movies/shows to keep me going through ’22 and a good way into ’23. Amazing, as I had NO idea there was so much Muppet stuff out there. So expect to see that each month.

Project X runs out in April so I will be on the lookout for a new series of posts to do. My creativity is at an all time low though, so I’m not sure what I’ll end up doing. Might do some arty posts with just a picture or maybe put a little effort into the Doom mini’s I bought a year ago. There are options, I just need to think of them. If there’s something you’d like to see on a monthly basis, let me know in the comments.

I do have some tentative Buddy Read/Watch options for 2022 and so as long as I don’t sit in a funk all year those will happen. Shoot me an email at myname at protonmail if you’re interested in doing something and I haven’t already contacted you.

I am also hoping to make more use of the WP4 than I did in ’21. When you have nutjobs like Dix, Alex and Fraggle just hanging around, I gotta put them to use somehow. Whether a collaborative post or just making fun, you can expect to see more antics in the comments and hopefully an extra post focusing on that Power Group. Plus, we’re all wicked good looking!

TOP 5:

Book Review Posts:

Non-Review Posts:

Commentors + Runner Up:

Movies/TV:

The Hall of Shame:

72 thoughts on “Bookstooge Reviews 2021

  1. You can never have too many muppets in your life! Congratulations on another stunning year of reading and blogging. I can only dream of those kind of numbers 😊
    I hope 2022 is even better than 2021 for you. Good luck, good health, God bless you! As my dear old mum used to say. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Trust me Wak, numbers are fun but are only a small part of the story. Plus, it’s taken me 5 years to get here 😀 So keep on trucking.

      Thank you. We are counting on Him to guide and lead us through what will most likely be a very “interesting” year 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy 2022! Is that a graphic that LibraryThing made too? Because that’s pretty darn cool! Also, my interest in mystery has taken off too. I’m definitely more heading down the thriller/suspense path rather than the classics though.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy 2022 to you as well!

      Yep, it was straight from LT. I have no idea how I got to the section where it was or if they’d had it in years past, but it worked great for this year. I might try to find it again next year 😀

      I feel like the mystery genre (whether suspense/thriller/crime) is intended for a “slightly” more mature audience and I’m really hoping that my continued investigations into it keep me hooked. Because fantasy is getting either too YA or too dark for me.

      Like

    1. In calibre there is a plugin that counts the words and pages for each book and I use that when I review a book and then I use those numbers in my monthly roundup. And then I add up all those numbers for the annual.
      Some are guestimates (like the comics and graphic novels, but it’s pretty close).

      As for the romance, I blame that squarely on reading authors like the Bronte sisters and then on people labeling other books “romance” even though they should belong to other genres. But I do read more than Zero, I just don’t read modern romances though.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hapoy New year man. Exited for our sherlock rewaTch. Also thank you for being around the year that passed. Always look forward to your comments on my posts. Milou and I also work the same hours now so it is nice to get up together and be home at the same time. I can relate to that feeling.

    May your 2022 be equally blessded and awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy 2022 Dave!
      I too am looking forward to our Sherlock watch. Once things settle down I’ll email you again and we can sort out some details. I don’t use whatsapp, so that’s out for me.

      It is nice to be home and awake at the same time, isn’t it? 😀

      Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy New Year Bookstooge!!!! 🙂
    Like you, I noticed a returning interest for crime/thriller fiction this year, mainly due to my discovery of Michael Connelly’s Bosch series, but since this genre was one of favorites in the past, it did not take much to rekindle it…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy 2022 Maddalena!

      I am hoping at some point to find more “thriller” classics, as this mystery exploration has turned out so well.

      Glad you can return to an old favorite. It’s always nice when you can.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oooooooh, Fraggle bested me with the most comments. Well, uneasy lies the head that wears the crown . . .

    Love the stats. That’s one thing being online is really good at, producing all these nifty graphs and reports.

    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yep, Fraggle beat down last years winner. No guarantees that someone won’t come out of nowhere and blast the record 😀

      I just love stats. So much fun. Some of it I don’t include because I think it is pointless, but I like every data bit I include because that’s what I want to see in others’ year end wrap ups.

      And a happy 2022 to you! may you get nothing but great Shakespeare movies (wishful thinking, but i have to try, right?)

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Are you claiming you are, in fact, NOT a nutjob? Because I’ve got pages and pages of comments from you that would make a strong counter claim. Plus your blog. I mean, what else is needed? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

          1. * mic *
            And Alex Good takes an early lead in the Bookstooge Nationals. He’s the odds on favorite this year but we’ll have to see if he’s got the stamina to keep this pace up. Many a leader has dropped the lead in this grueling race.

            Like

          1. * mic *
            and Fraggle show’s that there is some serious strategy to winning the Nationals this year. She’s showing the others that they’re going to have to comment smarter. Oh, this could be a VERY interesting race this year.

            Like

        1. Does that count as a comment? A teeny-tiny emoji? I can’t even see what it’s supposed to be!

          Oh well, since I don’t do emojis I’ll let you have a handicap. I’m still rising up the boards.

          Liked by 2 people

            1. The odds are never in my favour. But I consider it a challenge before the whole human race and I ain’t gonna lose.

              BTW, what is that emoji? I honestly can’t see it. Why is it so small?

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Challenge accepted! 😀

                I think it is supposed to be a person folding their hands, I supposed in prayer? I’m guessing Fraggle doesn’t want a zombie plague any more than I do…

                Like

          1. Alex! I’m disappointed. We are of the 4, and not in competition in the commenting department of Booky’s blog. See, this is what happens when statistics get involved. Up until now you and I had been commenting without even thinking about who was commenting the most. The teeny tiny emoji was of a zombie. You and Dix don’t use emojis but Booky and I do, it’s nice to see a smiley face or a funny one but we respect your non-usage and don’t chastise you for it. When I comment it will be because I’m having a convo with Booky, and not because I’m trying to outdo you in the numbers of comments made. That is all. I will say no more except I forgive you.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Yep, I think Alex feels pretty competitive about this.
              Way to forgive him though.,
              Now I just need to figure out why Dix is offended about being called a nut job
              Who knew blogging was so fraught w angst n turmoil! 😉

              Liked by 1 person

  6. Stats as impressive as ever, blogging and reading alike! May 2022 will be at least as good 🙂

    I share your frustration with WordPress, mine is probably bigger, as I write less and still am not used to the block editor… but I also think there is no better place to be, without risking the community we’ve found here. I think I should get more into Calibre, as I only use it to convert epubs into mobi…

    Anyway, happy 2022!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Happy 2022 Piotre! Thank you. Scheduling posts up to 3-4 weeks ahead has allowed me to really pack the posts in, plus it’s allowed me to vent my need to write without overwhelming people with 4 posts in a day or something like that 😀

      If I wasn’t using the block editor so much I’d be extremely frustrated right now. But since I am, it’s become a “learned behavior”.

      As for calibre, if you’re entire library is on LT, you can export from LT and then use that file to import into calibre with one of the plugins. Still have to do some metadata cleanup, but much easier than hand entering them.

      Also, why into mobi and not azw3? Any particular reason?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No really, probably just because I’m used to the mobi format, it’s what I get when I buy from Polish online bookshops (well, mobi or epub, but definitely not azw3). Is azw3 in some way better than mobi?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Azw3 allows for more formatting options than mobi. So more stylistic things. Plus, amazon has officially deprecated mobi in favor of azw3 so I always convert my epubs to azw3’s for future proofing.

          I never used mobi, as by the time I switched from epub (using the sony’s) to azw3, I was on the oasis, so wanted the most up to date format. So I can’t say that azw3 is strictly better. You’d probably have to do a strict side by side comparison and see if those differences mattered to you.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy 2022 Jeroen!
      Thanks. It’s pretty much the first time that Librarything has had a graphic that I found useable 😀

      Yeah, I was on a real Muppet kick and still am in fact. So expect those movie/tv stats to look similar at the end of ’22!

      Like

    1. Happy 2022 Yesha!
      Thank you. It was a lot of work to write and next year I’m going to definitely write more of it during December instead of doing it all at the last minute. It was too much 😀

      I think I counted up the words on a page of a couple of comics and synthesized a general average and have used that. I used a page of a manga, an american comic and one of the Asterix comics. So while not extremely accurate like a novel, it’s close enough for my purposes 😀

      I think I count on 1K’ish for a 24page comic, 3K’ish for a 50page graphic novel and 8K for a volume of manga.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy 2022 Matt!

      Well, if it makes you feel any better, I read someone’s wrapup where they had read close to 300 books for ’21. And someone else read over 65K pages. or those posts where their views for their website are 10x of mine 😀

      I will say this, you read a lot denser and less fluffier books than I do. Which is why I included that genre graphic. What one reads is as important as how much.

      So get cracking on those comic books! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Bart.

      Well, there are ways to guestimate those metrics for paper books as well. Readinglength.com is one I’ll use if it isn’t readily available in calibre or kobo.com.

      Like

  7. What a phenomenal year of reading! I’m also quite happy that you haven’t completely given up on comics/graphic novels/manga and even more happy to see you dive back into the never-ending One Piece world once again. 😛 Thank you again for being an important influence on readers through your unique perspective on the world and I hope you’ll see more fun than pain in blogging for the next year. The world needs a Bookstooge after all! Happy New Year! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll be sticking with comics at least until I run through the asterix and bone series 😀 So a couple of years for sure!
      I’m going to be adding Groo and TMNT and turning thursdays into a day dedicated to comics. So one piece, Asterix, Bone, Groo and TMNT. holy smokes, that’s a LOT! makes me wonder what my librarything genre graph is going to look like at the end of the year, hahaahahahaha!

      Like

  8. Blogger doesn’t have the type of engagement or interactions that WP has. It why I switch. The only problem is that my older posts are not getting attention.

    I’m planning on doing a lot of re-reading this year.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Compliments of the New Year

    I have come to realize a thing about blogging that after a while at it…. You sort of get a grasp for what matters, or rather what matters to you I have tinkered around with different platforms and for all its pains WordPress seems to tick the boxes that matter to me (WordPress plans are also overrated unless you have a specific reason for.. Tried going self-hosted for a bit cause it was cheaper and gosh it’s cold out there 🤣🤣🤣)

    Numbers take time and as you numbers also tell only a small part of the story… Speaking of numbers I’m in awe, my goal is usually to average 1 Book review a month 🤣 keep it simple 🥳🎊

    ~B

    I have learned to like the block editor from a weird workaround where I draft in MS Word… copy + paste to Block Editor for final layout and editing block by block…. Also what’s with the changes one day you wake up and a function isn’t where you left it 🤣🤣🤣

    Like

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