Tuesday, July 03, 2018

Running Out of Books

A few years ago, back when I was reading the Jack Aubrey books, I hit on the idea of splitting my 60 books for the year into five sub-lists. This had the advantage of giving me a variety of reading material in each month, while also allowing me to make progress in several series at once.

However, it looks like that approach may be coming to an end. Indeed, it looks like I might be running out of books to read entirely.

My sub-lists for this year are as follows: the monthly Pathfinder Adventure Path volumes from Paizo, books from The List, novels by Iain (M) Banks, the last few Shannara novels (now done), and 'Other'. As noted, the Shannara novels are now done - by the start of this year there were only two remaining, with a third published (in paperback) in February.

Next year, at the current rate of progress, I expect to read the last of Iain Banks' novels in March. Meanwhile, Pathfinder is moving on to its second edition and I have decided not to follow it. For that reason, I will be discontinuing my subscription to the Adventure Path then, bringing that sub-list to a halt.

The upshot is that I'll be left with two sub-lists: books from The List (which should last until about 2021) and 'Other'.

The other factor is that in the last couple of years, when faced with a need to find a new series, I've been able to fall back on some I'd read in part years ago but had fallen behind on: Feist's Riftwar saga and the aforementioned Shannara novels. However, there's now only one such series out there (Salvatore's Drizzt novels), but I made a very conscious decision to give up on those after "The Ghost King", which did not impress - I'm not really inclined to pick them back up again. Otherwise, I'm up to date on all the writers I follow, who each produce a book a year (if I'm very lucky).

The upshot is that I have plenty of books for this year, and probably have enough to bulk out next year as well. But come 2020, it may be tricky to find books I actually want to read!

(Funnily enough, I was talking about this issue with my mother at the weekend, who is in much the same position - she has various series she follows, but has reached a point where she's up-to-date on all of these and is now waiting for new books to be published, and is finding it hard to find reading material in the interim.)

#30: "The Bridge", by Iain Banks

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