2020 Reading Intentions

I have been reviewing what I wrote for my 2019 reading intentions and seeing how many I failed at!  Did manage a lot of them, but not all. I have written about that in my year in review here. That said I still like to have some broad goals that I can aim for, or most likely shuffle broadly in the direction of. And here they are:


My Own Books

Sarah has said again that I have too many books piled up (Tsundoko) around the house. (Note to self, try not to buy so many books). Did manage to read 25 of my own books, but that isn’t enough. That said,  I am allowed to get some more bookshelves!  So that is a new year project to sort that all of that out and unhaul some books. I am looking forward to having all my Little Toller and Eland books together in one place too!


Review Copies

According to my spreadsheet, I have 124 outstanding review copies to read. Even though there is a lot of books on the two shelves that I have for them,  I’m not sure if this is right as I counted way less than that on the shelf!!! I am grateful for every book I receive through the post from publishers, so thank you to you all. I fully intend to read and review as many of those as possible as soon as I can, but also see the blogging post below.


Library Books

As I said last year, these places are a precious resource. Sadly, our present government seems hell-bent on eradicating them from our cities, towns and villages. I still have too many library books out, and will still keep getting them out too. The author gets a small amount every time a book of theirs is borrowed and for the reader, most books are free or have a nominal reservation fee. I am fortunate that I have two library cards, and I am going to try not to max each one out…


Female and BAME Authors

In 2018, 35% of my reading was by female authors. Had intended to raise that for 2019, but have dropped back to 33%. So will be aiming for 40% in 2020. I want around 5% of my reading to be  BAME authors too.



Last year I managed to read a poetry book each and every month and sometimes read more than one. I like poetry, even though I don’t always get it, so am going to try to read around two books a month in 2020.


Literary Awards

Will be aiming to read all of these again (Next year I might get to the Baillie Gifford list as I didn’t this year)

Edward Stanford Travel Writing Awards (I am judging the Adventure Travel next year)


Royal Society

Baillie Gifford

Arthur C Clarke


The World From My Armchair Challenge

Managed to read 13 more books for this long term challenge bringing my total read so far to 44. I have been acquiring books for it though, and have a further 41 books on various bookshelves scattered around the house to read for other countries. I am still looking for travel books (or non-fiction) that are set in or pass through these countries, below. So if you know any, please do let me know.

Antigua and Barbuda
Brunei Darussalam
Capo Verde
Central African Republic
Persian Gulf
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Sao Tome and Principe
Trinidad and Tobago
Balearic Sea
Ligurian Sea
Alboran Sea



Managed two more from the Discworld series, but these are still to go:

The Wee Free Men
A Hat Full of Sky
Unseen Academicals
I Shall Wear Midnight
Raising Steam
The Shepherd’s Crown

Please feel free to pester me to remind me that need to keep reading them.


Science Fiction

Only read two (yes two) science fiction books this year which I am ashamed of really as I had high hopes of getting more than that read. Aiming to read at least one a month.



I have always been a reader first and foremost and I get immense pleasure from reading and talking about books. It was reading that introduced me to NB magazine and the blog came off the back of that. After a lot of thought, I have decided that I am going to change the way that I am blogging. I am going to still be reading and reviewing on here and Good Reads and so on, but will be drastically reducing the number of review copies that I request as I can’t keep up.  I am still happy to receive a book if a publisher or publicist still wishes to send them to me, but will not guarantee when I will get to read it. Instead, I have decided that I will either get the newly released books in 2020 from the library or buy them myself to read as and when I can. I will still take part in Blog Tours, but only a maximum of once a month as I don’t always like reading to a deadline.


So there we have it, some changes and evolution from last years intentions as my priorities have changed.

What are your reading intentions?

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  1. Liz Dexter

    Sounds like some sensible changes there. I have managed to limit my NetGalley requesting a bit, and I want to raise my BAME game further (which should happen due to purchases made but not read this year). Happy reading for 2020 – I hope the healthy overlap we have in our book interests continues to give ideas for new reads and give an interesting counterpoint on ones we both read. Haven’t got my Christmas acquisitions on the TBR shelves yet ….

    • Paul

      Happy Reading to you to Liz! I like being challenged in what we read because of the similarities and differences that we have in our reading scope. I know for example that I should be reading more female authors, but a lot of what is being released is still male-centric. Have a look at the Willowherb Review to see what they are doing with writers of colour with respect to nature writing

  2. Annabel Gaskell

    Admirable aims. My own are very vague – more from the TBR (always), more in translation, to keep up the NF, more poetry, more from the library, and to give up sooner if I’m not enjoying a book. Good luck with yours.

    • Paul

      The never-ending TBR… I have a small pile of poetry books to read too! My usual rule for books is fifty pages or three chapters and it gets set aside or rejected

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