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A Fresh Page

January 1, 2013

photo credit: me

2012 was such a rich year. It overflowed with everything, including magical, lyrical, soul-touching books. And while I managed to blog about some of these books, more slipped through my fingers. Eventually, the weight of all those books, the ones calling out for attention, overwhelmed me. I retreated into other things, and only glanced at my blog out of the corner of my eye every once in a while.

Now 2013 has arrived, and I’ve accepted that many of last year’s bookish treasures will stay hidden. I spend last night taking down Christmas decorations, tidying my room, and sorting my book cases, so that I could wake up to a room free from last year’s messes and projects. And if I could manage that in the physical world, how much easier in the virtual one!

And so, as A Striped Armchair and I embark on our seventh year together, I’m declaring amnesty. I’ve deleted my list of titles to post about, and with a light heart I look forward to seeing what 2013 will bring me. If it’s half as wonderful as last year, I will be a fortunate woman indeed.

Thank you to everyone who reads and comments and e-mails and tweets, despite my haphazard replies. And to all my fellow bloggers, are you starting again this year or carrying over last year’s books? Finally, if you’re a newish book blogger, feel free to leave a comment introducing yourself! I love to meet new bloggers and I’ve been so out of the community for the past six months, I have no idea who’s arrived!

48 Comments leave one →
  1. January 1, 2013 4:24 pm

    Welcome back, Eva! Amnesty is a great idea — start fresh and enjoy what you are now reading :)

  2. January 1, 2013 4:31 pm

    Amnesty is a fabulous idea. I wish I could bring myself to do it.

    • January 5, 2013 1:18 am

      I’m happy to declare amnesty on your behalf too! ;)

  3. January 1, 2013 4:57 pm

    Nice to make a fresh start, isn’t it? I’m doing much the same :) And embarking on my 7th year as well..hard to believe!

  4. January 1, 2013 4:58 pm

    Amnesty is a wonderful thing. I let myself off the hook by just writing up very short reviews of the 10 or so books I had left that I’ll post tomorrow and call it good. I’m still hoping to do a good bookshelf cleanse today to try and get that looking more manageable. Welcome back, and here’s to a wonderful 2013!

  5. January 1, 2013 5:09 pm

    Hooray for new beginnings! Can’t wait to see what 2013 brings. Welcome back! :)

  6. January 1, 2013 5:36 pm

    I’ve enjoyed your thoughtful posts, Eva, no matter how often they are posted – I also appreciate your honesty when you have to take time away from blogging. A big reason I haven’t kept a book blog is because I don’t think I could be regular enough with updates – especially book reviews. Instead, I’ve been logging my reading list for myself on a wordpress site and this year I’m adding in my mileage walking so that I’m not just holed away reading books ALL the time. You can check it out here if you want –> Best wishes for a very readerly 2013.

    • January 5, 2013 1:18 am

      Thank you for your kind comment, and I don’t think you need to be regular to be a book blogger, not in an age of feed readers. :) I’ll be sure to check out your log!

  7. January 1, 2013 5:56 pm

    A clean slate now and then is a very good thing. Happy to see you back!

  8. January 1, 2013 6:38 pm

    I totally get it! A clean slate is always a beautiful thing. :) Lovely to see you here again, my friend.

    I have about 10 books from 2012 that I’ll be posting about throughout the month of January, in fact I’m finishing up writing those reviews tonight. Tomorrow I’ll start my first book of 2013 and we’ll see where the reading year takes me! Hopefully wonderful, exciting places. :)

  9. January 1, 2013 6:54 pm

    Welcome back! I totally agree with the clean slate; sometimes its just what needs to be done.

    I’m part of a collaborative book blog which I’ve linked up in my name – we’re fairly new, posting a little sporadically at the minute and are just finding our feet in the book blogging world :)

    • January 5, 2013 1:17 am

      Welcome to the book blogosphere Bex! It’s a fun place to be; I’ll be sure to visit your blog. :)

  10. January 1, 2013 7:04 pm

    It’s nice to see you back!! Good for you for giving yourself amnesty.

  11. boardinginmyforties permalink
    January 1, 2013 7:18 pm

    Happy New Year Eva. I look forward to all of your reviews in 2013.

  12. January 1, 2013 8:57 pm

    I like reading posts that are fun to write, and not so much the ones that seem like a duty. No one’s paying us for this; it’s just for fun!

  13. January 1, 2013 10:27 pm

    I always start fresh in the New Year. Part of me regrets it, but overall less stress that way! Happy New Year, Eva!

  14. January 1, 2013 11:11 pm

    Hey I love the Amnesty idea. Well done on making that decision. Wishing you a Happy New Year, and especially wishing you better health and enjoyment in your reading and project choices. May 2013 be different!

  15. Kristen M. permalink
    January 2, 2013 12:37 am

    I only have three carryover books so I’ll review them in the next week or two (even though one was read in November!). I do it more out of a desire to share these books though than any feelings of obligation. If they weren’t good reads, I would totally let them go. I’ve decided finally to not review every single book I read in a year and it’s quite liberating. If a book sits too long on the review pile, I obviously didn’t care strongly about it either way.

    Welcome back again and here’s to a gloriously fresh and happy new year!

  16. January 2, 2013 2:20 am

    Seven years. Wow, Eva! That’s great. Happy New Year!!

  17. January 2, 2013 2:36 am

    Happy New Year Eva! I caught up with blog posts yesterday and am ploughing on as usual into 2013, looking forward to an exciting reading year and hoping to comment more. Glad you’re able to start with a clean slate, that mst be ver satisfying.

  18. January 2, 2013 3:17 am

    I’m starting afresh. I had a pile of library books which I kept on renewing because I hadn’t blogged about them yet – they’re going back to the library today.

  19. January 2, 2013 4:05 am

    I’ve been a secret stalker of your blog for a while, and have added many of your books to my list. It takes a lot of effort to catch up, and those reviews tend to be just ho hum. I play catchup a lot! :) So, here’s to a new year!

    • January 5, 2013 1:16 am

      Nice to meet you! I see you have a book blog too. :)

  20. January 2, 2013 4:56 am

    Welcome back and a fresh new start is always wonderful. I took my pile of library books back today and am going to focus on my huge TBR pile of books in my own library this year with only 1 or 2 coming from libraries at a time. All the best for the new year. Travellin Penguin and I will look forward to following you as always. Pam

  21. January 2, 2013 8:39 am

    It’s wonderful to start off the new year with a blank slate. It’s very refreshing! Also I find it’s really difficult to review a book if it’s been a while since I’ve read it. No fun. Happy New Year Eva and I look forward to reading your future reviews.

  22. January 2, 2013 8:43 am

    Yep, I think that’s a wonderful and healthy attitude, my dear! And you know what, I hope 2013 is twice as amazing and special for you as last year was…because you deserve it!!! :D

  23. January 2, 2013 9:40 am

    What an inspiring post, Eva, I think I may just do the same. The old half-written/planned posts of 2012 are weighing me down… here’s to a brand new 2013 with many more opportunities in reading, love, health and life in general!

    • January 5, 2013 1:16 am

      I hope you do! I felt much lighter after doing so. :)

  24. January 2, 2013 10:38 am

    Happy 2013, Eva!

    As for carrying over last year’s books: I still have not decided yet. I have read so many treasures last year that I never wrote about. I feel it would be a shame to “forget” about them. On the other hand, it feel refreshing to be able to start with a blanco page. We’ll see what happens.

  25. January 2, 2013 10:45 am

    Starting again absolutely. The weight of the neglected was pulling me down!

  26. January 2, 2013 11:20 am

    Happy New Year, Eva! I think amnesty on reviews is a great idea and look forward to your posts in 2013.

  27. January 2, 2013 11:48 am

    Happy new year, Eva! I’m glad to see you back to blogging and I’m sure that even of you don’t review these books, you’ll mention the great ones sometimes, ot we’ll just have to discover for ourselves :)
    I took a blogging break as well, and while I haven’t decided on amnesty, it feels like a fresh start and I’m the happier for it.
    Have an amazing 2013!

  28. Alex in Leeds permalink
    January 2, 2013 12:22 pm

    Welcome back, I’m glad it’s an amnesty not a drifting away!

  29. January 2, 2013 6:09 pm

    I have read countless posts like these in the past few days, leading me to believe that 2012 was the bane of many book bloggers’ existence! I personally didn’t right such a post, but then again, the fact that I haven’t updated S&TI! in months probably speaks for itself. Many books were read, but like you, they never got written about (which isn’t to say they weren’t worth writing about!). Here’s hoping that 2013 is a better blogging year for both of us, and hurrah for clean slates! :)

    • January 5, 2013 1:15 am

      And here I thought I was a special snowflake. ;) Quite a few of my close bloggy friends also took long breaks in 2012, so maybe it was just a weird year. Also, I think you have an excuse re: not updating your book blog! lol

  30. January 2, 2013 8:50 pm

    Glad to see you here! You have been missed.

  31. January 2, 2013 9:29 pm

    Welcome back to one my favorite all-time bloggers! I’ve missed you! Good luck in the new year and I look forward to reading your posts again.
    I’ve always enjoyed your choice of books!

  32. January 2, 2013 9:33 pm

    I think amnesty is just what you needed. I know when there are too many things hanging over my head that I feel I ought to do I feel overwhelmed and can’t get anything done. As for my books, I find I really don’t care if I don’t have them all finished as I enter the new year. (I did rush to catch up on posts, though!) Happy New Year and happy reading!

  33. January 3, 2013 1:37 pm

    Nothing like a fresh start, and what better time to do it? I’ve spent most of the morning cleaning out two email accounts, archiving and deleting the better part of 1200 old emails going back four years. Maybe now I won’t lose the new stuff in those big haystacks. Looking forward to 2013 and seeing what it holds for you. Have fun…

  34. January 3, 2013 4:47 pm

    Good for you! I will be sad not to read your reviews of everything awesome you read in 2012. But I know how good it feels to declare blogging bankruptcy (as it were). Happy New Year! I’m looking forward to reading your posts in 2013. :)

    • January 5, 2013 1:12 am

      Ok, here’s a tiny review of one of my fave books I didn’t get to blog about: True Murder by Yaba Badoe. Boarding school! Insanity, seen through Ghanaian culture! Pubescent girl drama! Sinister atmosphere! Gothic overtones! If you haven’t read it, you have to! ;) (It’s not published in the US but I got a cheap copy via a used book site.)

  35. January 3, 2013 5:40 pm

    welcome back and a happy new year Eva ,all the best stu

  36. January 4, 2013 1:01 pm

    Welcome back, Eva! Happy New Year to you! Looking forward to following your reading adventures this year! Happy reading!

  37. January 4, 2013 2:01 pm

    Hi–I am a new blogger who has been reading your blog for a while now. I am writing to introduce myself, as suggested in one of your recent posts. I hope you will take a look at my blog:

    Happy new year!

    • January 5, 2013 1:10 am

      Hi Catherine! It’s nice to meet you & I’ll go check out your blog. :)

  38. January 5, 2013 8:20 am

    I love the idea of a fresh slate for the new year. I’m seriously considering doing the same thing myself for those 11 books that I read in 2012 and still haven’t shared my thoughts on. What a great idea!!

  39. January 6, 2013 4:37 pm

    I kind of feel the same way about my blog and 2012. It wasn’t a great blogging year for me, at least not in the second half, and I’d like to do better in 2013, especially when it comes to writing about books. I did very little of that in 2012 and I hope to change that in 2013.

Thank you for commenting! For a long while, my health precluded me replying to everyone. Yet I missed the conversation, so I'm now making an effort to reply again. It might take a few days though, and there will be times when I simply can't. Regardless, I always read and value what you say.

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