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Mid-February is a perfectly fine time to announce my reading goals for 2017. Better late than never, right?
Normally, at the beginning of each year, I set a goal for how many books I want to read. (This year, it’s 125. I finished 155 last year and I’m actually trying to read a bit less this year.) Last year, my reading list was dominated by finishing my 40 before 40 list, so I didn’t want to follow any specific 2017 challenges. I’d just read whatever looks interesting.
Then something started nagging me. I read too many cupcake books. I loooooove them. And they are always my first choice. But, I realized that maybe I needed a little more balance in my reading life.
Balancing my book diet
I decided first to incorporate more personal development. Rising Strong (my review is here), You Are a Badass, And I finally finished Better than Before. Keeping the book diet theme strong, I assume that these are my veggies.
Then a few more fiction books that didn’t fall into the romance category. Britt-Marie Was Here. Today Will Be Different. My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry. (Is this the book equivalent to protein?)
Still, my book diet seemed off. Even though I was reading across more genres than usual, something was missing. (And don’t try to tell me sad books. I still don’t like to be super sad or scared on purpose.)
My Book Diet Needs Diversity. Badly.
That’s me. Just in case you forgot, I’m a 40-year-old white woman. I read a lot of romance novels, which are typically about 26-30 year-old white women. The memoirs and personal development books I was reading? White authors, almost all women.
In a complete lightbulb moment, I said, omg, I am so white and my books are such white girl picks.
Not only do I need greater variety in my genres, I’m seeking out more diverse authors. I’m starting on this goal by reading more books by or featuring women of color. And, I’m actively searching for cupcake books featuring women of color. I found a great list on GoodReads and I’m starting there. I also asked Facebook for recommendations and got some good ones.
I also saw a post from Cat about deaf romances and I realized I need to include more representation of disabilities. And, of course, more diverse gender representation.
If you have a recommendation for my 2017 TBR list, I’d love to hear it.
Here’s what I want more of:
- Cupcake books written by or featuring WOC
- Literary fiction that won’t leave me sobbing for days
- Memoirs of the not-celebrity variety, preferably by minorities
- Personal development that isn’t woo
- Books by or featuring disabilities
- Books by or featuring gay, lesbian, trans