Wrapping Up 2018 with the Gentlemen’s Book Club
It’s the time of the year when we take stock of 12 months reads with a sumptuous, warm and
As we went into the end of year tabulations, our monthly reads were ranked according to the average scores offered immediately after reading. The monthly reads were ranked:
A couple of us have developed the habit of compiling a few stats and findings as we go self-reflective on our reading experience. JW lead the findings this year with a casual note that:
Now that the dust has settled on our Eurovision style voting, we ended up with a clear winner – this year Michael Palin and Erebus: The Story of a Ship. It was a well appreciated read by all last month and the voting at the time gave it one of our top average scores with 7.63.
The Year End Ranks of our twelve reads ended up with two ties and shook out as so:
There were some winners and losers from our month to month rankings as the following chart shows, mapping the ranked scores from the 12 months against the year-end ranking.
Although the top finishers merely swapped places, the end of year 2nd place finisher ‘The Betrayal’ managed a quite respectable jump from fourth to second place. ‘The Black Count’ also demonstrated a significant climb but both of these were trumped by ‘The People of the Book’ jumping a full 3 steps in the
One factor that we are always conscious of is the fact that the books read earlier in the year have to either be tremendously memorable to battle it out lest they suffer from a more recent familiarity with good reads later in the year that may receive an unintentional bump based on our faltering memories. To try a little exercise in controlling for this I gave some slight weighting +/- up to 25% of point score in the final meeting based on reading sequence. Note: this actually removes the tied scores as they are altered slightly by weighting. The results show that at the extremes, there was no effect. Good and Bad books held their place. However, there is some shuffling in the middle with books such as Middlesex and the Butcher, Baker and Candlestick maker demonstrating lasting resonance and Lethal White taking a hit for being the last book of the year read and 4 others dropping a ranking each. In point of fact the weighting for how recently a book was read before our end of year rankings was not that significant on the overall end of year standings.
So how did we fare between Fiction and Non-Fiction? In past years, with few exceptions, we tend towards favouring our Non-Fiction reads. We generally have chosen a Fiction best read of the year, then ranked our Non-Fiction reads consistently higher than fictional ones. This year we gave a Non-Fiction book, Erebus, the nod as our Book of the Year, but then switched loyalties and ranked our Fictional reads slightly higher than our Non-Fictional ones. Did we just choose badly?
When we look at the average score for Fiction vs Non-Fiction we find that:
Fiction had an aggregate score of 40.20 for 6 reads with an average of 6.69 and our Non-Fiction only managed a 37.61 aggregate and average score of 6.26. Hmmmm.
Finally, All but two members managed to have at least one recommendation accepted for reading by the club. The results for reactions to recommendations are as follows:
DK recommended 2 books with a total 14.75 and average of 7.375/book
And on the reading front, we have average scores for each reader with the two outliers removed. So, who ranks high, and who ranks low? By the way, the average score by the club on aggregate
DK gives an average score of 7.3