Shelf Stats

Shelf Stats #1 / In Which I Look at the Ratio Female-Male Authors I Read and Own

I tend to keep track of my stats as I read. I try to mark it down in my little notebook after every book I’ve read. That way it really isn’t that much work. One of the things I keeptrack of is if I read female, male, duo’s or non-binary authors.

It is one of those things that I just find interesting to see. I started doing stats in 2015 but it wasn’t until 2018 that I started looking at what ‘gender or non-binary’ I read most authors of.  So in 2018 47% was female vs 44% male. That is quite close together.

However as 2019 is passing I find that I am reading more female authors. At the time of writing this (june 2019) almost 70% of what I’ve read is by female authors. That is quite a change. It made me wonder why that is? And how is the situation on my shelves?

So for this post I counted this in June 2019 because what better way to settle one’s curiousity is there?

No Non-Binary Authors?

Adding on to this story you might have seen that I did mention that I keep track of non-binary authors. However you won’t see them in the stats below. The reason for that is simple. I don’t own any books written by non-binary authors. I realize this is a problem that needs to be fixed at some point. It doesn’t mean I haven’t read books by non-binary authors but these were through ebooks and the like. No physical books. I wanted to say this seperately because I did have it along on my list to count.

My portion of ebooks is so small that it wouldn’t make sense to count them along so I didn’t. Most of what I read through ebooks is arcs and they dissapear of my ereader after a few weeks. Well most anyway. So I don’t own them in that sense.


Another addition I’d like to make is that I also counted Duo’s per female, male and mixed. These are only a little part of my shelves as you shall see but I still thought it was of interest to note. I also put in anthologies with multiple author in those categories along those lines.

Counting the Shelves

Surprisingly counting my shelves only took me an hour. I know. I am getting faster. I had two forms I used. One for the whole which author thing and the other was also to cut it up in target groups which I will also share a little further down. Seeing as female and young adult is often something that is seen as hand in hand unfortunately as is often shown in miscategorizing female author’s adult books as young adult. The link goes to a post by Pages Unbound.

The Whole

the whole

As you can see from this pie chart the whole of my bookshelves consists more females than male. I find this interesting to note because I think, or am actually quite sure, that a few years ago this was quite different. And I will say that a lot of the male authors are same authors like Rick Riordan, Terry Pratchett and Jonathan Stroud which also changes things quite a bit.

As for the tiny bits on there, Duo mixed is the most owned with Duo female the least. Female duo’s or complete female anthologies aren’t very often recommended. I think could only name you the two I own (two YA anthologies), Amie Kaufman with Megan Spooner and the My Lady Janesies. Where as I think the other two duo divisions are more shared. More well known.


Read Books Ratio

Dividing things up a bit. In the section of read books, female authors are still very much on top. It is of course easier to pick up a female author when you own more books my female authors.


TBR Books Ratio

As for the TBR books, this is actually rather close together. Still, females on top! The dark blue is Duo Male as I do not have any Duo Female on my TBR. Rec me some I don’t know please!

Target Group



I am pleased to see that this is rather even. I think that there are certainly some great authors of both gender in Adult (Fantasy) and I am glad I have equal of both.

Young Adult

Young Adult

Young adult is dominated by female authors on my shelves but that doesn’t come as a surprise. A lot of the young adult books i discover are written by female authors. A lot of YA authors I follow are female. Where as with adult I am certain I can find some great adult authors, I do not feel the same way in YA. I have more trust in most female authors there. A lot of male authors have shown their asses and where in adult I have found some trusted male fantasy writers, I certainly can’t say the same in YA.

Middle Grade and Children’s Fiction

middle grade

This is quite the opposite and one I can explain. I have a bit of Roald Dahl, John Flanagan and Artemis Fowl downstairs, the last two  waiting for me to sample  them before setting them away for Merijn. I bought these just for Merijn not because they are male authors but because the other middle grade I have on the shelves I have as favorites, and they are for me too. And these few seem to be fun and active books to round things out. But I have a few of those and not that much other middle grade currently on my shelves by females so that is the difference here. And of course there is Rick Riordan. Who has at least 10 books in this section.

Book Hauls 2015 and  2019

As I finished the above stats I also realized that perhaps it would be interesting to see how my book hauls tend to turn out. I buy a lot of books but I also get a bit gifted. And sometimes I win things.  I wanted to see how that was. Since that is a lot of work I did it just for 2015 and up to june 2019.

book haul 2015


book haul

Now if you look closely you can see that the female sections have gotten a little more percentage wise in total. 2015 had a good 53%. Where as 2019 has a good 63%. I am buying more female authors now than I was then.

What Influences Me?

So then the question is what influences me? How come I buy and read more female authors than I did before?

I think 1 point for sure is one I mentioned previously and that is that I don’t trust male authors (especially in YA) that much as I do female authors. There has just been too much things going on. While that has happened among female authors as well I feel that there it gets called out more and there is more discussion. So I am more willing to put my reading heart on the line for them than I am for male authors. #sorrynotsorry That isn’t to say I don’t trust male authors period. There are some I do trust. Hello Rick Riordan.

Another aspect is that I am more active on social media. With this I mostly mean twitter. I follow a lot of female bloggers, social media influencers and authors on there. They influence me into seeing what is coming out, what is being recommended, what is being read. And that is a lot by female authors. And an addition to that is that a lot of them also promote diverse voices and yes, those are very often female again. Of course there are male authors but sometimes they can seem lacking in diversity or the ones that do write diversity write those in genres that I generally don’t read.

I also feel that a lot of female influencers are more open about who they are on twitter. That is also a reason why I tend to be more open towards what they recommend me.

Do you know how your ratio falls between authors? Does it matter to you? What do you think influences you?

8 thoughts on “Shelf Stats #1 / In Which I Look at the Ratio Female-Male Authors I Read and Own

    1. It is always a lot of fun to see how things change between years that way. I always make a list at the start of the year with the kind of things I want to keep track of and then mark after every read book.


  1. I’m trying to keep track of what I’m actually reading this year along the same lines, including other factors, like nationality of the author, religion (if known), genre, fiction vs non-fiction, adult, YA, etc. I’m trying to get a better handle on what kind of books and authors I’m actually reading. I like to think I’m well-read and expose myself to a lot of different kinds of books and authors, but is that really true?

    It’s good to stop and actually consider the data sometimes. See where the gaps in
    exposure might be. I really like this analysis you’ve included about what influences your purchases as well. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! 🙂 It is a lot of fun to see, and yes good to see what your reading is like. I also like to keep track of release years and target groups but also the kind of diversity a book has.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Without looking I’d say more female pretty confidently. If anything it’s because they write more books I’m interested in because it’s usually a synopsis that catches my attention. This is really something to think about though. 👍✨

    Liked by 1 person

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