Ya’ll, please forgive my lack of commitment to the blog this year! I think it may have even been a New Year’s Resolution of mine to blog more, and I totally failed! Here it is the end of July and I’m on a mission to catch up! I’ve read 44 books so far this year, and the one thing I’m relying on to keep track of that is my book log that I bought myself for Christmas. I bought this one for me, but I got this one for my daughter and this one for my son. We are all in love. I thought it would be a great way for them to keep up with and remember books they’ve read for years to come. Especially my kindergartener! He can look back over a whole lifetime of reading if he keeps it up. So that’s how I’m catching back up here.
I planned to participate in both of Modern Mrs. Darcy’s reading challenges because I really wanted to stretch myself this year. I feel like I got a great start early in the year. Now in July, I’ve almost completed both lists! But we will get to that as I catch up. My early approach to the list is read what I want and see what category it fits into. As the categories dwindle, I have to be more intentional as I choose my next read. I’d love to hear how you do it!
Here’s my list for February, which is a short month. I hope it was cold where you are and that you were able to snuggle under a soft, homemade quilt with a cup of coffee and spend hours of time reading. It was cool for about 2 days in north Mississippi, so that’s not exactly what it looked like for me, but I take what I can get.
11/22/63 by Stephen King. This is only the second novel by Stephen King that I’ve ever read. The first was The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon at the insistence of my mom when I was in about eighth grade. She owns his whole library, so I borrowed her copy of 11/22/63. If I didn’t think it would pass down to me in her will, I would go right out and buy my own hardback copy because I loved it so. At this point, half way through the year, it’s my “best book of the year.” It took about 2 chapters for me to understand why the man is such a prolific writer and why everyone loves him so much. I’m a fan. I still can’t get on board with the horror novels, but I’ll be adding more of his to my book log soon. This is about a man who travels back in time to try to stop the assassination of JFK among other things. That sentence sounds hokey, but it’s the story that is woven and how absolutely accurate all the descriptions are that roped me in. Also, I didn’t see some events coming. History does not like to be altered, and it will do whatever it takes to remain the same. But do we really even want it to change? Five stars for this one! So, so good. A book with more than 600 pages for my reading challenge.
A Mile Wide by Brandon Hatmaker. I got this as a deal of the day on Kindle. This would make a great group study as it contains discussion questions at the end of every chapter. It deserves a reread as it is so dense with information and ideas for missional living that I know I missed a good bit of it. I know that there has been some controversy around the Hatmakers this year, but none of those issues are really touched on in this book and I definitely think it’s worth a read for anyone who doesn’t feel fulfilled in their faith and wants to go deeper.
The Marvelous Misadventures of Ingrid Winter by J.S. Drangsholt. This was a Kindle First freebie (this comes with a prime membership) in February, and it looked like a light, funny read. I did get through it really quickly, but this one just wasn’t for me. Ingrid Winter has horrible coworkers to the point of ridiculous, makes horrible financial decisions, and never stands up for herself. It would’ve been somewhat redeeming if the book had ended by being wrapped up with a bow, but it wasn’t. No redeeming qualities for me at all. I did mark it off as a book with an unreliable narrator or ambiguous ending though.
The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg. I snagged this series of three on sale on Kindle one day. You really have to keep your eye out for those sales! This is the first in that series. It’s definitely YA. I wrote this in my log: “While the story itself was okay, and it was an easy read, the plot was not well-developed. This 19 year old is apparently in love with a man she’s known for a week? I guess it’s sort of believable knowing some 19 year olds, but she seemed stronger than that. It would’ve been nice if her education in Folding had been extrapolated on more before she went into battle with that as her only weapon.” Three stars here. Will I read the rest of the series? The jury’s still out.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling. My quest to listen/read this series continues. I checked this audio book out from the library even though we own them all. I really enjoy listening to books on my 40 minute commute to work. Aside from the devastating ending, this was probably my new favorite book in the series.
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin. All the heart eyes! A.J. is a widower that’s drinking himself away when a child is left in his bookstore. He adopts the little girl and this is the story of how the whole community comes around him and the bookstore as she grows. He finds love and happiness and fulfillment. Prepare to lengthen your TBR list with this one. I sure did. It also made me want to open a bookstore and host a million different book clubs. Four and a half stars! Counted this one as a book about books or reading.
That’s it for me in February. I hope you enjoyed seeing my diverse range this month. There are plenty more behind these, but if you see something you’re interested in, follow the link to find a copy of your own!