January Wrap Up

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I think it’s safe to say that I started off the year on a good note, at least when it comes to reading. I reread a few favorites, found a couple of new favorites, and overall had a lot of fun with my goal to read whatever I feel like reading. Seriously, you should try it. It’s been a very busy, but very productive month. I finished a total of fifteen books, almost all of which I liked, and I’m pretty happy with where I’m at right now. Let’s get into the books!

What I Read:

This is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay – ★★★★★. I kept seeing this book around, but hadn’t heard of it since it doesn’t seems like it was published in the US. I found a copy on Book Depository, and read it in less than 24 hours. It is such a great book, and I found it really interesting, since I actually work at a medical school. You can read my review of This is Going to Hurt here.

Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare – ★★★★☆. I chose Twelfth Night as my Shakespeare read of the month, and I really enjoyed it!

Red Rising by Pierce Brown – ★★★★★. I think this was the fifth time I’ve read this book, and I loved it just as much as I did the first time. I reread the entire trilogy in preparation for Iron Gold.

Golden Son by Pierce Brown – ★★★★★. Another reread. I think this is number three.

Morning Star by Pierce Brown – ★★★★★. This was my first time rereading this one, and I forgot how intense it is!

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory – ★★★★☆. This is a new release – just out yesterday! – and it was fantastic! Even though it deals with difficult topics, it’s a really fun book, and I flew through it. I wrote a full review of The Wedding Date if you want to find out more.

The Stowaway by Laurie Gwen Shapiro – ★★★★☆. This is probably one of the most exciting nonfiction books I’ve ever read. It’s the story about a young man who stows away on the first American expedition to Antarctica. I had a lot of fun reading it! If you’re interested, you can read my full review of The Stowaway.

A Tale for the Time Being – ★★★★☆. Easily one of the strangest books I have ever read, but I really enjoyed it. I am so glad I finally got around to reading this one. It’s such an interesting and unique story. It took me a while to get my thoughts together, but my review will be up on Friday, so be sure to come back and check it out.

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton – ★★★☆☆. I was really looking forward to this one because I’d heard so many great things about it, but I was a bit disappointed. It’s a good book, it just wasn’t for me. If you want to read more of my thoughts on this book, you can read my review of The Belles.

The Power by Naomi Alderman – ★★★★☆. I meant to read this when it first came out – it was my Book of the Month pick for October – and I finally got around to it this month. (Considering how long some books have been sitting on my shelf, that’s not too bad.) It was very different than I was expecting, but still very powerful. You can read my review of The Power if you want to find out more.

The Restaurant at the End of the Universe – ★★★★☆. I finally decided to continue on with the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, starting with this one. I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the first, but it was still really great.

Iron Gold by Pierce Brown – ★★★★★. This book was a brilliant continuation of the Red Rising trilogy! I really enjoyed the story, and loved seeing more of that world. I could talk about this book for a while, so I’ll just direct you to my review of Iron Gold instead.

The Ghost Notebooks by Ben Dolnick – ★★☆☆☆. To be fair, I’m not sure why I picked this book up in the first place, but it wasn’t a favorite. I had a lot of trouble connecting with the writing style, and couldn’t get into the story. I’ll have a review of The Ghost Notebooks up soon.

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor – ★★★★★. I can’t believe it took me this long to read Binti, especially because I read almost the entire book over a single lunch break. It’s a short book, but it isn’t bogged down with a lot of unnecessary information or subplots, which was so refreshing, especially for a science fiction book. If you’re interested, you can read my full review of Binti.

Freshwater by Akwaede Emezi – ★★★★★. This book was amazing! I honestly don’t even know how to explain it, but it was brilliant and incredibly well-written and I loved it. I’ll have a full review up next week, but this is one to keep your eye out for.

What I’m Currently Reading:

Circe by Madeline Miller. I still can’t believe I managed to get an ARC of this. I was so excited that I immediately started reading it, and, unfortunately, had to put it on hold for a bit because I had a couple other ARCs I needed to get to first. But I just picked it back up and I am loving it.

Life, the Universe, and Everything by Douglas Adams. This is the third book in the Hitchhiker’s Guide series, which I am listening to on audiobook. I’m not quite sure what I think of it yet – it’s a very strange book. But I am glad to be finally working my way through this series, and Martin Freeman does a great job narrating.

Duel with the Devil: The True Story of How Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr Teamed Up to Take on America’s First Sensational Murder Mystery by Paul Collins. That is one long title! Over the past few months, I bought a slightly ridiculous number of books about Alexander Hamilton and the other founding fathers and I need to at least read a few of them. This one is relatively short, so it was perfect for my schedule at the moment. The first part wasn’t the most entertaining (it was honestly a bit confusing, and I’m used to reading history books), but it has started to pick up and I am looking forward to seeing where this book goes.

What I Watched:

Molly’s Game. I actually really enjoyed this one! It made me want to read the book, because it’s such an interesting story.

Downsizing. This was one of the weirdest movies I’ve ever seen, but I liked it. Not that I don’t like Matt Damon, but the supporting actors in this were amazing. Totally worth seeing.

Lady Bird. I can’t say this was the best movie I’ve ever seen, but it was pretty great. And, as someone who went to Catholic school and did theater (I was behind the scenes), it felt so real.

I, Tonya. This was such a fun movie! I was familiar with the story before I saw it, but I thought it was done really well.

The Disaster Artist. This was weirder than Downsizing. I feel like I didn’t enjoy this as much as everyone else did, but I’m glad I watched it.

What I Did:

Saw Shakespeare in Love on Stage. My cousin won tickets to go see this, and it was so much fun! I love the movie, and it was just as good on stage.

Non-Book Favorites:

Lazy Readers. I bought these after seeing Kristen Bell wear them in an Insta story, and they were totally worth it. They are fairly inexpensive (I got this version on Amazon for around $8), but don’t feel cheap, and allow me to read laying down without risking dropping my book on my face. Which I have done A LOT. Plus, they look kind of insane and it’s really fun.

Blog Highlights:

10 Reasons You Should Read Whatever You Want. I had a lot of fun writing this, so I’m glad so many of you enjoyed it! If you haven’t read it yet, go check it out. I’ve been working on being better at reading what I feel like reading, and it’s made this month so much better.


That’s it for January! I can’t believe we’re already a month into 2018. I hope you all had a great reading month.

Let me know in the comments: what was your favorite new release this month?

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15 thoughts on “January Wrap Up

  1. Seems like you had a great month! I only read 3 books in January, but I hope to read more next month 😀 I absolutely can’t wait to watch Lady Bird, I’ve heard wonderful things about it. Molly’s Game was definitely my favourite movie this month, such a thrilling and smart movie.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I hope you enjoy Lady Bird – I think it has something for everyone. And I think Molly’s Game was my favorite of the month, too. I would definitely watch it again.

      Like

  2. Seems like you had an amazing reading month in January! I keep seeing The Wedding Date and The Power everywhere and it keeps reminding me I need to read them as soon as possible – two very different books, I know!

    I’m reading Circe at the moment too (just started the eARC last night) but the formatting is slightly off and it’s really ruining the flow of it all. Let’s hope I get a bit more into the story and I stop noticing it, haha. Have you read her previous book, The Song of Achilles? That one is another recommendation that I keep seeing popping up everywhere! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They’re completely different books, but I think you’ll enjoy both of them. The Wedding Date is great for when you need a break from more serious books.

      And yes, I have read The Song of Achilles and LOVED it. If you like Circe, you need to pick it up. I’m sorry the formatting is off. My eARC seems okay, but I’ve had that happen with other books before and it’s so hard to read.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Aaah I’ll make a note – I used The Hating Game for that very purpose last year and ended up loving it despite myself. 😛 I’ve had The Power for months now and just never picked it up, I need to stop putting it off because I think I’ll probably really like it!

        Fantastic, I’ll make a note about it then if I like Circe. I don’t know whether it’s just the device I happen to be trying to read it on – my phone… might try my iPad and see if it looks any better, I hope it does because it’s mildly frustrating and I really don’t want something like that to put me off an otherwise great story!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. If you liked The Hating Game, you’ll definitely like The Wedding Date. They have a very similar feel. And I didn’t love The Power as much as everyone else seems to, but it’s such a worthwhile read.

          I hope the formatting doesn’t ruin Circe for you, but I know how distracting it can be. I’m not having any issues with it on my phone, but maybe your iPad will work better.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. I really enjoyed Duel with the Devil! It’s such an odd story that it’s hard to believe it’s true. Then I rewatch the Hamilton Drunk History episode. 🙂 Loved Molly’s Game too. I saw it at a film festival with a Q&A with Aaron Sorkin which made me so happy. Sports Night forever!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve been waiting for the Belles for a whole year… I did read Dhonielle Clayton’s other book, Tiny Pretty Things. I liked her writing style, but I can see why a lot of other people didn’t. Hmm, I’ve been on a sci-fi kick myself and I’m starting to like the genre more than YA fantasy. Fantasy still has a special place in my heart so crossing my fingers I end up enjoying the Belles. If Dhonielle can’t pull it off, I don’t know who can!

    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I think if you like her writing, you’ll probably like The Belles. It just wasn’t for me, unfortunately. I’ve been reading a ton of sci-fi lately myself, but I think I’m starting to crave other genres.

      Liked by 1 person

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