January Wrap Up – Mermaids, Sea Monsters, and Parasites

2019 is already flying by, but it’s been a good month! The last few days have been crazy busy at work (hello, overtime), but I still somehow managed to read – wait for it – THIRTEEN books this month. That’s right, I went kind of insane. But it was worth it. This is going to be a very long wrap up, so I’ll just get right into it.

What I Read:

The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One by Amanda Lovelace – ★★★★☆. This is the second installment of the Women are Some Kind of Magic poetry series, and I liked this one even more than the first. It’s so good! I’m glad I finally read this, and I am really looking forward to the next one.

This Will Only Hurt a Little by Busy Phillips – ★★★★☆. I enjoy the occasional celebrity memoir, and I’m glad I ended up picking this one up. It was really interesting, and such a fun read. You can check out my review if you want to find out more.

Unmarriageable by Soniah Kamal – ★★★☆☆. This is a Pride & Prejudice retelling set in modern-day Pakistan. P&P is one of my favorite novels, and I love the idea of a diverse retelling. Unfortunately, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the writing, but I can see a lot of people loving this one! Read my review for more info.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker – ★★★★☆. This is the story of the story of the Trojan war from the point of view of Briseis, a former queen who was given to Achilles as a war prize. This was really great. It felt like reading another side to the story told in The Song of Achilles. Definitely would recommend if you like books centered around mythology.

The Liar’s Room by Simon Lelic – ★★★☆☆. This is a thriller set mostly in a single room over the course of a few hours. It was interesting and exciting, but I didn’t love it. Ultimately, I wasn’t a huge fan of the characters, and I saw most of the twists coming. Solid thriller, not a favorite. Check out my review if you want to find out more.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona by William Shakespeare – ★★★★☆. I don’t have too much to say about this one other than that I enjoyed it. Nothing as special as Macbeth, but it was good.

Talent by Juliet Lapidos  – ★★☆☆☆. I was curious about this one because it’s a book about writers. It’s been a while since I’ve read any literary fiction, and I was looking forward to it quite a bit. Unfortunately, I didn’t really enjoy it. The story wasn’t bad, but Lapidos used my least favorite writing style, and it kind of prevented me from getting invested in the story. You can always read my review if you’re curious.

The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee – ★★★★★. I finally got around to reading this and I LOVED IT. This is such a fun series, and I had such a fun time reading this. Definitely deserved my first five-star rating of the year.

The Two Noble Kinsmen by William Shakespeare – ★★★★☆. I decided to fit in another Shakespeare play this month, and picked up this one. I didn’t know too much about it, but I enjoyed it.

We Cast a Shadow by Maurice Carlos Ruffin – ★★★★☆. This is a contemporary racial satire that reminded me a lot of Get Out. It was a bit too weird for my taste (and we all know I love weird books), but I did enjoy it quite a bit. I wrote a lot of reviews this month, so you can also read my review of We Cast a Shadow if you’re interested.

The Mermaid by Christina Henry – ★★★★★. This was another book I meant to read when it came out last year, and finally got around to. And it was amazing. It was a bit different than Christina Henry’s other books (at least the three others I’ve read), but it was just as good. I loved the story, the characters, and the writing. Strong five stars. If you’re curious, head on over to my review.

Plight of the Living Dead by Matt Simon – ★★★★★. If you had told me I was going to love a book about zombifying parasites, I probably would have rolled my eyes. But that’s exactly what happened. I absolutely loved this book. I learned a lot, but it also made me laugh. Also, I’m obsessed with cockroach wasps now. So that’s fun. Go check out my review for more. (Seriously, I was really proud of this one, but it published late because of a Goodreads issue, so please go read it if you missed it.)

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry – ★★★★☆. I think the hype killed this book a bit for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was really good. But I wasn’t in love with it. The fact that this took me nearly a month to get through kind of made me sad, because I was expecting this to be a five-star read that I couldn’t put down. Still a good book, just not a favorite, unfortunately. I mean, it’s kind of disappointing when you pick up a historical fiction novel you’re anticipating being a five-star read and you end up enjoying it less than a book about parasites. Just saying.

What I’m Currently Reading:

Heart Berries by Terese Marie Mailhot. I’ve been hearing about this one for a while, so I decided to pick it up this month. I’ve been on a nonfiction kick lately, and thought a memoir not written by a celebrity would be a good addition to my reading list this year. So far, I’m enjoying it a lot! The story is heartbreaking, and the writing is absolutely beautiful.

The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs by Stephen Brusatte. After finishing Plight of the Living Dead, I went through a few days of science withdrawals (not kidding about my obsession with that book), so I decided to pick up this one. I’ve been collecting dinosaur books lately, so I figured I should probably read one of them. Really interesting so far.

What I Watched:

The Good Place season finale. Can we just talk about this? Because I am still not okay.

What I Did:

Saw a medieval suits of armor exhibitI love new museum exhibits, and this one was fascinating. Some of the pieces were really beautiful. I mean, entire scenes carved in gold on grieves (basically really fancy shin guards).

That’s it for January! This took me forever to write. New goal: keep up with the wrap ups as the month progresses instead of writing them all in one go on a work night.

I hope you all had a great month! What’s your favorite book of the year so far?

10 thoughts on “January Wrap Up – Mermaids, Sea Monsters, and Parasites

  1. So many books! This must have been a good reading month for you, and I do see quite a few good titles on the list! Another thing in this post that really caught my eye was: medieval suits of armour! I find museums really interesting, especially since the pieces often contain so much detail, and as Anne Shirley says, “scope for the imagination”.

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