Wednesday, February 7, 2024

What We Read in January

Why yes, I am just getting to my reading recap when we are nearly 1/4 of the way through February. January was a pretty uneven month for me in terms of reading. I DNF'd 3 books (The Undoing, Forty Rooms, and An Immense World) which is a lot considering I only DNF'd 6 in all of 2024. I guess I'm getting more cut throat? Here is how my reading shaped up.


Adelaide is a coming of age story about dating in your 20s. I probably wouldn't broadly recommend it but if you've ever been ghosted in a relationship, you will probably feel very seen by reading this book. This was my best book of January by a landslide. 

The Caretaker is a historical fiction novel. It also tackles issues of class as the son of a prominent family marries someone his family views as "beneath him." Then the husband gets drafted for the Vietnam war and asks his best friend to watch after his wife. 

A Year in the Wilderness is my February book club books. It's a non-fiction memoir about the year a couple spent in a wilderness area in Minnesota that is referred to as the "Boundary Waters Canoe Area." They document their year there to try to highlight the importance of the region as a mining firm is pushing to mine in this region which would have horrible ramifications for the area.

Pretty good:

Why yes, I did read a Christmas book in January. The Christmas Orphans Club is a sweet found family kind of story. 

Our Best Intentions tackles a lot of issues around race and class. At its core, its about a young Indian girl who witnesses an act of violence between 2 white teens and a young Black girl. 

Exit Interview: The Life and Death of my Ambitious Career is a memoir about the author's time working at Amazon. It was very reminiscent of the brief period of time that I spent working at a large Minneapolis-based retailer... 

Did not work:

My Murder is set in a future time when a person can be brought back to life. In this case, a recently murdered woman is brought back to life and she is trying to figure out if they actually caught her killer or if someone else did it. This was a bit too out there/sci-fi adjacent for my liking. 

Screaming on the Inside looks at the impossible standards that are set for women. I could appreciate some of her insights but it didn't completely resonate with me? But if you want to read some spicy takes on a book, check out the goodreads reviews where the author gets totally skewered, especially for her views on social media. 

Lastly, I have no idea how Hold Me Tight ended up on my libby holds list. It's about 7 essential conversations that are important for strengthening a marriage. I could not relate to the dramatic arguments that were used as examples of conflict. Phil and I are 2 very rational people of German descent so I just can't fathom having this kind of conflict? I guess by 7 essential conversations I was envisioning something else that wasn't based on a high level of conflict. 

What the boys read:

Hands down, the boys' favorite book of January was something I plucked off a winter display at the library: The Three Canadian Pigs. Both Paul and Taco loved this book and we read it many times! I love the page spread with all of the Canadian foods, although I was not familiar with some of them! 

Paul and I also finished The Tale of Despereaux which we both really enjoyed! I read this when it was a new release back in the early oughts when I had a part-time job at Barnes and Noble but I did not remember much about the book.

How was your month of reading?

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