January was a huge reading month for me, mainly because I needed lots of hearty distractions (wonder why). I finished 10 books.
TV and social media just tended to be way too much for me as we started the year. So instead, I turned to old characters who I loved for years via rereading Harry Potter and met new characters who I will love for years to come.
The best part about reading so many great titles last month, apart from the welcomed distraction, was starting the year strong in the sense of finishing what I started.
January is a goal setting month. And every time you open a book, you set a goal, or add something you hope to finish, to your running list. Reaching the end of a good book, to me, makes me feel as good as crossing something off of my to-do list. So, here are all the titles I crossed off my list and added to my ‘read’ pile last month.
Brace yourself, I read a lot…
The Thousandth Floor by Katherine McGee
This book, THIS BOOK! I knew I wanted to read this book at the start of the new year, but had no idea how much I’d love it. It’s set in New York in 2118, and all of Manhattan exists in a thousand foot tall tower. You will fall in and out of love with characters and the ending will destroy you. The sequel (eekk!) comes out later this year.
Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Another book I was really anticipating reading, but didn’t expect the like so much! It starts slow, there’s lots of world building and a lot of characters, but when you get into the story it’s so worth it. The plot centers around 3 triplet queens, each with a different magical gift, who must fight to the death the claim the crown. If you like a darker fantasy with strong female characters and lots of moral gray space, pick this up.
Asking For It by Louise O’Neill
I’m not sure what made me pick this up, but I’m glad I did. The book is set in Ireland and centers around a tragic rape case. We watch how the case impacts not only the victim, but her family and friend relationships in major ways. Some parts of this book were extremely hard to get through. And though many people have said they dislike the ending, I think it’s an incredibly real take on the impacts of rape culture.
Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
I read The Sun is Also a Star last year, and knew I wanted to snag Yoon’s first novel, too. Her books are so sweet, light hearted, diverse and lovely to read. The book centers around a young romance between Olly, who’s father is abusive and Maddie, who cannot leave her house because of an autoimmune disease. The story is a fun and easy read, great for a quiet afternoon or a day on the beach. You’ll smile and feel good after this one.
Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Katherine Rooney
This book was one of my Book of the Month picks. It’s a lovely read that follows Lillian at 85 as she walks through New York City on New Year’s Eve. As she walks, she shares about her present life and some unexpected moments from her past that make you really fall in love with her. I enjoyed the book and finished it in a few sittings.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone & Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
I started rereading the series this year and reliving the magic is just what I needed. If you’re overwhelmed by the state of the world (who isn’t) and need an escape from reality, head to Hogwarts. What more can I say?
My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows
If you want to laugh and keep things light, pick this book up! It’s by far one of the most charming books you’ll come across this year. It’s a historical retelling that strays far from history and adds a bit of magic to reimagine the life of Lady Jane Grey, who was queen on England for only 9 days.
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
I really want to read more classics and modern classics this year, and The Bell Jar was recommended to me. The story focuses on our main character Esther who is suffering a mental breakdown after finishing an internship in New York. This book is very, very dark. Some parts were hard to get through. But it’s an amazingly well written book about mental illness.
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
This book kept popping up in my Good Reads recommendations and WHY it took me so long to grab I have no idea? This is the first book in the Shades of Magic trilogy (the last book releases in a few days). All I can say is, this book is wonderful! I finished it in just a day or two and was instantly obsessed with the world, characters and story. It involves magic, parallel London’s that have each been impacted by magic in different ways, an intense battle and some incredible diverse characters. Highly recommend!
What did you read last month? Follow me on Good Reads to see what I’m reading or which books I’m picking up! And if you’re looking for an easy way to read more books, I highly recommend Book of the Month!