Much like many people, I also made the New Year’s resolution to read more. In fact, I’ve made it for the past three years in a row. And while I have yet to reach my goal of reading a book per week, every year I’ve managed to read a bit more than the previous year..
And this year I’m off to a great start! In January my reading game has been stronger than ever, and I’ve already ticked off six books from my reading list. (Yay!). Though I suspect the reason might be that my reading list was filled with such stellar books. (Well, that and a few three-hour bus rides to see my family). Most of these books I actually breezed through in just a couple of days. So here’s a list of my January reads:
THE THIRTEENTH TALE – DIANE SETTERFIELD
This one was actually the slowest read of the bunch, and it took me quite a while to get in to it. It’s a twisty mystery with a bit of a haunted house and more than one pair of twins mixed in the story. It’s a slow burner, but once I really got into the story I found it hard to put down. I also liked the twist at the end, since I didn’t find it completely impossible (I’m a big believer that you need to at least in theory be able to guess it) but I also didn’t see it coming. Best read on a dark and rainy autumn day, but winter will also do.
THE GREAT ALONE – KRISTIN HANNAH
I loved Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale and kept seeing this book popping up on “must read” lists everywhere, so I knew I’d have to pick it up sooner or later. The Great Alone is the story of 13-year-old Leni, whose family moves to Alaska in search of a fresh start. I read most of this book in one sitting and the story held me in its grip all the way from the first page. It’s big, beautiful, heartbreaking and real.
One of my absolute favourite things about this book is how beautifully the setting is described. I swear that every time I opened this book I was immediately transported to the wild and breathtaking views of Alaska. It deals with difficult topics such as domestic abuse, but it’s also filled with hope and love.
YEAR OF YES – SHONDA RIMES
I picked this book up since it felt like a good book for starting the new year. And it definitely was. In Year of Yes Shonda Rimes (the writer of Grey’s Anatomy & Scandal) decides to spend a year answering yes to everything and doing things that scare her. If you like chatty, rambly books, you’ll like this one. It’s like having a really long chat with a good friend, a friend who is smart, funny and honest (she really tells you like it is, nervous sweats and all).
Rimes’ style of writing has that stream of consciousness, chatty vibe that’s full of sidenotes and weird tangents about warm chocolate chip cookies. This book is pure light-hearted joy – a positive, inspiring and encouraging read.
THE KISS QUOTIENT – HELEN HOANG
I went into this book thinking it was going to be a romantic love story, and while it definitely was, it’s also quite, well.. erotic. The protagonist of The Kiss Quotient is Stella, an analyst with Asperger’s, who decides to overcome her social awkwardness and lack of dating experience by hiring an escort to be her practice boyfriend. (I guess I should’ve seen the sex coming..). Typical to romantic comedies, the book has quite a few exasperating misunderstandings and ridiculously sappy scenes. But it’s sweet, romantic and has some seriously steamy sex scenes.
THEN SHE WAS GONE – LISA JEWELL
I found the story of Then She Was Gone to be both haunting and unputdownable (I actually stayed up half the night reading this book). When 15-year-old Ellie disappears her family is left dealing with the heartbreak of not knowing what happened to her, until a handsome stranger walks in to their life ten years later. The book is told from multiple points of view and I loved the switching between varied narrators. However, I also found the plot to be really predictable and could guess the twist pretty much from the start.
What’s the best book you read in January?