In an effort to share all of my read books with you, good and bad, I’ll be posting a wrap up at the start of each month. Without further ado, here is my December Reading Wrap Up!
Here’s what you’ll find in this post:
I’ve categorized each of the books I read last month by final verdict: Buy It, Borrow It, or Skip It. Here’s a little breakdown for you:
- Buy It: Books I read last month that are totally worthy of being added to your shopping cart.
- Borrow It: Books I read last month that were good fun and worth a read, but maybe not worth your money.
- Skip It: Books you shouldn’t bother reading at all.
VERDICT: Buy It
By Alice Hoffman
Verdict: Buy It
Alice Hoffman delivers a tale of redemption and rebirth in her usual magical realism style that is sure to satisfy. After a teenage tragedy that left her best friend in an unending coma, Shelby is left grappling with survivor’s guilt and grief. Shelby learns to embrace life again through the help of Chinese take out, stray dogs, and new friendships.
The Traveling Cat Chronicles
by Hiro Arikawa
Verdict: Buy It
A kindly man and the aloof tomcat he once rescued (or perhaps the other way around), travel across Japan to visit four friends. A simple premise and a simple writing style to match reveal a heartwarming story, one as easy to read as it is to relate to. Heartwarming, thoughtful, and shining. You don’t have to be a cat lover to appreciate the heart at the core of this story.
The Lost Queen
By Signe Pike
Verdict: Buy It
With captivating scope and scale, The Lost Queen follows the forgotten twin sister of the man myth calls Merlin as she grows from her childhood innocence as the daughter of a nobleman, to the start of her reign in line for the throne. The first in a trilogy by Signe Pike studies the shift in perspective and power between pagans and Christians at a tumultuous time in Scottish history.
Verdict: Borrow It
Once Upon A River
by Diane Setterfield
In a small village on the banks of the Thames comes a shift so sudden and startling the entire town can’t help but talk of it. A mysterious child comes tumbling into the local pub. She doesn’t speak. She doesn’t signal. To which family does she belong? Extremely character driven with writing that stirs the imagination, but with pacing and plot that fails to propel a reader forward.
by Julie Murphy
A popular young adult novel with themes of growing up, coming into your own, and finding your confidence. Willowdean is daughter to a small-town-famous mother who earned her stripes in pageantry. Willowdean, though not the usual body type, decides to join the local pageant to prove her worth with the help of Dolly Parton songs, friends, and the memory of an aunt who loved her. This novel carries themes of body confidence, but could have made such important themes stronger. Instead, the narrative is distracted with a self-pitying dialogue and the weak execution of a transformative plot.
VERDICT: Skip It
The Wife Between Us
by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen
The Wife Between Us is a popular women’s fiction novel sold with an enlivening description, a description that misleads the results of the narrative. Instead of an exciting thrill-seeking read, you’ll find a slower pacing and disappointing plot.
The Death of Mrs. Westaway
by Ruth Ware
Ruth Ware is a best-selling novelist with successful books such as In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10. The Death of Mrs. Westaway, a story about a woman who discovers she may have an inheritance from a distant relative, is not up to her usual caliber. Skip this read in favor of her previous works.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this December reading wrap up! What book did you most enjoy last month? Leave me a comment below and let’s chat about it!
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