A Winter TBR Preview

This year I decided to go back to seasonal reading therefore I won’t have monthly wrap ups or anything. I’m not 100% if I’ll actually pick these specific books up in the end—I’m mostly acting on my mood these next few month—but they are high up on my priority TBR for sure! You’ll notice a plethora of fantasy because I kind of missed out on that last year. I’m also picking up a few non-fiction because I think they’ll help grow my perspective for the year to come.

Leftovers from 2021

I made it about half way through both of these so at some point I want to finish them.

I kicked off the 2022 reading year with…

Up next are…

Science Fiction and Fantasy

Young Adult

Literary Fiction

Non fiction

New Releases

Nessa

find me on goodreads and storygraph.

Young Adult Series I NEED to Finish…Like Now

In recent years I significantly cut back on reading YA  but some series live in my mind rent free. There’s a couple other series I might read in the future but for now these are the ones I would love to finish (or start) soon. I still enjoy YA fantasy because it’s usually much easier to jump into and most times the characters are so easy to root for.

I also think that my interest in reading YA revived due to the world being a dark place for the past couple of years. I haven’t really kept up with my progress because these series haven’t been my priority for awhile, but now that they are again I’ll be referring to this post to keep track. Are there any series you still need to start or finish? Let me know!

Series I Started

The Last Hours

  • Chain of Gold 
  • Chain of Iron
  • Chain of Thorns

I’m actually halfway finished with Book 2! I really enjoyed the first book but the second book is kind of slow to get through. I think I listened to some of it on audio to read it faster. I’m hoping the final act is way more interesting than the first.

Scythe

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  • Scythe
  • Thunderhead
  • The Toll

Scythe literally wrecked my life. It seems that the general consensus is that you will either love this book or hate the book because you think the characters are too childish. Okay, well first of all—they’re children. I didn’t come here to defend Scythe but I loved it and that’s that.

Girls of Paper and Fire

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  • Girls of Paper and Fire
  • Girls of Storm and Shadow
  • Girls of Fate and Fury

Wow. What can I say about this series? The first book left my breathless. The stakes were high and you could break the tension was so intense. Girls of Paper on Fire wasn’t perfect by any means. In fact, I kind of hated the cliffhanger. That’s probably why I took so long to return to the series. I’ve heard some mixed things about the second book but I’m only bothering so I can read the final book.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

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Image Credit

  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone
  • Days of Blood and Starlight
  • Dreams of Gods and Monster

When I first read Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I felt so-so but I loved the world building and writing enough that I want to finally finish reading the series. Laini Taylor writes worlds and characters that are so enchanting and weird. I need more of that in my life.

Series I Want to Start

Strange the Dreamer

  • Strange the Dreamer
  • Muse of Nightmares

World of Margaret Rogerson

  • An Enchantment of Ravens
  • Sorcery of Thorns
  • Vespertine

Other YA series on my radar

  • Crier’s War duology by Nina Varela
  • An Ember in the Ashes quartet by Sabaa Tahir
  • The Skyward series by Brandon Sanderson

My Last Week in My Bookish Life

Sorry, this is late! This was documented a week ago (it ended this past Sunday) and I’m finally got around to posting it now.

I wasn’t planning on doing this but I’m ACTUALLY reading for pleasure again. Because of this I wanted to document my reads for the week. I’m looking forward to sharing another episode in A Week in My Bookish Life. The weather turned wintery and cold so there’s not much to share outside my little bubble from home. It did clear up by the end of the week but there wasn’t much for me to do besides run some errands. I’m not trying to catch anything that’s for sure.

Monday, January 3 – Sunday, January 9

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Monday

Today I got snowed in. Where I am got hit with 4-6 inches! I couldn’t even open my back door. It seemed like the perfect opportunity to start watching Season 2 of The Witcher. I did about 10 minutes of writing and got caught up on a bunch of things here at home.

The Whisper Man reminds me of Stephen Chbosky’s Imaginary Friend. I mean, there’s an absent parent and a little boy whose seeing an imaginary friend telling the kids to do things. I think Chboksky’s book is a little more creative but I like that North has multiple POVs—something I wish the former author considered for a 800 page book.

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Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 11%

Tuesday

I’m PMSing like a mf today and I decided to order take out food. I swung through the drive thru and got a grilled chicken sandwich and season fries and then I picked up some pastries from the bakery. Since I’m dealing with cramps, I’ve been reading in the strangest positions on the floor today. I ended up watching Encanto on Disney Plus and it was SO cute.

The Last Graduate FINALLY came on hold from the library! Whoo!

Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 17%
  • The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik – 9%

Wednesday

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The weather has been really snowy so I haven’t been able to go out all that much so I’ve been staying cozy by continuing The Witcher. Ciri’s character growth is making me so hyped. This show is so amazing!! I love the monsters and the action scenes. I feel like Yennefer has been somewhat in the background this season but I think I like where her arc is going.

I decided to focus on reading The Last Graduate for the rest of the week since I haven’t been feeling the best and because it’s on audiobook. I don’t know why I picked it up because I had multiple issues with the first book. I don’t even like this style of writing. I just find it comforting to be read to.

I got some exciting mail today!! I finally got my 2022 planner and I bought an ipad mini to read my ebooks on since my Kindle died on me a couple months ago.

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2022 Artist of Life Workbook

Weekly Reset Planner [Sold Out]

Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 17%
  • The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik – 30%

Thursday

Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 33%
  • The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik – 37%

Friday

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Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 33%
  • The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik – 60%

Saturday-Sunday

I almost decided to DNF The Last Graduate. I’m not enjoying it all. I have no idea why I picked it up as my first read of 2022. I only have 2.5 hours left in the audiobook so I’ll probably finish on Monday. I didn’t enjoy the stream of consciousness style the ifrst time around, so really I did this to myself.

Reading Progress:

  • The Whisper Man by Alex North – 38%
  • The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik – 80%

Final Thoughts

Yay! I feel like I made significant reading progress in the first week of 2022! I’m pleasantly surprised by The Whisper Man so far. I’m really creeped out. It’s been a long time since a book has made the hairs on my back stick up this way.

I did finish The Last Graduate by the time I posted this. I have THOUGHTS and not very good ones. 😂 I will say that I thought the book was hilarious. I just cannot take this book seriously as dark academia. The story reads like a hate-to-love rom com between Orion and El. I don’t know what all the fuss was about over the ending: it didn’t feel like a genuine cliffhanger. The book ends abruptly. That’s it.

Thanks for following a long with me on my final episode of a week in my bookish life!

Blog Sign

2021: My Year in Reading & My 2022 Reading Plans

My reading year was a flop due to the fact that I wasn’t really reading for pleasure this year at all. I was in a reading funk, a life funk, a post-pandemic funk. I don’t mind that I didn’t read as much this past year but the quality of my reads were just low to me. Not because the books were terrible themselves but I wasn’t picking up anything I was truly interested in. There were some non-bookish related things in life that were positive that I even talk about in my Top 10 Reverse Resolutions. My hope for 2022 is to read more intentionally. I want to read what I want to read and take as much time as I need with each book to fully enjoy it. I don’t want to feel blah the way I did when I was reading last year. 

I didn’t find anything particularly interesting about my stats this time around since I’ve stagnated in my reading goals this past year. I was a bit all over the place in terms of genre and demographics. I did pick 10 books in 2021 that I truly enjoyed reading, which I will talk about in a later post. 

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My Favorite Book of 2021: 

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My Least Favorite Book of 2021: 

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Most read author I read this year: 

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P. Djeli Clark 

The most popular book I read based on star rating, not the number of people who shelved it, was Know My Name by Chanel Miller and the least popular was Survive the Night by Riley Sager. 

Note: In the rest of my reading stats, I also included the details for two books I didn’t finish because I wanted to include them in my wrap up for personal reference. I didn’t finish Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare or The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon. 

Stats based on star ratings: 

I decided to skip this one this year because I didn’t have a great year anyway…

  • ★★★★★  
  • ★★★★ 
  • ★★★ 
  • ★★ 
  •  

Stats based on format:

  • Books – 34
  • Novellas – 5
  • Short stories – 3
  • Graphic Novels – 4
  • Poetry – 0

Unfinished: 

  • Books – 2

Stats based on target audience (MG, YA, Adult): 

  • Adult – 28
  • YA – 14
  • MG – 4

Unfinished: 

  • Adult – 1
  • YA – 1

Stats based on genre: 

  • Fantasy/Science Fiction – 17
  • Horror/Paranormal – 9
  • Thriller – 6
  • Contemporary Romance & YA Fiction –  7
  • Historical Fiction – 2
  • Non-Fiction – 4
  • Classic – 1

Unfinished: 

  • Fantasy – 2

Stats based on backgrounds represented: 

  • Black – 7
  • Asian – 5
  • Latin American – 3
  • Indigenous – 1

Stats based on year published:

  • Year 2008 –  1
  • Year 2011 – 1
  • Year 2013 – 2
  • Year 2016 –
  • Year 2017 – 1
  • Year 2018 – 1
  • Year 2019 –
  • Year 2020 – 14
  • Year 2021 – 11

Unfinished: 

  • Year 2015  – 1
  • Year 2021 – 1

Books Hauled

Last year I hauled a whopping 45+ books. I think that’s a new record! Can you tell I’ve been using books as therapy? Gracious. Buying this many books is not normal for me. I’m sure I had gift cards and birthday money that enabled this but still. A HUGE part of why I started buying books again is that I moved away from a city that had at least six well-funded libraries in the county alone and were well-funded to moving to a rural town with only one sad, very run down library with no access to digital loaning. We also don’t have a major bookstore for hundreds of miles. We do have one small indie bookstore but I had a bad experience there so now I drive the hour and half to go to the one I like better. 


2022 Reading Plans

Rate books less. This is so that I go into a book expecting to enjoy it, not to rate it. Sometimes you read several 3 star books in a row and that’s OK. I don’t want to feel disappointed if I do. I want to read for pleasure again. 

Write more in-depth reviews for myself.  I put too much pressure on myself as a book blogger to shell out book reviews so this time I want to do them for me. I’ll most likely write all my book reviews on Notion. 

Read more fantasy, sci-fi, horror, and dark academia. Last year I wasn’t really reading for enjoyment so I put a lot of my favorite genres and authors on the backburner. I’m hoping to revive my reading life by picking up more of my favorite authors and genres again. 

Swap my screen time for reading time. Lockdown caused many of us to turn to our screens for an easy form of entertainment. But for me, the time spent on Tiktok and Instagram left me with a void. I’ve deleted the vast majority of social media apps on my phone and I use a web browser extension called BlockSite to prevent me from mindlessly scrolling.

I looked up my stats under “Digital Wellbeing” section of my phone and I was relieved to see that in the past week I had already been using my phone less. The stats didn’t take into account how much YouTube I watch (a lot) but that’s because I watch videos from my desktop. This is something I’ll have to factor in. Maybe for every 20 minutes I spend on Youtube, I have to read for the equal amount of time. 

Read 36 books…but I’d like to read 70. Every year I’m torn between whether or not I should set a Goodreads challenge goal but I decided to lower it to something I know is manageable for me this year. Some years setting a goal feels like putting unnecessary pressure on myself and other years it’s motivating—I think this year it’s the latter. 

Here is a breakdown of the kind of books I want to read in 2022: 

  • 35 backlist fiction books (with a focus on what’s already on my shelf). 
  • 10 new releases. 
  • 5 non fiction books.