Happy Wednesday and Happy February, book friends! And might I add, belated happy Lunar New Year and a blessed Imbolc to those who celebrate!
In a little over a week, the fiancé, pupper, and I are going on a little weekend getaway for Valentine’s Day, and I’m so looking forward to some cozy cabin reading time. And I guess hiking with Andy and Azula, too. I’m a little less keen on snowy walks than they are, but we do what we can!
For now, though, the coziest vibes I get are the ones I make at home, and I’ve been trying to actually light my candles and use my bath salts lately, which has been nice. Plenty of hot cocoa as well, because it just. keeps. snowing. here in Pittsburgh.
Though not my favorite weather when it comes to getting out and about, the snow is perfect for reading, in my opinion. Let’s see what I’ve been up to since last we book-talked!
(Full disclosure: Book links are Bookshop.org affiliate links. Titles indicated with an asterisks were complimentary advanced reading copies provided in exchange for my honest review).
I wrapped up several ARC memoirs towards the end of January, including Rachel Krantz’ Open: An Uncensored Memoir of Love, Liberation, and Non-Monogomy* and Donna Y. Ferris’ We’ve Got to Stop Meeting Like This*. The latter, I enjoyed a great deal (review here) and the former, well… it didn’t work for me. Both released in January, so you can give them a go if you’re interested.
I decided not to provide a full review of Krantz’ book because it was personally very difficult for me to read for reasons that are not the fault of the book itself, and I wasn’t sure I could be fair in my assessment since it impacted me so negatively. In brief, I don’t think it was properly marketed and that it is more about emotional abuse in a romantic relationship than it is non-monogamy, and I wish I’d been better primed for that going in.
After cranking through so many memoirs, I realized I was really, really craving fiction, so I wandered over to Getting Clean with Stevie Green, which wound up being my first 5-star read of 2022! I’m part of the book tour so my review will be up later this month on my tour date of February 14th.
As noted in my February TBR post, I’m really trying to get caught up on my NetGalley queue this year! That means I’m reading yet another digital review copy, this time of With Love From London* (out February 8th, 2022) by Sarah Jio. Here’s a synopsis preview from Goodreads:
A librarian inherits a bookshop from her estranged mother, leading her halfway across the world on a journey of self-discovery that transcends time and honors the unbreakable bonds of love and family.
The POV swaps between present-day Valentina and her mother, Eloise, back in her younger years, telling their stories simultaneously. As is well documented at this point, I can be picky about my dual POV narration, and this is one of those books where I’m struggling with it, perhaps because of the shifts in time as well as perspective.
Aside from that, I am really enjoying the book so far! It’s fun to see London through American eyes as a reminder of my own time there, and I’m curious to see where the story will go. I get the sense it’s going to pick up here soon, plotwise, and that I might get more invested in both storylines.
I am still listening to White Magic since COVID cut out my commute for two weeks last month. It’s longer as far as audiobooks go, but I think I’ll finish it in February. Probably.
Finally, I am halfway through Beth O’Leary’s The Switch, which I only stopped because I’m being good about my buddy read and not going past the stopping point we agreed to. It’s very compelling and (funnily enough) also a dual POV but both in the present day, and I’m enjoying it quite a lot!
Up Next & On to You
I’m going to let mood reading take me for at least one read this month, as sticking too much to my TBR is part of what made January’s reading a little lackluster in my opinion.
I grabbed a bunch of books, including Sayaka Murata’s Earthlings and Lauren Groff’s Matrix from the lovely White Whale bookstore on New Year’s Eve. Because I’ve been working through ARCs and backlog, I’ve only started one of these shiny new books so far, and I want to let myself read one of these newcomers to the household when the mood strikes me.
I also had the joy of being invited to participate in a traveling ARC adventure for Kate Spencer’s rom-com, In a New York Minute* (out March 15th, 2022), which means I need to get reading so I can mail the copy (with my note added) on to the next reader!
Still, I do have some plans to keep on keeping on with my NetGalley queue and my Book of the Month backlog as well. I’ll be reading something from the Book of the Month stack here soon, though I’m going to let my mood dictate whether it’s Project Hail Mary, Beautiful World Where Are You, or one of my newer acquisitions like The Magnolia Palace or Once There Were Wolves.
Well, that’s where I’m at this week with reading! What about you? Have you been reading anything great lately? Let me know!
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