January Reads

Photo by Emiliana Hall on Unsplash

I set myself a #deadline challenge on Instagram to read five books by the end of January and I actually did it!

The Five Books I Read in January 
THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY BY ALIX E. HARROW

An obvious pick for the first month of the new year, but more than that, The Ten Thousand Doors of January was a fantastic read that I was so happy I didn’t miss. January Scaller is a young, mixed girl in the early 1900’s who lives as a ward of a rich white man who has hired her father to scour the earth for antiquities. But January can open doors into other worlds, and this starts off a chain of events that reverberates not only through the rest of  her life, but throughout other’s lives as well, and across worlds. Definitely one of my favorite reads of the year, already.

THE BOOK CHARMER BY KAREN HAWKINS

This book was, quite literally, charming. Set in the small town of Dove Pond, Sarah Dove, descendant of the original settlers of the town, realizes that her affinity to speak to books (yes, I meant that) means that she is the only one who is aware of how much Dove Pond needs saving from eventual decline and abandonment. Enter Grace, a foster child who is now taking care of her ailing foster mother, and her sister’s child. She doesn’t want to stay in Dove Pond. Or become friends with Sarah. Or fall in love with a local Dove Pond resident. Honestly, I can’t wait until the sequel.

BY BOOK OR BY CROOK BY EVA GATES

A cozy mystery set around a lighthouse library on Bodie Island on the East Coast, By Book or By Crook follows the amateur detective skills of librarian Lucy and the antics of the eclectic inhabitants of Bodie Island. I enjoyed this mystery, and it certainly provided the cozy feel. My one complaint is that one of the character’s name’s ( a love interest of Lucy, in fact) is just . . . ridiculous. But don’t let that stop you from picking up this cute and fun cozy mystery!

A LONGER FALL BY CHARLAINE HARRIS

Ahem. I wrote in another blog post that I don’t intend to bring negativity on this blog, and I won’t. So, I will say this. I didn’t hate it. But I didn’t love it either. I actually really liked the first book (this being the second). For me, this seemed more like a filler episode on a TV series between what should actually be the plot. Also, and I’ve felt this before (and this is, of course, my personal opinion) that some of the plot devices this author goes for really leans toward the ‘too weird’, and the denouement of this plot was not only weirdly unsatisfying, but just sort of out of nowhere, and not in a good way. But, I say again, I didn’t hate it.

THE CASTLE ON SUNSET BY SHAWN LEVY

The Castle on Sunset is about the Chateau Marmont, an apartment house turned hotel on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, California. It’s claim to fame is, well, fame, as it’s list of famous residents include the likes of Greta Garbo, Gore Vidal, Robert De Niro, Led Zeppelin, and more. There’s probably no way to write a biography about a hotel without getting into – or very, very, near – gossipy territory, and this tome was no different. Anecdote after anecdote, ranging from drug-fueled tragicomedy to Shakespearean level domestic drama, the character of the Chateau Marmont seemed to be made by the character’s of those who resided there. All in all, an interesting read. Levy’s non-fiction prose is pithy and an easy read, and keeps your interest.

THOSE ARE MY FIVE READS OF JANUARY

I already finished one read for February, which I will probably review in the day or so, once I figure out how I want to format my book reviews.

What were your reads in January? Any recommendations?

*Originally posted on previous blog February 5, 2020

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