January Reads

January Reads

Happy Monday!

I got some books to share with you today!

I read six books this January, and I really enjoyed five of them. The one that I didn’t love wasn’t truly horrible…because I’ve learned to stop reading a book if I’m not enjoying it. And this one was at least good enough to finish to the end. (Actually, this month for the first time in a while, I quit on a book halfway through when I realized it wasn’t worth my time…that’s new for me! I used to make myself finish a book all the way to the end, no matter what.)

I read four of these on my kindle, one as a paperback, and one as an audiobook. I’m officially an e-reader fan! Two years ago, I never would have believed that one day I’d be completely converted into an e-reader person, but I just love them! Mostly because:

1. I read a lot of library books, and I like using an e-reader because I always feel like library books have a lot of germs on them.

2. I looooove having the percentage and “time left in book” at the bottom of the page. Knowing I just have “X amount of minutes left” in a book motivates me to keep reading, so I feel like I’m more inspired to read with that.

3. My kindle is small enough to tuck into almost any purse I own, so when I have a few minutes to kill (say, waiting in a doctor’s office), I can read for a few minutes, which is such a better use of my time than aimlessly scrolling through instagram.

Ok, so here we go! These are the books I read in January:


The One-In-A-Million-Boy by Monica Wood

Published February 2016

I saw this book here and there throughout 2016…you know, at airport bookstores, on the kindle library “popular books” section, on book bloggers’ sites. I never bothered to pick it up to see what it was about until the end of 2016 when I was starting to make a list of books I’d like to read.

This was a sweet, slightly sad, charming little book that made me want to pay attention when people talk, ask better questions, and enjoy each moment of life. And because the book centers around a 104-year-old woman, I found myself wondering, “I wonder how many years I’ll be on this earth??”

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Published June 2014

When I’m reading, I want to feel something. I want to read because I want to change. So I’m a fan of books that make me feel sad, happy, infuriated, confused, thoughtful, excited, determined, inspired…I don’t want to shy away from those feelings.

Everything I Never Told You was definitely a book that made me feel sad and thoughtful. It’s about a mixed race Chinese-American family in the 1970’s who finds their daughter drowned in a lake. The book is about all of the moments leading up to this events; from the little words muttered (or not said..) to the big, obvious signs and lies. This book made me realize how fragile and difficult managing emotions and expectations can be. I thought it was a beautiful, tragic book.

Good as Gone by Amy Gentry

Published July 2016

I read this because google books recommends it for readers who enjoyed The Girl on the Train, and because I was needing something at the last minute to read on my flight to Denver last weekend. It is definitely a “novel of suspense,” but I thought that the book dragged out a little too long, and then came to a CRASHING halt at the very end. It almost felt like the author was trying to keep the story to a certain number of pages, so she crammed in the ending in too short a period of time.

Like I said before, I don’t think it was a bad book, but there are plenty of other suspenseful novels I’d rather read…like Gone Girl.

The Girls by Emma Cline

Published June 2016

Another novel that I’ve seen all over the place in the past 7 months, The Girls wasn’t what I expected it to be…but really good! Emma Cline’s debut novel follows Evie, a girl who is growing up in northern California in the late 1960’s when she is introduced to a cult with a charming, charismatic leader. Cline researched the Manson Family and loosely drew inspiration from that cult before writing The Girls. This book was fascinating and I couldn’t put it down!

Oh, I was surprised when I found out that Emma Cline is only 27-years-old!

Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein

Published October 2015

I read this book as a part of the twelve books I’m reading for the Modern Mrs. Darcy reading challenge. I’m a big fan of the tv series “Portlandia” (oh  my gosh…so so funny!!), but I hadn’t heard very much about Carrie’s band Sleater-Kinney…so most of this memoir was new to me.

First of all, if you’re expecting the Carrie from Portlandia….DON’T. Her book is the story of her years in the band and the years leading up to it, and I was amazed by the artistic way that she articulated her emotions during that stage of life.

It’s not the funny sort of memoir you expect from comedic tv show writers like Amy Poehler or Tina Fey…Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl was poetic at times, thoughtful, and brutally honest about all of the ugly parts of life. I appreciated this book and will be recommending it to some of my family and friends!

The Wonder by Emma Donoghue

Published September 2016

Emma Donoghue is the woman who wrote Room, the novel that was turned into a movie and starred Brie Larson, who ended up winning the Academy Award for Best Actress from her performance in it. Well, I read it and loved it, even after I had already seen the movie (it was really good – read the book!), so I was excited to read Donoghue’s most recent publication, The Wonder.

I listened to this as an audio-book, which was a little challenging for me because the book is set in Ireland, and the reader had a very strong Irish accent! The book follows a young nurse who is hired to watch an 11-year-old girl who is said to have been living without food for months…right. Weird.

The book unravels delightful slowly, so the ending is that much sweeter.


This year, I’ve been reading on my new Kindle that Nate gave me for Christmas! I have the Kindle Paperwhite, and I absolutely love it. I also have this case….it’s just $15, and is light and protects the e-reader well!


Just for a reference, here’s my kindle next to my iPad air that I was reading from last year (I downloaded the Kindle app on my iPad..). I read 100 books last year on this heavy iPad, so it’s an understatement to say that I’m thoroughly enjoying my kindle this year! Thanks, fiancé. 😉

Hope you have a wonderful Monday, friends! I’m off to look at wedding bands (the type that go on your finger…not the music band) with Nate today. Yay!



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7 years ago

The Wonder is on my list, and it’s almost my turn at the library to read it. It does sound weird, but it’s nice to hear you enjoyed it! I love hearing about what people have read and collecting new books to add to my hold list at the library. I almost exclusively read library ebooks these days because it is so convenient and free! Thanks for sharing!

Amanda Elizabeth - Meet at the Barre
7 years ago

I love roundups like this! I save them for my travel books. Thanks for the great recaps girl!

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