Tuesday, March 01, 2022

February: What I Read


 

Ben came running into the bathroom while I was brushing my teeth,  holding People magazine to tell me that my favorite thriller writer Lisa Gardner (who saved me from postpartum insomnia when Harry was a baby) had a new book out, and I was already listening to it on my AirPods. TRUE LOVE.  Speaking of true love-- me plus books equals bliss, especially this month.

Too Sad to Handle, so I Read it Really Fast

20. Notes on An Execution by Danya Kukafka: This book is beautifully written, and the plot is fantastic. But bad things happen to kids and babies and I cannot handle it. **2022

Entertaining, but Not Exactly Awesome

19. Royal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory: Ok, I have read the entire Wedding Date series so far, and I love it, I especially love how rich the secondary characters are. They keep popping up to star in books of their own, and it feels totally natural.

18.Genesis by Robin Cook: I had no idea this book was 12/12 in a series when I started it-- although I did feel like everyone else knew the characters better than I did, which makes sense now because most readers are probably way more familiar with the NYC OCME after reading the OTHER 11 BOOKS. I hated the narrator, to be honest, and the book opens with a totally wrong description of conception that follows the debunked patriarchal fairytale structure (strong sperm, placid egg, man implants, lady parts receive, etc), but still! LOVED it and put all the rest on hold. A new schlocky thriller writer! YES PLEASE. **Audio

17. Pandemic by Robin Cook: This is 11/12, and I didn’t like it as much as #12. But it was still incredibly fun to listen to, stilted narrator and all. **Audio

16. You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen McManus: This was terrific and twisty and fun. She’s the best YA mystery writer out there for sure, and I think this book will have a follow-up. Loved it!

Worth a Read

15. One Step Too Far by Lisa Gardner: I am not loving this new character of Gardner's the way I have loved her others, but this book was gripping and suspenseful, and it really grew on me. She is a thriller master! **Audio ** 2022

14. The Maid by Nita Prose: I liked this book, but the main character is a woman with **wink wink* *nudge nudge* autism-- although not diagnosed. Just hinted at in vague ways that let the reader fill her in with stereotypes. I HATE this trend a lot. *2022

 13. The Things We Do For Love by Kristin Hannah: Oh, don't mind me. I am just spending all of my Audible credits on Hannah's catalog and LOVING IT. **Audio

12. Olympus, Texas by Stacey Swann: SO entertaining. I meant to read this least year, but my hold never came in. I finally listened to it on Libby and highly recommend. **Audio

11. The Good Daughters by Joyce Maynard: I am just going to say it, you guys. I am a Joyce Maynard fan. This one was so sweet but also so predictable with a good twist at the very end. **Audio

10. The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine: Ooooooh, this is juicy. I could not stop listening. **Audio

8&9 Firefly Lane AND Fly Away by Kristin Hannah; I listened to both of these, but I did it out of order. The second book was available through Libby as a “skip the line” book, so I snagged it because I adore Kristin Hannah. Then I bought the first one on Audible *through my sobs as the credit from the second one rolled). I loved them both, and it was really cool, actually, to listen to the story backwards. **Audio (2)

7. Greenwich Park by Katherine Faulkner: This was basically the perfect thriller. Twisty, engaging, suspenseful, mindless. Another terrific palate cleanser. **2022

Okay, But, Like THESE Are Excellent

6. The Magnolia Palace by Fiona Davis: I didn't expect to like this book, if I am being honest. I don't usually like Fiona Davis. I am not over-the--moon about sappy historical fiction. And! I really don't like books with multiple timelines, usually. But! Despite all of this! I really like this one. I recommend it for sure. **2022

5. Vladimir by Julia May Jonas: Are you a middle aged academic? THEN THIS IS THE BOOK FOR YOU. Seriously, this is really terrific, and you should read it. *2022

It also wins the award for FUNNIEST COVER OF THE MONTH



4. Wahala by Nikkie May: LOVED THIS. I could not put it down. You should read it. (Best friends, gossip, family strife, mayhem). **2022

3. Joan is Okay by Weike Wang: Oh this book! So spare! So sad! So funny! Wang reminds me of Elizabeth Strout in that there is not a single wasted word. I really loved this. **2022


Would Be My Hands-Down Favorite, but It Was Written LAST YEAR

2. The Husbands by Chandler Baker: OH I DON’T WANT TO SPOIL THIS WITH PLOT TALK BECAUSE YOU NEED TO JUST READ IT. **Audio

My Actual Favorite (And BOOK OF THE YEAR So Far)



1. To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara: OH MY GOD. This book is a masterpiece. If you are scared to read it because you are still scarred from A Little Life, one of my favorite books of all time, you can relax. It is devastating but in a different way, and it is just so incredibly brilliant that you can be a little detached. I only cried once and not until the very end and it was more just out of astonishment at how beautiful everything was, which is SO FREAKING META in the context of the book, and Yanagihara is BRILLIANT. **Audio **2022

Stats:

This month
20 books
9 books published in 2022
11 audio books and 9 print books
This year
46 books for the year
15 books published in 2022
23 audio books and 23 print books

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