Books I Read in December 2017

I had about a two-week stretch in the middle of the month where I read almost nothing, so really, my reading total is surprisingly high. I was pushing the last few days to wrap up a few titles before the end of the year, to avoid carrying them over into 2018.

My local bookclub is doing a read-around-the-world theme for 2018 (and probably 2019 as well) and I’m on the hunt for a great book set in Scotland for us to read and discuss. I’ve tried two mysteries and I’m still looking. 🙂

    Fiction

  1. King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner

    A re-read as I listened to the audio, to get ready to read the next in the series. Also, just because I adore this series.

  2. A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner

    I decided to read this one first, and then I’ll listen to it later (I already own the audio). This one features a different main character, so I missed the usual narrator, but it’s still in that fabulous world MWT has created.

  3. Knots and Crosses by Ian Rankin

    Probably too gory to be the discussion book I was hoping to find, so I’m still looking for the right Scotland book for my local book club.

  4. Black Powder War by Naomi Novik

    I enjoy this series, except for the drawn-out battle scenes. I have so little interest in descriptions of battle tactics. Fortunately, those are easy to either skip ahead and miss and get back to the rest of the story.

  5. First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen

    A sweet follow-up to Garden Spells. Once I adjusted to Bay as the primary narrator, I enjoyed this as a very light read.

  6. Death of a Gossip by M. C. Beaton

    Too dated and not enough depth to it for it to be a good fit for my book club. The hunt continues for the perfect Scotland book.

  7. Nonfiction

  8. Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics by Tim Marshall

    LOVED this geopolitical look at the world and history and why some regions are so contentious.
    I listened to it, and the narrator was good, but it’s one where the lack of maps to actually show what they’re describing is a drawback to the audiobook.

  9. The Alpine Path: The Story of My Career by L.M. Montgomery

    I enjoyed the peek into the creation of some of her famous stories, but overall it was such a brief overview it left me wanting more depth and detail.

  10. Dogtripping: 25 Rescues, 11 Volunteers, And 3 RVs On Our Canine Cross-Country Adventure by David Rosenfelt

    Entertaining story behind a move from Southern California to Maine with 25 (large) dogs. Animal lovers should love the book, but it’s not a must-read for anyone else.

  11. Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are by Brené Brown

    I think my expectations were too high for it, as I was mostly underwhelmed by it. If I hadn’t gone into it remembering all the peole who said it was AMAZING and TRANSFORMATIVE I probably wouldn’t have felt so let-down by it.

  12. Kid Lit

  13. My Brigadista Year by Katherine Paterson

    Well-written and engaging middle-grade historical fiction. My perspective on Cuba is so skewed from growing up in Florida, knowing many Cuban refugee families with nothing at all good to say about Castro and his government. I appreciated learning about some of what it was like there as he took power, and especially reading about the successful literacy push.

  14. The Unbreakable Code by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman

    The sequel to Book Scavenger, and it was someone more graphic – the secondary plot line involved an arsonist, and there’s more personal risk to the characters. I do enjoy the characters and setting, and as long as I’m in the mood to suspend disbelief over several plot points, it’s a fun read.

  15. I Saw Three Ships by Elizabeth Goudge

    Old-fashioned Christmas story. I was pre-reading it as a possible readaloud for my kids, but quickly realized they would not have enjoyed it.

  16. Never Finished

  17. The Expats by Chris Pavone

    I abandoned it still with hours of reading time left in the book and got an overall plot summary of it from someone else. Nothing I was told about it made me regret not finishing it on my own, as the book isn’t a good match for my reading tastes.

  18. The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey

    Too much Jane Eyre in one year left me uninterested in finishing this retelling.


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