2022 Reading Wrap Up

*squints at calendar*
What do you mean 2022 is ending in a few days??
It just started! Like…yesterday!

This year, I gave myself a goal of 30 books and passed it. I upped my goal to 52 and failed it.

In the end, I read 46 books. I’m writing this on the 26th and sure, I could definitely squeeze at least one more in there (and can absolutely squeeze the remaining 6 to make it to my goal of 52), but you know what? I’m calling it quits. I finished a phenomenal year of reading at a whooping 46 books and I’m happy enough. I’ll take the last few days of 2022 to catch up to my brother’s nearly-filled Pokedex (he’s also waiting to trade me for my version exclusives) and maybe…just maybe I’ll get started on Harvestella too.

I read a lot of random new things this year so let’s go through some highlights:

It’s time to wrap up 2022…what’d I read this year?

My first book of the year was…

My first book of the year was right as I was getting ready for a massive work project in which I was fully anticipating the lack of time. Weekends were going to be allocated to this work project. After work hours were going to be allocated to this work project. If I did have time left over afterward, I would’ve been too tired to continue reading so…the only logical solution was to pick out a handful of audiobooks from Libby and go from there.

So, my very first book of 2022, was The Burning by Johnathan and Jesse Kellerman. I did in fact start the series with this book which seems to be the latest (#4) as of still. I enjoyed it well enough that the previous three have gone into my TBR but I’ve yet to get back to them.

My final book of the year was…

Metropolis by Monte Schulz. Still fresh in my mind, though I’m trying not to say too much about the book just yet (review is coming this Thursday!), this was a fantastic read of love and war. If it were a bag of coffee beans, I’d say it was a rich and deep blend with hints of China Miéville. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and honestly, I’m happy to end the year with it as my final read.

My biggest/longest book was…

My longest book of the year went to Perdido Street Station by (speak of the devil) China Miéville. Easily my favorite read of the year (yes, even surpassing John Sandford) and the number of page flags, highlights, and writings in the margins can tell you so. At 710 pages, this book took me a good long 2 weeks to get through and half of it was spent on trying (and struggling) to get through the density of Miéville’s writing. Between the actual physical page count and his writing style and density, this book honestly felt like 1,000 pages long. I’ve also come to LOVE deckle pages because of this book.

My smallest/shortest book was…

The Houseplant by Jeremy Ray. Probably one of the most creative reads all year (and across many other years too), I really enjoyed the read and especially enjoyed that the main character was literally a houseplant. It doesn’t talk in the way that you and I speak with voices, but the readers get to see what it’s like if the world was from the viewpoint of a houseplant. There was a really sad moment in here but overall, a cute and creative read. This tiny little guy clocked in at roughly 31 pages.

My stats in genres…

Hey, look! This year, I actually have a fancy grrraaaphhh!

I tried a couple of things this year including even more nonfictions (which I’ve really come to enjoy), horror (which I used to always stay away from), and trivia. Sure a good ton of these technically branch off into MG, YA, woman’s fiction, new weird, and all other sort of sub-genres, but can you imagine the length of this graph if I went into that level of detail?

One thing is for sure though. I’m glad [mystery] thrillers remain the top champion in my reading tastes.

I wrote this many reviews this year…

51 reviews were written this year and that number’s going to be 52 in a few days. That’s a review per week, even if I didn’t [fully] read that many books! Between a few Throwback/Retro Thursday reviews and my reread reviews (in which I wrote reviews for books I reread/reskimmed in order to remember details for some books I’d read prior to starting my blog (all Virgil Flowers books)), I managed quite a decent amount of posts! I used to joke and say it’s a book report per review post. Middle school me loved reading but hated book reports and look at me now. That’s 52 book reports by the end of the year!

Compared to last year when I read [#] books…

Every year, I look back at high school and college me when I still loved reading to the point of stating/listing it as my go-to hobby during ice-breaker conversations. I loved reading, but never had time for it. When I did have time, I couldn’t justify reading when I could’ve put that extra bit of time into a little more studying. In the end, I clocked in maybe a handful of leisure reads by the end of the year and that was it. And then in 2020, I started Cozy with Books and read 20 books. That first year, I mentioned my HS/college me would’ve been proud. And then last year, I mentioned 2020 me would’ve been proud of having read 34 books.

And now? Compared to last year which compared to 2020 which compared to the long 8 years of a handful of books combined, this year, having been able to read 46 books feels amazing. There were moments when I could read a book in 2 weeks or a few days. There were moments when I realized I had total freedom to ditch a book if it was causing a reading slump. I learned a lot in the last couple of years. I might’ve failed my second reading count goal of 2022, but I succeeded in meeting my first with plenty of time to spare too.

And seeing as my plans had hit a wall only because starting in September, I threw all of my time into job hunting, with a brand new year and a stead[ier] life back…who knows…maybe next year, I might even hit 60 books! Only time will tell.

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August/September 2022 Reading Wrap Up

It’s already mid-September?? And I’m just now putting up my reading wrap up?
Shhhh, nobody has to know I’m late.
Let me just sneak into the back row. The teacher will never know…

AUGUST READING WRAP UP

Check out my review >HERE<

Old Country by Matt & Harrison Query

My first read of August was a horror book! Man, I should’ve saved this one for Spooktober! I didn’t like the main characters much (at all), but found the plot to be very intriguing and unique with all of the rituals. I may not have loved the book, but I often think about it. As October comes around, it’s not leaving my mind anytime soon. Especially when I see anything about the very very rural quiet country life.

Silent Prey by John Sandford

Generally, I don’t anticipate seeing the same villain again in Sandford’s books. It rarely happens, but Bekker’s unique. But I guess, of course he would be. This was a great thrill, though the change in setting threw me off just a bit. Bekker however, as interesting as he was in Eyes of Prey, is not so interesting here. Not much of anything, he’s so desperate. This downward plummet was amazing to read.

Check out my review >HERE<
Check out my review >HERE<

The 6:20 Man by David Baldacci

For my third August read, I gave Baldacci a try. I see his books often, but have yet to have cracked one open until now. The 6:20 Man was thrilling in a way where I couldn’t put the book down. Travis is such a great character to read and many of the side characters around him were just as well-developed. I liked how explosively thrilling this one was and enjoyed the ending.

Winter Prey by John Sandford

Lastly, I know I’m going to jump ahead and read the latest Prey book soon. I’ve been waiting and waiting to get started on Righteous Prey and am so extremely excited for its release in October. Before that, I wanted to at least clear my shelf of every Prey book I already have on hand and that ends with Winter Prey. Absolutely hated the plot, and what the villains were doing to the children, but I got to meet Weather for the first time as I only really knew her from her cameos from the Virgil Flowers side of things. Damn satisfying end though.

Check out my review >HERE<

SEPTEMBER TBR HOPEFULS

OK, seeing as it’s already mid-month, I know half of these aren’t really “hopefuls” anymore, but I’m happy to report I’m at least on track and so far, some of these “hopefuls” have been happily read.

Review to come: Sept 2022

Glittering a Turd by Kris Hallenga

This was a nonfiction I’ve picked up from NetGalley on a whim. I saw the pink peach-colored cover and the boobie dotted “i”s and couldn’t resist. A phenomenal read of strength and humor as Kris Hallenga takes us through her cancer journey and what it is like to live with terminal breast cancer. A great story with some pretty important information. I definitely make sure to check my breasts more often now.

The Frederick Sisters Are Living The Dream by Jeannie Zusy

I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway ages ago and never got around to it. There was nothing wrong with it other than it suffering from the same thing that ails the rest of my books(…TBR mountain!). I can’t believe I put it off so long either. It was a wonderful read that was refreshingly real. The tone is serious but mixed in with just enough humor to lighten up the mood. I really really enjoyed this book and, if you pick it up, hope you will too. The Frederick Sisters Are Living The Dream by Jeannie Zusy comes out September 20th!

Check out my review >HERE<

E.R. Nurses: Walk My Rounds with Me: True Stories from America’s Greatest Unsung Heroes by James Patterson, Matt Eversmann, and Chris Mooney

This was sent to me by Grand Central Publishing and is my current read. It reminds me of the Chicken Soup books with how it’s formatted. Very small pieces and stories from all different nurses. Enjoying it with all of the absolutely insane stories and experiences that the nurses go through. Some stories have made me gasp, some laugh, and I’ve already cried some tears too. I look forward to reviewing this one.

Righteous Prey by John Sandford

Ohhhkay, so my MOST anticipated read of the month and year. I know if I mention that Sandford is my favorite author ONE MORE TIME, someone’s going to punch me, but just like Ocean Prey was my most anticipated read last year so is Righteous Prey. I have high expectations for this one. I will say though, after finishing my fifth Lucas Davenport book, I know for sure that my bias lies with Virgil Flowers now. I simply like how Virgil handles matters more than Davenport and I think part of my high expectations for Righteous Prey is Virgil continuing to work with Davenport, especially seeing that his side of the duo series have come to a close as I see no more solo-Virgil adventures and I’m nibbling on any new Virgil Flowers crumbs there are *sob*. 

Black Run by D.L. Marshall

My last read of the month will undoubtedly slip into the next month. Just like with The Frederick Sisters Are Living The Dream, Black Run is far overdue for a review. I came across this one while on NetGalley and simply never got into it, for the exact same reason, with the addition of the fact that it’s actually the second book of the series and I’m a little nervous that I might be missing something important. None-the-less, just like I told myself I’m DEFINITELY reading The Frederick Sisters Are Living The Dream this month, I’m doing the same for Black Run. It’s not escaping from me this time.

June Wrap Up / July TBR

July is here and it’s a long weekend!
June has been absolutely wild. I finally stopped drowning in emails at work. We had our family from Canada visit us and ended up deep cleaning the entire house in the “our guests must not know there’s living beings here” kind of way. In between all of that, I somehow managed to squeeze in a bit of reading and came out with five books, as well as having completed my Goodreads goal of 30 books!

You could say that June was pretty successful!

June Reading Wrap Up

The Coordinates of Loss by Amanda Prowse
My first read of the month was focused around the topic of grief and the loss of a child, as well as the recovery afterwards. I’ve only read one previous Amanda Prowse book, one of which had me crying buckets. Beautiful prose and emotions seemed to be a signature of hers, so I was expecting more tears from this book as well. I did end up crying (though not as much as the first book) and found “The Coordinates of Loss” to be a wonderfully written book. My review for it will come out later this month.

Ten Tomatoes that Changed the World: A History by William Alexander
This was a surprisingly good read! I was so into my little red fruit that by the time I finally finished reading the book, my mother was immensely glad. Apparently she was sick of the random tomato facts I kept spewing at her! Divided into ten chapters and focusing on ten tomato topics (from species and farming to the beginning of canneries), this book was very entertaining and I really enjoyed it. You can find my review for it >HERE<

A Mark of Kings by Bryce O’Connor & Luke Chmilenko
Guts and gore everywhere, this was a pretty good read as well. In fact, I don’t think there was anything I didn’t enjoy in June. Declan is a mercenary who thought he’d seen everything life had to throw at him. From normal missions against bandits and wild monsters, he did not expect the undead to rise up. I really enjoyed the world building for this book, but I think the deuteragonist was the most interesting character, especially given his history. My review for this will come out later this month as well.

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver
A Heartfelt book with lots of strong emotions and plenty of important and heavy topics at discussion including identity and orientation, body dysmorphia, coming out, starting a new life, complicated and abusive families, and mental health. I thought the romance and friendships presented were all very cute and gave Ben such a wonderful new start. I managed to inhale this one in a day and half and really enjoyed it. My review for this will be out later this month.

The Journey Of Artemis : EXODUS by Lamonte Louis
I’ve been reading more sci-fi lately, but compared to the others genres I’ve been slowly adding to my TBR/read pile, it’s still pretty lacking, especially in space opera. This was a nice read and was so fast-paced, the crew having to be on the edge and fighting often. I enjoyed the main character and kind of thought the cliffhanger ending was pretty darn good, especially considering I generally dislike cliffhanger books. You can find my review for it >HERE<

July TBR (Hopefuls)

April 2022 Reading Wrap Up

Happy Hump Day, my lovely peeps 🐣!
2022 feels like it’s flying by and while I want to say the same goes for April, I actually felt like this past month went by at a normal pace for once. I got a decent amount of reading in and was even able to devour a book in as little as two days (granted, I was on vacation then)! It’s been a fantastic month and I’m looking forward to summer now.

This past month, I read six books!

Dreaming of Flight by Catherine Ryan Hyde

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A great read full of emotion and lessons. I picked this up on a whim while clicking around NetGalley. I didn’t know what to expect going in other than from the other reviews, that I’d merely glanced through. It turned out to be a beautiful read full of insight. I smiled some and I definitely had a few tears.

Full Review: >HERE<

Cancer, You Picked The Wrong Girl by Shormistha Mukherjee

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Picked up from Libby when I was also mindlessly scrolling for my next read, one day. Picked it up because I enjoyed the sampler and loved the cover. An enjoyable nonfiction that brought humor to a very tough situation. There was lots of love and support to go around and the writing was well done, informative and upbeat considering the topic.

Full Review: >RTC: May 5th, 2022 Thursday<

Vampyre Lawyer by George Parker

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Picked it up from NetGalley because comedic vampire stories seems to be a fun little sub-genre/corner of the bookish world that I’ve come to enjoy lately. The story didn’t even majorly revolve around the vampire, but a newbie lawyer instead. The most bizarre book I’ve read this year; it felt like a sitcom. Left me with a big ol’ grin though.

Full Review: >HERE<

Style of Love by AJ Sherwood

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Soft and fluffy, this book was my pick for the week-long vacation I had towards the end of April. Didn’t even last me a full three days, I ate through this so quick. Fun and smooth writing, it doesn’t get fluffier (and cheesier) and this. No jealousy, no scandals, no rivalry drama. Just friends to lovers, gay for you, romance between two best friends that could put old married couples to shame. So painfully obvious, the entire town has a betting pool between these two.

Full Review >HERE<

Making Rounds with Oscar by David Dosa, M.D.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

A nonfiction book I picked up because I’d once again come across the clip about Oscar on Youtube. I remembered seeing the clip a good handful of years ago and recalled there being a book about Oscar too. It’s mostly an interview, told in a story format, done by Dr. David Dosa as he goes back to and visits/calls family members of patients who have lived in the nursing home that he worked at to see if his nurse’s story of “Oscar’s special talent” was really true.

Turns out. He’s as extraordinary as they say he is.

Full Review: >RTC: May 19th, 2022 Thursday<

The Sun Dog by Stephen King

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

My first Stephen King book and it was relatively enjoyable. I got the goosebumps I was looking for, though it did become less scary towards the end, as it became more intense and exciting. It was like, the long moment I had been waiting for had finally arrived. A slowish burn of 198 pages, it probably could have been so much shorter, but it kept dragging on and on. Still though…I kicked out that Fujifilm Instax cam off my wishlist…so the book did it’s job.

Full Review: >RTC: May 26th, 2022 Thursday<

Overall, I thought it was a pretty fantastic reading month! I read some new things, tried out Stephen King for the first time, and even gave romance another whirl.

Have you read any of these? Did you enjoy them?

February 2022 Wrap Up

For February, I didn’t get to do much of anything other than work and maybe squeeze a read in every night. One of my goals for New Years had been to “read every day” and that didn’t come with a number goal or threshold, only that I read. It could be 100 pages, 50 pages, or even three sentences as long as I pick up a book and read it!

And guess what? Once I do sit down to read, I never stop at just three sentences. I always make it through at least 20 or so pages. So, maybe the key to reading a lot is not setting goals like “read 30 books a year” or “read 50 pages a day” or “you must read this, this, and this book” but simply, “As long as you sit and read for three seconds every single day, I don’t care what you do.”

And once I get started.
It doesn’t often stop anywhere near the “reading minimum” (which I’ve set to as a single measley sentence).

For February I read Five Books

Deep Freeze (Virgil Flowers #10) by John Sandford

Not much of a mystery with the killer’s name right there as the book’s second word, but a thriller nonetheless. You get to play hot and cold with Virgil Flowers as he tries to find the person whom you, the reader, are already aware of.

Bloody Genius (Virgil Flowers #12) by John Sandford

Terrifying towards the end, adrenaline rushing and heart pounding. I didn’t really realize until Ocean Prey, but this may be the last Virgil Flowers solo. At least that’s what it’s looking like.

The Way Out: 40 Empowering Stories by Laura Stamps

A sweet read with some good stories. 39 different flash fictions that gave me a new appreciation of them. Cried some, laughed some. A pretty heartwarming book with a review coming up soon.

Ocean Prey (Lucas Davenport #31) by John Sandford

Hell, this one was so good that it left me speechless and with a book hangover. I’m loving U.S. Marshal Virgil Flowers and can’t wait for more of him, Lucas, and Rae.

Sisters Behaving Badly by Maddie Please

A surprisingly good read full of humor, family love, and self-discovery (and self-love!). There’s bits of romance in it, but the meat and potatoes of the plot revolved two sisters healing through the rift that’s grown between the them. A warm read with some infuriating moments. The review is also set to be posted soon.

January 2022 Reading Wrap Up

Hello my lovely peeps!
I can’t believe it’s finally February!
January felt so long that I’m just glad to see the turn of a new month!

This means it’s time for a wrap up post! Considering how little spare time I had in January, I think it’s a miracle I made it through even a single book, but 6 is pretty mind-blowing.

This past month was a little special too. January’s original TBR had only audiobooks, seeing as I had anticipated the lack of time, but I ended up blowing through those three books pretty quick and found myself with about a week and half of extra time. With there being a whole week, later this month, dedicated to retro-reviews for the Virgil Flowers series and with me essentially forgetting all plots and events of those six books, I took the opportunity to have a week-long Virgil Flowers reread binge session, managing to squeeze the last of the rereads in on the 30th.

The Planned Books Read

The Burning by Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman

My first Clay Edison book that I kind of enjoyed. I may very well check out the other books in the series, as I’d read this one out of order.

Review: >HERE<

The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred, the Vampire Accountant by Drew Hayes

This was a unique read in that it was such a fluffy and cozy read considering the very ordinary and totally boring adventures our protagonist finds himself in. I thought it was a light and good breather after the tense previous read.

Review: >HERE<

I’ve pretty much fallen in love with audiobook nonfiction by now, specifically memoirs and autobiographies. This was my nonfiction pick of the month and was both a heartwarming and heartbreaking read.

Review: >HERE<

Unplanned Additions to January

The Houseplant by Jeremy Ray

My first short story of the month was a shocker. I wasn’t expecting to cry over a plant, but if you considered the last one to be unique, get a load of this book! The protagonist…is a plant! You get to read from the perspective of George the fern!

Review: >HERE<

Not A Drill by Lee Child

I realized that between Cookie Cure and my first February read, I had no planned books (besides the rereads whose own set of reviews were slated for the end of February). I looked around for a nice read for this upcoming Thursday’s review post, but simply couldn’t find a good one before giving up and started to look for some short stories. This wasn’t the typical Jack that I’m used to, but an alright read in itself.

Review: RTC 03 Feb 2022 Thursday

The Reread Binge Session (Full Cover to Cover Reread)

Shock Wave by John Sandford

There were six books up for reread and this was the only that I read from cover to cover again. Can you blame me? It was and still is my favorite book in the series so far!

I won’t spoil the upcoming review, but let’s just say that there were enough twists to give me whiplash!

Review: RTC 25 February 2022 Friday

The Reread Binge Session (~90% Reread)

These books I mostly reread from cover to cover but didn’t include them in the January “books read” count because I did skim/skip anywhere from one to three chapters each.

Heat Lightning by John Sandford

Review: RTC 22 February 2022 Tuesday

Rough Country by John Sandford

Review: RTC 23 February 2022 Wednesday

Holy Ghost by John Sandford

Review: RTC 26 February 2022 Saturday

The Reread Binge Session (Skims & Partial Rereads)

These were rereads that I either partially read or skimmed because I simply couldn’t stomach a reread (i.e. disturbing themes/cases) or because I already knew all of the events and didn’t need to reread the book to write a review.

Dark of the Moon by John Sandford

Review: RTC 21 February 2022 Monday

Bad Blood by John Sandford

Review: RTC 24 February 2022 Thursday