January 2018 is quite a harsh month for me. This is my first year of teaching, and so I am finding/making resources and lessons for the first time. I am also just getting used to marking work, which definitely takes longer than you would expect. On top of this, January is the month when my book chapter was due for submission, and I had a lot of work left to do on that. A lot of my spare time was taken up, so I have found audiobooks invaluable this month.
This month I have read 9 books, which really surprised me, but some are very short and were audiobooks, so that worked really helped.
We Should All Be Feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
I listened to this as an audiobook and wow. I did not expect to like it, and it is usually not the type of thing that I would have listened to; however, I took a chance on it, and it was compelling.
Dear Charley – N M Gomes
I really wanted to like this book, because I thought it would be a really different perspective on a horrible issue but I just didn’t feel attached to the characters at all, and I just thought it was all surface and really uninteresting in the end. I listened to this as an audiobook, and so I think I pretty much missed parts of it because I just zoned out and did not care.
The Fall – Garth Nix
I love Garth Nix and his world building. This is another unique kingdom which has great potential, but this book is so short and simplistic that I just feel like I am missing out on so much. I will probably read this again at some point over a readathon when I can read all 6 at once, and that will make one decent sized Garth Nix novel.
How to Stop Time – Matt Haig
This is now one of my favourite books ever. I love the time shifts and the way in which the story is told. The protagonist is compelling, a little cynical, but never willing to completely give up, he is so human even though he has lived so long. There were fantastic little touches that I enjoyed about Shakespeare and F Scott Fitzgerald, and I really appreciated the humour and the way that the storytelling was balanced between past and present. Amazing.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman
I almost DNFd this, because the beginning just didn’t seem to appeal to me. Just as I was about to, I got the first conversation with her mother, and I was hooked. This book has a good twist and was compelling at the end. I’m glad I read it.
Three Things About Elsie – Joanna Cannon
For many reasons, this was a harder book for me to read this month, but I am very glad that I did. It is funny, poignant and heartwarming. There is incredible sadness in this book, but it is also so warm that you wont want to put it down. I enjoyed it so much that I am going to visit the author to hear her speak, and will be reading her other book before I go!
Exit West – Moshin Hamid
I think Exit West is incredibly important and powerful, but it just wasn’t for me. I didn’t really get all of the writing, and parts were either too simplistic or overexplained. There didn’t seem to be a healthy in between. I am glad that this book was short, so for the 200 pages it was, I am not complaining; however, had it been much more, I would be.
A Wrinkle in Time – Madeleine L’Engle
I so wanted to read this, because the Disney film is released later in the year, so I thought it would be a really cute, simple read. But I was wrong. It is all over the place, nothing is fully explained, and it couldn’t hold my attention. I couldn’t read it quickly, because I felt like parts were missing, and I couldn’t read it slower because it was dull. So I DNF’d.
Desolation – Derek Landy
This was my last read of the month and I got it finished just in time. It took forever for me to listen to it. It wasn’t bad, much better than Demon Road, though not Skullduggery Pleasant, but I definitely enjoyed it. The audiobook was good, and really seemed to work, and I had lots of fun with the cast of additional characters, which I think is something that Landy does well. I’m now really looking forward to reading American Monsters.