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Ahh January. I have a love/hate relationship with January. On the one hand, it is cold and dreary outside, which I actually love because it gives me an excuse to stay in and read more books.
On the other hand, it is cold and dreary outside, which can seriously affect my mood and cause some seasonal depression.
But I think the best thing about January is the fresh start. Admittedly, I have two fresh starts to my year-January and August (when the new school year starts). But January is when I set my yearly goals and feel like I’m hitting the reset button on my reading.
Here are some mini reviews and ratings of my recent reads from January. You can also check out my own progress for the 2021 Reading Challenge. (P.S.-It’s not too late to join!)
Related: 2021 Reading Challenge
Recent Reads January 2021
I had major FOMO when I didn’t choose this book in my November Book of the Month box, so I added it to my December box.
This fast and fun rom-com features Minnie Cooper (yup, that’s really her name) and Quinn Hamilton. Minnie and Quinn were born in the same hospital just after midnight on New Year’s Day. Quinn was born just a minute sooner and won the title of first baby born in 1990. His mom claimed a cash prize-and the name that was meant to be Minnie’s. Ever since, Minnie’s life has been plagued by a series of unfortunate events every year on her birthday. But her 30th birthday turns out to be slightly different as she finally meets the infamous Quinn Hamilton at a New Year’s Eve party.
This Time Next Year was the perfect first read for the the new year. The book takes place over the span of a year while also sprinkling some flashback chapters here and there. I enjoyed the book but I definitely wanted more from these characters. I actually enjoyed Minnie’s journey of self-discovery and growth more than the actual romance.
Reading Challenge: A book i already own
One of my reading goals for 2021 is to read more books that I own, whether that is a physical book on my shelves or an audiobook I’ve downloaded from Libro.fm, which is an audiobook service similar to Audible except they directly support independent bookstores. You can use this link to join and get a free audiobook.
This novel is incredibly unique. Oona lives her life out of order. She “jumps” to a new year at the stroke of midnight every New Year’s Eve (her birthday). She wakes up not knowing what year she is in or how old she is on the outside. Oona struggles with the first few jumps and attempts to change things. But she will soon learn the importance of family and the endurance of love as she travels through her life out of order.
I absolutely loved this book. It is completely out of my comfort zone because I don’t read general fiction, but Oona Out of Order has made me rethink that! I loved the relationship Oona has with her mom because they shared a unique bond since her mom is the only one who knows what is happening each year. This is a book I would buy just so I could annotate it. There were so many wonderful quotes about life and living in the moment and not obsessing over missed opportunities or what you would do different. Basically this book came at the perfect time for me and I will probably never stop recommending it.
Reading Challenge: A Person On The Cover
In the nation of Panem, two teen Tributes-one boy and one girl-from each of the 12 districts is chosen to fight to the death in an event known as the Hunger Games. The Games are used by the government to remind the citizens of their attempted rebellion. Katniss Everdeen is forced into the games when she volunteers to take her little sister’s place in the Games. Her survival instincts make her a surprise contender in the Games, and Katniss must make hard decisions in the arena if she wants to make it back home to District 12.
I needed a book for the “first book in a series” prompt in my book club’s yearlong reading challenge. I recently re-watched all of The Hunger Games movies, so I was in the mood to re-read the books. I listened to the audiobook of The Hunger Games since I’ve read the physical book before. I remembered the world building being tedious the first time I read this, but I found it more enjoyable through the audiobook. It probably helped that I already had a sense of the world.
Reading Challenge: Fantasy/Magical Realism
I was saving this book for February, but I just couldn’t wait any longer. I read this entire book in less than 24 hours, which almost never happens anymore!
Blythe’s husband, Fox, wants to start a family. Blythe is worried because of her own strained relationship with her mother, but she wants Fox to be happy, so they have a child. The early days of motherhood prove to be difficult for Blythe, and she begins to worry that her daughter, Violet, is not like other children. Soon Blythe is pregnant with a son, Sam, and the two share an unimaginable bond. But an unspeakable event changes everything, and Blythe is forced to face the truth about her child.
This book address every single fear I have about having children. My heart broke for Blythe as she struggled to connect with her child. And I was increasingly angry with Fox and his mother as they continued to dismiss Blythe as a hysterical, paranoid woman filled with grief and depression. You will be guessing the truth until the final few pages of this book, so go ahead and clear your schedule because you’ll want to binge read it in one sitting!
Reading Challenge: n/a
What was your favorite book in January? Let me know in the comments!