Sunday Summary – 7th January 2024

Good evening friends and welcome to this Sunday Summary update. This post is the fifth I have drafted and published this week. It’s not very often I have such a busy schedule. However, with the end of the year, I’ve had a lot of content to push out in a short window. I’ve shared about 7,100 words with you in the last week, when you include this post as well! 

The first blog post I shared was my monthly wrap-up for December 2023. In summary, reading progress slowed down a little bit in December, given I’d already met my reading goal and because of the festive period. If you’re interested to see what I read in the final month of the year, you can check out that post here.

The next post was my wrap-up for the whole of 2023. In this post, I took a look at the goals I set myself at the beginning of the year to see if I managed to complete them.

After a day’s break, I shared my 2024 Reading Resolutions on Thursday. Some of the resolutions I have set myself this year are very similar to ones I set last year. But, there is one brand-new goal for 2024. If you want to find out what I’m setting out to do this year, you know what to do.

Lastly, I shared my January TBR on Friday. I may have set myself a reading goal that equates to 5 books a month, but I am very excited for the New Year and new reading opportunities. As a result, I maybe have been ambitious with my reading goal for the first month. I feature no less than 10 books on this reading list… yeah, that’s where we’re at!

No pressure…

 

Books Read

 

My Sister’s Keeper

Leaving off from last week’s Sunday Summary update, I picked up My Sister’s Keeper having already made progress with about a third of the audiobook.

I’ve raced ahead this week and I am now just over 3/4 of the way through. This book is everything I hoped it would be in terms of dealing with the morality and ethical aspects of the underlying story. Even better for me, I am just getting to the point where Anna gets her hearing in court. We get to dive into the detail of the family dynamics as well as the ethics of the story. How is it likely to end? I have no idea at this point. That makes me all the more keen to keep listening!

I’m looking forward to making further progress in this audiobook next week. If I’m any judge, I think I could get it done next week. We’re at the interesting bit and there’s only a few hours left to listen!

 

Gemina

Gemina is the second book I carried over from last week’s Sunday Summary post. In my last update, I had read just over 200 pages with a further 450-odd to go.

I raced through those 450 pages within the first few days of January! I’m not surprised, as I knew what to expect from my enjoyment of the first book in the series, Illuminae. The character perspectives are fun to read and the format of the book (mixed media) makes it very easy to pick up. Now and then it’s nice to break away from books written in traditional prose.

Gemina was a great book to pick up both to end 2023 on, but also to start 2024 with. It was my first read of the year, and also my first five star read at that!

 

The Girl in Seat 2A

The next day, I started the book I picked up and read in full this week, The Girl in Seat 2A.

The book is a thriller written by Diana Wilkinson and is due to be published on the 19th January. As a reviewer and follower of Boldwood books, I was very lucky to be accepted for an advanced reader copy to share my thoughts with you ahead of publication.

You can expect those thoughts in full coming up on the blog very soon. However, to give you a flavour of the book now, it is a thriller about a young woman living the lifestyle of a millionairess. But, not all is as it seems. When she meets and starts to date a wealthy man whilst on holiday in Marbella, things take a turn for the worse.

Overall, the book was a four-star read. I wasn’t a huge fan of the main character, just because we are opposing personality types. But, that didn’t detract from my overall enjoyment of the book. It is also told from another perspective which I liked far more. I’m looking forward to more detail in the near future!

 

Betrothal and Betrayal

I picked up one final book this week, and as of this Sunday Summary post, Betrothal and Betrayal is my current read.

Betrothal and Betrayal is another book that I am reviewing for a tour coming up very soon. I’m having to read this particular book on the Kindle app on my phone, which isn’t my favourite, but I’m making do. It’s a relatively short read at about 250 pages, so I’m not anticipating it will take too long to read anyway.

As of this post, I’m already 20% through the book, having picked it up just yesterday. The storyline is still in the introductory stages, so I can’t tell you too much about it right now. Set in the Byzantine empire, we follow a young woman called Thekla in this historical fantasy. She has fled from her family who are trying to marry her off to someone she is unwilling to commit to after her betrothed has stood her up for a third time. Shes young and fiesty, making her much more my cup of tea compared to Jade in The Girl in Seat 2A!

I can’t really tell you much more than that at this stage, as I’m just getting introduced into the story myself. I trust I’ll be able to share more with you in next week’s update.

 

Books Discovered

I went to town with family today, and of course I made us stop in Waterstones on our travels.

I’ve added a couple of books to my bookshelves as a result of that trip. One of the books I purchased was already on my TBR, but now I officially own my copy. So far, I’ve read and loved two books by C.J. Tudor, The Chalk Man and The Taking of Annie Thorne. With this in mind, I added The Burning Girls to my reading list just over a year ago. I didn’t yet own a copy of that book… until today!

The second book I discovered from Waterstones IOM Instagram page. It is their non-fiction book of the month, The Wager. I like the sound of the premise, and as I’ve just set myself another goal of picking up non-fiction again this year, it was a no brainer!

In addition, I added one further book to the reading list after Bibliobeth featured it on her Instagram. Again, another non-fiction, the Icepick Surgeon appealed to me because the title hints at some of the topics I explored and loved in when doing my psychology A-Level.

If you’re a bit squeamish, then perhaps this content is not for you. I suppose there is a theme in my reading, because this book explores the ethics and morality of science and where boundaries have been blurred in the past. Sound familiar to another book I’m currently reading?

 

Coming Up…

I’m not lying when I say I’m looking forward to going back to my regular blog schedule next week!

Still, there is no rest for the wicked, as my first post of the week is going to be a book review. I have a pending review on NetGalley for a book I read last year, Leadership and Culture. As leaving this outstanding can affect my feedback ratio and potential to be accepted for further downloads in future, I’m going to prioritise reviewing this. It’s also been outstanding since August last year; whilst not the longest a book has had to wait from me for a review, I don’t want to leave it too long either!

I’m keeping up with my Shelf Control and First Lines Friday features this year. So, this Friday, I will be back with a Shelf Control. If you are unfamiliar with this series, I take the opportunity to feature upcoming books on my reading list. I’ll tell you all about them in detail, and most importantly, share why I’m excited to pick it up!

The last post I will be sharing next week will be another Sunday Summary. With all the luck in the world, I will have as good reading week as I’ve had this week and I’ll have plenty of updates to share with you. Maybe my 10 book TBR isn’t so ambitious after all…

Who am I kidding?! 😂

 

That’s all from me in today’s Sunday Summary though! It’s 11pm and I’m off to prep lunches for the week ahead, and then get stuck in with a few pages of Betrothal and Betrayal before bed.

What are your Sunday plans?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

Monthly TBR – January 2024

Hello friends and welcome to my first monthly TBR of 2024!

Are you excited for the new year?

This week on the blog, I have wrapped up my reading progress for the month of December, the whole of 2023, and set out my reading resolutions for 2024. If you want to check out any of those posts, you can do so following these links. Today, I am setting out the books I plan to read in January and start me off on my 2024 reading journey.

Although I have set myself a reading goal which equates to picking up five books a month, I am being ambitious in January! What can I say? I’m excited for the fresh start. I’ll point out that a few of these books are carried over from December. Although I’ll feature 10 books on this monthly TBR, in reality I started two in December.

 To read each book in the intended format, I need to read 100 pages physically and listen to 28 minutes of audio every day of January. As of publishing this monthly TBR post, I’m already 50 pages and one hour ahead respectively. And I’ll be reading more before bed tonight!

Let’s talk about the books I plan to read in January!

 

Fixed Reads

 

December Insta Poll Runner Up – My Sister’s Keeper

I started listening to My Sister’s Keeper in December and it is the first of my carryovers. I kicked off 2024 having listened to just under a third of the audio in December.

As of this monthly TBR post, I am just over halfway through the audiobook and really enjoying the storyline. The premise is an interesting one; it tackles the law, ethics and morality of a child conceived as a donor for her older sister. What starts off as a one-off has turned into a series of increasingly invasive surgeries. Anna’s opinion on whether she wants to be a donor and undergo these procedures isn’t considered. At the start of the book, she is 13 years old and is starting to question both her identity and her role as donor for her sister Kate.

 

December TBR Jar – The Black Coats

I didn’t get to December’s TBR Jar pick last month, so I’ve had to carry it forward into January.

I don’t know much about the book other than the synopsis, but that is enough to draw me in! The protagonist Thea is invited into a group called the Black Coats. Their mission is to seek justice for girls and women who have been hurt/wronged by men by exacting revenge. Thea has an interest in the group’s activities as her cousin was killed by a man and got away with it. It definitely sounds like a feminine power story, but the suggestion of their revenge escalating out of hand is why I’m intrigued about the book.

I’m excited to pick it up and see what it’s all about!

 

January Insta poll pick – The Atlas Six

I had a dilemma with my most recent Insta poll pick. At the time I called the competition, both books had drawn level.

After consideration, I have decided that such an occasion means that I get to choose what I pick up first. In the end, I went with the book that I thought was going to win the poll – The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake.

Maybe this is going to be one of those books that ends up overhyped, but I’ll just have to check it out for myself. I read something similar in terms of genre last year and I enjoyed the book. I believe that one of my friends is also picking this up in January, so I’m looking forward to comparing notes with her.

 

January TBR Jar pick – Crime and Punishment

Although I am behind on my TBR jar reads, that doesn’t excuse me from picking one for January. This month I pulled out a classic that I’m looking forward to trying.

At 656 pages, Crime and Punishment is one of the chunkiest books on this monthly TBR. If my reading pace is going to slow down any, it might be with this book. That I’m ahead now buys me that wiggle room should I need it.

It’s not deliberate, but I don’t have many books on my reading list that are not originally published in English. Crime and Punishment is one of the exceptions to that rule. From what I understand about the book, it is in some ways and exploration of mental health at a time and setting where it wasn’t really understood in the same terms as today.

 

Betrothal and Betrayal

I’ve signed up to a blog tour this month for Betrothal and Betrayal by Janet McGiffin. Betrothal and Betrayal is a historical fantasy, in which our two protagonists start from very different walks of life. Thekla is a commoner, whereas Princess Irini is not. It is a narrative of these two women’s journeys, with hints at social and political strife in a setting that I am not that familiar with. I always like to learn about new places, so I’m excited to explore Constantinople and the Byzantium empire.

This review is coming up very shortly on the 18th of January. With this in mind, it’s going to be the next book I pick up to read. The only reason I didn’t pick this first after completing Gemina (my physical read carryover from December) is because I was having some technical issues with my copy. I’ve since got that sorted (I can read it on my phone but not my Kindle), so I’ll be picking this up very soon!

 

The Girl in Seat 2A

The second and last review obligation I have in January is due on the 19th January, just a day after Betrothal and Betrayal. I decided to pick up The Girl in Seat 2A in the meantime whilst I sorted my B&B technical issue out.

The Girl in Seat 2A is about a young woman who sets off to Marbella after winning a lump sum cash prize. She’s determined to live a life of luxury for the rest of her life, but she hasn’t exactly told the truth about her winnings…

The Girl in Seat 2A is my current read and as of this monthly TBR post, I am 40% into the narrative. I have mixed feelings so far. The book is written well and I’m intrigued as to where the storyline is going to go. However, I don’t really like or relate to the main character. That’s entirely personal.

The story and who she is are written well and I can somewhat understand her situation and motivations. However, she is not my type of person and I am spending the majority of the book questioning the decisions she’s making! I’m 90% sure they’re going to come back and bite her, but we’ll just have to see!

If you’re interested in the sound of this book, I’ll be sharing my thoughts in two weeks time.

 

Sword of Vengeance

I have signed up to review the fourth book in the Saxon Warrior series, Sword of Vengeance by Peter Gibbons on the 2nd February. I have really enjoyed the series to date. In this latest instalment, I am keen to see what happens next.

Picking up this book for the blog tour works well for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I get to feature a series and an author that I really enjoy and love to share with you. Secondly, I get to keep up with this series and give myself a nice tick on keeping up-to-date with the series. Doing so contributes towards my ‘Finishing series’ reading goal. If you’ve read my resolutions post, you’ll know that I’m including any series I’m up-to-date with as a completion until such time a new book comes out. So, after reading this book, I’ll have finished 1 out of my target of 10. 

As this post is due right at the beginning of February, I couldn’t leave it until then to pick up the book. I’m making a conscious effort to read the books for which I have review obligations first. So, whilst this is featured a fair few down on my fixed reading list, it’s one I’m going to be picking up sooner rather than later!

 

Mood Reads

 

Gemina

Ironically, this mood read is the first book I picked up in January as I carried it over from December. In theory, it shouldn’t be the priority, but I wasn’t going to put this book down!

After starting the series with Illuminae last year, I knew I wanted to keep up momentum in picking up the sequel. I also enjoy these books as they are written in a mixed media format. They are fun to read, different from traditional prose and both books so far have a great storyline backing up a cast of lovable characters.

I started off in 2024 having already read 266 pages of the book. I’ve devoured the remaining 400 odd pages in the first three days of January, and so this book is already complete as of this monthly TBR. It’s also also the reason why I’m ahead with my reading so far! Gemina has been a great start to my reading year and. Picking this up also works well for my ‘finishing series’ goal. Whilst it doesn’t mark a completion in its own right, it means that I have just one book left of the trilogy, Obsidio, to read before I can tick this series off the list!

 

Unmasked

Switching to my other reading goal of picking up non-fiction again this year, I have added Unmasked to my January TBR.

I originally discovered the author, Ellie Middleton, via one of my connections on LinkedIn interacting with her content. Ellie was diagnosed at 24 with ADHD and autism. She has become popular for vocalising her experience of living as a neurodivergent. Her recently published book, Unmasked, is about breaking down the barriers of understanding what it is like to be neurodivergent through education and her experience.

It’s a perspective that I’m interesting to read about and understand the ways in which people think and experience life differently. I also think the title is pretty clever given that girls are typically diagnosed with such things late because they are taught socially how to mask their ‘symptoms’.

 

The Measure

The last book I hope to pick up in January is a speculative fiction that I put on my 2023/2024 Winter TBR.

The premise of the book is that one day, every person receives a box on their doorstep. The box contains the person’s name and a piece of string which correlates to the length of their lives. The book explores what happens to individual characters, and I think to a certain extent to society, when people are faced with knowing that information or choosing to live in ignorance.

It’s really interesting premise, and it’s for that reason that I added this book to my reading list. When looking for interesting books to start 2024 with, this felt like a natural choice.

 

Summary

That’s a lot of books to keep me busy in January. But, with the dark nights and cold weather, is there anywhere else I would rather be than home, curled up reading a book?

Not really!

If you’re still with me, thank you for reading today’s monthly TBR post!

What book(s) are you reading in January?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

My 2024 Reading Resolutions!

Good evening fellow readers! I’m excited to be looking ahead into the year just started and sharing some of my reading goals and resolutions with you.

Are you setting yourself any reading resolutions this year?

Some of my goals will be similar to those I set last year. I’ve set myself a goodreads reading challenge for six out of the last seven years, and 2024 is no exception! I am also setting myself one identical goal to last year, and modifying another. Lastly, I have another resolution that’s not specific to my reading, but to my blog and social media accounts. This is the most different of them all, and the goal that I’m going to have to work on the hardest this year.

Let’s go through the specifics of each goal and why I’m committing to the resolution in 2024:-

 

Reading Goals

 

Goodreads Challenge – 60 books

In last year’s resolution post, I set myself a goal of 50 books. I wanted to up my reading slightly from the previous year (47 books). It wasn’t much of a push as resolutions go, but in reality I managed to exceed this goal by a further 10 books.

If I had to choose a word that sums up what I want to achieve this year, it’s consistency. I’m not looking to push myself hard. The reading pace I’ve maintained in 2023 has allowed me to enjoy a vast array of different books, but not to the detriment of other hobbies. I’ve had time to play games, enjoy my crafts and spend time with the people I love. I want to maintain that.

With this in mind, I am looking to match my 2023 reading pace. That’s why I am setting myself a goal of 60 books. Like I say, I want to be consistent this year. Although I’m not pushing myself with this goal, I would also like to point out that I have only exceeded reading 60 books a year twice. Remember, that’s out of seven years that I have been blogging and reading ‘seriously’. It’s still a pretty high target for me, but definitely achievable!

 

Read >15 non-fiction

Do you remember in the intro to this post that I mentioned one goal coming back again exactly as I had it last year? This is it!

Although I had to make a conscious effort to read all the non-fiction books I did last year, I’m glad I did it. Open until then, I had been a very fiction-heavy reader. There’s nothing wrong with that, but there is also a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be picked up through non-fiction. Up until last year, I wasn’t really benefitting from it. 

Given that I achieved this goal in 2023 with completion of my 16th non-fiction book on the 24th of December, I would say that just over 15 is a sensible number. That’s also 25% of my target reading for the year, after all.

Again, this is definitely an achievable goal as I’ve done it before. Will I get competitive with myself and try to read more than 16 books this year? We’ll just have to see.

 

Finish 10 Series

This last reading goal is a more specifically defined reading goal than I had last year. In my 2023 reading resolutions post, I set myself an overarching goal that I wanted to finish ongoing series rather than start new ones.

This year, I am setting myself a very similar goal, but I am quantifying it a bit better. I also want to give myself some specifics, so I have a definite aim to work towards, and anything else is a bonus.

The advantage of the position I am in this year is that I have a number of ongoing series in which I am very close to the end. I have 18 different series in which I have anywhere between 1-3 books left to the finish line. As of this reading resolution post, six of those series require me to read just one book to complete it. Naturally, I’ll be prioritising these.

To complete this goal by reading the fewest number of books, I’ll still need to pick up 14 over the year. Between this goal, and my non-fiction reading goal, that still leaves me around half of my reading capacity for mood reads, standalones, and anything else that doesn’t fit into either of these goals. There’s no reason why this is unmanageable.

 

Blogging Goals

 

Make Social media a habit

In addition to the reading goals I have set myself above, I am also setting myself a brand-new goal of making social media a priority.

I have a love/hate relationship with it. On the one hand, it is a great tool that allows us to connect. However, I’ve always been conscious of the less pleasant side of social media though. It can be a place of negativity and so, whilst I have grown up with it to an extent, I’ve always tried to keep it at arms length.

I’ve had social media accounts for my blog and reading activities for a few years now, but I haven’t given them (and my lovely readers and followers there) the attention deserved. With my overall goal of consistency in mind, these are the steps I will be taking to step up my social media game in 2024:-

  • Post a variety of content to Instagram 4/5 times a week
  • Login to Threads daily and interact with followers/bookish accounts

I plan to step back from X (formerly Twitter). The truth is, I never really loved the platform when I set up my account back in 2017. However, back then it served a purpose. It drove traffic to my blog. Stats in this regard have been dropping since 2020. Last year, of the record 15,000 views I got on my blog, only 47 were referrals from X. Pants. Instead, I will be focusing my attention on Threads. I have been making an effort with this goal already, and in the last few days alone, I have gained 40 followers.

I’m specifically not using follower numbers as a metric for this goal/resolution. It’s a shallow metric; I want to engage using my accounts, not shout into a void like I am on X. I’ll know if I succeed because I’ll either be doing what I’ve set out above, or not!

 

So, these are my resolutions for 2024!

Are you setting yourself any resolutions this year?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

2023 – Reading Goal Review!

In today’s post, I look back at each reading goal I set myself back in January 2023. Did I meet them all? Make yourself comfortable, as well be diving into the details in this post.

Did you set yourself any reading goals in 2023? Did you manage to achieve them?

To quickly recap – what were the goals I set myself in 2023? If you want to check out the full post, it’s here. Otherwise, here is a summary: –

  • Goodreads Challenge – Read 50 books
  • Read >15 non-fiction books
  • Continue ongoing series
  • Read 30 mins daily

So, did I achieve any of these goals? Let’s take a look!

 

Goodreads Challenge – 50 books

For my Goodreads reading challenge, I set myself a goal of reading 50 books before the end of the year. I set myself this goal as I had read 47 books the previous year. Setting a goal of 50 was a small push on what I had already achieved, but equally, it was a manageable target.

In the end, it proved more than manageable! I met my target of 50 books in November 2023, leaving myself plenty of time before the end of the year. Thereafter, I set myself an unofficial goal to push the reading total up to 60 books, which I just managed before the end of the year.

I haven’t read this many books since 2019, so needless to say I’m very happy with what I’ve achieved! More importantly though, I am comfortable that I did it without stretching myself too far. Although I love reading, I obviously do the blogging aspect of the hobby as well, amongst many other things. I don’t ever want this to take over or prevent me from doing the other things I enjoy as well. That’s not been the case this year, so it’s a result all round.

 

Read >15 non-fiction book

When I set myself the reading goal of completing more than 15 non-fiction books, 15 felt like a nice number. It was a little more than one book a month over the course of the year. I didn’t really think about it in the context that it would mean non-fiction would constitute 25% of 2023 reading list. Even so, I’m happy I set myself this challenge.

I’m pleased to say that I completed my 16th non-fiction book on the 24th of December, meaning that I hit my goal with just over a week to spare. Here are the non-fiction books I read in 2023, in case you want to take a look:-

  • The Secret Library
  • Chimp Paradox
  • Becoming
  • Thanks for Sharing
  • Stolen Focus
  • Spike
  • A Brief History of Time
  • Leadership and Culture
  • Twelve Years a Slave
  • Killing for Company
  • Surrounded by Idiots
  • Vikings of the Irish Sea
  • Vikings in the Isle of Man
  • The Boy Who Followed His Father into Auschwitz
  • The Success Code
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People

Setting myself this non-fiction goal has meant that I have picked up more of the genre than I ever have before. Had I not set this goal, I wouldn’t have consciously picked up this many over the course of the year. I think doing so has been a great benefit, and it’s something I definitely want to continue with.

Not only has reading non-fiction benefited me in the short term, but I believe that that setting this goal has started paving the way for my reading more non-fiction in future. Comparing 2023 and the year prior, I added a further 16 non-fiction books to my reading list in 2023, compared to just 4 the previous year. I still have some way to go before reading non-fiction becomes a natural habit, but I’m definitely heading in the right direction.

 

Finish Ongoing Series

This goal was always a lofty one. At the start of 2023 I had a great number of ongoing series that I had started, but I was yet to finish. Without digging through my records, I think we’re talking about 40 ongoing at the start of 2023… yikes! 

With this goal, I ended up doing more in the way of progressing with ongoing series than completing them. I have a number of lengthy series on my reading list, including Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series (41 books), Robin Hobb’s the Realm of the Elderlings series (16 books split across five smaller series) and so on.

That said, I did manage to complete the following series in 2023:-

  • The Liveship Traders (Robin Hobb series 2/5 in Realm of the Elderlings universe)
  • The Miniaturist duology
  • Eagle of Mercia
  • The Saxon Warrior
  • The Hunger Games
  • Mistborn

Note that I am marking anything complete if the series is either fully finished, or if I am up-to-date with the series as published. In addition to the above full completions, I had one very close completion of the Skyward series. I was up-to-date with this series in July, but the sequel, Defiant, was published in November 2023.

Other series that I read in 2023, but didn’t necessarily complete, include:-

  • Terry Pratchett’s Discworld,
  • Robin Hobb’s the Realm of the Elderlings (as a whole),
  • Stephen King’s The Dark Tower,
  • Jojo Moyes’ Me Before You, and;
  • Bernard Cornwell’s The Last Kingdom.

If you compare this with my list of series I started in 2023, you’ll see the list of significantly shorter!

  • Lost Solace
  • Soul Identity
  • Illuminae

In addition to these, I did read some further ‘first’ books in a series, but they are books I read as standalone. I don’t intend to continue with the series and so I’m not including them in this statistic.

Overall, I made more progress with goal than expected. I had no easy way of tracking this goal throughout year. However, that is changing in 2024. I plan to do a lot more in the way of book stats and monitoring in the next year so I have a better idea of both what, and how much, I’m reading. Watch this space…

 

Read 30mins Daily

I didn’t set out to stick to this in the purest sense. Although I probably did read for 30 minutes a day for the vast majority of the year, it was the point of making reading a regular habit that I was looking to achieve.

I think it’s fair to say I did! I don’t think I could have met or indeed exceeded my reading goals in the way that I have without reading becoming a near daily habit.

In 2023 there were days when I read for several hours, and there were days where I didn’t read at all. Sometimes such as life, but also, sometimes that was down to choice. As I’ve mentioned earlier in the post, I want to be able to enjoy my reading in a sustainable way. I don’t want it to become a detriment to the other things I want to do. If there have been times where I’ve not been in the mood to read, I haven’t forced myself. I’ve done other things and taken a break and come back when I’ve been good and ready.

That’s the way I’ll continue to read into 2024 and beyond!

 

Summary

I think it’s fair to say that I should give myself a pat on the back for achieving my reading goals in 2023! If you are interested in seeing what reading goals, I set myself for 2024, check out my blog on Thursday! 

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

Monthly Wrap-Up – December 2023

Happy New Year gang – welcome to my final monthly wrap-up post relating to 2023! In today’s post, I recap the reading progress I made over the month of December. Tomorrow, I will be publishing an overarching review of 2023 as a whole, so if you’re looking for that content keep your eyes peeled!

With festive plans and lots of catch ups, reading progress naturally slowed down a little in December. However, as I had already met my official reading goal of the year, I wasn’t too bothered about this. I did set myself an unofficial goal, however, to try and get to books before the end of the year. Did I achieve that? Find out more below!

 

Books Read

 

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

I started the month of December carrying forward The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins. At the end of November’s monthly wrap-up, I was just over 25% into the book.

It was refreshing to pick up a mood read for a change. If you recall that post, I picked up The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes after DNFing another read on November’s TBR. I had just been to watch the film at the cinema, and I loved it.

It’s fair to say that I enjoyed the book every bit as much as the film, even if there did turn out to be those usual minuscule differences between the two. I also think knowing the ending impacted the speed of which I read this book… combined with the festive period, of course. That’s not to take away from my experience of the book though! I really enjoyed this prequel, and following on from this, I will be looking to re-read The Hunger Games trilogy this year.

 

The Success Code

With my non-fiction reading goal in mind, I picked up two non-fiction books in December. The first of those was a physical read of The Success Code by John Lees.

This book is great as it is made up of multiple short chapters. It outlines small steps we can take in order to represent ourselves as best we can, put our best foot forward and promote positive image of ourselves to others.

It’s content should be worked through sequentially, as some of the latter chapters build upon framework outlined earlier. I think that’s useful though, as this framework gives you a model to work around, rather than giving you some generic advice and expecting you to be able to implement it without any guidance. The baby step nature of it as well, stop you from getting intimidated and falling over at the first hurdle.

I’ll definitely be looking to take away some of the points brought up in this book, so it was definitely a worthwhile read!

 

Order and Chaos

My next physical read, was picking up Order and Chaos, a short story anthology. I read another anthology, contributed to by the same author that approached me, earlier this year. Having enjoyed the experience of reading that first book, it was easy to say yes to the second.

I’m not going to go too much into the details of why I enjoyed the anthology, because I have a review live on my blog that you can check out instead. In summary, though, the anthology is a fun and diverse collection of stories that all revolve around the themes of order and chaos. But, from there, are vastly different from each other! It was a nice short read that fit in perfectly around the busy Christmas period.

 

Gemina

The last book I picked up physically in the month of December is Gemina. As of the end of 2023 and this monthly wrap-up post, I have read 266 pages of Gemina by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman.

Yesterday, I was under no illusion that I wasn’t going to get through this book before the end of the year. I had read just over 200 pages at the start of the night. There was no way I was going to get through the final 450… even with the best of intentions! It doesn’t matter though. Through my reading to date, I did indeed meet my unofficial (larger) goal of reading 60 books by the end of the year. There wasn’t a massive push to get this finished. I’m also happy to take this through into January and set my reading year off right!

I read the first book of the trilogy, Illuminae, earlier this year and I fell in love with it. I love the way in which the books are written, the characters (different between both books, but that doesn’t matter one iota) and the overarching story. It’s a different format to what I usually pick up, but it’s working really well for me!

 

Audiobooks

 

November Insta Poll Pick – The Minders

I left off my November monthly wrap-up post having listened to half of The Minders by John Marrs.

I listened to the second half of this audio when making gifts for Christmas. Although not a festive read, I found it compelling to follow along with whilst doing something mindless. The narrative of this story is interesting. As it’s a conspiracy thriller, we’re always pondering what we don’t know or what is going to happen next.

I liked how this audio was cast. We had a couple of different narrators (one for each gender), and the characters were differentiated well enough that we could easily follow who was who.

Overall, I really enjoyed The Minders, and for sure, it won’t be my last John Marrs book!

 

How to Win Friends and Influence People

The second non-fiction book that made it onto December’s reading list was How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

I confess I went into this book with a preconception that it was going to be a little trickier compared to The Success Code. In comparison, the second book is more modern and considerably shorter. How to Win Friends and Influence People was first published in 1936 and the audio was around seven hours long.

In reality, How to Win Friends and Influence People was a very easy listen. Despite the age of the book, I still find a lot of the points raised in it to be relevant today. Well, some people may resent being told to smile more. But, there is definitely argument for why this can help you. Don’t worry ladies, this isn’t targeted at just us!

 

December Insta Poll Pick – My Sister’s Keeper

I ended the month of December having listened to just less than a third of My Sister’s Keeper. I wanted to pick up this book for the moral debate that makes up the vast majority of the story. Now and then I will read out of my comfort zone for a specific reason. For example, I read Me Before You in 2019 as it deals with the topic of euthanasia.

My Sister’s Keeper is about a 13-year-old girl, Anna, who was conceived as a donor match for her sister. Kate was diagnosed from a young age with an aggressive form of leukaemia. Throughout her childhood, Anna has undergone multiple procedures and surgeries in order to donate to her sister. However, the nature of her illness means more invasive treatment is required each time.

At the opening of My Sister’s Keeper, Kate is suffering from kidney failure and is in need of a transplant to save her life. Anna‘s parents expect her to undergo the surgery and give her a kidney, but she has ideas of her own.

I enjoy reading stories that take a look at some of the more difficult topics in life. It’s more than just a story to enjoy, but one to think about as well. Although I am only a third of the way through the book so far, the set up is giving me everything I was hoping this book would be, and more! It’s a nice easy listen and I hope the narrative going forward explores the issue in as much depth as it can.

 

Summary

I trust you can tell from this monthly wrap-up post that I enjoyed each and every read I picked up in December, whether I finished it or not. I’m taking forward some great books into 2024!

I have briefly mentioned that I met my unofficial goal of reading 60 books. If you want to see what other reading goals I set myself, and how I did with those, check out tomorrow’s blog post in which I take a look at my 2023 year in review.

I hope to see you in that post. But until then, thanks for checking out today’s monthly wrap-up… and happy reading!

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

Sunday Summary – 31st December 2023

Happy New Year’s Eve, and welcome to the last post I will be sharing in 2023! It’s been a fantastic year, and whilst I’m not going to go into too much detail in this post, know that I’m very happy with what I’ve achieved this year.

I’ve taken the smallest of steps back this week to celebrate Christmas and wind down a little bit before going full throttle next week. With this in mind, I’ve only shared one post so far, and that was my review of the book I started reading last week and finished this week – Order and Chaos.

Shall we dive into my last bookish update of the year?

 

Books Read

 

Order and Chaos

I started off the week having made an initial 20% progress into Order and Chaos, which I shared in last week’s Sunday Summary. I knew I wanted to review this book this week, so it was my priority to finish.

As a short story anthology, the book in itself isn’t very long. It lends itself very well to flexibility in picking up and putting down at will, which I definitely made use of around this otherwise busy period!

Of course, if you want to get into the detail of my thoughts on this book, that review is now live. You can find it here if you want to read more.

 

My Sister’s Keeper

I’ve made another couple of hours of progress with My Sister’s Keeper this week, bringing me to about 33% so far.

For a multitude of reasons, including the festive period, it’s been quiet at work at times this week. Whilst it’s not something I make a habit of, I have taken advantage of some of those quiet times. Thanks to the need to complete a necessary but monotonous job, I’ve been able to listen to this whilst working. In any other circumstance, I couldn’t really do it anyway.

Now the story is starting to develop and I cannot help but wonder how far this will go. It seems like battlelines are being drawn up by different characters and it’s anybody’s guess how nasty things will get!

 

Gemina

After completing Order and Chaos earlier this week, I picked up my next (and last) physical read of 2023 – Gemina by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman.

As of this Sunday Summary post, I have made my way through the first couple of hundred pages, and have 450 to go. It’s fair to say that hoping to get through this before the end of the year is a tad optimistic! Nevertheless, I can’t think of a better book to be taking through into 2024. If you believe that kind of thing sets a precedent for what is to come, then I have everything good to look forward to!

I am curious to see how much of the book I can read before the end of the year though… stay tuned on the blog to find out in the coming week!

 

Books Discovered

Christmas definitely delivered on the promise for books added to my reading list, so strap yourselves in!

I received a total of six books from multiple family members on the big day. Some of these were specifically requested, and there were some surprises too, which I was very happy about!

The Eye of the World, The Great Hunt and Yellowface were books I put on my Christmas list. In addition, I received a physical copy of Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon, which I had already earmarked as a book I wanted to read, as well as A Stroke of the Pen by Terry Pratchett, and even a biography about owls. If you know me, then you know that I love owls and have them throughout my house. I’m even wearing owl earrings I got for Christmas right now!

 

Coming Up…

I have no less than five blog posts lined up for you next week. So, I hope you are looking forward to a little more activity from me next week. Can you see now why I took a wee break this week?

The first of the posts I will be sharing with you next week will be going live tomorrow. I might as well make the use of the bank holiday to prepare and share my monthly wrap-up for December 2023!

Following that, I’ll be back on Tuesday with a wrap-up for 2023. In this post, I’ll be looking back at the resolutions I set myself back in January and seeing how many I completed and what I have progressed with.

I’ll then kickoff my 2024 posts by sharing my goals and resolutions for the new year on Thursday. There aren’t necessarily going to be any wild changes in comparison to what I set myself this year. However, there are going to be a couple of new ones that don’t necessarily revolve around my reading. I plan to prioritise and set some social media goals. I hope you can check out that post later next week to find out more!

My January reading list will be going live on Friday. I have a number of great books lined up to kick off the year and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you all!

Last, but by no means least, I will be back with another Sunday Summary regular update at the same time next week. Let’s hope for lots to update you with that post!

But, for now, that is all from me. I am spending my New Year’s Eve tucked under a heated blanket with a cuppa and my copy of Gemina. How are you spending your New Year’s Eve?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Fable

Book Review: Order and Chaos – An Anthology

Good evening readers! I’m excited to bring you a book review today. I’m sharing my thoughts on a short story anthology I just finished – Order and Chaos!

You may recall that I read and reviewed another short story anthology earlier this year. Taking Liberties was a great anthology that got me to read something different. When Stephanie Bretherton, an author contributing to both these anthologies, approached me for a review for a second time, it was an easy decision!

 

Order and Chaos

Genre: Short Stories

Pages: 185

Audience: Adult

Publisher: Breakthrough Books

Publication Date: 31 Oct 2023

Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟

 

 

Goodreads – Order and Chaos

Ancient gods in conflict and a zombie on welfare, a disappearing boyfriend and AI with daddy issues, a balloon bound for icy danger and a mysterious theft at the museum, a sinister woodland cabin and a pleasure house that’ll cost much more than you can afford.

Raiding parties in dystopia, art classes in the city, opposites attracting and love catching fire. Separations and siblings, life and death decisions, flying into trouble and traveling to self-discovery…

Which comes first, chaos or order? The cycles between may seem inevitable, and change may be the only constant, but what does that mean for the human experience?

Sixteen authors from the Breakthrough Books collective explore our relationships with nature and technology, science and the sacred, each other and ourselves, offering an array of stories as individual as every reader.

Eli Allison, Mark Bowsher, Stephanie Bretherton, Jamie Chipperfield, Jason Cobley, Stevyn Colgan, Sue Clark, Samuel Dodson, Miles Hudson, A.B. Kyazze, Pete Langman, Virginia Moffatt, Eamon Somers, Nicole Swengley, Damon L. Wakes, PJ Whiteley.

Also from the Breakthrough Books collective, Taking Liberties , a short story anthology on the theme of freedom.

 

My Thoughts

Much like Taking Liberties, Order and Chaos is an anthology of stories that loosely fit around the titular themes. Otherwise, they are very varied! In the grand scheme of things, the themes of the book can be interpreted very broadly… and they are by the authors who have contributed to the book. From stories with science and/or futuristic settings, to modern day encounters, it’s all here!

Order and Chaos is a quick and engaging read. I found it easy to pick up and put down around my busy schedule this month. In truth, I read the book in three sittings, but could easily have read it sooner if I’d read for longer sessions.

The beauty about short stories though is that you don’t have to do that. You can read stories one at a time, or maybe a couple in one go. With none being that long in length, they can fit into a bite-size break as and when time is available. For readers who are on the go, or need to make the most of small window opportunities, this would be a great book to do that with!

Even though Order and Chaos doesn’t require much in the way of commitment to read, the stories are still immersive and emotive. Quality isn’t compromised as a result of the quantity. I enjoyed each of the stories within for different reasons. What they all have in common are characters that I cared about.

If as a reader you are unsure of what to read next, need a spice of variety and/or a palate cleanser between books, look again at anthologies. They are a great way to sample new authors or settings to you decide if you want to explore them further. At least one of the stories in this book references additional material should you want to expand on the story just read if you liked it.

 

Summary

Order and Chaos is a fun anthology that brings together the diverse works of multiple authors around these common themes. Easy to pick up and even easier to read, I enjoyed the flexibility of shorter narratives and being able to try the works of different authors. The change of pace has been enjoyable in the busy days over Christmas; as a result, I recommend this to anybody who wants to try and make the most of even short breaks to pick up a book and read!

If you’re setting yourself a New Year’s resolution to try and read a little more, wouldn’t this would be a perfect start?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

Sunday Summary – 24th December 2023

Good evening readers and welcome back to my weekly Sunday Summary update. It’s a special one as it’s Christmas Eve, and I’m excited for the big day tomorrow! I may be an adult, but I love the big day as much as any child would. For different reasons, perhaps, but all the same! I’m looking forward to spending the day with my family, giving gifts and making memories!

However, it’s still Sunday evening and I owe you an update, so shall we dive in?

My first and only blog post I shared so far this week was an End of Year Book Tag. I was tagged by my follower Misty in her version of the post and invited to take part that way. I’ve taken part quite late in the day, so there’s only so much I could do towards some of the bullet points. If you’re interested in checking out what that post is all about, you can find a link to mine here!

I was supposed to share a Well, I Didn’t Know That! post on Friday, but I didn’t come to pass for a couple of reasons. The first of those is that I had a last-minute and late-night meet up with friends before Christmas. We had tried to meet up earlier in the month, but this had to be postponed due to illness. Secondly, I didn’t take up the post and share it on Saturday instead as my research into the topic of Christmas reading traditions was rather dry. Other than the Icelandic tradition of Jolabokaflod, I hadn’t uncovered anything else.

 

Books Read

 

The Success Code

As of last week’s Sunday Summary update, I was 20% into The Success Code by John Lees. I had not long started the book before I shared that update, and it was the physical read I carried over into this week.

I found myself picking up The Success Code at chapter or two at a time, chipping away at it over the course of the week and finishing it on Thursday. If I’m honest, I expected the book to be easier to read than it was. Don’t get me wrong, the language and messages within what easy enough to understand and take in. However, I found I couldn’t read more than a handful of chapters at a time. Out of the two non-fiction books I was reading at the same time, I expected this one to be easier than the other. In practice, it was the other way round.

I’ve still given The Success Code for stars as it has plenty of helpful advice that I have been thinking about, and will look to implement myself at work in the near future.

 

How to Win Friends and Influence People

The second non-fiction I carried through from last week’s Sunday Summary is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

I enjoyed this audiobook every bit as much as I expected, and more besides! Although the book was written and first published in 1936, I found the advice within the book still relevant today. You can perhaps understand why I expected this to be the drier of the two non-fiction books this month; this was partly because of the publication date of this book, but also because it is narrated by Andrew Macmillan. He was a 70-something year-old at the time of recording in 2004.

How to Win Friends and Influence People is easier to listen to than you would expect, taking into consideration the above facts. Again, I’ll be looking to take some of these points on board and see if they can help me in my working life.

 

Order and Chaos

Moving on from the reads I carried over into this week, I picked up my e-book copy of Order and Chaos on completion of The Success Code. Order and Chaos is a short story anthology. Although I’ve only picked it up for one sitting so far, I already made it to 20% with very little effort. I’m looking to make considerably more progress tonight once this blog post goes live!

I don’t have too much to say on the book so far given that I’m still reasonably early into it. However, like Taking Liberties, which I reviewed earlier this year, it includes a range of stories that centre around the titular themes. Each story so far has taken a unique twist on the topics. I’m looking forward to seeing what other stories feature in the book and what they take on the theme is.

 

My Sister’s Keeper

Finally, I started another audiobook today, and it’s the last one on my list for December. Thank you to my friend Rachael for giving me a kick up the bum and getting me to start my cross-stitch project again. Around cleaning, I have been working on that project and listening to audio at the same time!

Just today, I have made approximately 15% progress with the audio. I’m not a big contemporary reader or listener. However, the narrative explores morality and human rights in the battle of Anna for her body autonomy.

Even from birth, Anna was designed with her sister in mind. Kate has leukaemia that keeps re-emerging, and Anna has grown up in her shadow, continually donating blood cells, then bone marrow, to help her fight the disease. The donations and surgeries become increasingly invasive until at 13, Anna puts her foot down when her sister needs a kidney.

So far, I’m really enjoying the story and the set up. I don’t know much more about the book beyond what I’ve described here, so I’m looking forward to exploring that further in the coming week.

 

Books Discovered

I’m still saving myself for Christmas, so once again, there’s nothing to see here!

Not long to wait now though…

 

Coming Up…

I’ll be taking a few days off to celebrate Christmas, and breaking the routine a bit. I’ve also decided to do this because the first couple of weeks of January are going to be busier than normal. I’ll rest up and get ready for some of that content ready now whilst I can!

I’ll share my first post of the week on Thursday and publish my review of my current read, Order and Chaos. A little while since I published a review and I’m looking forward to sharing my thoughts on this short story anthology before the end of the year.

My next post, and my last post of 2023, will be next week’s Sunday Summary update!

That’s all for me in today’s Sunday Summary though! I hope you have a wonderful day, a fabulous Christmas, and I will see you later next week. And if you are from a Nordic family and taking part in Jolabokaflod tonight, just know that I’m very jealous!

Have a great one!

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

End of Year Book Tag!

In today’s End of Year book tag post, I’m taking part in a book tag that the lovely Misty @ Misty’s Book Space tagged me in. I’m a little late to the party with Just 11 days left in the year…. But it’s just a bit of fun!

Let’s get stuck in!

 

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

I only have one book on hold at the end of this year, and I won’t finish it in 2023.

Earlier in the year I started listening to Queen of Our Times. Whilst I am enjoying the book, I ended up putting this on hold to pick up at a time where I was better suited to this type of non-fiction.

December’s reading list is already christened (and I’m not likely to finish that either). I’ll have to pick this up again in 2024!

 

Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

I wouldn’t describe myself as much of a seasonal reader. At times I do, but not consistently. As a result, I have nothing seasonal on my reading list for December.

I had a couple of seasonal reads in October / November. Ironically, I didn’t pick either up at the ‘right time’. In October, I started The Shining on Halloween but ended up reading most of the book in November. A second read, based loosely on the Gunpowder plot, would have been an ideal read in November. I didn’t get to it at all though. Maybe next year!

 

Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

I’m only eagerly anticipating one release, and that’s not until next year. I’m not one for keeping too much of an eye on upcoming books in any case, but doing this End of Year book tag post so late in the day would limit my choice for 2023 releases. I feel like the savvy author would have published them in time for Christmas gifting.

The only book I am looking forward to releasing in the near future, and I have a pre-order of, is Empire of the Damned by Jay Kristoff. The book comes out on the 29th February 2024 – you bet I’ll be re-reading the first book in February so I can pick this up in March!

 

What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

I have a reading goal of completing more than 15 non-fiction books by the end of the year. As of this post, I’m close to that goal. I’ve read 14 and I have the last two books on the go.

Currently, I’m listening to How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie and physically reading The Success Code by John Lees.

If I have to prioritise a third book to finish off the rest of my December TBR, it will be Chaos and Order. I’ve agreed to read and review the book, so that’s a priority over the others. But for that, I’d have had a hard time choosing one as I have a number of great books on the list.

 

Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favourite book of the year?

Gemina is a contender for that title. After reading and loving Illuminae earlier in the year, I wanted to pick this sequel up before the end of the year to keep up momentum.

One of my goals is to continue with series, (and spoiler alert, this is likely to continue into 2024). With this in mind, picking up a detailed, but easy to read mixed media book that’s a sequel to a 5* read just makes sense!

 

Have you already started making reading plans for 2024?

I have started making plans, although nothing is set in stone yet. At the beginning of the year I typically set myself reading goals and this is also my intention in 2024.

A fair amount of work is going on behind the scenes to take stock of where I’m at with my reading, the books I own etc and this will likely shape my goals next year. Honestly, I don’t expect my ‘core’ reading goals to change drastically, but watch this space. I may yet change my mind!

I also think I’ll be setting myself some blog/social media goals for the first time. However, that’s all to be worked out in the next couple of weeks and I’ll be sharing these with you in January. 

 

I hope you have enjoyed my end of year book tag post. Are you looking to complete any goals before the end of the year? Are you setting any for 2024?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads

Sunday Summary – 17th December 2023

Good evening all! It’s time for my Sunday Summary catch-up, and I have a great week to share with you! Before we get into the books I’ve been reading this week, let’s recap what I’ve shared on the blog.

The first post I published this week was a Top Ten Tuesday. The subject of this week’s post was my 2023/2024 Winter TBR. I’ve done iterations of this post throughout the seasons this year. Once again, I’ve enjoyed setting out my intentions for what to read in the next few months.

Later in the week, I shared my First Lines Friday post. For this week’s post, I set myself a challenge of featuring a book I do not yet own a copy of. If you like stories with a fairytale or theme park twist, how AI fits in such a setting and a murder to unravel, then I strongly suggest you check out this post!

 

Books Read

 

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

I had to look back to my Sunday Summary post published on the 3rd December in order to work out where I left off with this book. I hadn’t touched it all last week. There are reasons for that, and I talked about that in last week’s Sunday Summary update. Reading progress was generally abysmal that week.

I’ve made up for that this week though! I picked up The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes from chapter 13 onwards, which is a fraction over a third of the book. I read over the course of several days this week and reached the epic conclusion! Reading progress was slower than I expected, partly because of last week’s plans, but also because I knew what happened. A few weeks ago I went to watch the film in the cinema. It was interesting to see how each differed from the other. In some ways, they are very close… but there are differences. 

Had I not watched the film and known the ending, I might’ve been more compelled to read quicker. Despite watching/reading in the opposite way round to usual, I still really enjoyed both. I’m glad I’ve finally got into the prequel of The Hunger Games series, and I’m all the more excited to get back into the main one next year.

 

The Minders

Picking up from last week’s Sunday Summary, I listened to the remaining 40% of The Minders whilst cleaning and wrapping presents. I’m actively trying to utilise time where I can’t sit down and read more traditionally to pick up audio instead.

I enjoyed listening to The Minders and trying to work out what was going on in this conspiracy thriller. It may be my first John Marrs book, but it won’t be my last. The audio experience of this book was a good one. Whilst it wasn’t expansively cast, having a couple of different narrators made the narrative interesting and varied perspectives sufficiently to be able to work out who is who.

I listened to the majority of the audio yesterday morning; it was that compelling that I listened for approximately three hours!

 

The Success Code

The next physical read I picked up this week is The Success Code by John Lees. The Success Code is the first of two non-fiction books on December’s reading list. I’m aiming to read more than 15 non-fiction books before the end of the year. It’s also a very short book at just over 200 pages, which helps me stand a chance of completing this goal. 

In the last couple of days of the week after finishing The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, I have read just over 40 pages. In the 20% I have picked up so far, there are some interesting ideas in the book about how to get noticed, and debunking very common (and sometimes unhelpful advice) out there. It offers instead an alternative that will have more impact. I’ll be looking to take on some of this advice and I’m interested to see what else we explore in the book.

 

How to Win Friends and Influence People

The second and final non-fiction on my reading list for December is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. It’s also the second audiobook of the week.

In actual fact, I started this book today. I’ve already made my way through the first three chapters, or 25% of the book.

Much like The Success Code, How to Win Friends and Influence People has some solid advice on how to persuade by appealing to others. So far, each concept has been explained fully and backed up by examples and experts in the field. Although some may believe it a relatively dry subject, the audio is narrated in a way that it prompts the reader to take an active listening role. I’ve enjoyed what I’ve listened to so far today, and I plan to make further progress with the audio over the next week.

 

Books Discovered

There are no new additions to the reading list this week! Got to save myself for Christmas you see 😉

 

Coming Up…

The first post I am going to be sharing this week is a book tag. I was tagged in Misty’s rendition of the End of Year Book Tag and invited to take part. It may be a bit late in the day to answer some of the questions, but it’s a bit of fun nonetheless!

On Friday I’m due to share a Well, I Didn’t Know That! post. I know some countries have Christmas traditions revolving around books. I think I’d like to explore that topic a little bit more and share the results with you!

Finally, next week’s Sunday Summary will be landing on this page at the same time… and it will be Christmas Eve!

Where has the time gone? Are you prepared for Christmas yet? Are you reading anything festive to get in the mood?

 

signature

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Threads