Book Chat

Reading Life: December 2017

It always takes me a while to wrap up the past year, especially now that I’m blogging at a slower pace, but here it is, finally: the last reading log of 2017! Staying home full-time with my baby was a huge adjustment in 2017, but I’m proud that I kept reading during a new season of life, even if it isn’t at the same pace as life pre-baby. In December I only read one book for myself – the rest are books with Amelia – but that’s OK! In fact, going forward I’m going to keep Amelia’s books separate from my Reading Life posts; I still want to document new books that we read together, but a board book (no matter how many thousands of times I read it) isn’t the same as reading for myself.

I’ve already written a bit about what I want for my reading life in 2018 – but to recap: I want it to grow! For me, that means reading more often, reading more challenging books, and focusing on quality over quantity. I’ve started using a few fun new tools to help me do so – the reading tracker from the MMD Challenge kit that I’m using as a bookmark, taking daily photos with the 1s app, etc. I might not have a great track record of keeping up with pesky resolutions like diets or exercise goals, but reading is one area of life that I enjoy tracking!

Cheers to 2018!!

 

 

December 2017 Thoughts

Finished:

Cozy Classics: Pride and Prejudice, by Jack Wang and Holman Wang


Start date: 12/4/2017
Finish date: 12/4/2017
Source: Gift from Secret Santa
Genre: Children’s Lit
Format: Board book
Stars: 5 stars

This is the cutest ever! Each page pairs a single word with a needle-felted scene and it’s amazing how it perfectly conveys the entire plot. Big kudos to my Secret Santa Evelyn for knowing me so well; there’s nothing better than Jane Austen and children’s lit… and now I want the whole set!

A Christmas Carol: A BabyLit Colors Primer, by Jennifer Adams and illustrated by Alison Oliver


Start date: 12/10/2017
Finish date: 12/10/2017
Source: Franklin Book Store
Genre: Children’s Lit
Format: Board book
Stars: 3 stars

I picked up this board book at a local bookstore downtown while we were at the Dickens of a Christmas festival; it was just too perfect! I love this whole series of books for the stylish illustrations and clever wordplay. The colors are a great aspect to highlight from the original story, and it’s a great addition to Amelia’s Christmas collection.

Llama Llama Red Pajama, by Anna Dewdney


Start date: 12/19/2017
Finish date: 12/19/2017
Source: Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library
Genre: Children’s Lit
Format: Hardcover
Stars: 5 stars
 

The original! I’ve shelved so many of these books in my library days, but I don’t think I ever stopped to actually read it. The rhyming words are so fun to read aloud, and it’s a classic for a reason.

Baby Beluga (Raffi Songs to Read), by Raffi and illustrated by Ashley Wolff

Start date: 12/25/2017
Finish date: 12/25/2017
Source: Santa
Genre: Children’s Lit
Format: Board book
Stars: 5 stars

I absolutely could not resist buying this on sight, because this is my favorite Raffi song from childhood and I sing it ALL the time to Amelia. The illustrations are perfect, and I love that the illustrator made the environment more accurate too (belugas wouldn’t swim with dolphins, so she added killer whales instead). Maybe now I’ll finally remember the last stanza!

The Circle, by Dave Eggars


Start date: 12/25/2017
Finish date: 12/31/2017
Source: Mom’s book club
Genre: Fiction
Format: Paperback
Stars: 3 stars

Fun beach read! In a nutshell: a Google-esque tech company solves all of modern man’s problems… but at what point will it go too far? I started on Christmas day while we were at the beach and finished up when we arrived home… valiantly trying to savor the feeling of vacation on the last day of the year! Great world building and momentum in the beginning, with some biting satire that was fun to read. But as it kept going and going and going, I got more and more frustrated by the lack of nuance; the main character never evolved, the side characters didn’t have much depth, and not a single person ever questioned the powers that be. I won’t give away the ending, but when I finally realized the inevitable conclusion, I ended up liking it. It just took way too long to get there!

They All Saw a Cat, by Brendan Wenzel

Start date: 12/31/2017
Finish date: 12/31/2017
Source: Gift from Sarah
Genre: Children’s Lit
Format: Hardcover
Stars: 5 stars

Such a gorgeous, ingenious picture book! Every pair of eyes sees a cat from a different perspective, and it’s such a joy to spend some time with each page of this book. Amelia loved pointing out the cat on each page, but I know she’ll see so many different aspects the older she grows. So creative and beautiful.

Still Reading:

Reading People: How Seeing the World through the Lens of Personality Changes Everything, by Anne Bogel


Start date: 11/21/2017
Source: Modern Mrs. Darcy blog
Genre: Nonfiction / Self Help
Format: Paperback

Still enjoying this nonfiction book about six of the most prominent personality frameworks out there, although it’s taking me some time to get through it. Without school or work to show me how I respond to certain pressures, I’m having a hard time “diagnosing” my personality these days!

Rules of Civility, by Amor Towles


Start date: 12/4/2017
Source: Modern Mrs. Darcy blog
Genre: Fiction
Format: eBook

 

With comparisons to The Great Gatsby, I have high hopes for this one!

Books read in December: 6
Books read in 2017: 74
Still reading: 2

So that’s what I’ve been reading during the last month of 2017! Stay tuned for more reading adventures in 2018.

I’m always looking for more book recommendations – are you reading any good books?

The Amateur Librarian is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

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