In the beginning of 2021 I decided to keep track of what I read through the year. Not for any real reason other than to encourage myself to read more. I keep a list on my phone of books people recommend as well as a list on Instagram of books I see there.
It turned out to be a fun thing to keep track of. I like looking back and seeing the various books I read and loved (such as Cold Sassy Tree, The Tattooist of Auschwitz, Turtles All the Way Down and Four Winds). Then there are the books I read and didn’t love (such as Educated, A Day Like This and The Handmaiden and the Carpenter). Special mention for The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, by Bill Bryson. If you haven’t read this and are in my age range, give it a try. It is a hilarious and sometimes serious memoir for growing up in the 1960’s. This was my second time through it and just as enjoyable as the first time!
I know Educated was super popular and what the main character overcame is truly amazing. But for me that book just went on for too long. Maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for it. So I decided not to finish it. As for The Handmaiden and the Carpenter by Elizabeth Berg, that was a strange read for me. I have read and loved just about everything Berg has written and read many of the books more than once. So during the holidays I thought it would be fun to read her interpretation of the Christmas Story. But I couldn’t get into her perception of Mary and Joseph. It felt very strange to me. This book seems to be one that people love or don’t- and I didn’t.
Sometime during the year, I picked up a stack of novels by Elin Hildebrand at the local used book store. I read them and they are ok. But very light – lots of fluff. Now that I have read a few of them, they are feeling formulaic and I think I am done with her for a while!
I will be keeping track this year as well. It has been crazy busy so the list hasn’t been too long for the start of 2022 but I am sure as things calm down, I will have more time to read. Currently I am enjoying Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear.
If you are a reader, and I know many of you are, share some of your favorites in the comments. I love having a list of suggestions!
Three Junes, by Julia Glass
Heal Your Headache, by David Buchholz
Before You Go, by Elizabeth Berg
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, by David Sedaris (audio)
The Tenth Circle, by Jodi Piccoult
All He Ever Wanted, by Anita Shreve
Something Rising, by Haven Kimmel
Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel, by Ruth Hogan
The Innocent, by Harlan Coben
Cold Sassy Tree, by Olive Ann Burns
How to be Cool, by Johanna Edwards
The Woman in Cabin 10, by Ruth Ware
Happiness Sold Separately, by Lilly Winston
What to Keep, by Rachel Cline
The Tattooist of Auschwitz, by Heather Morris
Looking For Alaska, by John Green
Accused, by Lisa Scottoline
Betrayed, by Lisa Scottoline
Frederick Douglas’ memoir
Redhead by the Side of the Road, By Ann Tyler
Water Witches, by Chris Bohjalian
Summer of ‘69, by Elin Hildebrand
Fly Away, by Kristin Hannah
I See You Everywhere, by Julia Glass
7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
The Associate, by John Grisham
Big Little Lies, by Lianne Moriarty
My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry, by Fredrik Backman
Turtles All the Way Down, by John Green
Four Winds, by Kristin Hannah
28 Summers, by Elin Hildebrand
Barefoot, by Elin Hildebrand
The Ugly Cry, by Danielle Henderson
The Atlas of Love, Laurie Frankel
The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, by Bill Bryson
Educated- 1/2 way but didn’t like it enough to finish it.
I didn’t record anything. Not sure what happened here and I can’t remember what I read! It was a very busy month – so who knows? Maybe I didn’t actually finish a book.
The Island, by Elin Hildebrand
A Day Like This, by Kelley McNeill
Such a Fun Age, by Kiley Reid
Harvest, by Tess Garritson (Audio)
Where or When, by Anita Shreve
The Art of Mending, by Elizabeth Berg
Home Safe, by Elizabeth Berg
Strange Fits of Passion, by Anita Shreve
One By One, by Ruth Ware
The Dutch House, by Ann Patchett (audio)
The Handmaiden and the Carpenter, by Elizabeth Berg