It's only the first month of the year and I'm already behind on my 2022 reading goal. Like really behind.
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
I put off reading this book for years because I thought it was going to be so sad and depressing, and while this book tells the story of a young woman suffering from severe depression, it wasn’t A Little Life. I was shocked at how relatable and funny this book was. Sylvia Plath was hilarious and witty. There were so many moments where Plath so eloquently describes a feeling that I’d felt so precisely and perfectly. I’m obsessed with the fig tree metaphor and have thought about it non-stop since I finished reading this. It is easily entering into the realm of my favorite books of all time.
The Bell Jar is My Year of Rest and Relaxation’s older sister.
Ghosts by Dolly Alderton ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
I ADORED this book. It was so so so good! It’s the story of a thirty-two-year-old lady navigating modern dating after the break-up of a long-term relationship. It’s this really vivid and intimate portrait of what this woman’s life is like as she navigates being in her thirties and dating apps and friendships evolving and her relationship with her parents evolving. I already know it’s going to be one of my favorite books of the year. It was truly brilliant.
A Shadow in the Embers by Jennifer L. Armentrout ⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
This is the spin-off, prequel series to JLA’s From Blood and Ash Series. It follows Sera, the original Maiden (if you’ve read From Blood and Ash, you know), who was supposed to marry Nyktos, the god of death, but he rejects her. So she’s living her life with her magic power and then she runs into a mysterious god. Anyway, this book was very middle of the road. Did I have a bad time reading it? No. But it was also pretty unremarkable.
The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️✨/5
I read Amy Engel’s other adult book The Familiar Dark at the end of 2020 and really enjoyed it. The Roanoke Girls was on my list for some time, but I finally got around to reading it. It was an incredibly enthralling read and I devoured it in a single evening.
It follows two timelines, in both of which Lane is returning to Roanoke, her grandparents' house in Kansas. In one timeline she’s coming to Roanoke as a teen because her mother has just died and in the other, she’s returning 11 years after that first summer in Roanoke, because her cousin Allegra has gone missing. It’s a very heavy read and you should look up trigger warnings before jumping in. This book made me sick to my stomach, but I couldn’t stop reading about this twisted family.
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
This was an adorable romance with just enough magical subway time-warps to keep things interesting. August has just moved to New York and moves into an apartment and becomes friends with this quirky group, and then she meets Jane on the subway. Jane and August start to fall in love, but also Jane’s trapped on the subway in a time loop situation. It was cozy and delightful.
A Dowry of Blood by S.T. Gibson ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
I saw this book all over youtube in the last months of 2021. People seemed to love it and I’m trying to read more horror, so I was excited to give it a shot. It follows Constanta, one of Dracula’s brides (although he is never named) as she explains to him why she had to kill him. It’s really interestingly written. Very quotable. The plot wasn’t a big page-turner for me, but I still really enjoyed the read.
The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
I was feeling a little sad about my book count for January, so I spent the last Sunday of the month reading through a fun little romance. Warning, this book is very, very sad. It’s about Calla who decides to visit her estranged father in rural Alaska. She hasn’t talked to him since she was 12 (now she’s like 26ish). Her mother is like “don’t fall in love with a pilot” and that’s what she does. It was very cute and cozy and I had a nice (albeit teary) time.