Hello readers! I hope you are well and had an amazing December. For me, I’m just glad finally last month of 2022 is over. Surprisingly I could read more than I did in the last couple of months but in terms of life, it wasn’t as good as I would have liked. It made me rethink how I go forward in 2023 and made me think about some changes in myself, to be specific the way I react to certain things. It made me make not just reading and blogging resolutions but personal life resolutions as well. I’m not really good at following plans/resolutions but this is something I don’t want to neglact for my own mental health as there will be lots of changes in 2023 that might test my tolerance limits and if i manage to follow those resolution I might get through all those chages unscathed.
Here are some highlights of December-
There was annual fuction in my kid’s school and to our surprise, she actually performed well. We thought she might not be in mood, might cause tantrum or something. we feared that happening more as they were turning off lights on stage to clear the props and arrange kids in their positions and my kid is afraid of dark. we were thinking many things going wrong but no such things happened and she performed really well.
There was also a story telling competition. I was preparing her for it for almost a month and I still wasn’t sure if she will tell the story like I taught her and to my suprise she spoke all the lines without help from teacher. She spoke very slow but it’s big achievement for me she spoke all the line.
She has her choices now and she can tell what she did and where she has put her things. No matter how bad other things in life has been, seeing many improvements in her made life much better. Poor kid caught viral infection this week. She is feeling better now but we will still make her rest one more day and will send her to school from Tuesday.
As for me I had to go for allergy tests as medicines for my seasonal and allergic cold weren’t working. It turned out I’m allergy prone person! I have many mild allergies but have severe allergy to pollens and dust so he suggested to wear mask more particularly in this season, work on building immunity, and take care of certain things that might help reducing the recurrent cold. I was advice to take care in following those things or over the long period of time I might get asthma. 😐COVID or No COVID, mask is must for me.😪
We planned a vacation in 2023 but now that our house is almost ready (we will get our flat keys around Feb end) and we would need to paint it and get furniture and appliences, etc. We finally checked out the cost for everything and it turned out we have tight budget that means we had to cancel our vacation. i think that’s okay as our own house is priority for us now. I’ll be buying less books in 2023 too.
Books read – 8
Pages read – 2922
Books I read in December
The Spice Master at Bistro Exotique is heartwarming hate-to-love contemporary romance. I loved the first half of the book. The setting of Paris is one of my favorites and it was interesting to see non-touristy part of it. but second half isn’t as good as first half. I didn’t feel the chemistry and dialogues between Kate and Charles are chunky. Overall, it is lovely, entertaining, and heartwarming contemporary foodie romance but I didn’t love it as much as I expected.
Nubia The Awakening is gripping and interesting first book in futuristic fantasy series racism, political intrigue, corruption, social difference, climate change, and colonial magic. All characters are flawed that made them realistic. World is fantastic. I enjoyed every detail of it. But there is still lot to know about this world and the characters and development is to come in next books which makes it hard to have any firm opinion towards certain characters. Overall, it is stunning, gripping, complicated, and tense YA fantasy with amazing themes and futuristic dystopian world.
Wretched Waterpark is an interesting middle-grade mystery with a gothic water park setting. It makes perfect first book in Sinister Summer Series by introducing the series, characters, and Sinister-Winterbottom family. Setting is the best part. There is huge tower with gargoyles and from gargoyles’ mouths tongues twist out into long slides. It makes a perfect gothic setting and creates an amazing creepy atmosphere but not in a terrifying way. However, this felt too slow for middle-grade genre and mystery isn’t that strong. Overall, this is fun, entertaining, and strange but interesting middle-grade mystery with an amazing gothic water park setting.
Vampiric Vacation (Sinister Summer Series #2) by Kiersten White
Vampiric Vacation is entertaining second book in middle-grade mystery series that now takes the Sinister-Winterbottom kids to Transylvania Mountains where they get tangled in another mystery. This can be read as standalone but I still advise to read first book before starting this sequel as you get to know characters and understand their personality better. Setting of the spa is amazing. The pace is still slow but mystery is really good.
A Dash of Salt and Pepper is heartwarming and entertaining small town romance about a man returning to small town and falling in love. Romance is lovely and heartmelting. I liked all the tropes in this. Age gap is perfectly written as both characters acted according their age and it also wasn’t the obstacle in their relationship which make it less dramatic and a little more mature as well. I absolutely loved small town vs big city monologues of Xavier. Black and queer in the business world is well represented. I would have loved Logan’s perspective and would have liked to know him more. Overall, this is heartwarming, lovely and enjoyable M/M romance with small town vs big city moot at the center of it.
Futureland: Battle for the Park is adventurous middle grade sci-fi that revolves around eleven-year-old Cameron and saving his home and loved ones. I loved the format that includes text messages, transcript, interviews, play script, posters, and graphics that gives words and setting of Futureland park and Atlanta in 2048 a life. Setting was the best part. The pace for the first half is a little slow because of build up. Overall, this is fun, adventurous, imaginative, and action-packed STEM based middle grade sci-fi with amazing concept and setting.
The Sunbearer Trials (The Sunbearer Duology, #1) by Aiden Thomas
The Sunbearer Trials is Mexican-inspired YA fantasy filled with action, adventure and mythology. The comp titles Percy Jackson meets Hunger Games is perfect description. Plot is really amazing. There is huge cast of characters. World is obviously my favorite part. There is lots of action, twist and turns. I’m already excited for the second book. Overall, this is engaging, adventurous, and excellent diverse YA fantasy with Mexican-inspired mythology.
King of Scars (King of Scars, #1) by Leigh Bardugo
King of Scars is intense and spectacularly written YA fantasy that focuses on Ravka’s ongoing struggles where we don’t just see the Scars of King of Ravka, Nikolai, but also of king’s general, Zoya, and of King’s spy, Nina. The story is written in multiple narratives from Nikolai, Zoya, and Nina’s POV that takes place in two different places making it two stories going parallel at the same time. Characters are absolutely amazing. Author gave so much depth to all characters. and it’s half the reason I gave this 5 stars. I thought there can’t be more to add in Grishaverse but author surprised me by including more histories and legends. I’m definitely excited to see what happens next but at the same time, I don’t know how I feel about that cliffhanger.
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Plans for January
Write and publish year end posts. I still need to write them as my last two weeks of December was highly disorganized because of lots of things going on and unexpected visit and at the same time I wanted to read more.
Try reading eARC I received for Jan and Feb before publication date.
Plan ahead for social media posts.
I’m itching for change so you can expect change in appearance and content of my blog and instagram in 2023.
Thank you for reading! Let’s chat..,
How was your last month of the year?
Have you read any of these books or plan to?
What are your plans for January?
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