Happy end of January! I can’t lie–I’m not sad to see it go. It’s five degrees out right now. I’m cold and tired and I wish it were spring already.
This time of year, I become an indoor-Shan and try to entertain myself by planning my garden, making collage, baking, anxiety-pacing the house because it’s too cold to walk outside, and, of course, reading.
I managed a whopping 18 books in January, which has to be some kind of record for me. I am just that bored.
The one highlight has been the fun of planning a baby shower because–drumroll please–your girl is about to become a v. young grandma!
That’s right, Jacob (my son) and Desiree’ (his partner) are expecting and we couldn’t be more excited. The baby is due in April and will be the highlight of the spring (and the year, obvi).
I truly can’t wait. Are there any good books for grandmas out there? Let me know.
Okay, on to the books!
What Shannon Read in January
I did some heavy re-reading and some comfort reading in January.
Diary of a Bookseller–Fun, witty, touching, and interesting insight into owning a second-hand bookshop in Wigtown, Scotland. Great writer/narrator and filled with fun characters.
Confessions of a Bookseller–Sequel to the above. Ditto.
Their Eyes Were Watching God–I read this in high school and hadn’t picked it up since. What a saga. Just. Yeah. There’s a reason this is a classic. It floored me.
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry–Comfort reading here.
Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times–Very obvious comfort reading. I recommend this one if you’re sick of winter and may benefit from “leaning in” to this trying season.
The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman–Fascinating story of a woman (girl at the time) taken captive by Yavapai and then Mojave Indians.
The Women of Brewster Place
I adored this book. The women’s stories are fascinating and often heartbreaking. A true modern classic. I plan to read lots more Gloria Naylor.
Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism
The author examines several cults, both modern-day and historic, along with fanaticism that leans toward “cultish,” while showing how the language used by leaders and followers in cult movements foments/fomented each one’s influence. Really interesting.
More Barbara Pym
Really liked A Glass of Blessings. Didn’t particularly care for Jane and Prudence. Overall, the rest of Pym’s novels aren’t really hitting for me the way Quartet in Autumn and Excellent Women did last year. I’m currently listening to Less Than Angels though and will report back.
I’m afraid my impressions on the rest of the books I read are rather boring. In sum:
Secret Daughter: Really good!
She Came to Slay: Short but informative.
The Bluest Eye: I’ve only read two other Morrison books–Beloved and God Help the Child. I liked both better than The Bluest Eye. I’m not totally sure why. Maybe the story just wasn’t my cup of tea.
Bad With Money: A Millennial tells you how to money. Fun listen.
Joan is Okay: You know I love a quirky main character and this fit the bill.
Pizza Girl: Whole different kind of quirky and good.
In February, I plan to go right down my TBR and either read the books I think I want to read or dispense with them already. It’s a long list, so wish me luck.
And tell me what you’re reading this month!