Wednesday, January 1

December Wrap-Up!

And December comes to close, as does the year. Wow! I got a lot accomplished this month, especially considering it's the holidays, work was crazy, home life was crazy. And I still managed to do it all, and squeeze in reading time. Okay, so I may have just scrapped by in keeping my sanity, at times my hair was frazzled, but I did it! In fact, reading was part of what helped lower the stress this holiday season. The wine and chocolate also helped. Oh and the cats and family too! I almost read one more book this month, but it would have been close, eleventh hour (almost literally) close, so I decided to save that book for later, to ensure it get's the attention it deserves. I will be doing a year wrap up shortly as well.

The Books

This was not my month for reading books. While I read 13 book, most of them failed to grab my attention or just weren't the book for me. I took a few chances, read authors I didn't know much about and in the end it didn't work to my advantage. The majority, all but one in fact, were books sitting on my TBR shelf, some of them for years. But overall, this wasn't my month. I did read one fantastic book, which was Mercy Among the Children, which is also my favourite book of the year. A close second to that book was The Empty Room. Always and Forever also deserves some attention, as it's been sitting on my shelf for at least seven years, ouch. And it ended up being a great read. I wonder what other gems are hidden on the shelf?

1) Beautiful Days - Teng Xiaolan - 7/10
2) The Flight of the Earls - Michael K. Reynolds - 4/10
3) The Odds: A Love Story - Stewart O'Nan - 2.5/10
4) All Together Dead - Charlaine Harris - 6.75/10
5) The Empty Room - Lauren B. Davis - 9/10
6) Mercy Among the Children - David Adams Richards - 10/10
7) Irish Fairy Tales - James Stephenson - 6.5/10
8) The Beothuk Expedition - Derek Yetman - 4/10
9) The Book of Secrets - M. G. Vassanji - 4/10
10) End of Days: A Night Runner Novel - Max Turner - 7.25/10
11) Always and Forever - Cathy Kelley - 8/10
12) Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall - Kazou Ishiguro - 5/10
13) Gulliver's Travels - Jonathan Swift - 2.75/10

The Challenges
This month I completed two challenges, and almost completed a third. I will go in more details about the challenges, especially my didn't not complete ones in my year end wrap up.

Sookie Stackhouse Reading Challenge 2013 - 5/5 - Completed December8 , 2013
Ireland Reading Challenge 2013 - 10/10 - Completed December 31, 2013

On-Going (Sort of)
2013 Category Challenge - 102/131 - 78%
Alphabet Challenge 2013 - 51/52 - 98%
Finish That Series Challenge 2013 - 1/4 (Series), 2/7 (Books) - 25%
Mental Illness Advocacy Challenge - 9/12 - 75%
Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2013 - 54/75 - 72%

Countries Visited

This month during my reading adventures, I managed to visit: Canada, Ireland, China, USA, Tanzania

Books That Followed Me Home

Omens - Kelley Armstrong
Carried Away - Alice Munro
Moons of Jupiter - Alice Munro
My Best Stories - Alice Munro

The Red Knight - Miles Cameron
Tide Road - Valarie Compton
Cataract City - Craig Davidson
Afterlands - Steven Heighton
Nocturnes - Five Stories of Music and Nightfall - Kazuo Ishiguro
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared - Jonah Jonasson
What Becomes - A. L. Kennedy
Kit's Law - Donna Morrissey
The Way of Kings - Brandon Sanderson
Irish Fairy Tales - James Stephens (I had the free version of this one, but the formatting was so messed up it was unreadable)


  1. Haven't read any of your books except Gulliver's Travels and some of Alice Munro's short stories. Good luck with your reading plans for this new year.
    Book Dilettante

    1. Thanks! I hope you have a great reading year too. Maybe check out a few unfamilar books. How do you like Munro's books?

  2. It;s a nice surprise when those dust collectors on the book shelf turn out to be such great reads, doesn't it? That happened to me with Clara Callan. I think it followed me through moves to 3 different provinces/ territories before I finally committed to reading it and then I had to ask why I had avoided it for so long!

    1. It's a very nice surprise when those books end up being such great reads. At least the book was well travelled, as well as being a good read. I think I avoid certain books, so I won't have to know if its a good read or not, avoid the disappointment

  3. Oh, man...I can't believe how CLOSE you are on the Alphabet Challenge. Hehehe.

    Mercy Among the Children is still on my bookshelves. I have this idea that I need to read his works in order (not sure that's valid, or just my usual obsessiveness) and I've only read two IIRC. But I am particularly looking forward to this one.

    Congrats on a great month!

    1. I think you'll really enjoy Mercy Among the Children, it really shows the authors writing skills, especially compared to his Miramichi Trilogy.