January 2023 Reads

I’ve been reading more lately, which is such a joy. While I don’t always feel like it, it is always worth it as soon as I begin.

Christmas Shopaholic by Sophia Kinsella

Yes, I bought Christmas books online that didn’t arrive until January. I’ve still enjoyed going through them, and even though I haven’t read the other Shopaholic books (except for the first, as well as the movie) this book was still funny and easy to read. While I don’t enjoy the lying and miscommunication, Becky is such an engaging character and everything works out in the end. 3.5 stars

Good Wives by Louisa May Alcott

Is anyone surprised that this was such a joy to read? The story of Beth, Jo, Amy and Meg is heartwarming and precious without shying away from the realities of life. The character development of all characters, especially Jo with her writing, is real and lovely at the same time. The struggles, the flaws, are all made worth it for the ending. 4.5 stars

A Sky Painted Gold by Laura Wood

After reading the sequel to this book last month (without realising it was a sequel!) naturally I had to pick this one up as well, and it didn’t disappoint. Laura Wood writes the liveliest, most readable stories that I couldn’t put down. The romance is sweet, and the friendships and family dynamics are true. 5 stars

Sleigh Rides and Silver Bells at the Christmas Fair by Heidi Swain

This Christmas read wasn’t bad, but it did feel lacking. The characters, whilst trying hard to remain unique and funny, still felt flat to me. While the story had a good premise, the execution didn’t quite capture my attention. 3.5 stars

When Your Memory Fades by Toshikazu Kawaguchi

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, as it isn’t the type of novel I’ve read before. Translated from Japanese, it is about different characters who visit a cafe that offers time travel should you sit in the right seat. While this book wasn’t bad, I don’t think the premise has enough room to differ to allow three really good books (this is the third in the series…) All the stories have since felt like rewrites of the first. 3 stars.

I read some delights this month, as well as some books I struggled through without connecting. All in all, a strong month for my reading goal of 100 books a year.

Sarah xx

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