January 2022 Wrap Up: cozy mysteries, unique SFF reads, meh romances and some interesting horror and nonfiction

Hi everyone! it’s time for the first wrap-up of the year. I actually had a pretty good reading month in January both in terms of quantity and quality, and I’m excited to share my thoughts on the 10 books I read.

But before getting into the books, here are some posts I wrote in January in case you missed them:

Now, without further ado, here are the books I read in January:

Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir (3,5 stars): The first 40% of this was confusing and a little frustrating. It did get better after the 40% mark and the last 30-25% was actually really good. My main issue was not that it was confusing, it was that I had a rough idea of what was going on (not everything but I guessed some things) and that made the past timeline a little boring for me, even if at the end, something surprising happened with that storyline.

This was a very unique and original book and I appreciated that. I like the weird relationships between all the characters, every interaction was charged and it was interesting to understand a little of the backstory of those relationships. I also really appreciated all the twists and turns the story takes. While I liked Harrow as a pov character, I missed Gideon, she made book 1 funnier and more entertaining.

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina by Zoraida Córdova (4 stars): This is a beautifully written and magical story, full of strange and wonderful magic and about a large and complicated family. It explores the importance of knowing and understanding where we come from and it deals with the things we inherit from our families, the good and the bad. A story filled with interesting characters, that changes perspective often and while there were moments where it seems like it’s going to dive deeper into the characters, it never really happens.

A Dead Djinn in Cairo by P. Djèlí  Clark (3.5 stars): I enjoyed this, but not as much as I was expecting. The setup, the concept and the world-building are amazing. Steampunk is not a subgenre of fantasy that I read often, so a lot of elements from this felt new and interesting to me. I really liked the main character as well, she is sassy, strong, and independent. While the mystery was interesting, the resolution felt really rushed.

It Happened One Summer by Tessa Bailey (3 stars): I had high expectations for this book and I’m so sad that I didn’t love it. I usually end up loving hyped romances but it was not the case with this one. In the beginning, I was really enjoying this story. I liked Piper from the start and I actually enjoyed her character development throughout the book. At first, I also liked the relationship between Piper and Brendan, the bad first impression, the bickering, the slow transition into a friendlier relationship. I liked all of it. But I had so many issues with the second half of the book, Brendan decides that he wants Piper forever after less than three weeks of knowing her and he becomes pushy and annoying, and the book becomes so cheesy that it was almost unbearable at times. I listened to the audiobook and the narrator was so dramatic when narrating the dialogue, which didn’t help.

The Introvert’s Guide to Online Dating by Emma Hart (3,5 stars): This was a fast and entertaining read, which was exactly what I needed when I picked it up. While it was good, it wasn’t anything memorable. It has a frenemies-to-lovers relationship which is a trope I love, it has good banter, it is a little steamy and it has sweet moments. The main problem with this is that it had way TOO MANY side characters for such a short novella.

Finlay Donavan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano (4,5 stars): This was fun, fast-paced, full of twists and turns, and absolutely absurd. It kept me at the edge of my seat. My issue with this is that was a lot of convenient and unrealistic things happened, but that didn’t affect my enjoyment too much. More of my thoughts HERE.

Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala (4 stars): I read this in one day and it was a fast and entertaining read. It had captivating characters, complex relationships and the Filipino culture and food were an interesting part of the story. The mystery was entertaining, but there wasn’t any sense of urgency or danger, which made it feel just a little lackluster. More of my thoughts HERE.

We Have Always Live in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (4 stars): I didn’t have high expectations for this book and maybe that’s why I ended up really enjoying it. I know this is an unpopular opinion but this was a very quick read for me. This had an unreliable narrator but also unreliable characters in general, they all seemed to be hiding something even from themselves, and it’s set in a creepy little town full of hateful people which added to the atmosphere of the story. While not a lot happens, it was still an interesting read because I kept trying to figure out what really happened even if I had strong suspicions.

The Low. Low Woods by Carmen Maria Machado (4 stars): I didn’t know what to expect going into this so I was shocked while reading it. This is like literary horror put into graphic novel form, so it’s slow and it’s disturbing and sinister in a quiet way. But it’s also so powerful. It’s a story about two queer women of color and it’s definitely a story for women and about women’s experiences.

Broken (In the Best Possible Way) by Jenny Lawson (4 stars): Jenny Lawson is honest, raw and funny while talking about her mental health, her chronic illness, her marriage, being an introvert and her life in general. Which makes this book very touching and entertaining at the same time. The chapter that it’s a letter to Lawson’s health insurance company is one of the most heartbreaking, infuriating, and powerful things I have read.

What is your favorite and least favorite book of December? Was December a good reading month for you?

Add me on
 Twitter Bookstagram | Ko- fi | Goodreads Bloglovin Pinterest Letterbox

Reading Other People’s Favorite Books of 2021 | TBR

Hi everyone! As you may know, I usually don’t make tbr because I’m a mood reader, but after the abysmal reading year I had in 2021, I decided that I needed to do something to try to find some amazing books in 2022. After thinking about it for a while, I decided to put together a tbr with books included in favorite books of 2021 lists of bloggers, booktubers, and people from book twitter. To pick the books for this tbr, I set some rules:

  1. It had to be on the list of favorite/best books of 2021 of more than 1 person
  2. It had to have good reviews from my goodread friends
  3. It had to sound interesting to me

After going through SO MANY lists of favorites/best books of 2021, I finally have a tbr of 6 books that I’m looking forward to reading in the first few months of 2022.

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir: This was already on my tbr because it sounded interesting and because I have been hearing great things about it all year. It feels like everyone loves this book, so many people that I follow on different platforms and that have completely different reading tastes have enjoyed this book, so I’m hoping I won’t be the exception.

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke: This sounds a little like The Starless Sea, which was one of my favorite books of 2020, so I’m hoping I’m going to love it. I enjoy clever, layered, confusing books, so this sounds right up my alley.

The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake: for what I gather this was a hit on booktok and it spread all through the bookish community, and most people seem to love it. I have heard people compare this to The Secret History, which is a book I loved, so I’m excited for some dark academia in a fantasy setting.

The Hollow Places by T. Kingfisher: I started to read more horror in 2021 and I’m excited to continue to explore that genre, so I’m happy that a horror book made it to this list. Still, I’m a little worried because from what I can tell this is a polarizing book, people either love it or hate it, so I’m hoping to fall in the camp that loves it.

Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano: this book has such a quirky premise and for I understand it’s almost like a cozy mystery, which sounds perfect for me. I have heard that the journey this book takes you on is really surprising, so I’m intrigued.

The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina by Zoraida Córdova: I think I’m going to love this, I started it a few months ago and made it 15% into the book but I had to return the audiobook to my library, so I’m waiting to get it back. But I’m so glad to see it on other people’s lists and I can’t wait to continue listening to it.

Have you read these books and did you enjoy them? What books have you seen a lot on people’s favorite books of 2021 lists?

Add me on
 | Twitter  | Ko- fi | Goodreads BookstagramBloglovin Pinterest Letterbox

Hyped 2021 Releases: will I read them? should I read them?

Hi everyone! I share a few posts liked this in 2020, I had so much fun putting them together and I’m not sure why I stopped, but now they are back. The idea is that I’ll tell you whether I’m planning to read the hyped releases on this list or if I’m not plannig to read them, and I’m hoping you’ll tell me if maybe there’s a book that I’m not planning to read but that you think I should. Also, I would love to know if you enjoyed or didn’t enjoy one of the book I’m planning to read.

The books I included on this post are books released between August and October 2021 that I haven’t read but that I have heard a lot of people talk about and that already have over 1000 ratings on Goodreads. Also, I only chose books that are not a sequels or companion novels to books that I read before because it’s very likely that I’ll read those books.

The Ex Hex by Erin Sterling

Release date: September 28, 2021

I’m on the fence about this one, I had never heard about this book until it came out and suddenly everyone was reading it. I immediately added it on goodreads because everyone was loving it but there’s something about it that makes me think I won’t like it. Mainly because I struggle with books about second-chance romances, I either love them or dislike them.

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

Release date: September 14th 2021

I’m for sure reading this, all the romance booktububers and bloggers that I trust have LOVED this, so I’m like 99.9% certain that I will enjoy it. Also, the whole grumpy/sunshine dynamic is one I love in books and I have heard this is really steamy, which is always a plus. I would be extremely shocked if I ended up not liking this.

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune

Release date: September 21st 2021 

I’m nervious to read this, but I still think I’ll give it a chance. I LOVED The House in the Cerulean Sea, it was one of my favorite books of last year, so of course Under the Whispering Door was a highly anticipated release for me. Nonetheless, I haven’t heard the first person I follow and trust say they loved this, from what I have seen people either didn’t like it or thougth it was just ok.

Battle Royal by Lucy Parker

Release date:  August 17th 2021

I’ll definitely read it. Not only does this book sound incredible, but I also LOVED Headliners, which is another book by Lucy Parker. Besides that, this includes the grumpy meets sushine and rivals to lovers tropes, which are two of my favorites.

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina by Zoraida Córdova

Release date:  September 7th 2021 

I’m going to read it. I added this book to my tbr since it was announced because I have loved other books by Zoraida Córdova, but it didn’t sound like the type of book I enjoyed so it wasn’t high on my priority list. Nonetheless, so many people are reading this and loving it, so I’m excited to give it a chance. Also, I have found out more about this book now that it’s out and I’m really intrigued.

Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney

56597885

Release date:  September 7th 2021

I don’t think I’ll read this. I keep hearing about Sally Rooney’s books, people seem to either love them or hate them, and I have a feeling that I will be on the hate them camp based on what I have heard about them. I’m still a little tempted for the chance that I might end up loving them.

Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty

56143578

Release date: September 14th 2021

I don’t know if I’ll read this. It sounds really good but I don’t often read domestic thrillers, even if they sound interesting I never end up picking them up. But at the same time, when I do pick them up I usually end up enjoy them, which was the case with Big Little Lies. So I think I’d probably enjoy this book but I don’t think I’ll have the motivation to pick it up anytime soon.

My Heart is a Chainsaw by Stephen Graham Jones

55711617

Release date: August 31st 2021 

I don’t think I’ll read this. I thought this book sounded really good when I first heard about it and everyone seemed so excited for it that I was getting excited too. But after its release, most people are saying this book is really boring and it doens’t live up to its great concept and that is making me really scared of reading it. Especially since I read a Stephen Graham Jones novella and didn’t like it that much and I dfn’ed one of his books.

Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney

56269064

Release date: September 7th 2021

I’m nervous about this one, but I’m leaning towards reading it. As I said before, I don’t often read domestic thrillers, nonetheless, this sounds like an isolated mystery and those are my favorite kind of mystery, so I’m intrigued. Also, I have heard so many good things about it.

Out of the books I’m not planning to read, is there any that you think I should pick up?

Out of the books I’m planning to read, , is there any that I should prioritize or maybe one you wouldn’t recommend?

Add me on
 | Twitter  | Ko- fi | Goodreads BookstagramBloglovin Pinterest Letterbox

On My Radar #4: Books people are reading for the Latinx Book Bingo

Hi everyone! I’m back with another edition of On My Radar, which is a feature where I talk about books that I have heard a lot about and I’m curious about, but I’m not sure if I should give them a chance, whether it is because they are outside my comfort zone, they got mixed reviews or any other reason. My idea is that hopefully, you all can help me decide which books are worth reading.

In the past On My Radar posts, I talked about books other people loved, books that other people hated, and books I never thought I would want to read.

Since I’m the host of the Latinx Book Bingo and I see everyone ‘s blog posts, videos, instagram posts, tweets about their tbrs, I thought it would be cool to see what books a lot people are reading for the readathon that are on my radar but I I’m not sure if I want to read or not. Those are the books I’m talking about in this post.

Weep Woman Weep by Maria DeBlassie

I added this book to my tbr because so many people were reading it for latinx book bingo, but since then I have seen a couple of those people give it very low ratings, so now I’m unsure about picking it up. But I checked on goodreads and the overall rating is good and it sounds interesting, so while I’m on the fence I think I’m leaning towards reading it. 

The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina by Zoraida Córdova

I added this book to my tbr when it was announced mainly because it was written by Zoraida Córdova and I have read and liked so many of her books, but it didn’t exactly sound like my thing so it wasn’t high on my priority lists. It was one of those “maybe one day I’ll read it” kind of books, nonetheless, a lot of people are reading this for Latinx Book Bingo and LOVING it, so now I’m really intrigued. 

Amazon.com: Here the Whole Time eBook : Martins, Vitor, Helena, Larissa:  Kindle Store

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins

From what I have seen, this is the most common pick for the “translated book” square of the Latinx Book Bingo board and so many people are singing its praises. This book sounds cute and I think it’ll probably be a fun read, but since I’m really not reading that much YA anymore I’m not sure if I’ll pick it up. 

Fire with Fire by Destiny Soria

I added this book to my tbr when it was first announced but I lost interest in it since then, mainly because I haven’t been that into YA lately. But a few people are reading it for the Latinx Book Bingo and it seems like they are enjoying it, so I have a renewed interest in it. 

Amazon.com: Paola Santiago and the River of Tears eBook : Mejia, Tehlor  Kay: Tienda Kindle

Paola Santiago and the river of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Last year when I first got into middle grade I added this to my tbr, but it got so many mixed reviews that I never picked it up. Nonetheless, I have enjoyed Tehlor Kay Mejia’s previous work and I have seen a lot of people read and enjoy it for Latinx Book Bingo, so I’m tempted to give it a chance.

Which of these books do you think I should read? Are any books that are on your radar but you’r not sure you want to read?

Add me on
Twitter  |   Ko- fi | Goodreads Bookstagram | Bloglovin Pinterest Letterbox