My Bookish Month of December 2023

Hi and welcome to another monthly overview!

The last month of the year, and another month that just flew by. What I will remember is the large flocks of finches that filled the skies. I’ve never seen them this active, and looking out the window I sometimes felt like I was stuck in a snow globe, but with bobbing birds instead of snowflakes.

In vaguely related news, we seem to have acquired a cockerel. I spotted him wandering around the fields and a while later, he had spotted our hens, who seemed positively enthralled. He spent the night on our window sill and the next day, we decided to let him into the coop, since he was clearly hungry and nobody in the neighbourhood knew where he was from. The rest, as they say, is history. He struts around like he’s always been here, has no inclination whatsoever to leave and I’ve never seen our hens happier. We called him Dieudonné cos he clearly thinks he’s God’s gift to henkind 😄

My bookish month was fabulous! I had some time off work and my blogging mojo was in full swing so I managed to read quite a few advanced copies and write the reviews too, who says you can’t have your cake and eat it 😄I took advantage of a Kindle Unlimited deal (two months for free) and an Audible deal (one month, including one credit, for free), which motivated me to read and listen as much as I could.

Honourable mentions to The Guests, Big Bad and Fourth Wing but these were my favourite reads of the month:

In figures December looks like this:

December
Novels: 6551 pages across 17 books and 13 short stories / novellas
Audiobooks: 64 hours across 11 books

And here’s what I did in December and some of what I’ll be posting in January / February:

What I read:

The Glass Woman, Alice McIlroy
The Package, Sebastian Fitzek
The Salt Grows Heavy, Cassandra Khaw
The Guests, Agnes Ravatn
The Mantis, Kōtarō Isaka
Yule Island, Johana Gustawsson
After Dark, Minka Kent
The Mosquito, B.A. Paris
The Pram, Joe Hill
Directions for Dark Things, Stephanie Sowden (review to follow)
La tumba del niño, Eugenio Prados
Ankle Snatcher, Grady Hendrix
People Like Them, Minka Kent
Shadows Slow Dancing in Derelict Rooms, Stephen J. Golds
The Lover, Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Mr Sandman, S.J.I. Holliday
Sweetmeat, Mark Edwards
Fathomfolk, Eliza Chan (review to follow)
Crow Moon, Suzy Aspley (review to follow)
Murder on the Christmas Express, Alexandra Benedict
Everyone Who Can Forgive Me Is Dead, Jenny Hollander (review to follow)
The Long Game, Ann Leckie
In Bloom, Paul Tremblay
The Kingdom of Sweets, Erika Johansen
Big Bad, Chandler Baker
Murder at Holly House, Denzil Meyrick
Murder at the Royal Ruby, Nita Prose
Fourth Wing, Rebecca Yarros
The Killer’s Christmas List, Chris Frost
Nightwatching, Tracy Sierra (review to follow)

What I listened to:

Otherworld, Jason Segel & Kirsten Miller
The Bird Tribunal, Agnes Ravatn
Geneva, Richard Armitage
Upon a Frosted Star, M.A. Kuzniar
Sherlock Holmes & the Christmas Demon, James Lovegrove
My Darling Girl, Jennifer McMahon
Trapdoor, J.P. Pomare
Don’t Hang Up, Benjamin Stevenson
The Downloaded, Robert J. Sawyer
The Drowning Place, S.W. Kane
The Optician’s Wife, Betsy Reavley

What I read earlier but reviewed in December:

Halfway House, Helen Fitzgerald

I also had a look at My Life in Books 2023.

Let’s have a look at the books that landed on my lap in December:

One paperback for the Orenda collection, two hardcovers I couldn’t resist at a 50% discount that should have arrived in November but were lost in transit, one FairyLoot special edition (also the last, probably, since I’ve cancelled my subscription in an effort to keep my book budget a little more under control in 2024) and a proof copy courtesy of Firefly Press with thanks to Graeme Williams and Grace Samuel (both of them 😉)

Eight 99p deals, two NetGalley eARCs courtesy of Orbit and Viper and two Orenda eARCS, and one Audible audiobook (for free thanks to the Audible Christmas deal):

I hope you had a good month and that you are safe and well! Thanks for joining me today and happy reading xxx

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