February Wrap-Up

Happy March everyone!

February was a short month, but one in which I managed to do more reading than usual. I was in kind of a reading slump in January, but luckily I managed to break out of that in February!

I think part of the reason my motivation to read improved last month was because I was reading with purpose. Due to it being Black History Month, I decided that I wanted every book I read to be written by black authors. Of course, I’d like to note that I strive to read from a diverse selection of authors year-round, but I really wanted to focus some extra energy and attention on this during February.

And WOW! I really discovered some great books this month. I even read some genres that I don’t normally explore!

Without further ado, here is my wrap-up of all the books I read in February…

Book Review: “The Color Purple” by Alice Walker

Wow. This book was so much different than what I expected (though I guess I wasn’t sure what exactly to expect in the first place). I initially picked this up when I was a sophomore in high school, but ended up putting it down after reading only the first couple pages. There is pretty graphic abuse throughout the novel, and it occurs at the very beginning of the story. As a young reader who had never really been exposed to anything like that in stories before, it was pretty disturbing and upsetting. However, this time I was determined not to give up. And I’m so glad I didn’t! This book was so powerful and moving, and well worth the discomfort caused by the darker scenes.

Spoiler-Free Review: “The Color Purple” is a classic novel written by Alice Walker. I’m struggling to write a review for this book because…

Top 10 Tuesday: Purple, Yellow, and/or Green Book Covers (Mardis Gras!)

Welcome to Top 10 Tuesday! This is a weekly challenge hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, and this week’s challenge is about purple, yellow, and/or green book covers to celebrate Mardis Gras!

I know they say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but how can you not when the covers are this beautiful??

I had so much fun scanning my bookshelves for this one! One of my favorite hobbies is admiring my books (strange, I know, but it calms me), so I really enjoyed getting to take a closer look to find spines and covers that were predominantly one of these three colors. In no particular order, here are my top 10!

Top 5 Saturday: Books with a Unique Format

Welcome to Top 5 Saturday! This is a weekly challenge hosted by Devouring Books, and this week’s challenge focuses on books with a unique format.

I had a lot of fun with this one! I enjoy finding books to read that are out of my comfort zone, and one way I do that is by finding books to read with a format that is “atypical” for me. For this post, I decided to sort it by format rather than by specific book, as there were several categories for which I was able to think of multiple examples. So here we go! Here are my top five categories of unique formats for books (in no particular order)!

Te amo, Je t’aime, I Love You… (Top 10 Tuesday)

Welcome to Top 10 Tuesday! This is a weekly challenge hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, and this week’s challenge is a Valentine’s Day/Love freebie!

I really enjoyed this one! I tried to approach it not just from a romantic perspective, but in a way that includes many different types of love. Mother-daughter love, sisterly love, the special love between a dog and its owner, love of a place or activity, and more! There are many different kinds of love, something which many languages other than English do a better job of differentiating linguistically. English only has one word: love. You can say you love your mom and that you love chocolate and we can use context to determine which kind of love we mean. But in Spanish, there are entirely different verbs to represent these two kinds of love. So interesting! I love to geek out over Spanish grammar, but I’ll stop (for now). Instead, let’s check out my top ten choices for books with a love motif!

Top 10 Tuesday: Books Written Before I Was Born

Welcome to Top 10 Tuesday! This is a weekly challenge hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, and this week’s challenge is about books written before I was born.

I had so much fun with this one! Many of my favorite books were written long before I was born. I also frequently read books that aren’t recent releases because I tend to feel like I’ve missed out on books published either when I was too young to enjoy them or before I existed at all. Therefore, I had a lot of options to choose from! Here is my top ten (in no particular order)!

Top 10 Tuesday: Books I Meant to Read in 2020 But Didn’t Get To

Welcome to Top 10 Tuesday! This is a weekly challenge hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, and this week’s challenge is about books that I meant to read in 2020, but didn’t get to…

2020 Goal Reflection & 2021 Reading Goals

One of the few highlights of the horrible year that was 2020 was how much more I was able to read than usual. I accomplished all of the literary goals I set for myself and discovered many new favorite books (as well as some least favorites, but I’m trying to forget about those just like I’m trying to forget most of 2020).

After my most impressive year of reading thus far, here are my reflections and updated goals for the new year!

Top 5 Audiobooks of 2020

As rough as 2020 was, being stuck in quarantine sure did make more time for reading! Without my commute to work, I listened to fewer audiobooks but was also able to get to more books in my physical TBR pile! Even with the reading slump I hit this summer (amidst pandemic wedding planning), I still managed to read an astounding (for me, anyway) 100 books, with many of my favorites being from the very beginning and very end of the year.

I have my top books divided up among physical books and audiobooks (since this greatly impacts the reading experience). I considered dividing the lists by genre or by target audience (adult, young adult, children’s), but decided to go by format instead since a great book can be written for any audience and from any genre. I also didn’t commit to a specific number of books to acknowledge for each category, I just identified my standout reads from the year and ranked them within that range.

Without further ado, here are my top audiobooks of 2020!

Cluster Review (December Wrap-Up): My Final Reads of 2020

Hello again! It’s been a while since I’ve written a review. Teaching in December is always a whirlwind (and teaching virtually is no exception). In order to get through these last few weeks of the year, I have been reading ravenously. It’s to the point that I’ve done little else in my free time. I decided to just embrace it and take a break from my blogging and reviewing, but now I’m back!

In this post, I will write very brief reviews of some of the stand-out books I managed to read in December. I finished my last two books of the year yesterday, which brings me to 100 total books read this year! I can’t believe it.

Many of the books I read this month were…