Reading Better | March.

I added 17 books to my Read shelf last month (all my 2022 books are shelved here on Goodreads):

  • Five of those were 5-stars; and the rest I Loved, or Loved A LOT. [here’s my Instagram post with quick reviews of those five 5-star books]
  • 12 (71%) were paper, and none were ebooks.
  • 10 (59%) were borrowed, one I owned, and six were purchased (three new and three used).
  • 13 (76%) were fiction and the non-fiction were spread across memoir, spiritual growth, and general.
  • My intentions were very evenly represented with nine check marks each for Diversity, Growth, and Connection (only two books didn’t check any of those boxes – they were simply Delightful). Three books checked all three boxes:
    1. The Wrong End of the Telescope
    2. The End of Days
    3. So Many Beginnings

Here are the qualitative ♥ notes from my journal:

♥ I’m now a Sarah Winman completist and on my way to becoming a Maggie O’Farrell one, too.
♥ Loving books in translation – I read four (Homesick – Spanish, The End of Days – German, The Anomaly – French, and The Books of Jacob – Polish). I checked the Diversity box for each of these; honestly, it’s a toss-up if they should be that or Growth, and maybe they’re both? For sure, they open my eyes to something different and have lessons to share.
♥ (still) authors who are (also) poets. This month it was A Ghost in the Throat, which I see Goodreads describes as “a fluid hybrid of essay and autofiction to explore the ways in which a life can be changed in response to the discovery of another’s.” I’m pretty sure that anyone who reads this blog would love it, too.
♥ Discovering a new series (Just One Damned Thing After Another, the first installment in The Chronicles of St Mary’s) that’s smart, fun, and just a little sexy. (note – I’ve already read the second installment and have the third on my desk … they get even better!)
♥ Growth. I learned about translation, Irish history, Cumberland Island, Syrian refugees, Eastern Europe in the 20th century, the Black male experience in modern America, Freedpeoples’ Colonies, memoir theology, and whole lot about Jews, Catholics, and life in general in late 18th century Europe.
♥ and last but not least, discovering Rabih Alameddine and Jennifer Croft (as an author). Rabih hosted an author interview with Olga Tokarczuk (The Books of Jacob) and Jennifer Croft (who translated it from Polish to English). I was already reading The Books of Jacob and the insights from that conversation were inspiring (and helpful) as I continued that book. But the rabbit hole I went down with those two new-to-me authors was my favorite part of March’s reading. The Wrong End of the Telescope and Homesick landed solidly on my 5-star shelf and I’ve recommended them both multiple times. Also, kudos to my library for having both available without waits!

Not specially noted, but having a monthly TBR was – again – a help. Only two of the books I read in March weren’t part of that TBR (both were “connection” books). Here’s a look at how March fared and what I have planned for April.

March TBR/April TBR

Of course now that it’s April 13, I’ve made a decent dent in that April stack … do we have anything in common? What are you looking forward to reading this month?

8 thoughts on “Reading Better | March.

  1. I see a few I have read and a few on my list. And of course I alway find something new and interesting on your shelves.

  2. Looks like a wonderful collection of books to read! I am only familiar with a couple of the authors but will take a look at the others. Thank you so much for sharing 😊

  3. I just finished A Ghost in the Throat last night and I was enthralled. “sipping my own dark sustenance from ink.” <– I wrote it down and can't get it out of my head. I want it tattooed somewhere!! I have so much to say about that book, but that will all have to wait.

    What a great reading month for you! Thanks to Fiction Matters, we read many of the same books. I've enjoyed making my way through the Women's Prize long list. I'm focusing on a few big books in April: The Books of Jacob, Coming Home, and Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. I love that there's always a good book to turn to!

  4. I’m also into Translated books, but have been reading different books. I picked up Cursed Bunny and Elena Knows from the Booker prize shortlist. We have many books in common, but surprisingly more that are not. What we do share is that we read great books!

  5. I just heard A Ghost in the Throat mentioned on a podcast (maybe by Anne Bogel?), and I’m definitely interested in learning more. Right now I’ve just got my head down trying to finish Books of Jacob, but I have The Wrong End of the Telescope on Hold and of course need to get to my next Erdrich.

  6. I always enjoy seeing what you have been reading! So many good books! I just finished Young Mungo, a tough read, but the beautiful writing pulled me along. I’m currently reading After You’d Gone and that will leave me just two of Maggie O’Farrell’s books to be a completest. My library system doesn’t have My Lover’s Lover or The Distance Between Us, so I’m going to have to search for them.
    I do plan to read the next Erdrich book for our discussion in May!

  7. _Heavy_ was a ‘changing’ book for me. It’s been 3 or 4 years now, but I can still remember listening–sitting in a parking lot, unable to turn off the book and go into the store. It was one of those books that was so terribly uncomfortable in parts that I knew it was transforming *while I was wincing*… and I knew I would be telling everyone: You must read this book. What a man, what a human being. So much, so much–and still he gives.

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