My January 2023 in Books

I can’t believe we are at the end of the month already. I finished 6 books in January. I almost made it to 7 but i still have 30 or so pages left in my current book.

1.Fairy Tale by Stephen King

When Charlie Reade stops to help Howard Bowditch, a local recluse, it begins a friendship that ends with Charlie inheriting the key to a fairy tale world. Charlie visits the world, discovers it had been taken over by an evil force and realizes he is the key to saving the world.

Fairy Tale is like two books in one. The first half is about Charlie and his friendship with Howard. The second half is Charlie’s adventures in the fairy tale land after Howard’s death. I thought the first half flowed better than the second half. The fairy tale story gets bogged down sometimes in King’s habit of being a little too descriptive. Overall, I thought it was very good. I did enjoy the Fairy Tale story despite its need for editing in places.

2. Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter

I had started reading Girl, Forgotten by Slaughter and realized it was a sequel. I paused that one and read the first one instead.

Pieces of Her starts with a shooting at a restaurant. Andy and her mom Laura are there. Laura kills the shooter and that leads to secrets from her past being revealed. It also leads to Andy going on the road to uncover those secrets. It was a decent read. I liked the flashbacks to Laura’s past more than the current-day Andy story.

3. Girl, Forgotten by Karin Slaughter

This is the second in the Andrea Oliver series. In this one, Oliver has just graduated and become a US Marshall when her biological uncle she has never met pulls strings to have her assigned to a protection detail in her biological father’s hometown. He hopes that she can prove that her father killed a girl as a teen so he will not be released from prison. It all makes more sense if you read the first book, which I did when I started this one and realized it was a sequel.

I mostly liked the book. I was invested in the central mystery of who killed the girl. I think it would have been a better story if you took out all of the connections to the first book and let it be its own story. It didn’t need to be muddled with Andrea’s backstory and her cult leader dad. The mystery reveal was satisfying. I enjoy Slaughter’s work and will read more if I can find her stand-alone books.

4. My Remarkable Journey by Katherine Johnson

Johnson’s memoir details her life before and after NASA.

This was an easy, interesting read. I think it would be a good book for a high school assignment. It reads like a book written for something like that. I agree with one member of book club who said it lacked heart. She talks about her life in a very academic way. Even when she mentions the deaths of loved ones you don’t get a lot of emotion. As long as you are OK with facts and detail and not a lot of emotion, this is good for those who like memoirs and non-fiction.

5. The Eighth Detective by Alex Pavesi

This is a mix of mystery short stories and the story of an editor working with the author to republish the collection. As we go, we realize the author has a secret and the clues might be in the stories.

This was another book club book. No one in the group loved the book. One person hated it. I think it was a good concept, but lacking in execution. A couple of the short stories were good, but I found myself looking many times to see how much further I had to get to the end of the story. The ending was decent but seemed rushed with an extra detail that was wasted at the end of the book. If that reveal had come earlier it might have helped me care more about the main character.

6. Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris

I listened to the audio again of Sedaris reading his collection of essays.

I think I might have listened to too many of his too close together. I liked this one but found myself wanting to go back to listening to music more than when I listened to the others. I still laughed while listening. I would still recommend it. I just need a music break before going back to another book.

I’m hoping this is the beginning of a trend of reading more. I will try not to get too stressed if it is not.


4 thoughts on “My January 2023 in Books

  1. I’m not a big King fan, but I have liked a few of his books. So I’ve put the audiobook on hold at my library. No investment to regret if this is one that I don’t like.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting about the Katherine Johnson memoir. I enjoyed Hidden Figures, but someone else wrote that, and that someone made the story so interesting. I do usually prefer the individual themselves to write, but some people simply don’t come across well… which is why there are so many ghost writers I guess 😉

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s