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January 2021 Reading Roundup


I’m so glad I didn’t set myself a hard and fast TBR this month, as it was not the easiest month to navigate and being able to mood read and not feel like I *had* to read anything specific helped me stay motivated a bit.

Also the utter mess that is the state of the world right now had me running to books for some sort of sanity. Yes, reading about Ragnarok was less stressful than reading the news. Because life right now.

I ended up finishing 8 books, which is a really good start to the year, providing a decent buffer for any future slumps.

I will give brief reviews here, and link to any full reviews I have done as well.

What I Read (Books & Audiobooks)

  • Fearless Fairy Tales by Konnie Huq & James Kay, Illustrated by Rikin Parekh : 5*A brilliant twist on the classic fairy tales that is perfect for slightly older kids (7+) and their grown ups. They are inclusive, hilarious, and change the morals of old for ones more relevant to modern day life. From Trumplstiltskin and his fake news, to Snow White and her dreams of joining the 5-a-side football team even though she’s a girl, every tale is funny but also packs a punch. The illustrations are perfect, and they’re just the right length for sharing out loud – Tori & Arthur loved them (and so did I!)
  • The Testament of Loki by Joanne M. Harris: 4.5*Excellent follow up to The Gospel of Loki, full of sass, sarcasm, and classic Loki trickiness.
  • The Colour Purple by Alice Walker (Audiobook, narrated by the author): 4*Finally read one of the ‘modern classics’ everyone expects me to have already read. Surprised to find myself loving it, it wasn’t what I expected (I don’t know what I expected, really), but I’m so glad I decided to pick it up.
  • Drawn Chorus by Dru Marland: 4*A beautiful hand illustrated poetic alphabet of (mostly) British birds. The poems are a mixture of styles, from prose poems to funny little rhymes. A delightful little read, and the accompanying drawings are stunning. Dru is a very clever bean.
  • Rose, Interrupted by Patrice Lawrence: 5*The sort of book that makes you think a lot, whilst also being super easy and compelling to read. Highly recommended.
  • Helping Our Planet by Usborne Books: 4*This is a great little book for kids aged 8+ to inspire them to think about how we live and how our choices affect the planet. It not only warns about climate change, pollution, and other environmental issues, it gives clear, sensible suggestions for things the reader can actually do. From just talking about the situation with others, to recycling and upcycling tips, suggestions for shopping switches, and lifestyle changes – it is never patronising or accusatory, rather encouraging and hopeful. Would be great for any budding eco-warriors out there!
  • Magnus Chase and the Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan: 5*My first delve into Rick Riordan’s world of myths and legends and I fell instantly in love. Going to have to get the next one in the series for sure! (Also, apparently my theme for this month was accidentally Norse Mythology, as this was all about Loki & friends, too!)
  • A Wayne In A Manger by Gervase Phinn, Illustrated by Chris Mould: 4*A collection of stories from an Infant School Inspector in Yorkshire, recalling the many Christmas Nativity bloopers and outbursts he’s seen over the years. Adorable and laugh out loud funny on many occasions, this is a light, feel good book that was perfect for a tumultuous, grey January.

Something has begun…

  • True Fire by Gary Meehan: I got this in December, it was my last book from my Willoughby Book Club subscription that James got me for my birthday… my first book from the new subscription he got me for Christmas comes in February so I thought I’d get this one read first!!
  • When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon (Audiobook, Narrated by Sneha Mathan & Vikas Adam): My audiobook consumption is distinctly less when the kids are not at school-school, so whilst I am enjoying this, I’m not getting through it very quickly as I’m basically only listening to it when I drive to and from the weekly food shop.

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