Pavement slipp’ry, people sneezing / Lords in ermine, beggars freezing / Titled gluttons dainties carving / Genius in a garret starving. January, 1795 by Mary Darby Robinson

In the last six months I have definitely cut down on ARC requests. Rather than reading at a breakneck pace and feeling overwhelmed (sometimes in a good way, but it’s still stressful), I am trying to be more choosey of the books I plan to read in the new year.

I actually didn’t read very much over the holiday break. It was quite busy with get-togethers and we took a short trip to St. Augustine. This week, however, we had two snow days, which is unheard of in Savannah, Georgia! I grew up in New England so it didn’t bother me much but we don’t have the equipment to handle it, so roads are closed everywhere. It gave me time to finish one book and start another.

Having grown up in New England, I knew the basic story of the large Christmas tree that Halifax, Nova Scotia, sent to Boston every year, but I was glad to read a comprehensive summary that outlines how the explosion happened as well as the aftermath.

The book isn’t perfect — the writer repeats himself often, using the same phrases multiple times — but the information is good and it reads quickly.



from the publisher: The year is 1896. The city is New York. Newspaper reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned by his friend Dr. Laszlo Kreizler—a psychologist, or “alienist”—to view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy abandoned on the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge. From there the two embark on a revolutionary effort in criminology: creating a psychological profile of the perpetrator based on the details of his crimes. Their dangerous quest takes them into the tortured past and twisted mind of a murderer who will kill again before their hunt is over.

I’ve had this one on my TBR for a long time, but since there is a new show coming out I decided to read it before that premieres. I’ve just started it but I already love the tone.

from the publisher: 1939: Europe is on the brink of war when young Lily Shepherd boards an ocean liner in Essex, bound for Australia. She is ready to start anew, leaving behind the shadows in her past. But Lily soon realizes that she’s not the only one hiding secrets. By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and Lily’s life will be changed irrevocably.

I’d been coveting this title ever since I saw it published in the UK. I finally got an advance e-version via NetGalley. I read about 100 pages but it really wasn’t great. Rather than an exciting page-turner, it’s maudlin. 

Soon, I will be reviewing a bunch of nonfiction: Brolliology: A History of the Umbrella in Life and Literature (it’s great!), The Un-Discovered Islands (also awesome), and Reading the Rocks (lovely). 

What are you reading this month?

2 thoughts on “Books for January”

  1. Ooh, I can’t wait to hear about the umbrella book! I read a YA novel at the end of the year whose heroine made ART umbrellas, and it made me feel just massively fond of umbrellas as a genre. (It was Jane Unlimited if you’re curious.)

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