Reading Wrap-up: December, 2019

The year is officially over, but before I completely move on to new and hopefully better books, I have to do one last reading wrap-up for December. I ended last month with 11 books read. Not exactly the best, but I felt like I was catching up on a lot of things I had put aside when I was in school.

Anyways, I also liked most of the books I read this month. Now, without further ado, into the books I read.

2 Stars

  • Storm Front (The Dresden Files #1) by Jim Butcher (released 2000)
  • Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier (released 1938)

3 Stars

  • The City of Ember (Book of Ember #1) by Jeanne DuPrau (released 2003)
    • This is an interesting book, despite feeling a lot shorter than it actually is. I kept wanting more, like I felt like there could have been depth in the story. For example, I found it interesting that things commonplace to us are foreign to the people of Ember, like the sun or a boat. There were also hints throughout the book of a higher power. Who were the Builders? Who really created this place? Is there a God? Maybe some of these questions will be answered in the next books, but I found any depth the book had was a bit ignored for a monotonous story. It’s not a bad book, but I was expecting it to be more interesting.
  • The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2) by Rick Riordan (released 2006)
    • I did enjoy this book, and found it to be a fun adventure which never made me feel bored. I also, however, kept wanting more. In many ways, it felt very similar to the first book, just with more of the same things. More exploring the world. More friendships and mystery. It didn’t feel like the stakes became higher, or the writing became more maturer as Percy aged, as we see in Harry Potter. I did like reading this book, but I hope the third book impresses me more.
  • Halo: The Fall of Reach (Halo #1) by Eric S. Nylund
    • I’m not a massive science fiction fan, and even less so intergalactic war, so I understand why I found this book difficult to get through. Saying that, though I wasn’t a huge fan of the science scenes or the intense battle strategy scenes, but I did enjoy the story. John makes for an interesting protagonist, especially the themes of whether or not the Spartan program is morally correct, taking children and forcing them to become highly trained, genetically enhanced soldiers. The Covenant, the alien race and main antagonists of the book, are also fascinating, as they are kept mysterious through the story. The unknown is far more terrifying than the known. Anyway, I enjoyed the plot, even if my style of reading it different from this book.

4 Stars

  • The Deal of a Lifetime by Fredrick Backman (released 2017)
    • Like many of Backman’s longer books, this is such a bittersweet tale of the difference a life makes. Even though it took my less than a half hour to read, I truly found it to be a beautiful story, especially for the holiday time of year.
  • Whose Body? (Lord Peter Wimsey #1) by Dorothy L. Sayers (released 1923)
    • I have been a fan of every book Sayers has written, especially those that follow Peter Wimsey. So I was excited to see the first book featuring this great detective. It is fascinating to see a typical murder mystery brought to life by Sayers deep understanding of psychology and philosophy. Because of this, her mysteries stand a step above any other mystery author I’ve read. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, equally for its characters and its mystery.
  • The Thran (Magic: The Gathering: The Artifacts Cycle #0) by J. Robert King (released 1999)
    • This was a big surprise to me, considering most books which were inspired by games tend to be pretty bad (at least from my experience). For those who don’t know, this book is based on a card game (which is really fascinating to learn about). But, honestly, this book stands on its own, giving the backstory of a certain villain. I loved it, watching the descent into fear and evil of a civilization, all led by one man who swears to heal them from a plague. It makes me crave reading more of these books, or just read more fantasy in general.

5 Stars

  • Elantris (Elantris #1) by Brandon Sanderson (released 2005)
  • The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Volume 1 (The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956 #1-2) by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (released 1973)
  • Heretics by G.K. Chesterton (released 1905)
    • This is a collection of essays centering around people looking down on Christianity, or feeling above religion in general. Honestly, the title of the book is a bit of a misnomer, which is no surprise, considering how Chesterton loves to play on words. I certainly enjoyed some of the essays more than others, but I honestly love the way Chesterton understands the world. He has an understanding of how humanity works and considers things few other authors do.

So, there you have it, and with that I round up my year of reading having read exactly 200 books. That breaks my previous record set in 2017 (I think) of 199 books in one year. It’s exciting!

Have you read any of these books? What are some of your favorite books of 2019? Or this month? Let me know your thoughts down in the comments, follow my blog for more musings and, as always,

Best wishes in your life full of adventure, and Happy New Year!

Madame Writer

4 thoughts on “Reading Wrap-up: December, 2019

  1. That’s a good chunk of books you read in 2019! Yea, the Percy Jackson books don’t mature in the writing, but they are always fun, light reads. I enjoyed them and the Heroes of Olympus and Kane Chronicles. Some good reads.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I definitely plan to read more of the Percy Jackson books, but I was disappointed that they don’t age with the characters. Ah, well. I’ll have to see if I like the other two series too.


  2. Way to go! What a great job you’ve done breaking your own record! I’ve never achieved my goals, not to mention breaking my own records. And again, Happy New Year! More power to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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