quick lit – next page, please {january 2021}

One of the things that I would like to do in 2021 is not waste time “doom-scrolling” and then numbing out to Netflix and Rise of Kingdoms (a game on my iPhone), so this January I was intentional about picking up a book and reading it instead of defaulting to my 2020 preferences.  

Thanks to the classes currently underway in the Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club, I set two main reading intentions this year.  

  1. To continue experiencing new things via reading, discovering a good mix of genres for me.  Last year, I delved into audio books.  This month, I read sci-fi.
  2. To read some of the books on my Unread Shelf – these are books that I own (physical or digital) that I haven’t read.  I have too many for my preference.

Let’s see how I did in the first month of the year.


  • The Late Bloomer’s Club by Louise Miller. This was January’s pick for the Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club.  It was cute and cozy and I liked the ending.
  • Our Lady of Perpetual Hunger by Lisa Donovan. I named this one of my Best Books of 2020. You can listen to me gush about this on a recent episode of What Should I Read Next, Episode 268 (I start up around the 9:17).  At the time of that recording, I had not finished this and to be honest, I was scared to, afraid that it wouldn’t end on the high that I had been riding the whole time.  It did.  I’m so glad. 
  • Transcendent Kingdom Ya Gyasi. I started this one last year but found myself struggling. It’s not my typical read.  Then Chelsey, a fellow team member and cohost of The Novel Pairings podcast, remarked in the same aforementioned What Should I Read Next episode that she read this like it was a memoir and not a novel.  I read a lot of memoir so I decided to give that mindset a go. It worked. I finished.  Yay!
  • The New Corner Office by Laura Vanderkam. One of my goals is to work through my half-finished reads this year and get them off my Unread Shelf.  This was one of those. I listen to Laura’s podcast, The Corner Office, that has similar content but I wanted to finish this quick read.  I did.  This is a Kindle exclusive. You can check it out here.
  • Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes. This was the flight pick for the MMD Book Club in January. And it did go nicely with The Late Bloomer’s Club.  Cute and  cozy; it was also a pleasant read. 
  • The Confident Woman by Joyce Meyers. I am working on my confidence this year and saw this on my shelf.  Pulled it out and read it in the mornings. Another off of my Unread Shelf. 
  • The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers. My team member, Brenna, recommended this during the same podcast, mentioned above. Her description sent me scurrying for my library website to place a hold.  I don’t read sci-fi/fantasy normally so it was hard to get into. It took a while to become acclimated to the unfamiliar world. But, since I was doing it as a #buddyread with my other team member, Donna of I am Your Rabbit fame, I persevered and by 48% in, I was hooked.  This is the first in a four book series.  Book 2 is currently sitting on my nightstand.
  • Bookshop Memories by George Orwell. This is actually an essay that was published in 1936 but Goodreads counts it as a book and so will I. You can read the essay here.
  • The Kindest Lie by Nancy Johnson. Thanks to William Morrow for the advanced reader’s copy of this one.  This is not my usual jam but if you like a novel that explores class, racism, and a complicated family history, this will be your jam and is worthy of your attention. 
  • The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict. This is the current pick for the Rocket City Mom Virtual Book Club. 

So, in total, I read 10 books. To be fair, I had started 4 of them in 2020 but Goodreads counts the dates that they are finished and so I will too.  I also read 4 books from my Unread Shelf and if I wasn’t intentionally making an effort, those 4 books would still be sitting on my Unread shelf so I am very pleased with this progress.  

As usual, I am linking up to Anne Bogel’s Quick Lit post and if you are here because of her, thank you.  

Also, quick question, do you guys like to know what I am currently reading in this post or is the round-up of what I read last month sufficient?

Thanks for being here and as Anne would say, “happy reading”.

…enjoy life

12 thoughts on “quick lit – next page, please {january 2021}

  1. 'Becca says:

    Wow, that is a great variety of books–and I haven’t read ANY of them myself! I am currently reading The Color of Water by James McBride and just loving this memoir of one unique American family; it’s about his mother in particular, but he ties in lots of stories about himself and his extended family as well. His mother was an Orthodox Jew who immigrated from Poland, left her abusive family, became a Christian, married two Black men (one at a time), and had 12 kids, and that summary does not begin to describe her personality!

    I’ll be reviewing that after I finish it. Here are my most recent reviews, illustrated with the photo of all the books I got for Christmas! A few years ago, I included a photo of my new books in my January post and then as I finished reading them, I went back and put in links to the reviews. That worked well for giving me a sense of motivation and accomplishment, and getting readers to click through, so I’m doing it again this year.

  2. Lis Moriarty says:

    What a fantastic reading month! I’m also trying to be more mindlful and putting down my phone and reading more.
    The Kindest Lie sounds so good – those topics are ones I definitely read frequently in novels. Also how brilliant to read “Transcendent Kingdom” as a memoir – I love Yaa Gyaasi’s writing and recently attended a virtual talk she did through our local library and am always struck by how much Transcendent Kingdom could have been a memoir but wasn’t, she’s just an incredible writer.

    PS I always enjoy hearing what people are currently reading – I’m all about ‘in progress thoughts’ as much as completed ones.

    Here’s my Quick Lit for the month if you’d like to go check it out – https://www.everyoneslibrarian.com/blog/quick-lit-february-2021

  3. Margaret says:

    That’s a good haul for January! It’s interesting how Goodreads will classify some long forms as books. Same with MLKs Letter from Byham Jail.
    Brenna can get me out my comfort zone every time. Now I have to look at that sci fi!

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