Here we are, a full week into February already! I can’t believe how quickly the weeks are flying by in 2018. January was a great month for me. I took on a couple of new book projects (more to come on those later!) and I read some great books. My February reading is also off to a great start with a debut novel from a talented author that is turning out to be a wonderful young adult fantasy read. Added bonus: I’m reading it from sunny Arizona, getting a much needed break from winter in the northeast. In today’s post, I will recap my January reads and share my reading plans for February, all while sending sunny vibes your way!
All the Beautiful Girls by Elizabeth J. Church
I kicked off the new year with this new read set largely in 1960’s Las Vegas. This was a great story about survival and finding your way. The main character, Ruby, is one I loved but also wanted to smack some sense into at times! But I also found myself sympathizing with her and cheering for her. That, my friends, is a beautifully written, wonderfully flawed character. I really enjoyed this book!
The Ghosts & Jamal by Bridget Blankley
I was fortunate enough to receive an early copy of this new read, which I found that I couldn’t put down. Jamal is a young boy living in rural Nigeria. He is treated as an outcast because his family and village don’t understand his epilepsy. They think he is plagued with evil spirits. When his village is attacked by terrorists, Jamal finds himself the sole survivor on a journey to find help. I really couldn’t stop reading this once I started, and the ending was very powerful. I highly recommend this new read!
Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers (Book Bucket List)
I was very excited about this January pick from my Book Bucket List. If you don’t know what a Book Bucket List is, you can read about it here. Like so many others, I was initially introduced to Mary Poppins in the Disney film. But the film was based on the books by P.L. Travers. It is a series of books, but I have only read the first one so far. While there were some differences between the book and movie versions of the story, I did feel that the movie stuck pretty closely to the book. I enjoyed reading this, and it felt good to read a book that “I’ve been meaning to read forever.”
These books are two new releases from Neem Tree Press, a publisher of international fiction in translation in the UK. I enjoyed both of these books. They are each told through a unique voice – Code Name Butterfly by Ahlam Bsharat is the story of a young Palestinian girl living in occupied Palestine with her family, and Toletis by Rafa Ruiz is the story of a young boy determined to bring trees back to his town that has been invaded by a road. They are both thought-provoking reads, told through innocent voices that prove you are never too young to be bold, to learn something new, or to make a difference.
The biggest highlight of January for me was the release of my first children’s book from Cavendish Square Publishing. Civic Values: Property Rights is part of a nonfiction series on Civic Values for grades 2-4. I am very proud to be a part of this project!
February Reading Plans:
I have kicked off my February reading with Esme’s Wish by Elizabeth Foster. Esme is a teenage girl whose mother was lost at sea…or was she? Determined to find out what really happened to her mother, Esme sets off on an adventure to another world. So far, this book is shaping up to be the fantasy adventure that it promised to be. I am intrigued by it and enjoying it!
My February Book Bucket List pick is A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. With the Disney movie version releasing next month, I thought it was time to reread this book from my childhood and revisit the story. It has been at least twenty years since I’ve read this book, and I’ve been meaning to give it a good reread for some time. Look for my review later this month!
It’s never too early to start thinking Spring! I don’t know about you but by the end of January, I’m over winter and ready for flowers and chirping birds! I have several reviews of new and upcoming Spring releases planned over the next few months, including The Italian Party by Christina Lynch, My Lady’s Choosing: An Interactive Romance Novel by Kitty Curran, Limelight by Amy Poeppel, and The Other Lady Vanishes by Amanda Quick. Stay tuned to the blog for these reviews and others!
Up Next: My review of Elizabeth Foster’s debut novel Esme’s Wish! Subscribe to the blog or sign up with your email here so you don’t miss out!