What I Read in December

I had ALL these plans of cozy December evenings sitting by the tree reading with light from the fire… and, well, it didn’t happen. The first half of the month was spent cranking through work and then I kind of mentally crashed. The last thing I wanted to do was read. It didn’t help that it took forever for me to get into the book I started around Thanksgiving. (I really need to be better about quitting books if they’re not working out!)

It’s a slightly shorter list this month, but I’ll be back in a few days with my BEST READS OF 2019 recap. I’m really excited about it because I read some excellent books this year!!!

The Giver of Stars


by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This had come very highly recommended. I think it’s a pretty universally loved book. I didn’t know anything about it when I started and it ended up being completely different. It’s about a young woman making her way in Hollywood and then a present-day storyline of her working with a reporter for a magazine story. While I thought the book was super well-written, I ended up feeling like the story was quite… depressing. Very good, but depressing, which I didn’t expect!!

(Please note though, I think I’m in the minority here. Most people that I’ve talked to Loved–With-A-Capital-L this book.)


by Talia Hibbert

I have two completely polarizing opinions of this book. On the surface, I thought this was super cute. Quirky in a refreshing way and funny in a genuine way. I kind of pictured Mindy Kaling starring in this if it was a movie or TV show it had that level of “quirk.” Very typical British Rom-Com novel with an eccentric female character and a good amount of tension between her and the love interest.

There were though… a lot of sex scenes. And I’m generally not opposed to that but these felt excessive at best and gratuitous at worst. They went on forever and were pretty romance-novel-level graphic.

While cute, I was kind of ready for it to end.


by Jojo Meyes

This is the book that took me forever to get through. I will say, if I only read 10 books a year and it normally took a month-ish to get through a book, I would probably like it a lot more. One of my favorite parts of reading though is getting sucked into a book and feeling like I can’t put it down because of incredible writing, or a story so engrossing I get lost in it, or characters that feel like friends. I didn’t have any of those feelings while reading.

This was slow. Interesting concept (based on an actual traveling library set up in rural Kentucky in 1930s), but took a long time for the storyline to pick up. The first 300 pages took me weeks to read and then (finally!) I was hooked and couldn’t put it down. But to trudge through 300 pages just to have a good book didn’t feel worth it.

CONVICTION: 3.9/5 Stars

by Denise Mina

A super quick mystery thriller. If you’re into books like Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train (or any of that genre really), you’ll like this a lot! It was super captivating and clever. It follows a woman whose secret past is brought back to the surface after she listens to a popular podcast. There’s kind of a lot going on and I thought it was hard to follow occasionally, but I really liked the way Denise Mina set the book up… alternating between “reality” and the podcast. I couldn’t wait to get to the bottom of the mystery!

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Was wide awake at 1 am this morning and started Evelyn Hugo. Looks like I picked a winner.


I agree about Evelyn Hugo; though I did ultimately love it, it was pretty dang sad!

Also, I listened to The Giver of Stars on Audible and loved it that way. Maybe it was having someone read it, but I got hooked and couldn’t stop listening! Always love reading what you’re reading!

Jules Buono

I read Evelyn Hugo a few years ago and didn’t expect the story that it became either! That being said, I am in the camp that loved it and it’s one of the books I recommend the most simply because it’s a book everyone likes.


Really want to read 7 Lives. Can’t wait for your roundup post. I really trust your reading recs.

Nicole Perez

I was also not a fan of the giver of stars, especially after having read The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek, which I loved and couldn’t put down. If you didn’t like Meyer’s book, but thought the rural librarians idea was interesting, I’d definitely recommend it.