The 2023 season comes to an end. So out comes the yearly book round-up!
I started strong, I even had monthly genre themes, and then I went rogue. Though, I somehow managed to juuuuust get through 45 books before January 1. I was losing hope at the end with my dwindling reading habits but surprised myself the last few weeks.
Without further ado, here is what I read: the highlights, the lows, and the best overall.
The Last Cuentista by Donna Barba Higuera 3.75/5
“The stories we tell ourselves make us who we are.”
The Last Cuentista follows a girl named Petra. The world is coming to an end as a comet hurtles toward the Earth. Only some people are fortunate enough to be getting on the shuttles to the new world. Petra and her family are some of them, but everything is wrong when she wakes up hundreds of years later and is the only person who remembers Earth.
I enjoyed this book and read it in one sitting. I did guess the twist but I had to see her journey through. A fun, but heartbreaking read.
Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith ⅘
“Oh, magic hour, when a child first knows she can read printed words.”
A coming of age novel set at the turn of the century. It follows idealistic Francie Nolen as she grows up in the slums of Williamsburg, from a young girl to a young woman.
This book is heartbreaking and uplifting at the same time. It pulls you in from the beginning and while there are parts in the middle that seems to drag, I really enjoyed it overall
Taliesin by Stephen R. Lawhead 4.5/5
“whatever is done cannot be undone, but whatever is lost can sometimes be found.”
The last shadows of the Roman Empire, the doomed Atlantis, and it all leads to Arthur.
Taliesin is the starting novel of the Pendragon Cycle series It follows Charis the Atlantean princess whose home is fated for discretion and the fabled seer and druid prince Taliesin.
I immediately bought the next book once I finished it. It was a slow start as the author has a lot of world-building to get through but once it did I was thoroughly hooked. Both Charis and Taliesin are interesting characters and it is a great beginning to their tale of Arthurian legend.
The Chalice of the Gods by Rick Riordan 3.5/5
“I am a guy of limited talents. If I can’t kill it with water, a sword, or sarcasm, I am basically defenseless.”
If you know me, you know I’ve loved the Percy Jackson series since I was little. I procrastinated reading this when it came out but I am glad I read it. It felt more like one of the short stories than a full-fledged novel, but I am excited for the next one and more of Percy’s adventures and amazing inner dialogue.
The Oath by Frank E Peretti 3.5/5
The Second Mrs. Astor by Shana Abe 3.5/5
Favorite Irish Legends in Irish and English by Bairbre McCarthy 3/5
Merlin by Stephen R. Lawhead 3.75/5
Shadow by Kara Swanson 3/5
The Starlit Prince by C. F. E. Black 3/5
The Plays of St. Therese of Lisieux 4/5
When you are an elementary teacher you read aloud, and since I was so incredibly behind on my reading goal this year… I decided to supplement. I did technically read them haha
Sideways Stories of Wayside School by Louis Sachar 5/5
If you have never read this I highly recommend picking it up (Though the sequel may be my favorite). Two years in a row now I have read this to my student’s and they LOVE it. My fourth grade teacher read it to us and I remember it being the funniest thing. It still stands the test of time all these years later at being such a kooky and silly book. Laugh out loud, ridiculous.
Froggy Goes to School by Jonathon London
The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig
Franklin’s Bad Day by Paulette Bourgeois
Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson
Night of the Ninjas by Mary Pope Osborne
Olive the Other Reindeer by J. Otto Seibold
Total Books: 45
Total Pages: 13,160
Longest Book: The Oath 656 pages
Worst: Cursed by Marissa Meyer
Top 3: Life of St. Gemma, Taliesin, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Most Surprising: Night of the Ninja’s by Mary Pope Osborne- I was the biggest Magic Tree House Fan when I was little and after finding this book at my grandma’s I decided to read it on the drive home. It took me 15 minutes and I felt like when I was little a lot more happened in each book.
Tell me about what you read this year! And let me know what you think I should add to my reading list for 2024 🙂
Complete List of Books
- The School for Whatnots by Margaret Peterson Haddix
- The Deceivers by Margaret Peterson Haddix
- The Messengers by Margaret Peterson Haddix
- The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner’s Dilemma by Trenton Lee Stewart
- Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button by F. Scott Fitzgerald
- Mr, Popper’s Penguins by Richard Atwater
- Heartless by Marissa Meyer
- Dust by Kara Swanson
- Cursed by Marissa Meyer
- Briarheart by Mercedes Lackey
- Love and Responsibility by JPII
- Life of St. Gemma Galgani by Gemmanus Ruoppolo
- The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
- The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
- Dracula by Bram Stocker
- Are You There God, it’s Me Margaret by Judy Blume
- Cheaper by the Dozen by Frank B Gilberth Jr
- 7 Secrets of the Eucharist by Vinny Flynn
- The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B White
- Murder in an Irish Village by Carlene O’Connor
- Murder at an Irish Wedding by Carlene O’Connor
- Murder in an Irish Churchyard by Carlene O’Connor
- Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple: Complete Short Stories
- The Last Cuentista
- A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Betty Smith
- The Oath by Frank E Peretti
- The Second Mrs. Astor by Shana Abe
- Favorite Irish Legends in Irish and English by Bairbre McCarthy
- Taliesin by Stephen R. Lawhead
- Merlin by Stephen R. Lawhead
- Shadow by Kara Swanson
- The Starlit Prince by C. F. E. Black
- The Chalice of the Gods by Rick Riordan
- The Plays of St. Therese of Lisieux
- Froggy Goes to School by Jonathon London
- The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig
- Sideways Stories of Wayside School by Louis Sachar
- Sideways Stories of Wayside School by Louis Sachar (Read Twice to two different classes)
- Wayside School is Falling Down by Louis Sachar
- Franklin’s Bad Day by Paulette Bourgeois
- Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson
- Night of the Ninjas by Mary Pope Osborne
- Olive the Other Reindeer by J. Otto Seibold