Follow along with my 2023 reading list! I’ll list all the books I read (along with a short commentary) after I’ve read them. If I write a longer review, I’ll link to it. I’ll also keep some quick stats at the top of this list. To quickly get to books with certain star ratings, click on the links below.

2023 Reading List Updated as of February 19, 2023

Number of Books Read: 9
Fiction: 6
Non-Fiction: 3
5 Stars: 3
4 Stars: 6


5 Stars

Books where I was thoroughly engrossed, transported to a different place while reading, couldn’t stop reading because I was enjoying myself so much, or just wanted to shove this book into everyone’s hand and say “READ THIS!”

A Heart That Works by Rob Delaney

Finished January 2023

Thoughts to come…

Corruptible: Who Gets Power and How It Change Us by Brian Klass

Finished January 2023

Thoughts to come…

The Subtle Knife: His Dark Materials #2The Subtle Knife: His Dark Materials Book 2 by Philip Pullman

Finished January 2023

I instantly fell in love with this series when I listened to The Golden Compass last year. This book expanded and widened (literally) Lyra’s world and introduces a new important character (Will). This series is just magical, and I cannot state enough how much I enjoy it. I also recommend listening to it on audio as it has a full cast that makes the book come alive. I’ve started watching the HBO series, but I’m trying to finish the book series first. I’ll definitely be writing a full review of the series once I’m done.


4 Stars

Books I really enjoyed and would highly recommend. They might miss out on 5 stars for some reason—either because I often resist giving 5 stars to books in certain genres (like thrillers or romances) or there was something about the book that kept me from loving it.

The House on the Cerulean Sea by TJ KluneThe House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

Finished  February 2023

I kept seeing this book all over the place, so I decided to check it out. I knew nothing about it going in, and I’m so glad I didn’t because it was a delightful surprise! It was like biting into a some unknown food and finding out that it tastes like chocolate! (I love chocolate, by the way.) Anyway, this book has a lot of whimsy (such as a variety of magical beings) but also has an important message of tolerance that I wish everyone would take the time to hear. There is also a narrator who experiences an awakening to the joys and possibilities of life and love. To be honest, I just wanted to live in this world, in that house, and be a part of everything in the story. If you like fanciful stories that also have a sense of humor and whimsy, this book for you! After all, it isn’t everyday that an author can make the Antichrist an endearing and lovable character. (Yes … you read that right. Just go with it.) Read this book with an open heart and an open mind and you’ll be rewarded.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John MandelSea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

Finished February 2023

I absolutely ADORE time travel books, and Sea of Tranquility was a super creative version of one. I read this with my book club, and most of us really enjoyed it. The book is like a puzzle: you keep putting pieces together and don’t see the full picture until it is all finished. Several of us remarked that we wanted to read the book again immediately after finishing it to go back and see everything from a new angle now that we knew what was happening. It was a fun and interesting book that keeps you wondering and confused for a bit until things start to come into focus. I love when authors “play” with me like this. So satisfying! I was also surprised to find out that this book features characters from The Glass Hotel, the author’s previous book. (I actually wasn’t a super fan of that book but felt like reading it again after reading this book. In fact, one of our book club members did exactly that. Who knows? Maybe there are characters from Station Eleven in this book as well–it has been so long since I read that book that I can’t remember.) Anyway, this was a super satisfying sci-fi, time travel book by an author who can write like nobody’s business. Highly recommended!

Am I Overthinking This by Michelle RialAm I Overthinking This? Over-Answering Life’s Questions in 101 Charts by Michelle Rial

Finished January 2023

This is one of those books that I enjoyed immensely, but I cannot really recommend buying it because I read it in about a half hour while eating my lunch. I also don’t think I’ll go back and wish I could read it again. (I borrowed it from the library.) The book contains creative charts that answer whether the author is, indeed, overthinking things. For example, one chart asks “Has Anyone Seen My Sunglasses?,” and the related chart uses a top-down shot of a pair of sunglasses to serve as the visual for the chart. This is a visual book (each page is a new chart) that is entertaining and fun to look at. I admire the author’s creativity. However, I just can’t justify spending money on an actual printed copy.

The Appeal by Janice HallettThe Appeal by Janice Hallett

Finished January 2023

This was super fun to read! Essentially, this is a murder mystery where the reader acts as the detective. The book itself is composed of copies of emails, letters, police statements, and texts that present the “case” that two junior investigators are being asked to solve using the “evidence” presented via the emails, letters, etc. As the reader, you also get to see the texts between the investigators as they hash out the issues of the case. You don’t even know who is murdered until halfway through the book, but you’re pretty much able to predict it based on reading the emails. I enjoyed the unique format of this book and seeing whether I could figure stuff out. I was definitely on the right track, but I felt that the author kept back some critical information until the very end of the book to point you in the right direction. Who knows … maybe more astute readers than me didn’t need those kinds of extra clues. Regardless, The Appeal is a fun spin on a murder mystery, and I recommend giving it a try to see how good your powers of deduction are.

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik BackmanA Man Called Ove by Frederik Backman

Finished January 2023

Well, after reading three other books by the author and finding them kind of annoying (Anxious People, Britt-Marie Was Here, and Things My Son Needs to Know About the World), I finally enjoyed a Frederik Backman book! Maybe I’m getting used to his style or I was just more receptive this time around, but I wasn’t as annoyed with this book. This author definitely has a unique writing style that will either drive you up a wall or make you fall in love. I was more in the “drive you up a wall” camp until I read this book. (I kept trying because many people I know and respect REALLY like this author.) Perhaps this is his best book (it is one of the best known) or perhaps I just adjusted to his style, but I found this one sweet and kind of heart-warming.

Gallant by VE SchwabGallant by V.E. Schwab

Finished January 2023

This was book club read. I rather enjoyed it, but you need to give yourself over to the atmosphere and supernatural aspects of the book. The book includes multiple pictures that are important to the story so it may work better in print or on an e-reader than on audio. Not everyone will be a fan of this book, but I kind of enjoyed it. It would be good book to read in October during “spooky” season.


3 Stars

Books that I thought were just OK. Thrillers tend to get this rating because I enjoy them while reading but find them utterly forgettable. This is my equivalent of “meh.”

My reviews will go here…


2 Stars

This is for books that actively annoyed me or I couldn’t finish because I was slogging through it.

My reviews will go here…


1 Star

I tend to be generous and give books at least 2 stars but if I’m actively hating or miserable while reading, then I give them 1 star.

My reviews will go here…