January Reflection

Lots of people go mad in January. Not as many as in May, of course. Nor June. But January is your third most common month for madness.

Karen Joy Fowler

I’m one of those lucky people whose college semester didn’t start until January 22nd, so even after I ended up taking on a five-day remote externship in the last week of winter break, I had plenty of time to read, plan and write and schedule blog content, and even (briefly and half-heartedly) contemplate getting ahead on organic chemistry so that this second semester isn’t as torturous as the first. I even did my first readathon, #24in48!

But now I’m back at school and my semester is mostly in full swing, so I’ll have a lot less time to sit around staring at my stats or changing the font on every tab of my planning spreadsheet. Though hopefully I’ll still be getting through a decent number of books and posting consistently — I’ve planned out my reading order and posting schedule, so the trick will really just be prewriting and sticking to it as best I can.

Also, a quick plug: Cami, Sam, Ruby, Clo, DB & I have been hard at work on a writers support group! If you’re interested in consulting people from different backgrounds (culture, ethnicity, sexuality, etc.), being/finding a beta or sensitivity reader, and just generally talking to other writers, you can message any of us to be added to the Discord.

This post is kind of long because I’m still figuring out what exactly I want to include in these monthly wrap-ups, so by all means feel free to pick and choose the sections that interest you. I won’t know unless you tell me (please don’t tell me). 😉 



26 total, 3.38 average rating

DNFs (7)

Top [new] read of the month: The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton


As is always the case, there are so many awesome books set to be released in February! This list is not meant to be comprehensive, but instead consists of the titles I’m most excited about — and there’s a lot of them. (My Beat the Backlist Challenge is sulking in a corner at the moment.)

ARCs I Have

TBR After Release


As I mentioned in my Birthday Book Tag, I got tickets to Maggie Stiefvater’s Portraits & Dreams Writing Seminar in Brooklyn! She’s one of my all-time favorites — both as an author and as a human person — and I’m so excited to hear her talk about the writing process. (And besides, what’s the point of going to college on the East Coast if you don’t take a day trip to NYC every once in a while?)

Lunar New Year also falls in February this year. The Year of the Pig/Boar starts on the 5th; I was always taught that the holiday traditionally lasts 15 days, but the biggest celebrations are the first 3 days, and people don’t usually get more than 7 days off. I’m an out-of-state college student so I won’t be able to spend any of the holiday with my family, but I’m lucky to have lots of Asian-American friends and books from Asian authors to celebrate with! #YearOfTheAsian

Speaking of reading challenges, by the time this post goes up I’ll hopefully have updated my original post to reflect my January progress and set some goals for February, so feel free to take a peek if you’re curious! (Beat the Backlist may take a backseat next month while I try to catch up on all my new and old review copies, but I’ve been catching myself mood-reading lately so we’ll see how it goes.)


What’s the best book you read in January? Did you read any of the releases that came out in January, or ARCs of February/March releases? Have you set any goals for February?

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31 thoughts on “January Reflection

  1. You’ve got this, Isabelle! Kick organic chemistry into the bucket! I got taught the same thing as well about the Lunar New Year – 15 days is how long it lasts, the first three days are important with all the hoopla and I think depending on the region, there are a few important days before the holiday?

    I just finished Last of Her Name, though, but I have Crown of Feathers and Pretend She’s Here as well that I’m currently or about to start reading. Plus there are a few other books in March that I don’t remember off the top of my head…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks Soph! 💖

      my family’s not super traditional so I just go off of what they told me in Chinese school (and Asian dramas, tbh) ¯_(ツ)_/¯

      and yup, there’s so many hyped books coming out every month this year – it’s almost a full-time job just keeping up with them all 👀📚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am doing a Read The World Challenge, and I would say my favorite book from last month was The Rent Collector. (a book from Cambodia). Well that and The Fifth Gospel (Vatican City). Toss up!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I realized that I’m very behind on books that are actually coming out in this decade let alone this year, so I think I may need to up my game, looks like you’ve made some great progress and I’m glad to hear you all are starting a writing support group!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yay for being able to make the most of your holiday time! You do such a good job with blog commenting and posting a lot that I am in awe and kind of want to learn from you. I also want to learn from you to know how you managed to read so much. 26 books DD: Such an amazing amount. I am glad you could really enjoy some rereads in there as well. I hope you will have a fabulous February even though you are back at university as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ouh I quite like that quote, aha !
    Oh wow lucky you to have spent most of the January relaxing ! I hope you the best with blogging and college xx Scheduling posts truly is a godsent! Use it wisely, and however much you can !

    Wow, lots read indeed ! A fairly good number you enjoyed too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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