January 2013 Reading Wrap-Up & February Plans

Posted February 1, 2013 by in Monthly Wrap-ups / 24 Comments


January has come and gone, and that means we have only 59 days left of winter. The calendar may say that the first day of spring is sometime in March, but those of us who live in the northeast know full well that spring doesn’t start until April…at the earliest. Remind me: why is it that humans don’t hibernate? Because that sounds pretty good to me right now. Single digit temperatures and negative wind chills be damned.

Anyway, I read SO MANY books in January. I have never read this many books in one month. I was a READING MACHINE. Most of the books I read were excellent, too. That’s always a plus. Also, I am proud to say that I have become a Fforde Ffangirl. I finally started reading Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next series, and I love it. Laughter abounds. (And some tears…that didn’t really need to be shed…damn you, Colonel Next.)

Fforde Ffangirl buttonEvery Ffangirl & Ffanboy needs a pin, so sj made some on Zazzle.

I will be reading The Well of Lost Plots (Thursday Next #3) in February, as well as the first book in his Nursery Crime series (The Big Over Easy). sj gave me a not-so-subtle nudge and said I should be reading the two series together, so that is what I’m going to do. SO…The Well of Lost Plots, The Big Over Easy, The Fourth Bear, and Something Rotten will be the next Ffour books read, in that order.

Year of Reading Whatever the F*ck I Want bannerYoRWtFIW has its own page, on which I’m keeping track of this year’s list of books I’ve read. Click the banner to check it out.

Now let’s look at some STATS, shall we?

I read TWENTY BOOKS in January. Twenty. That’s a lot of books.

The list:

  • Go Tell It on the Mountain, James Baldwin
  • Carrie, Stephen King
  • Bluebeard’s Egg, Margaret Atwood
  • The Campaign of the Century, Greg Mitchell
  • ‘Salem’s Lot, Stephen King
  • Report from Planet Midnight, Nalo Hopkinson
  • The Wind Through the Keyhole (Dark Tower #4.5), Stephen King
  • Rage, Stephen King
  • The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood
  • Just Kids, Patti Smith
  • The Tell, Hester Kaplan
  • The Eyre Affair (Thursday Next #1), Jasper Fforde
  • Damascus, Joshua Mohr
  • How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Thomas C. Foster
  • Proof of Guilt (Ian Rutledge #15), Charles Todd
  • How to Read Novels Like a Professor, Thomas C. Foster
  • Fight Song, Joshua Mohr
  • The Promise of Stardust, Priscille Sibley
  • Lost in a Good Book (Thursday Next #2), Jasper Fforde
  • A Pretty Mouth, Molly Tanzer

I reviewed the following books read prior to January:

Pages read: 6,636

Pages read in JanuaryThis is an iPhone app called Tally Track. I’m using it to keep track of all kinds of reading stats this year.

I am currently in the middle of three books–Les MisΓ©rables (Victor Hugo), Discipline and Punish (Michel Foucault), and The Black Muslims in America (C. Eric Lincoln). I am really enjoying Les Mis and The Black Muslims in America. Discipline and Punish is interesting, but slow going…very slow going.

Stephen King project buttonWe have a button courtesy of sj and Meg! READ ALL THE SK! Click it to view my list of SK reviews.

sj and I are going strong with our READ ALL THE SK project, and we finally have a button! The original drawing was made by Meg (of Snobbery), and then sj added me into the drawing so we could use it for our project. I have to give her credit…do you know how hard it must have been to draw that Pepsi can??? Holy smokes. I made a separate page for my reviews of Stephen King’s books–you can find it under the “Book Reviews” section in the menu bar, or by clicking on the awesome drawing of me and sj wherever you see it. I’ve also added a Stephen King Project widget to my sidebar so interested parties can keep track of which books we’re reading each month. In February we’ll be reading The Shining, Night Shift, and The Stand. I haven’t read any of them before, so I’m super excited to be doing so this month.

As far as other reading plans for February, I don’t have any (unless I’m forgetting something in my it’s-too-early-to-think-straight morning brain fog). That’s the beauty of YoRWtFIW. I’ll just play it by ear.

Did you read any books in January that you would recommend to others? Leave your suggestions in the comments! Happy reading!


  • Holy batman you were a reading machine in January πŸ™‚ So envious, since my year started out slow – but a lovely slow burn so no complaints here. Hope you have a great Feb. too.

    • There will be much slower months in my year, too. Right now I’m reading to keep from wanting to sleep until April. Escapism in cold weather rules. πŸ™‚

  • therelentlessreader

    Reading machine indeed! Woot woot, way to go hair twin! That SK button makes me feel all happy πŸ™‚

    • Isn’t it a great button?

      Hair twins, unite!

  • sj

    I’m going to write a post today about the things I’m hoping to read this month (as well as maybe finally getting off my butt and finishing my NaNoWriMo project).

    The button STILL makes me giggle, even though it’s been over a year since Meg first drew me.

    I’m so happy I’ve turned you into a Fforde Ffangirl! I really think Nursery Crime is best when read in the context of Thursday Next, I hope you end up agreeing. <3


    • *o/*

      I’m looking forward to seeing what else you plan to read this month.


  • Oh can’t wait to see what you have to say about The Handmaid’s Tale and Go Tell it on the Mountain. I really struggled with Mountain in undergrad and need to revisit it in a few years. I also find Foucault fascinating (yet another fan-boy crush) and have intentions of re-reading his History of Sexuality series, we read a lot of him for both of my degrees! If you get a chance, check out Hallucinating Foucault by Patricia Duncker, it was a beautiful and haunting fictional read about a sexually confused (maybe) character and Foucault and I can’t wait to re-read it too!

    • If I review The Handmaid’s Tale, it will be full of gushing. I love that book.

      I’m struggling with how to review Go Tell It on the Mountain and do it justice. Such beautiful writing.

      I really wanted to read Foucault’s History of Sexuality, but our library doesn’t have it. This one sounded interesting (and it really is), so I borrowed it instead. I will definitely check out Hallucinating Foucault. Thanks!

      • The one you’re reading is very interesting and raises a lot of issues that philosophers are still discussing, the panopticon and the boys schools/prisons is fascinating.

  • You’re going to read The Stand plus 2 other King books, plus all the others in the shortest month of the year? Go you! Of the books I read in January, I’d recommend Christine by Sai King (that was a re-read) and Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists. Yes, an interesting combination.

    • We probably won’t finish The Stand in February, but we’ll at least start it. I remember reading Christine when I was a teenager–I’m looking forward to rereading it and seeing how it has changed for me.

      I will definitely put Click on my wish list. Thanks!

      • Enjoy! The Stand is one of my favorites, especially the unedited/re-edited version.

        With me, I think I was more aware of how much a better writer King became after Christine with this read, but I enjoyed it a lot, anyway. That car still gives me the willies.

        You’re welcome!

  • Wow and wow! And I was so very pleased with myself for reading all of six books in January. πŸ™‚ Are you doing #shineon in February?

    • I’m not reading The Shining officially as a part of the #shineon group, but I’ll probably join the discussion at some point since they’re reading it this month, too.

  • Wowee!!! Good job on 20 books in Jan! I finished Rage yesterday morning and have a post coming out soon. . . but I can’t review the book!!!! I just can’t make myself do it after the newest school shooting. . . so I just heavily chatted up your and SJ’s posts and then spoke about making a difference in the world. . .

    But I’m loving your Read All of SK but you should have an asterisk that notes *including Richard Bachman or something like that!

  • 20! Great job. I’m going to take a look at that tally app.

  • You are a reading machine, lady! I just downloaded the tally app. We’ll see how well I remember to update it each night, though πŸ˜›

    • I’ve gotten in the habit of updating the app after every reading stint. That’s my OCD kicking in. Hahaha!

  • 20 books! Heather that is more than great. I only managed to finish two, with three being read concurrently. I was hoping to see Ashley’s reading list for 2013. πŸ™‚

    • I don’t know if Ashley is keeping track of her reading this year or not–I’ll have to ask her.

  • i LOVE jasper fforde. LOVE.
    so much that I love when other fall in love with him too.

    also, 20 books? ROCK ON.

    • Thanks, Courtney!

      I just finished The Well of Lost Plots, and on some advice from sj I’m going to read the first two books in the Nursery Crime series next. Then I’m going to jump back to the Thursday Next series.

  • Are you a speed reader? Seriously, what’s your secret? I want to know because I can’t seem to read fast enough to devour all I want to read, and still have time for things like eating, exercising, working, friend & family demands, etc! ALso, I read The Eyre Affair in December and really enjoyed it. I write many more reviews in my head than I actually post these days.

    • Well, I’m a “stay-at-home” right now, so that helps A LOT. I get most of my reading done during the day when I have the house to myself, and then a little more at night after the kids have gone to bed. I didn’t read nearly as much when I had a job outside the home.

      I write more reviews in my head, too. Haha!