November Wrap-Up and a Look to December

by Kim on November 30, 2012 · 25 comments

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November has been a very, very slow month of reading, but I did reach my Goodreads goal of reading 100 books on November 19 when I finished Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway. In total, I read three books this month:

  • How the French Invented Love by Marilyn Yalom
  • Born to Run by Christopher McDougall
  • Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway

I think three books is the fewest books I’ve read in a month since I started blogging. Yikes! In general, it’s just been a very busy month, between work and some crocheting projects (to be revealed very soon). I’ve also been making slow progress on two very big books — Bleak House by Charles Dickens on audio book and Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin. A friend and I went to see Lincoln over Thanksgiving, and now I’m feeling even more motivated to finish Team of Rivals, it’s just a giant book!

I’m not sure that December is going to provide much more time for reading, but I’m trying to be optimistic. One of my goals for 2013 is to get more ahead of review copies. This year, and for the last several years, I’ve generally read any review copies during the month that they come out. While this is good for my general book fannishness — I’m reading what’s buzzy when it’s been buzzed about — it’s not great for reviews. Inevitably, it takes me several weeks to write a review and so I feel behind the curve by the time it goes up. So for 2013 I’m going to try and get a month ahead, reading January 2013 books in December 2012.

With that in mind, here are the books that should be on my plate this month (in between chapters of Team of Rivals):

  • Prairie Silence by Melanie Hoffert (Beacon)
  • Wanted Women by Deborah Scroggins (Harper Perennial)
  • Friendfluence by Carlin Flora (Doubleday)
  • The Real Jane Austen by Paula Byrne (Harper)

I’d also like to get to a few of the library books I have out at the moment. I have this terrible habit of checking out books and then never reading them. Right now, I have these few on my shelves that I am very excited about:

  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo (the National Book Award winner for 2012)
  • Where’d You Go, Bernadette? By Maria Semple
  • Waking Up in Eden by Lucinda Fleeson
  • As Texas Goes… by Gail Collins

We’ll see how it goes though; I have such a hard time estimating how much time I will have to read during the holidays. I do a lot of traveling in December and early January, which eats into a lot of my reading and blogging time. If I can get to all four of those review books, plus finish Bleak House and Team of Rivals, I will call this month a win.

What books are you looking forward to reading in December?


{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

diane November 30, 2012 at 6:08 am

November and December are so busy; you did well. Hope you find a nice balance in December.


Amy November 30, 2012 at 7:06 am

I looooooooooooved Where’d You Go, Bernadette. Hope you enjoy it too.


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:12 pm

I hope so too! I have read several fun reviews, and I have a serious weakness for anything epistolary.


Joanna November 30, 2012 at 9:00 am

I only read three books in November too – but for me it’s become the norm! :-)


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:13 pm

My low “norm” was around five or six… three seems off the charts slow. I’m hopeful December will bump back up again.


Nikki Steele November 30, 2012 at 9:13 am

It seems you already hit the year goal — that means a month of sitting back right? ;)
November was a shameful month for me as well (with only 4 books and not all quite books at that), but the time spent with family was well worth it.
I’m hoping to get into my annual re-read of The Secret History this December and some businessey type books to get me ready and rarin’ to get those resolutions at the end of the year.


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:19 pm

Ooo, The Secret History is a very December kind of book. I hope you have time for a re-read this month.


Vasilly November 30, 2012 at 9:47 pm

November wasn’t the best month for me either. I’m hoping December will be better. How’s Team of Rivals so far? I had no idea it was so long. Good luck with your reading.


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:20 pm

Team of Rivals is really, really good. The pages seem to be going by pretty quickly, but since it’s really long it’s slow going. I didn’t know much about Lincoln before reading it, so I’m learning a lot.


softdrink November 30, 2012 at 10:38 pm

It’ll be a miracle if I finish Bleak House. The Count of Monte Cristo has consumed November. And I still have over 500 pages to go!


Amy December 1, 2012 at 7:28 am

Hey, Softdrink, we’ll be reading Bleak House through March 2013. Join us!


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:21 pm

It’s going to take me awhile to listen to Bleak House too. I may have to keep going through March; is that a different read-a-long, Amy?


Amy December 3, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Yeah, there’s a small group over on my blog doing Bleak House according to the original publication schedule, running through the end of March. We’re taking a two-week break at the end of this month. Join us!


Kim December 3, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Excellent, thank you! I am participating in one that was supposed to be November and December, but I don’t think I will finish by then. Maybe I can be caught up to your schedule by the time you finish up your break :)


Amy December 4, 2012 at 6:51 am

Here’s the reading schedule we’re following:

David Abrams December 1, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Don’t be too hard on yourself, Kim. November is a hard month for all of us readers who just want a little quiet time with a book…and instead find ourselves basting turkeys, impatiently listening to Uncle Ned’s “hilarious” story about his psoriasis, and standing in line for an electronic gadget we know will be obsolete two months after Christmas. *sigh* What’s a reader to do?

As for me, what I’m looking forward to reading in December: “Misfit” by Adam Braver, “The Rules of Inheritance” by Claire Bidwell Smith, and–in keeping with my annual tradition–one each by Agatha Christie and Louis L’Amour. Hopefully, Uncle Ned will keep his big yap shut long enough for me to read them.


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:21 pm

It really is! November is such an unexpectedly busy month, it seems. Your December reading sounds fabulous — enjoy!


Jennifer December 1, 2012 at 2:07 pm

November and December have to be the busiest months of least they are for me! I really want to read Behind the Beautiful Forevers, I’ll look forward to hearing what you think about it. The Real Jane Austen? Hmmm..intrigued!


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:22 pm

Behind the Beautiful Forevers is a wonderful, sad, aggravating book. I haven’t quite finished, but even part way through I can see why it’s been so well-recognized.


susan December 2, 2012 at 4:39 pm

How are you liking Team of Rivals? And is it different than the Lincoln movie? I’m also interested in the Maria Semple book you listed. Looks good. cheers.


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:23 pm

I’m liking Team of Rivals a lot. It’s very different from the movie in scope, looking at most of Lincoln’s life and the biographies of his cabinet, while the movie focuses on a very specific time in Lincoln’s presidency. I haven’t gotten to that time in the book yet, so I can’t compare that though.


Emma @ Words And Peace December 2, 2012 at 6:03 pm

yep, sometimes there are not enough hours in a day…
I enjoyed very much your #2, and your #1 is on my TBR, well I’m French, so no surprise.
here is my Nov wrap-up, and my Dec plans:


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:24 pm

Born to Run was such a fun book. I’m glad I finally read it :)


Jessica @ Quirky Bookworm December 3, 2012 at 4:37 pm

I really liked Team of Rivals, but it IS giant. I’m looking forward to some Christmas re-reads!


Kim December 3, 2012 at 8:25 pm

I might try to do some re-reading, or take a break and breeze through a YA series my sister (and, apparently, the rest of the world) loved, Ally Condie’s Matched trilogy.


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