In March, I got two of my most anticipated sequels of 2022: Sarah J. Maas’ second book in the Crescent City series, House of Sky & Breath, AND Bridgerton Season 2. Despite being consumed by both SJM and Bridgerton (when I watched last weekend, I did manage to finish 2 books while consuming the second season), I still read a total of 11 books in March. I am loving my reading progress this year, as I have read 39 books so far! Today, I’ll be sharing the books I read in March, my Bridgerton Season 2 thoughts, and reshare what I wrote this month.
I started this month with some poetry, then transitioned to the massive beast that is House of Sky & Breath, and made my way back to my usual romance self. My favorites this month were The Viscount Who Loved Me (Bridgerton #2) by Julia Quinn, If You Ask Me by Libby Huscher, The Unsinkable Greta James by Jennifer E. Smith, and In a New York Minute by Kate Spencer. My absolute favorite though was One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle!
Before the Ever After by Jacqueline Woodson | 4/5 Stars
unlock your storybook heart by amanda lovelace | 4/5
House of Sky & Breath (Crescent City #2) by Sarah J. Maas | 4.5/5
It’s no secret that I am an avid library patron. Having read 120+ books a year (for the past three years at least), it just would not be financially feasible (aka possible) for me to buy every single book that I read. I’ve been super fortunate throughout my blogging ‘career’ – sidenote that February/March is my five year anniversary of book blogging?!? – to receive so many books for review from publishers and I tend to buy more books than my past self would, but regardless, at least half, if not more, of my reading comes from the library. Out of the 32 books that I’ve read at the time of reading this post in 2022, 21 have been borrowed from the library. I’m super fortunate that I have two local branches of my county library system close to my home AND that even if one of the branches doesn’t have a specific book that I’m looking for, I can put it on hold from another branch.
For today’s post, I’m going to be sharing the books I currently have on hold from the library. The majority, if not all, are either new releases or upcoming books. I try to put anticipated books on hold as early as possible so I can be one of the first to have it when it comes in – I have noticed that likely due to supply chain demands that new releases can take weeks past their release date to come into the library system. And knowing my luck, all of these books will come in at the same time, but at least I’ll be busy reading!
Do you use the library? Have you read any books that I’ve listed here? Any on your TBR? Share in the comments!
There’s so many books that I’ve read recently AND books that I plan on reading that I want to talk about today! I’ll be sharing some mini reviews on 4 recent books that I’ve read and 4 books I have on my March 2022 TBR (plus some anticipated releases on my library holds list!)
What I’ve Recently Read
Finlay Donovan Knocks ‘Em Dead (Finlay Donovan #2) by Elle Cosimano –Finlay Donovan Is Killing It was one of my favorite books of 2021 & I just reread the first book in time for the sequel, Finlay Donovan Knocks ‘Em Dead. I don’t want to give spoilers for either book, but I really enjoyed how the plot built upon and connected back to the first book – and still managed to make me laugh throughout! I need the third book ASAP! My Rating: 5/5 Stars
February was another great reading month, having read so many good books and 12 total (one of them being the 800+ page beast that was my reread of House of Earth & Blood). I’m so happy with how much I’ve read so far in 2022, and hope I continue this reading energy throughout the year!
I read a total of 12 books this month, with 2 rereads – Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano and House of Earth & Blood by Sarah J. Maas. The Finlay Donovan series has become of my favorites, & I loved being back in the world of SJM with my Crescent City reread. I plan on reading House of Sky & Breath soon! I kept up with my YA mystery/thriller kick by finishing the A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder series – I don’t have reviews for this trilogy but its become one of my new favorite YA series. The third & final book, As Good as Dead, was so dark & twisty, I’m still thinking about it.
My gems from this month include Running Wild by K.A. Tucker (I need more Marie & Tyler), When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord, and I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys. I also read BookTok fave Reminders of Him and it’s become one of my favorite Colleen Hoover books.
Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano (reread) | 5/5
New Kid by Jerry Craft | 4/5
When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord | 5/5
Good Girl, Bad Blood (A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder #2) by Holly Jackson | 4.5/5
As Good as Dead (A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder #3) by Holly Jackson | 4.5/5
This month has been the BEST January of reading that I’ve ever had. January usually signals the end of winter break and the start of a new spring semester for me, aka my reading life taking a dip, but I am SO enjoying the free time that has come with post college life… and yes, I am prioritizing reading in my free time after work vs. scrolling on my phone and watching TV — on TV, I also feel like lately I find maybe 1 TV show a month I’m obsessed with, binge it in a handful of days (and yes, you’ll find out the show I’m talking about below), and then feel meh about any other TV I watch.
I read a total of 15 books in January and I either really enjoyed or LOVED all of them. I also spent the past two weekends starting a book on Friday night or early Saturday morning and then having it finished by Saturday night… and then starting another in between/after doing my weekly school prep on Sundays. I don’t even finding myself pressuring to read or thinking about any annual reading challenges, as I genuinely just want to be reading & hope to keep this motivation up!
This month was about getting to some backlist books I’ve had on my TBR, a new release from a favorite author, some ARCs, and the start of an unexpected YA kick. Weather Girl by Rachel Lynn Solomon was my favorite book of the month, always loving any adult contemporary romance or YA book that Rachel Lynn Solomon writes. I attended Matzah Book Soup’s book club meeting with Rachel yesterday afternoon and it was so fun learning more about the book & her upcoming releases. I read both Denise Williams’ The Fastest Way to Fall & How to Fail at Flirting – I enjoyed The Fastest Way to Fall the most out of the two & I attended BBBC’s virtual meet with Denise Williams. I FINALLY picked up my copy of Erin Hahn’s Never Saw You Coming (this was one of my most anticipated YA releases of 2021), and reread my favorite book of hers, More Than Maybe, before picking the former up.
The books I was the most obsessed with below include The Boys Club by Erica Katz, Wish You Were by Jodi Picoult, & Very Bad People by Kit Frick. I’m so glad I finally read Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down, definitely one of the most powerful books I’ve read and one with an ending I’m still thinking about. I’ve mentioned before that 2021 was exactly the year of YA books for me, reading way more contemporary romance than YA, but I found myself picking up so much YA this month, including some of the books I’ve mentioned & specifically, All the Right Reasons, If This Gets Out, and A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder.
I love starting the new year off on the blog with a final recap on my previous year reading with the End of Year Book Survey, created by Jamie of The Perpetual Page-Turner. This survey takes an in-depth look at some of my favorite (and not-so favorite) books of the year, books I’m excited about in 2022, and blogging life in general.
2021 Reading Stats
Number of Books You Read: 162 Books ; 3 Novellas
Number of Re-Reads: 4
Genre You Read the Most From: Contemporary/Contemporary Romance
Best Book You Read in 2021: Tie between People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry and The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t? Mom Jeans & Other Mistakes by Alexa Martin
Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
Good Way:Rush by Lisa Patton – was way more addicted to this book than expected
Bad Way: Controversial opinion time! – From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)? Can I count the fact that I made my friends watch Bridgerton (The Duke & I by Julia Quinn) on Netflix??
Best series you started in 2020? Best Sequel? Best Series Ender of 2020?
Best series started: Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano
December was a mix of hectic times and relaxing times. My New Year’s Eve plans with friends have unfortunately been cancelled again this year, but I am actually looking forward to staying in with my family, watching some movies, and maybe finishing another book before midnight. I did my most amount of reading in December since the summer, as of right now having read 13 books and 1 novella. Over the past week or so, it’s been super nice to unplug from work and the screen and just dive into reading & relaxing. I’ve included some of my thoughts on the books I read this month – so many must reads!
I read a few holiday books this month, like Jenny Bayliss’ A Season for Second Chances (very cozy & cute) and Kara McDowell’s One Way or Another – this one is in my classroom library, and one of my students recently loved it, so I wanted to give it a read to). My favorite holiday read of the month was definitely Jean Meltzer’s Hanukkah inspired romance, The Matzah Ball. I remembered the day after Christmas that Rainbow Rowell’s e-novella following Reagan from Fangirl is available for free. The novella is also Christmas-themed, set in 2020 and 2021. There was a lot of covid/pandemic talk involved, but I loved being in the Fangirl world and loved Reagan’s banter & personality . I also read Elin Hildebrand’s entire Winter Street series in December, her holiday/Christmas series set on Nantucket. I wouldn’t necessarily say that they’re my favorite Elin Hilderbrand books, but they all had such a binge-worthy & cozy quality.
I also finally read the first book in the Bridgerton series. I found myself rewatching season 1 this month, and I think I’m going to continue on with the book series closer to season 2’s March 25th release on Netflix!I also found myself reading some adult fiction picks and was heavily addicted to them, specifically Lisa Patton’s Rush (following a fictional sorority at Ole Miss) and Minor Dramas and Other Catastrophes by Kathleen West (following a high school English and a stay-at-home mom caught in school scandals).
The Matzah Ball by Jean Meltzer | 4.5/5 Stars
The Winter Street series by Elin Hilderbrand: Winter Street, Winter Stroll, Winter Storms, & Winter Solstice | Overall Series Rating: 4/5 Stars
Today, I’m back with my third & final favorite books post for 2021! I read so many fantastic books this year that didn’t (necessarily) fall into contemporary romance or Young-Adult, like non-fiction, contemporary (some with a thriller or mystery twist), & of course, the adult fantasy that everyone read this year (aka Sarah J.Maas). I’m going to use a little bit different of a style for this favorites post by just sharing the covers & listing my ABSOLUTE favorites.
It’s time for one of my favorite posts of the year: my annual favorite contemporary romance list! Whether you’ve been following me for a short time or my near five (!!!) years of blogging (my five year anniversary of Fangirl Fury is in February!), you know that I am a huge contemporary reader, with most of my focus on contemporary romance. Today I’m going to be sharing my FAVORITE contemporary romance reads of the year and my honorable mentions. There’s a chance I may do some re-reading this month to decide my #1 pick, but you’ll find out below which two books were my absolute favorites – instead of building anticipation, I decided to just list them at the top!
The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
The Love Hypothesis completely blew up and is still deservedly doing so and the hype is 110% worth the hype. As a Star Wars fan, I loved the Kylo Ren & Rey inspiration (look at the cover alone!) and this book nailed every single element. I loved the academic premise and slight enemies-to-lovers trope.
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
Yes, Emily Henry’s People We Meet on Vacation is tied with The Love Hypothesis as my FAVORITE book of 2021. There’s something that just clicks with me and Emily Henry’s writing style right from the get-go that makes me know that I’m going to love the book. I don’t read too many best friends-to-lovers romances. Poppy and Alex’s dynamic was so pure and funny, and I love the story-telling, alternating between their current vacation gone-wrong and their past trips together. And I’ve heard from early reviewers & Taylor Jenkins Reid’s advance blurb that Emily Henry’s 2022 release, Book Lovers, is her best yet.
And just like that, it’s time to share my five star prediction results for2021. Each January, I look at my most anticipated releases lists and predict which books I believe I will rate 5 out of 5 stars. My picks are usually based on my books whose authors are some of my all-time FAVES, a highly, highly anticipated sequel, or an author whose previous book I loved. And like nearly every time I make my five star predictions, there’s a book or two that I haven’t quite read yet. Out of the 7 books I predicted, I read 6/7 (the only one I didn’t get to is Kelsey Rodkey’s Last Chance Books). I’ve separated this post into my correct predictions & not-so correct predictions.
If you’re interested, here’s my Five Star Prediction Results for2020 & 2019.
My Correct Predictions
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry – Like most readers, Emily Henry’s contemporary romances are PERFECTION. I still don’t know which Emily Henry contemporary romance I prefer, Beach Read or People We Meet on Vacation, but I still think about the banter between PWMOV’s leads, Alex & Poppy. The setting, the friendship, the plot, and the romance were again, pure perfection. Slight spoiler alert for my favorite posts of 2021, but People We Meet on Vacation is a contender for my #1 favorite book of 2021.