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Archive for January 31st, 2022

As I mentioned earlier in the month when I announced all of my goals for the year, I joined the 2022 Reading Challenge on Goodreads. My goal for this year is 50 books. I completed five books in the month of January, and as of today, I am one book ahead of schedule. Go me!

Even though reading is one of my absolute favorite ways of spending my time, I have to make reading a priority. Therefore, setting a yearly reading goal, adding books to seasonal fun lists, buddy reading with Kelsi, and participating in a book club as well as a daily reading challenge ensure I will not only make time to read daily, but I will also reach my goal on Goodreads.

Chills, Thrills, & Kills Book Club

Kelsi and I formed the Chills, Thrills, & Kills Book Club in the spring of 2021. Our members nominate books each month which Kelsi and I narrow down to four choices; then, everyone votes on a selection.

Our January book was nominated by Rachael and won the majority of the votes. Kelsi asked for nominations that had a wintry vibe to it, and Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident by Donnie Eichar definitely fit the bill. It was our first nonfiction selection, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I gave it 4 stars and had a great time discussing it with my book club. The story captivated my interest immediately. I love a good mystery, especially if it is a true story with unsettling circumstances.

Nine young hikers die in 1959 on a hiking expedition to Otorten Mountain in the Northern Urals of Russia. The author, Donnie Eichar, stumbles upon this riveting case while researching for a scripted film project. He is so captivated by the mysterious case and its eerie circumstances that he ventures all the way from the United States to Russia to determine the true cause of the hikers’ demise that fateful night in 1959.

#Read21in21 Challenge

I know that we are in 2022 and Gretchen Rubin’s #Read21in21 is finished, but I enjoyed this challenge so much last year that I decided to do it again this year and kept the hashtag. Last year, I used the daily challenge to read nonfiction. This year, I am reading Children’s Literature which I adore to a great extent. I read three books this month, all middle grade horror selections, for my daily challenge.

The first book was Haunt by K. R. Alexander. It is a good middle grade ghost story worthy of earning its 3-star rating. It’s a fun and fast read.

The second book was Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh. I love this delightful book which is also a ghost story with lots of suspense and chilling moments mixed with cultural identity and well-developed characters. It is the first book in the series. It was a 5-star read for me.

The third book was Hide and Seeker by Daka Hermon. Another 5-star read for me. It is creepy, suspenseful, and has an awful monster called the Seeker who turns a popular kids’ game into a nightmare.

Year of King

Kelsi and I are spending each month of 2022 reading a novel, novella, or short story written by Stephen King. Afterwards, we will watch the screen adaptation or adaptations, if there is more than one. Each month, we will have a livestream chat to discuss what we read and watched with tidbits about King’s writing process, the actors, and more.

January’s selection was Misery. It was actually a reread and a rewatch for me. However, it had been a good while since I had read or watched Misery, so it was almost like reading it or watching it for the first time with fresh eyes. Also, I am a good bit older than my first experience with the material. Perspectives change and scenes are long forgotten. Kelsi and I chose Misery because the story begins in the winter. In fact, author Paul Sheldon actually crosses paths with the peculiar Annie Wilkes in the midst of a blizzard.

I really, really, enjoyed Misery. It earned a 5-star rating from me. It has so many awesome scenes in both the novel and movie. Anyone who is a horror fan and has not yet read Misery, should definitely give it a whirl along with watching the movie. James Caan does a terrific job in the role as Paul Sheldon, and Kathy Bates does an outstanding job as Annie Wilkes. Bates’s portrayal of Paul’s number one fan earned her an Oscar. Kelsi and I had an absolute blast chatting about Misery. If you were unable to watch us live on 23 January, dear reader, you can check out the recording on Kelsi’s YouTube channel (see below).

That’s a wrap of the books I read this month. I think January was a fairly productive reading month for me. I am currently reading Small Spaces by Katherine Arden for #Read21in21. My book club selection for February is Gerald’s Game by Stephen King. It also happens to be the novel Kelsi and I are reading for Year of King in February. I know, I know, we are double dipping. However, it did get the majority of the votes in our poll. And yes…Kelsi and I nominated it. To see my current book reviews or books I have read, follow me on Goodreads at Katherine Loyacano. Happiness!

“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” ~ Richard Steele

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