I’m sorry to say, but this is the last Indie Books Challenge post. I’ve decided to take up a new challenge next year, so this is the end of my focus on indie reads. In a little over a week, next Monday, I’ll be posting about my 2022 challenge.
For my personal Indie Books Challenge, I’ve decided to try to have at least half of all the books I read in a month be by an indie author or published by an indie publishing house, which I’m broadly defining as not published by one of the Big 5 because doing otherwise would break my already exhausted brain. So, how did I do in December?
I read 8 books and only 1 was an indie book. I’m quite sad about this considering this is the end of my Indie Books Challenge, but I had to get a move on with the books releasing in January and I had a couple others that have been sitting for a bit that I needed to get to before my guilt at not getting to them ate me up.
The Indie Book
I started Lucky King by Bruce Griffin Henderson in November and finished it up in December. It’s a fictional book following an ensemble cast in NYC about one year after 9/11. Some of the story lines were more interesting than others and some, well, I couldn’t quite figure out why they had been included, but I did really love the way the book wrapped up. It was a bit of a tiresome read, but the end really made up for it.
The Books from the Big 5
The Liar’s Knot by M.A. Carrick was the first one I picked up in December, just before it was published, and I’m grateful to the publisher for a physical copy, which arrived right around the time I got my COVID booster and spent a number of days dealing with side effects so it was a good week before I was able to crack it open. And then both my kids were wrapping up school for the year and that kept me busy so I ended up taking almost 3 weeks to finish this one. But I really enjoyed it, especially the last half. Definitely a knotted read!
I read 30 Things I Love About Myself by Radhika Sanghani at the same time I was reading The Liar’s Knot. This was a fun women’s fiction read about a 30 year old Indian woman living in the UK learning to love herself after spending her 30th birthday in jail. I loved how realistic it was with so many ups and downs, but it also felt a little long sometimes.
I followed that with Bad Luck Bridesmaid by Alison Rose Greenberg, which ended up being more disappointing. It’s women’s fiction, but is so wrapped up in romance that I didn’t remember that until the end when it kind of hit me over the top of my head. The description had me thinking rom-com, but it was anything but. Instead, I felt like I wandered a little too much in the main character’s head and memories.
A Practical Guide to Conquering the World by K.J. Parker was a much needed return to fantasy. This is the third in The Siege trilogy, but I’ve only previously read the second. It serves well enough as a standalone, but I think the second book was more interesting to me. I did like that this one emphasized the importance of learning from books, but it just felt too tongue-in-cheek to me and I didn’t actually like the narrator much.
Fan Fiction by Brent Spiner was one I’d been looking forward to since a copy from the publisher unexpectedly showed up on the publication date in October. It had been staring at me for over 2 months before I finally got a chance to read it. A fictionalized account of Spiner’s time on Star Trek: The Next Generation, it’s primarily about a stalker he acquires. I loved that I couldn’t tell what was fact and what was fiction, and I was amused from beginning to end.
I’ve been a huge fan of The Coffeehouse Mystery series by Cleo Coyle for over 15 years, so I was absolutely thrilled when I was approved for an eARC of #19, Honey Roasted. Usually, when these books come out at the end of the year, it comes out in December and I love cozying up with it during the winter break. This one was pushed back to January, but I made sure to make time for it during the winter break. I adore everything about this series, so really enjoyed this book, and I can’t wait to try out some of the recipes (thank goodness the eARC came with them all!).
Lastly, I’m closing out the year with Light Years From Home by Mike Chen. I am not a fan of aliens, but, for Mike Chen, I’ll read them. His first and third books (I decided to skip the second) really impressed me and I really like his writing style, so I’m really enjoying this one so far, even if I don’t really know what’s going on yet.
Thanks for reading!
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2 thoughts on “Indie Books Challenge: December 2021”
It’s amazing of you to bring so much focus to indie books 👏🏼
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Thank you! There are so many amazing indie books out there and they deserve to be in the spotlight just as much as one published by one of the big publishers.
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