The Monday Check-In ~ 11/1/2021


My Monday tradition, including a look back and a look ahead — what I read last week, what new books came my way, and what books are keeping me busy right now. Plus a smattering of other stuff too.


Happy November! I didn’t do anything for Halloween (except candy… yum), and now I’m ready to start thinking about Thanksgiving. Although I did get out of my house over the weekend to hear a friend’s band play at an outdoor venue in my neighborhood, and it was a lot of fun! Look at me, actually being social!

Blogging and reading

I’m making a big push to winnow down my pending/unread NetGalley ARCs before the end of the calendar year. I won’t get through them all, but I’m hoping to make a big dent. For 2022, I’m keeping requests to a minimum (trying to keep to books that I’d read with or without ARC access). I want to get back to reading whatever I feel like, whenever I feel like, without worrying about keeping up with commitment books and planning around release dates. Wish me luck!

What did I read during the last week?

All the Feels by Olivia Dade: A really enjoyable follow-up to last year’s Spoiler Alert. My review is here.

The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan: I love this author, but this Christmas-themed book feels more like a re-tread of her usual tropes rather than something new and different. Strictly a 3-star read for me. I didn’t write a blog review, but if you’re interested, I shared some brief thoughts on Goodreads.

A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny: I finshed! This was a month-long read, and I loved it. My review is here.

The Last House on Needless Street by Catriona Ward: Definitely the most disturbing book I’ve read all year. I ended up giving it 4.5 stars, but I could just as easily have convinced myself to give it 1 or 2 stars. I’m hoping to be able to put this one out of my mind immediately — it’s that upsetting. My review is here.

Pop culture & TV:

The season finale of What We Do in the Shadows dropped this week… and for a silly vampire comedy, I have to say this season has been pretty brilliant! Here’s a thoughtful write-up via Vulture (full of spoilers, so don’t read if you’re not caught up).

Here’s a peek at a favorite episode from this season:

Other than that, I’ve been catching up on a few shows I fell behind on, and started Only Murders in the Building, which is cute (and as of episode 3, features one of my favorite cameo/guest spots of the year).

And despite having watched Dune already last week from the comfort of my couch, I’m trying to find a time to go see the IMAX version with a friend, hopefully this coming week.

Fresh Catch:

I treated myself to more books this week — a new paperback release, a couple more paperbacks of books I’ve already read on Kindle, and the newest MinaLima Harry Potter edition:

What will I be reading during the coming week?

Currently in my hands:

A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow: After the last book I finished, I need something on the more upbeat side to cleanse my brain. I’m hoping this fairy tale retelling novella will do the trick.

Now playing via audiobook:

Well Matched by Jen DeLuca: I wish I’d had more time to listen during the past week! This is a really fun series, and I’m enjoying this book (#3) so much, especially now that I’ve gotten to the part where the characters are back at the annual Ren Faire.

Ongoing reads:
  • Outlander Book Club is doing a speed-re-read of Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, #8 in the Outlander series. We’re reading and discussing 5 chapters per week. This week: Chapters 131- 135. Three weeks to go!
  • Doctor Zhivago is our group classic read, two chapters per week. Plugging away… this is definitely a challenging book.

So many books, so little time…


9 thoughts on “The Monday Check-In ~ 11/1/2021

  1. So many books, so little time is super accurate. Like you, I also hope to make a huge dent on my ARCs and hopefully request less in 2022. Happy November.

  2. I’m also trying to really rein in my book requests for next year. I’m always so stressed out and I need to stop it and take charge! And that’s a great idea, only requesting books on NetGalley that you would read anyway😁

    • Of course, I’ve made similar statements in the past and then failed to stick with them…. but I’m really going to try. I’ve gotten so frustrated lately, and feel like no matter how much I want to read a particular book, I need to wait until 2022 when I will be (I hope) more caught up.

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