November 2022 Reading Wrap Up
November was the month of lost causes. All the grand ideas I had for Novellas in November, Non Fiction November and Reading Australia month pretty much evaporated.
I did just about manage to read two novellas — Summerwater by Sarah Moss and ‘Twas The Nightshift Before Christmas by Adam Kay. But the stack I’d originally earmarked for Novellas in November was returned to the bookcase unread. As for Non Fiction November — an event I’ve participated in with relish in previous years — it came and went without a single word from me.
My tale of woe continued. I’d suggested a read-along of Voss by Patrick White for Australia Reading Month hosted by Brona of bronasbooks. But I feel guilty that I never got beyond chapter 3. It demanded a power of concentration I just didn’t possess at the time because of some family health issues. The small size of text in my edition didn’t help.
Just to cap it all off, the book chosen for our November book club meeting turned out to be. a huge disappointment. I’ve loved previous novels by Colm Toibin but his most recent one, The Magician, left me underwhelmed. It’s a fictionalised biography about the Nobel laureate Thomas Mann but it was so dull so dull. I honestly don’t understand why Toibin didn’t just write a straight biography because that’s how this book felt. So another book I couldn’t finish.
Very little to report here since I didn’t actually read anything that would count towards the Classics Club list or my World Of Literature project. The wanderlust bingo card looks just as it did at the end of October.
State of the TBR
After months when I was seeing slow but steady progress to reduce the TBR, I succumbed to temptation in November Colm Toibin so now the total is at 278. It would have been higher but for the Sunday Sample decisions to let a few go out of the house unread. Unless I completely go off the rails I’m still likely to finish the year with the TBR at a lower level than end of 2022 (when it was 292).
I’m not going to get fixated on this and make (rash) commitments to stop buying books since I know such a “promise” would be futile. Slow but steady progress is fine.
In case you haven’t caught the drift, November is what I would class as a rubbish month. Fortunately December looks marginally better.
How was your November reading? Were there any stand out novels that you would recommend? I would love to know what you’ve been reading, and what you’re reading currently.
44 thoughts on “November 2022 Reading Wrap Up”
I’m sorry you didn’t accomplish what you’d hoped for in November, and hope December was better. I thought Summerwater was great, though maybe not as powerful as Moss’ Ghost Wall. I often find novellas harder to get into due to the shorter length, but this was a good one.
Moss certainly writes well so I may give Ghost Wall a go at some point based on your comment Deb.
I’ve come to really enjoy novellas in recent years – they are far more satisfying than short stories which I have tried several times but always end up feeling short changed
Sorry to hear November wasn’t a good month for you. I hope December has been better! I was disappointed with The Magician as well – I agree that it would have worked better as non-fiction.
I had been thinking of reading his other book about a famous writer – The Master which I believe is about Henry James. But if it’s just going to be like The Magician I will think again.
That’s so disappointing for you, Karen, and I suppose it’s no help to say I’m certain we all go through the doldrums now and again. So I won’t point that out…
November for me was good with several novellas polished off plus a couple of candidates for SF Month, and December is looking promising too. My Mount TBR? I refuse to quantify this – it’s too massive, keeps being added to, and I know will never be conquered before I kick the bucket so why worry? 🙂
A very healthy attitude Chris. I know I will never conquer my TBR either -nor really do I want to because I love have so many books to choose from. I just want to make sure they are books I AM interested in reading rather than those just filling space I don’t actually have
I’m sorry you had such a dreary November. I’m still hoping to finish reviewing my November reading by the end of this month (which also = the end of the YEAR). Things are bound to improve–right?
I’ve given up thinking I can catch up and review all the books I’ve read this year before the year comes to an end. Just not going to happen….
Yeah, some months are like that. I hope December and January are better for you!
December was much better – at least I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read
November is the worst: wet, full of sniffles and flu, dark and interminable. I’m not surprised even the books disappointed you. I hope December is much better for you – and of course all of 2023!
I can’t remember a month when I had such a hard time finding books that captured my interest. Things do seem to have turned the corner on that front luckily
Oh dear – sorry you had such a rotten reading month, but life does get in the way and I’m glad the health issues have been sorted. Hope December is being kinder to you!
I think it was the combination of “real life” issues and some unappealing books that generated the general feeling of gloom. Both do seem to have been resolved for now at least
Ha, these slumpy months happen sometimes and we probably wouldn’t even notice if we didn’t blog! Hopefully you’ll be back to normal soon – maybe Santa will add some enticing reads to your TBR!
Santa did indeed deliver some very interesting books – all I need know is an extra few hours every day to enjoy them
I think you’ve done a tremendous job of reading throughout the year, Karen. No need to berate yourself at all. If it’s any consolation, I think family ( or your own) health issues top anything. And, I need to report a dismal three books read in the whole of November – and two started before concentration and boredom set in just enough to make me give up and put them aside. All in all I’ve enjoyed (though not often commented on) all your reports of the books you’ve read in 2022. I hope you have a good, peaceful, festive time in the next couple of weeks.
Thanks Judith for all your support – now and throughout the year.
Good to hear that we share the same attitude to books we are not enjoying – I no longer feel any guilt about putting them to one side and going in search of something far more engaging
Wishing your family health issues resolution and recovery. I’ve been off the reading radar but allowing it, when it’s part of self care or care of others, it just needs to be embraced. But it is strange when ones usual habits have to step back for a while. I hope December brings you cheer and satisfying reads. 🎄🕯️
Thank you Claire. It was so frustrating to find that something I love doing just wasn’t giving me the pleasure I needed at that time as an antidote to life’s problems. But I’ve since come to think that getting frustrated about lack of reading wasn’t helping at all and I needed to cut myself some slack
Hasn’t been a great reading month, season, or year! But im reading my Classics Club spin book, The Autobiography of Alice B Toklas, and I’m loving the conversational tone.
Sorry to hear about health issues in the family. Glad to hear that things have improved now. Totally hear you about November being a wash-out. I had books selected for the German Literature Month and didn’t read even a single one. One of my favourite Reading Events too!
Health issues and stress are brutal on reading mojo, glad to hear that things are better for you now. Wishing you and yours a peaceful and happy holiday and new year!
Sorry for a washout of a month and glad December is a big improvement! I did NaNoWriMo in November and only produced 15K words instead of 50K. Had too many other things claiming my attention. Here’s to 2023!
I hope the family health issues are resolving, it makes perfect sense to me that your priorities had to shift.
Fingers crossed that 2023 turns out better.
It happens. So glad your December reads are turning out better
All of us have these interruptions. Just kick on and don’t look back. All the best for 2023. I love the clean slate of a new year. ❤️
Sorry to hear, hoping for a better month of good readings; if not then next year!
I definitely hope December turns out better
I am sorry, I just realized that December is nearly done, gonzo, nada, out-of-here, yesterday’s news, that long goodbye and not returning…
I hope December is much better for you! I listened to a lot of audiobooks in November.
I’ve read two excellent books already this month so things are looking up
That is great!
Hoping that all the factors that prevented your having a good read throughout November are resolved soon. But with all those Challenge balls up in the air, something was going to have to give!
I know and I tell myself every year that I am not superwoman and cannot cope with multiple challenges in one month —- but do I listen!!!
We’re all hopeless in that respect. And we all ignore such very good advice from the person who knows us best!
Oh so true! I shall have to remind myself again in a week or so when it comes to thinking what reading projects I will do for 2023. I always take on too much
All self-imposed. Why do we do it?
Why indeed. It’s not like anyone is forcing us ….
(I think my previous comment didn’t go through so if this is a duplicate, please delete)
Awwww Karen! I’m sorry on behalf of November! Health concerns put a gray sky over every aspect of our life. Hopefully December is kinder. The book I’m recommending to everyone these days is The Girl From Guernica by Karen Robards. Well-written, unputdownable, page-turning, memorable, and compelling histfic/thriller. My best read of the year! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I shall have to take a closer look at that book now Carol. What a temptress you are!
Happy to enable you! If you like Kate Quinn, you will enjoy Girl From Guernica. Happy end of year reading!
Fingers crossed that December’s off to a better start for you, Karen, both with reading and your family’s health.
The health issues have abated so that’s one less thing to stress about.