What I Read – October 2020


Mother Mother – Jessica O’Dwyer (Apprentice House Press, 2020)

The Bird King – G. Willow Wilson (Grove Press, 2019)

The Party Upstairs – Lee Conell (Penguin Press, 2020)

Bunny – Mona Awad (Hamish Hamilton, 2019)

It Would Be Night in Caracas – Karina Sainz Borgo (translated from the Spanish by Elizabeth Bryer) (HarperVia, 2019)

The Summer Book – Tove Jansson (translated from the Swedish by Thomas Teal) (New York Review Books, 2008)

Prayer – Philip Yancey (Zondervan, 2007)

Real LifeBrandon Taylor (Riverhead Books, 2020)

Did Not Finish:

The Tin Drum – Gunter Grass

This book had been hanging out on my TBR for years so I finally picked up a copy at the library and thought I’d try it out. I got as far as the narrator’s grandmother being impregnated after hiding a man running from the police under her skirts, which all takes place in the first chapter. I couldn’t read this as anything but a rape scene although the book did not seem to treat it as such and I realized I wasn’t going to enjoy it enough to struggle through the insane narrator and the complicated Polish names.

Currently Reading:

Halfbreed – Maria Campbell

Waiting for a Star to Fall – Kerry Clare

2020 Goals:

Books Read: 81/100

Books Reviewed: 68/75

Current TBR: 187 (previously 186)

What’s Next:

October was looking like a bit of a lacklustre month but I managed to squeak in two more books in the final week so that I could shake the six total that’s been following me recently. I did better at writing book reviews than I did in September.

As I said to someone the other day, I feel like October has both lasted six months and about two days. Thanksgiving feels ages ago and yet I can’t believe we’re already entering November. I’m working hard to combat the dreary doldrums of the rainy season with good books and I’m finding my patience wearing thin on reading anything I’m not excited about. (Hence, abandoning The Tin Drum only thirteen pages in.)

My Reading Goals for November include four books that I have high hopes for. Halfbreed is a new edition of a Canadian classic originally published in 1973 that I’ve been meaning to read since it came out a year ago. Jack by Marilynne Robinson and Waiting for a Star to Fall by Kerry Clare are both new releases, both of which I pre-ordered so that should tell you of my hopes for them. Land-Water-Sky is a new Canadian release that sounds intriguing and I recently received an ARC. I hope to keep using the local library as well but I don’t currently have anything on hold.

What about you, fellow readers? What did you read in October? What was your best read? How much of a chance do you give a book before you firmly shut its pages?

Oh, and since it’s Halloween, here’s a picture of my kids on the way to school yesterday:

11 thoughts on “What I Read – October 2020”

  1. LOL! I showed my co-worker the picture of your kids in their costumes and we both found the box of donuts adorable! Did you make that costume? I remember one year my sister-in-law asked her three-year-old daughter what she wanted to be for Halloween, and the kiddo said, “A hot dog.” LOL!

    1. A hot dog is a fantastic costume! No, I didn’t make this one though lots of people have asked me that. I bought it at a department store when Pearl was 2 – this is her second Halloween as a box of doughnuts. I was delighted that she wanted to wear it again this year!

  2. I love that donut costume – I haven’t seen that before!
    I actually had a really good reading month – I enjoyed every single book. That might have something to do with the fact that I’ve been reading quite a few from prize lists. A few standouts are Polar Vortex, Consent, Seven, All I Ask, The Glass hotel, If You Hear Me, and Transcendent Kingdom. I just have to get caught up on reviews!

    1. It’s such a great costume! She picked it out herself and this is actually the second time she’s worn it for Halloween.

      I’m glad you had a good reading month! Some good CanLit on your list there! I’m curious about Polar Vortex and I want to read Transcendent Kingdom because I liked Homegoing so much.

  3. Ah, the costumes are cute! I’m glad you made it through October, and I hope November will seem less dreary. I can absolutely sympathize with the lack of patience for books you’re not very excited about, as I’ve been struggling with that for a few months myself (but seem to be breaking through, so there’s hope!). I’m looking forward to catching up on your reviews from the month, I see a few titles I’ve read or had my eye on, so I’ll be eager to get to your thoughts!

    1. So far November has been pretty sunny and we might even get snow this week! Unfortunately, our region is now in a 2 week lockdown due to rising Covid numbers. On the plus side, I made it to the library before it was announced yesterday so I am well-stocked for books. (That’s pretty much always true!)

    2. Books are a must for lock-down! Especially if you get some snow, in my opinion- the best way to enjoy snow is through the window, while you’re holding a good book, lol. I liked it more as a kid though; I hope your girls will have a good time with the weather! And I’m glad the month has been off to a good start. Hopefully the Covid surge will go down quickly so you’ll have a good end to the month as well. 🙂

    3. Snow is a bit of a novelty in our region and when we do get it it rarely lasts longer than a day or two. So I still enjoy it and the kids love it!

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