November 2022 reading wrap-up

November was meant to be a busy month and because of that, I didn’t expect to read much. However, life can throw curveballs your way and in an odd twist of circumstances, I found myself with more time to read than initially expected. This allowed me to put another small dent in my ever-shrinking TBR. Reading is by far my favorite way to spend time. Each book I delve into allows me to explore new worlds, learn something new, or simply be entertained for a few hours. My November 2022 reading wrap-up is here to go over the books I read this month and my thoughts on them. Perhaps you will find a new book to add to your own TBR from this list.

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November 2022 reading wrap-up

Wolf Children by Mamoru Hosoda

Occasionally, I get the desire to reread a book, and this month Wolf Children was vying for my attention.

This story is truly beautiful in its depiction of friends, family, and finding your place in the world. Seeing Hana, Ame, and Yuki struggle and thrive through lives various situations is the core of this story. As short as this series is, three volumes, it packs so much into it. From dealing with loss to moving to a new area to learning much-needed skills to growing into who they are meant to be. While much of the story focuses on Ame and Yuki, I feel like it is Hana who is the star of the show. Her determination to give her kids the best lives while balancing the challenges of them being wolf children really shows how strong of a person she is. She makes plenty of mistakes along the way, as do her children, but they each learn and grow from those to be better overall.

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

I picked up this book after seeing someone mention it on Twitter and I am glad I did. I felt an almost instant connection to Nina and her chaotic, yet structured life. I loved the mental health representation in this book. It perfectly highlighted how others in your life may not understand your needs or feeling when depression is rearing its ugly head- such as the need to ‘do nothing’ which in itself is doing something or the desire to be alone when the world is suffocating you. Seeing Nina navigate the messy world of family, romance, and the craziness of her job made me love her even more. And of course, her love of books is what I really enjoyed about her.

Really, the only thing I didn’t like were the regular and almost too-often references to Harry Potter – why does every book that mentions/references another book have to mention that one? Ignoring that small thing, I absolutely loved this book and will be looking to read more of this author’s books in the future.

The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner

Another book I picked up on a whim after seeing someone share its cover – which by the way, is absolutely gorgeous.

I know I am going to struggle to explain what I loved about this book. The story does start a bit slow and initially, I was questioning what any of it had to do with a lost apothecary. Yet, it picks up very quickly and soon I was completely absorbed in the book. Normally, I don’t care for books that jump between timelines yet for this one it worked so well, and the two stories blended together beautifully. The way Nella, Eliza, and Caroline’s lives and stories become interwoven was fantastic – though admittedly I feel like Caroline’s life is a lesser of the three interest-wise.

I listened to the audiobook version of this book and the three narrators did a fantastic job of giving each character their own unique voice. I will say that the narrator that did Nella’s portions was my favorite. I do feel like this book would be more enjoyable as an audiobook than the physical book simply because of the narrator’s fantastic jobs. This was one of my favorite books this year.

Dhampir by Barb & J.C. Hendee

Another reread. I first read Dhampir years ago and really enjoyed it. However, I have been wanting to finally finish reading the series but so much time has passed since I started it I have forgotten most of it. So, I decided to reread it so I can continue on the with series in the future and finally finish it properly.

The story revolves around Magiere and Leesil, an unlikely pair who make money by ‘killing’ undead yet their lives will change much as the story progresses. As a pair, Magiere and Leesil work well, as one fills in for the weakness or lack of experience in the other. They do butt heads a lot. The journey they embark on, shifting from undead hunters to a more docile life is anything but boring. Toss in a mix of regular town folk, a trio of undead, the mysterious Welstiel, a desire for a new life, and destiny rearing its ugly head and you have a pretty solid story. This book isn’t perfect, there are parts where I feel like it goes astray a bit, however, as a whole, I enjoyed it quite a bit and look forward to revisiting the next few in the series before diving into the ones I still haven’t read.

The Thousand Names by Django Wexler

The Thousand Names was a book that caught my attention based on the blurb more than anything else. It sounded like one I would enjoy. However, I couldn’t get into the story. I was expecting a fantasy novel, however, it’s more of a military story with a light fantasy undertone. Most of the characters I didn’t care about nor did the story itself grab me in any way. I managed to read it to the end purely because of the sections focusing on Winter, the one and only character I found interesting – yet even these sections couldn’t make me love the book. I know there are people who would love this one, but it wasn’t for me.

Yona of the Dawn Vol. 37 by Mizuho Kusanagi

After reading volume 36 a while back I had been eagerly awaiting this one. I knew this volume would be amazing yet I wasn’t ready for what I was about to find. Yona, Hak, and the dragons have already been through so much and yet the triumphs and struggles for this group continue. I honestly can’t go into too much detail about this one because this far in the series anything I say could be a spoiler. However, I will say the cliffhanger ending on this one hit hard and the wait for volume 28 will be far too long. I really hope everything works out but right now I am stuck waiting for what happens next.

Rascal Does Not Dream of a Logical Witch by Hajime Kamoshida

Sakuta can’t get a break from Adolescence Syndrome. This time it’s his friend Rio who is affected. How does one solve the issue when the one he normally goes to for advice is the one affected? Much like the previous volumes, this one is an entertaining read from beginning to end. Having Rio goes through the effects of Adolescence Syndrome and being unable to help herself throws a new set of problems for Sakuta to solve.

Shuna’s Journey by Hayao Miyazaki

I went into this book believing it would be a manga. However, it is more like a very detailed storyboard. The art itself is both beautiful and simple at times. The story flows well, though it feels like it’s missing something. For anyone familiar with Miyazaki’s work, this book is like a mashup between Princess Mononoke and Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. The journey that Shuna embarks on is an interesting one and kept me reading until the end. I would love to see an expanded version of this story one day, though I doubt that will happen. Even so, I am happy I got to read this one as it shows the brilliance of Miyazaki’s works and the evolution of his storytelling which is later reflected in his other works.

November 2022 reading wrap-up stats

  • Books read: 8
  • Books purchased: 2
  • Books purged: 1
  • Books DNF’d: 1

I hope you enjoyed my November 2022 reading wrap-up. What did you read in November?

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