Friday, February 18, 2022

Halfway Through February And What I've Read

We're heading into a long weekend here in Canada (YAY!) with a potential for a snow day today (double yay!) so I'm looking forward to reading some more great books soon. Until then, here's what I read the first half of February.

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune

This book was so beautiful and heartbreaking and joyful. I loved it. It is very different than The House In The Cerulean Sea but just as magical. I really can't say too much about this book without giving away some key points but please read it. Fall in love with it, just like I did.

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women

I cannot believe I hadn't heard this story before. I flew through this book as I just couldn't put it down. This story is one which needs to be told and we all need to know it. I was horrified reading this book, knowing what the end was going to be. Do you know the story of how women started to win worker's compensation? These women were the pioneers of that era. This story reminded me a lot of The Immortal life of Henrietta Lacks in that this is a key part of our history which hardly anyone knows about. I also found this book much more engaging than The Woman They Could Not Silence which is another Kate Moore book I read. This one is way better.

A Reaper at the Gates (An Ember in the Ashes, #3) A ​Sky Beyond the Storm (An Ember in the Ashes, #4)

If you haven't read this series yet, what are you waiting for?!?!? It's violent but oh so engaging. The last book is over 500 pages but I raced through it in two days. These books are some of the best fantasy I've read in a long time. I think they might be better than the A Court Of Thorns and Roses series. Yes, I said it.

The Uncommon Reader

This was a really short, really hilarious novel about what happens when The Queen of England makes time for reading. There were lots of lines about reading which made me laugh out loud! This would be a perfect readathon book because it's light and short.

Bringing Up Race: How to Raise a Kind Child in a Prejudiced World

This was a parenting book with a focus on anti-racism. I wish this book had been around when my kids were a little younger. I think it has great ideas, and things which I could still implement, but I would have loved this book to be foundational in parenting my kids in their younger years.

The Extraordinaries (The Extraordinaries #1)

I wasn't sure what to expect with this book. I mean, it's TJ Klune and I've really enjoyed his books thus far. However, this was a superhero novel with a twist. And it's a series. Parts of this book made cry and parts of it left me confused. But I still want to read the second in the series :)

This Place: 150 Years Retold

This is a graphic book with ten short stories, telling Canadian history from Indigenous points of view. Given that I don't love graphic novels and I really don't tend to gravitate towards short stories, I liked this book. I was going to recommend it to Sam but I think it needs some conversations as younger people read it and, sadly, I just don't have time to do that right now.

So that's what I read the first half of February. What have you been reading lately? Do you know the story of the Radium Girls? How do you engage with your kids when you come across books like This Place?


  1. I've been vacillating on reading "Under the Whispering Door" because I loved Cerulean Sea SO MUCH that I can only imagine being disappointed by reading this one. You say you recommend it but... really? I'm glad Uncommon Reader gave you a little chuckle; I liked the premise, too. And I will add "Bringing Up Race" to my TBR given that I DO have little kids and it's a great time to implement in my parenting.

  2. Another impressive collection!

  3. I read both of the TJ Klune books but loved The House In The Cerulean Sea way more than both!

  4. Just added Under the Whispering Door to my list!

  5. I just finished Klune's other book this weekend and thought it was so cute and so touching. I see at least 3 I want to add to my reading list!

  6. I'm over halfway through Under the Whispering Door...definitely not loving it like Cerulean so we'll have to see how it finishes. :/ I'm really curious about This Place! I try to talk to the kids when something 'natural' occurs (example - we were selling Girl Scout cookies last weekend and an older lady bought some and said she was a Girl Scout in the 60s in Georgia and her mom was her troop leader and they had the first integrated troop in Georgia, Drew asked me what that meant and we had a good discussion in the car on the way home.), but that isn't always doable, and I don't want this subject to get overlooked so I love reading books with the kids with characters of color - there are often subtle plotpoints that address some of these issues.


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