January Wrap: What a weird month?

January 31, 2019

January was a really weird month for me, in some good and bad ways:
good: after dreaming of being a librarian for my entire life, I became one!
bad: I had to adjust to returning to work after 3 years of staying home and being a mother and student.
good: I learned that publishers treat librarians REALLY nicely!
bad: I hit such an awful reading slump that several of my January releases slipped past me without my getting the chance to read/review them.
good: I learned how to DNF relentlessly and shamelessly—life’s too short!
bad: my seasonal depression showed up like it does every January and made me hate everything.

All of that said, I still managed to have a good-looking January. Most of what I read was along the lines of graphic novels, manga, and kids’ books, but I still knocked out a little handful of novels and ARCs and had some pretty solid reads!

Click the titles for links to reviews wherever available!

? = review copy
? = POC rep
? = LGBTQ+ rep
⏰ = Late-a-thon
? = January Jam Jar

5 stars:

  • Darkest Hours — Mike Thorn ?⏰?
  • soft magic. — Upile Chisala ???
  • In Real Life — Cory Doctorow & Jen Wang ?
  • Orange: The Complete Collection, Vol. 1 & 2 — Ichigo Takano ?
  • A Girl Like Her — Talia Hibbert (reread) ?
  • The Midwinter Mail-Order Bride — Kati Wilde
  • Giant Days, Vol. 2 & 3 — John Allison ??
  • Dead of Winter — Kealan Patrick Burke
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone — J. K. Rowling (reread)
  • What Does it Mean to Be American? — Rana DiOrio ??
  • Simon and the Big, Bad, Angry Beasts — Ian De Haes ?
  • The Test — Sylvain Neuvel ??
  • The Breakaways — Cathy G. Johnson ???
  • The Last Olympian — Rick Riordan ?⏰
  • A Curse So Dark and Lonely — Brigid Kemmerer ???⏰?


4 stars:

  • Manga Classics: The Count of Monte Cristo — Stacy King ?⏰?
  • Even If I Fall — Abigail Johnson ??⏰?
  • Giant Days, Vol. 1 — John Allison ??
  • Mera: Tidebreaker — Danielle Paige ?
  • Kid Gloves — Lucy Knisley ?
  • Ink Knows No Borders — Patrice Vecchione ??
  • Tarot Elements — Melissa Cynova ?
  • Goodbye, Perfect — Sara Barnard ??⏰


3 stars:

  • Ripley’s Believe It or Not — Tony Isabella ?
  • Gyo — Junji Ito ?
  • The Woods, Vol. 1 — James Tynion IV ?
  • The Owls Have Come to Take Us Away — Ronald L. Smith ??


2 stars:

  • Tomie — Junji Ito ?
  • Darkfever — Karen Marie Moning ⏰
  • Chasing American Monsters — Jason Offutt ?


1 star:


DNF — no rating:

  • You Are Here — Dawn Lanuza ?⏰?
  • Parasite Life — Victoria Dalpe ??⏰?
  • The Traitor Prince — C.J. Redwine (I might revisit this later) ?⏰?
  • The Same Deep Water As You — Chad Lutzke (this wasn’t a DNF, but I didn’t give it a star rating) ?⏰


in progress & predicted ratings:

  • This Mortal Coil — Emily Suvada
    • prediction: 5/5 stars
  • It Ends With Us — Colleen Hoover
    • prediction: 4/5 stars
  • Binti: The Complete Trilogy — Nnedi Okorafor ???
    • prediction: 4/5 stars
  • The Nightmare Girl — Jonathan Janz ?
    • prediction: 5/5 stars


Movies Watched this Month:

I didn’t watch anything this month. ?

Music I Loved This Month:

I had 2 albums on pretty heavy (ha, heavy, get it, because they’re… heavy… groups… ANYWAYS) rotation this month: The Sin and the Sentence by Trivium, and a major throwback for me, The Triptych by Demon Hunter (as well as their new single, On My Side). I might not be religious anymore, but DH has been one of my faves since I was 11 years old and I doubt that’ll ever change.

My Favorite Non-Review Posts of the Month:

(click the post headers to see the posts!)

My Favorite Posts from OTHER Bloggers This Month:


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More about Destiny @ Howling Libraries

Just a horror aficionado/geek girl trying to juggle motherhood, reading, blogging, gaming, and everyday life.

Leave a comment
    1. Great post, Destiny! I’m so glad you loved A Curse so Dark and Lonely. THAT ENDING THO
      Also, I’ll be binge-reading the links you gave of the other blogger, excuse me.
      🙂 Have a nice day

    1. Congrats on the new job! Going to download the music selections now! ?

    1. Thank you so much for featuring my smol post here! CONGRATULATIONS ON BEING A LIBRARIAN. I’m so sooo happy for you ?
      I’m in awe with how many books you’ve read this month! I aspire to be a dragon like you in life.

    1. That’s a hell lot of books you read .
      That’s such a great start for the year. Happy reading for month ahead ?

    1. Still you did so well in my opinion 🙂 I’m also happy for you about your library job! I’ve been at my library for 3 years and love it. Keep going strong and I cannot wait to see your thoughts on This Mortal Coil!

    1. Wow… just hit me it is time to do Wrap-Up posts… I swear work has me so out of it.
      Looks like you read a ton of great books this month! Hope things are going well at your new job 🙂

    1. congrats on getting your dream job, destiny! that’s amazing ? i actually started working at a library myself this month and it’s so good to be surrounded by books 24/7
      i’m finally reading a girl like that this month with the dragon & tea book club and i couldn’t be more excited to finally have more talia hibbert in my life.

    1. I love how you split your month into the good and bad, it really balanced it out! Also, I’m so glad you enjoyed Giant Days – I think my library just got in the series so I might give the series another try!

      1. Aw, thank you! Oooh, I hope it goes better for you if you do. This reminds me that I REALLY need to read volume 4 ASAP so I can get it back to the library when I go run errands later today. ?

    1. OH MY GOSH, I JUST FEEL SO HAPPY??? Bc you get to be a librarian, and you mentioned it was your dream, and SLDKFJLSKJDFI. This absolutely made my dayyyyy, I’m just, v excited for you c: c: c: c:
      also I agree, dnfing books is so important, there are SO MANY BOOKS and so little time, I don’t even feel bad about DNFing anymore XD
      ++thank you so much for featuring two of my posts???? it means so much & I’m so happy u liked them !! <3 <3 <3

      1. Awww THANK YOU!! ♥♥ you’re too sweet and I’m all mushy now ♥
        And yessss exactly! I used to feel so guilty and would almost never DNF anything but now it’s like BYE, got better things to do with my time~~
        You’re so welcome! ♥

      1. It was really excellent, but I will say that it won’t please everyone—it felt very “on brand” for me in certain ways (that I can’t really say without spoilers) but struck me as the kind of thing that people will feel very hit-and-miss about. All of this to say that I still think you should definitely give it a try. ?

    1. Congratulations on becoming a librarian!! My it be everything you dreamed it would be, and more!!! Can I ask what the process was like? I’ve been maybe considering a career change… 🙂

      1. Thank you! 🙂 Well honestly, the process is going to be different for everyone. I’m in school for my master’s degree in library and information science right now, which helped me because the library system that hired me hopes to prepare me for a bigger/higher-up position by the time I graduate, or so my boss has mentioned to me. But as far as landing the position itself, it’s mostly a matter of my having gone into the library so many times and networked with the ladies there for the last few years, so when they had this position come open, they immediately asked me to come in for an interview and hired me the same day. So I feel like I got lucky in a sense of having been in the right place at the right time and knowing the right people. 🙂
        Good luck if you choose to do it, it’s a really big field with a lot of opportunities!

    1. You read so many books, Destiny! That’s awesome! And yay for learning to shamelessly DNF books, life is indeed too short!
      I hope you are adjusting to librarian life well, I miss talking to you incessantly.

      1. It really is! And thank you so much, Kal. ♥ The new job is going well, but the last few weeks have been a disastrous cluster of sicknesses and mental health garbage (hence my not being around nearly as much as I’d like to be). I miss you tons ♥♥

    1. I’m so so happy that you achieved your dream and became a librarian, Destiny! I hope adjusting to your new job isn’t too stressful! ❤️ I will forever be in awe of how much you can read in a month! Haha.

      1. Awww, thank you so much, Kelly! <3 It was tough for the first few weeks but now that it's been about 6 weeks I'm finally feeling like I'm getting used to it and it's feeling more "normal", thank goodness. <3 Haha thank you!

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