Posted in Books and Shows

December Books + TOP 5 books of 2022

Hello! How has your week been?

Today is one of my favorite posts of the year. I’m sharing the books I read this month (Christmas reads!) as well as the Top 5 books that I read in 2022.

I love reading and always enjoy seeing what books others are reading.

For the past couple of years, I’ve read Christmas books in December. To me, these are usually pretty light hearted and perfect to read this time of the year.

December Books:

This month I read:

{As always, book summaries are from Goodreads…}

With such a long post, I’m just sharing the summaries and my rating. My quick thoughts are the fact that these are perfect reads for December. Most were light-hearted and festive while others did have a sad moment or two. That being said, I thought this was the perfect mix of books for my December reading.

The Holiday Switch:

Summary:

Lila Santos is ready for her last winter break of high school. The snow in her small town of Holly, New York, is plentiful, the mood is as cozy as a fuzzy Christmas sweater, and she’s earning extra cash working at the local inn—AKA the setting of the greatest film of all time, Holiday by the Lake—while moonlighting as an anonymous book blogger.

But her perfect holiday plans crash to a halt when her boss’s frustratingly cute nephew, Teddy Rivera, becomes her coworker. Lila is type A; Teddy is type “Anything but Lila’s Way,” and the two of them can’t stop butting heads over tangled icicle lights and messy gift shop merch. But when they accidentally switch phones one afternoon, they realize they’ve both been hiding things from each other. Will their secrets—and an unexpected snowstorm—bring these rivals together?

Rating:

Always in December:

Summary:

It started with a letter. It ended with a love story.

Every December, Josie posts a letter from her home in London to the parents she lost on Christmas night many years ago. Each year, she writes the same three words: Missing you, always. But this year, her annual trip to the postbox is knocked off course by a bicycle collision with a handsome stranger–a stranger who will change the course of Josie’s life.

Josie always thought she was the only one who avoided the Christmas season, but this year, Max has his own reasons for doing the same–and coincidence leads them to spending the holiday together. Aglow with new love, Josie thinks this might be the start of something special.

Only for Max to disappear without saying goodbye.

Over the course of the next year, Max and Josie will find that fate continues to bring them together in places they’d never expect. New York City. Edinburgh. The quiet English countryside. And it turns out, Max had every reason to leave and every reason to stay. But what does fate hold for Josie and Max as Christmas approaches again?

A devastating, romantic, life-affirming love story, Always, in December will stay with readers long after they’ve finished the last page.

Rating:

Christmas in London:

Summary:

A charming, glamourous love story set at Claridge’s in London during the magical week before Christmas starring a sweet NYC baker and the Cooking Channel Producer who could change her life.

It’s a week before Christmas and Louisa Graham is working twelve hour shifts at a bakery on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. When a young cooking show assistant comes in from the rain and begs to buy all the cinnamon rolls on her tray, she doesn’t know what to do. Louisa is just the baker, and they aren’t hers to sell. But the show burned the rolls they were supposed to film that day, so she agrees.

The next morning, Louisa finds out that her cinnamon rolls were a hit, but the star of the show was allergic, and the whole crew is supposed to leave for London that afternoon. They want Louisa to step in for their annual Christmas Eve Dinner TV special at Claridge’s. It’s a great opportunity, and Digby Bunting, Louisa’s famous baking idol, will be there. Even if he does seem more interested in her than her food.

And then there’s Kate, the show’s beautiful producer. On their first day in London she runs into the skinny boy she jilted at St. Andrew’s in Scotland ten years ago. Now he’s a handsome, brilliant mathematician, and newly divorced. Their familiar spark is still there, but so is the scar of how they left things. Kate and Louisa are busy preparing for the show, but old and new flames are complicating their work.

Set during London’s most festive time of year and filled with delicious food, Christmas in London is about love and friendship, and the season’s most important lesson: learning how to ask for and give forgiveness.

Rating:

The Christmas Wedding Guest:

Summary:

The Somerville sisters believe in love, but they’ve lost faith it will happen for them. Reggie hasn’t been home since the end of the world’s shortest engagement. When her parents decide to renew their vows, she buffs up her twinkle to help with the Christmas wedding. Unexpectedly, Toby, her first love, is back too, and the spark between them shines as brightly as ever. In the spirit of the season, will they let go of past hurts and greet the New Year together?

Done waiting for the one, Dena is pregnant and on her own—on purpose. But then a gorgeous, sad-eyed songwriter checks in to a room at her inn. Micah, unable to write since he lost his wife, finds inspiration in Dena’s determination to be a mom. One snowflake-speckled kiss and he’s a goner. But Dena is afraid to believe that a rock star could fall for a cookie-cutter small-town girl like her.

As the Christmas wedding draws closer, these two sisters just might unwrap the most treasured gift of all—love.

Rating:

Christmas Shopaholic

Summary:

Becky Brandon (née Bloomwood) adores Christmas. It’s always the same – Mum and Dad hosting, carols playing, Mum pretending she made the Christmas pudding, and the next-door neighbours coming round for sherry in their terrible festive jumpers.

And now it’s even easier with online bargain-shopping sites – if you spend enough you even get free delivery. Sorted!

But this year looks set to be different. Unable to resist the draw of craft beer and smashed avocado, Becky’s parents are moving to ultra-trendy Shoreditch and have asked Becky if she’ll host Christmas this year. What could possibly go wrong?

With sister Jess demanding a vegan turkey, husband Luke determined that he just wants aftershave again, and little Minnie insisting on a very specific picnic hamper – surely Becky can manage all this, as well as the surprise appearance of an old boyfriend and his pushy new girlfriend, whose motives are far from clear . . .

Will chaos ensue, or will Becky manage to bring comfort and joy to Christmas?

Rating:

Recap of Books 2022:

This year my Goodreads goal was that same as last year: 40 books. I was able to read 41! Thank goodness for a couple of vacations and winter break to get me across the finish line. There were a couple months this year that I only read two books, so I wasn’t sure I would hit that goal.

Here are my Goodreads stats:

  • 41 books read
  • 14,824 pages read
  • The shortest book I read (Lucky) was 232 pages
  • The longest book I read (Katie Couric’s Going There) was 736 pages (was it?! I really don’t remember it being that long of a book!)
  • Average book length in 2022: 361 pages

My 2022 Reads:

Looking back, I realized that I’ve read by the fire, in the mountains, poolside and with my toes in the sand. That definitely makes for a great year of reading.

January:

  • Katie Couric’s Going There
  • The Royals Next Door
  • We Are the Brennans

February:

  • Our Woman in Moscow
  • Becoming Mrs. Lewis

March:

  • Lucky
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors

April:

  • Such a Quiet Place
  • Pack Up the Moon
  • The Rent Collector

May:

  • Save Me From Dangerous Men
  • A Stranger’s Game
  • The Summer Getaway

June:

  • Summer Love
  • The Summer Job
  • Harry: Life, Loss, and Love

July:

  • The Sweet Taste of Muscadines
  • One Italian Summer
  • Meant to Be
  • The Lifeguards
  • The Hotel Nantucket
  • This Tender Land

August:

  • Under the Southern Sky
  • Book Lovers
  • Every Summer After
  • The Chain
  • This Time Tomorrow

September:

  • The Younger Wife
  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
  • Twenty Years Later

October:

  • Smells like Tween Spirit
  • The Beach Trap
  • The Masterpiece

November:

  • The Things We Cannot Say
  • One True Loves
  • A Magical New York Christmas

December:

  • The Holiday Switch
  • Always in December
  • Christmas in London
  • The Christmas Wedding Guest
  • Christmas Shopaholic

Top 5 books of 2022:

I felt like I started off 2022 strong with reading, but then wasn’t reading as much. From July on, I felt like I was reading more books that I enjoyed and was able to find a bit more time to read.

Before I share my Top 5 reads of 2022, these deserve honorable mention recognition:

  • One Italian Summer
  • This Time Tomorrow
  • Every Summer After
  • Our Woman in Moscow
  • Summer Love
  • Meant to Be

Here are my 5 favorite reads of 2022 in the order I read them…

Becoming Mrs. Lewis, (also my fave of the year, I think. My Gma recommended it to me.)

The Rent Collector.

The Sweet Taste of Muscadines

This Tender Land

The Things We Cannot Say

I clearly lean towards more serious books with a side of historical fiction.

Previous Top 5 Books:

What’s the best book you’ve read this year? I’d love to add it to my Goodreads list!

I have two more posts this week: a blogging and 2022 recap.

Happy reading!

12 thoughts on “December Books + TOP 5 books of 2022

  1. I loved this and added several books to the notes app on my phone for 2023. My top book of the year was a two way tie: After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid and Loving My Actual Neighbor by Alexandra Kuykendall. Both are two of the best books I have ever read and I couldn’t stop thinking about one and will be challenged for a long time to come with the other.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You had a great reading year! I wish I had read some of your December books, but now I am moving on from Christmas! I think I want to read the Lives of Marjorie Post book for something more serious. I really don’t think I can do anymore WWII books but I read some great ones.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. We stopped in Columbia Mo to watch my tigers play UK. Then drove to St. Louis. On the road the Louisville now to pick up homer and then home. I will not be leaving break rested unfortunately

        Like

  3. I’ve only read This Tender Land of your top 5. It was a great book, loved it but different from my usual reading… putting the others on my list. I love book reviews

    Liked by 1 person

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