May recap

Hi all,

Time for another monthly update!

Read(ing)

I managed to finish another 4 books this month, although Ariadne was almost as a whole read during April. It took some time for me to finish ‘I, Eliza Hamilton’, as it was a slow paced book that left me a bit disappointed. I started The lost apothecary and Heresy, which I both finished in no time and enjoyed a lot! I’m also in the middle of one of the books in the lord John Grey series of Diana Gabaldon.

Number of pages read: 1.525 pages
Number of books finished: 4
Favorite read: Ariadne
Centuries visited: B.C., 16th century, 18th century and 21st century
Countries visited: England, Greece and America
Currently reading: Labyrinth by Kate Mosse
Next up: Any of my 20 books of summer list

Reviewed

Blogged

Added to my TBR

How was your month?

April recap

Hi all, April was a crazy month at work, so I had slightly less time for reading. I stopped reading classics for a while and just worked my way through a library haul of some more recent books.

Read(ing)

The wolf den was definitely my favourite book of the month. It is set in the ancient city of Pompeii and tells the story of 5 women in a brothel who are trying to survive. Next, I discovered the existence of stave churches in 19th century Norway and read about the Wars of the Roses in the next installment of the Kingmaker series. At the moment, I’m finishing Ariadne, a Greek myth retelling that I’m enjoying a lot so far.

Number of pages read: 1.540 pages
Number of books finished: 3
Favorite read: The wolf den
Centuries visited: 1ste century, 15th century and 19th century
Countries visited: England, Italy and Norway
Currently reading: Ariadne by Jeniffer Saint (almost finished)
Next up: Probably ‘I, Eliza Hamilton’, as it was on my TBR for 2022.

Reviewed

Watched

  • I’ve started watching ‘Poldark’ again. It seems I forgot some things about season 1.

Added to my TBR

What have you read in April?

March recap

Hi all! April started in Belgium with a bit of snow and now a week of rain. I hope for some sunshine in the coming weeks. I’m in a bit of reading slump because work is crazy as is the construction of my home, so sometimes I’m just too tired too read a few pages. The fact that I started a classic that wasn’t at all something for me, didn’t help.

Read(ing)

I still managed to finish 4 books during march. It’s difficult to choose a favourite but I think I’ll go for ‘The Tudor crown’, just because I enjoy Hickson’s books so much. But I discovered two new authors with Miranda Malins and Jennifer Saint of whom I both want to read other books.

I participated to the next classics club spin and got ‘Tender is the night’ from Fitzgerald as my lucky draw. I immediately started reading it, but it dragged on and on and after 30% I wasn’t enjoying anything about the novel anymore, so I decided to DNF it. As also ‘The trial’ and ‘Villette‘, my two previous classics failed to grip me, I’m a bit ‘done’ with my classics challenge at the moment. Reading should be fun, so I decided to let go of classics for a while. We’ll see what I pick up next.

Number of pages read: 1.817 pages
Number of books finished: 4
Favorite read: The Tudor crown
Centuries visited: Ancient Greece (B.C.), 15th century and 17th century
Countries visited: Greece, England and France
Currently reading: The wolf den by Elodie Harper
Next up: Maybe ‘the bell in the lake’ by Mytting

Reviewed

Blogged

Watched

  • I’m almost finished with ‘Domina’ about Livia Drusilla, wife of emperor Augustus. I’m so happy that there’s a new series about Ancient Rome. It’s very modern (just like Sisi) and the main actress her voice is a bit strange, but I still like it nonetheless.
  • Still going strong with ‘Downton Abbey’ (season 4)

Added to my TBR

Have you read a lot in March? Any favourites?

February recap

Hi all

February is the shortest month of the year and I actually don’t mind because I’m done with the Winter and I hope that April (Spring!) arrives soon now. I also try not to think too much about what’s happening in the world because it makes me sad beyond words. And I want to offer my support to everyone who suffers in some way from the war. What an awful word.

Read(ing)

I managed to finished 4 books of which ‘Wildevrouw’ is my favourite. It’s a historical novel only written in Dutch, so I’ll write no review about that one. But it is set in 16th Antwerp during the Great Iconoclasm.

Number of pages read: 1.448 pages
Number of books finished: 4
Favorite read: Wildevrouw
Centuries visited: 16th century, 17th century, 18th century and 20th century
Countries visited: England and Belgium
Currently reading: Villette by Charlotte Brönte for the classics club
Next up: Don’t know for sure, but I think I’ll pick a book from my physical shelves.

Reviewed

Watched

  • My boyfriend and me are still watching ‘Merlin’ and we’ve started The Borgias again (which is a first for him).
  • Looking forward to the new series of Outlander and The last kingdom and to Vikings: Valhalla.

Added to my TBR

  • The royal secret by Andrew Taylor (The next Marwood and Lovett)
  • The devil and the dark water by Stuart Turton. I haven’t read one of his books before, but this one seems something different for me that I would like to try.

What was your favourite read in February?

January recap

The first recap of 2022! January always feels like an extra long month or so and mostly this means that I can finish a lot of books. Which I did.

Read(ing)

The first days of January I was still recovering from the holidays but I also had some productive days at work and I managed to finish Anna Karenina. I also read two ARc’s this month ‘The hemlock cure’ and ‘The leviathan’. I didn’t like the first one, but enjoyed the atmosphere of the second. My favourite book of the month is ‘A tapestry of treason’, although the next Uhtred book proved again one of the best of the series.

Number of pages read: 2.228 pages
Number of books finished: 5
Favorite read: A tapestry of treason
Centuries visited: 10th century, 15th century, 17th century and 19th century
Countries visited: Russia and England
Currently reading: ‘The trial’ by Franz Kafka for the classics club
Next up: Probably: ‘Wildevrouw’ (A Dutch book set in 16th century Antwerp) or ‘The last protector’ by Andrew Taylor (both are on my shelves from the library).

Reviewed

Blogged

Watched

  • I started watching ‘Downton Abbey’ finally and am already in the middle of the second season. Late too the party, I know :).

Added to my TBR

  • I saw this historical mystery set in Tudor times in my library: The first horseman by D.K. Wilson. Not sure if this will be any good. Has anybody read it?
  • War of the wolf by Bernard Cornwell. Three more books to go in this series!

What was your favourite January read?

December recap

Happy New Year! Although it feels like 2012 is only a few years ago, I now have to write 2022 on top of every document at work. I hope 2022 will bring a good health, love and some fun. But I also hope I’ll read some great books and that I can continue to share my reading journey with you all.

Before we dive into the new year, it’s time to look back at my reading of December. I didn’t read as much as a normal month, but with good reason…

Read(ing)

I started the month with a novel about Maria Feodorovna, set in Russia. C.W. Gortner again showed me why he’s one of my favourite authors. The Romanov empress received 5 stars and a spot in my top ten of 2021. Afterwards, I didn’t know what to read and I decided to focus again on my classics club project. I started Jamaica Inn and enjoyed it. And then, it was half December and I started Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. I don’t know why but I tend to look for classic reads especially in December/January.

I kept up a good pace in Anna Karenina, until Christmas. But the week between Christmas and New Year always tends to be a difficult period for reading. So I slowed down and will only finish it in January.

Number of pages read: 1.320 pages
Number of books finished: 2
Favorite read: The Romanov empress
Centuries visited: 19th century, 20th century
Countries visited: Russia and England
Currently reading: ‘Anna Karenina’
Next up: Probably ‘The hemlock cure’, one of my Netgalley arcs

Reviewed

Blogged

Watched

  • I started the German 2021 mini series Sisi and am enjoying it so far. It’s modern and very coming of age. But I don’t mind that.

Added to my TBR

Do you read a lot in December or do you also tend to be taken up by the festivities?

November recap

December is here, so we’re almost done with 2021. And I can admit that I’m really happy about that. 2021 wasn’t my year and with covid hanging around again like an old friend, I’m eagerly awaiting Spring. November felt like a more difficult month for reading, but I still managed to finish quite some books so this is more like a feeling than a fact.

Read(ing)

I started the month with ‘Love in time of cholera’ for the classics club. I found this one easier to read than expected but had some feministic issues with the plot. Next, I read two library loans I was really looking forward to. I enjoyed ‘Where the crawdads sing’, but was disappointed by ‘The doll factory’. In between, I read ‘The butcher bird’ on the train, the next historical mystery in the Somershill manor mystery series about Oswald De Lacy. An entertaining light read.

Number of pages read: 1.410 pages
Number of books finished: 4
Favorite read: ‘Where the crawdads sing
Centuries visited: 14th century, 19th century, 20th century,
Countries visited: Columbia, England and America
Currently reading: ‘The Romanov empress’ by C.W. Gortner
Next up: I have no idea yet :).

Reviewed

Blogged

Added to my TBR

What was your favourite read in November?

October recap

I don’t know what it is with October but it always feels like the longest month ever. I’ve been wanting to write this recap a few times now, but then I noticed it was still two weeks to go or so. 😅 It’s getting dark real soon, and we got a lot of rain. I’m no autumn person, which makes me think I don’t belong in the book blogging community since everyone seems to enjoy crawling under a blanket with a hot chocolate and a book. I do like that sometimes, but I’m a summer person and I always will be. And summer is still so far away 😢.

Read(ing)

Ah well, I did manage to make time for reading. But after World without end, it wasn’t easy to find my flow again. I even decided to DNF a certain book: ‘Dark queen watching‘ from Paul Doherty. Doherty was an author I’ve been wanting to read for a time and this was one of his Margaret Beaufort mysteries so I thought I could jump right into the story, as I know a lot about the Wars of the Roses. And yes, I could jump right in but I found out I didn’t like it at all. Doherty’s writing is fine, but his story is full of secret organizations wanting to massacre each other, not really knowing why because they have been doing that since the birth of Christ or so. If there is one trope that I really hate it is secret organizations (I’m looking at you Dan Brown) and in this book there was even some useless bloody violence. I’m not a quitter usually, but this time I gave up. But what did I manage to read? Well, I finished 5 books!

I really enjoyed ‘The damask rose’ and ‘Revelation’, I love both series and this were excellent parts. Also, Broken faith was the second book in the Kingmaker series, I did like it but it felt more like an in-between book. The catcher in the rye was an easy to read classic that did make me experience how a torn teenage boy may look at the world.

Number of pages read: 2.219 pages
Number of books finished: 5
Favorite read: Revelation
Centuries visited: 13th century, 15th century, 16th century and 20th century
Countries visited: Ancient Greece, England and America
Currently reading: ‘Love in time of cholera’, my CC Spin result.
Next up: I have no idea yet :).

Reviewed

Blogged

Watched

  • I’ve started Maximilian on Disney + about Emperor Maximilian and Mary of Burgundy
  • In Belgium, we now have our own historical series, which is also available in some countries on Netflix with English subtitles. It’s called ‘Thieves of the wood’ and is set in the 18th century. The main character is Jan De Lichte, some kind of Flemish Robin Hood.

Added to my TBR

Some new work from favourite authors, and some next installments in series I’ve been reading

What was your favourite book in October?

September recap

September, that meant going back to the office most of the time and less corona measures. But also some sunny days and the cycling world championships in my city :D. So yes, this was a great month! I even managed to reach my reading challenge (in September yes, I also don’t know what got into me).

Read(ing)

It’s an easy month to recap. Lolita was my 35th book of the year and so I surpassed my Goodreads reading challenge. I already can tell you this will be my best reading year ever. Thanks covid 😷, thanks bad weather ☔︎, thanks failed holidays… and thank God for books 😅🙏.

To celebrate I started a really big one. I love Ken Follett, but his books are heavy in pages. ‘World without end’ proved the perfect medieval escape during this busy month. ‘The collector’s daughter’ was a review copy of a much anticipated author for me. I read it during my train rides and enjoyed it. But maybe I had expected a bit more? I’ll definitely try another Gill Paul!

Number of pages read: 1.915 pages
Number of books finished: 3
Favorite read: World without end
Centuries visited: 14th century and 20th century
Countries visited: England, America, Italy and Egypt
Currently reading: The damask rose by Carol Mcgrath (and loving it)
Next up: I hope to grab ‘Revelation’ at the library and I’m looking for my next classic

Reviewed

Added to my TBR

  • The handfasted wife as I want to try some more books of McGrath
  • Matrix by Lauren Groff because it’s about the 12th century (not the kind of author I was expecting this as a setting from, but it sounds promising)

What’s the longest book you have read so far this year?

August recap

So summer is over, but I still need to look back at August. As you might have guessed from my 20 books of summer recap, this was a successful reading month. But in the end, this summer didn’t work out as I wanted in some way. We had so much bad weather, some troubles were on my mind and my boyfriend got sick during our the few days we would go on holiday. But well, here’s what I read :D.

Read(ing)

I stared off with my classics club spin result ‘Treasure island’, which I enjoyed but the language was a bit too difficult for me at times. Then I finally got to ‘The scarlet contessa’, a novel about Catherina Sforza, one of my favourite historical figures.

My library haul just before my holidays included ‘Captive queen’, ‘A thousand ships’ and ‘Dit leven is van jou’ (the newest book of Tatiana De Rosnay in Dutch, translated from French. The book is not out yet in English, so I’ll not review it for the moment. But it was great, I finished it in one day!).

Number of pages read: 1.922 pages
Number of books finished: 5
Favorite read: A thousand ships
Centuries visited: Ancient Greece, 12th century, 15th century, 18th century and 21st century
Countries visited: England, France, Italy and Greece
Currently reading: ‘Lolita‘ for the classics club and ‘The collector’s daughter‘ (an e-arc I received via Netgalley).
Next up: I might finally start ‘World without end’ as this was on my 20 books of summer list but I didn’t manage to pick it up.
20 books of summer: 14/20

Reviewed

Blogged

Watched

  • I watched the BBC docuseries ‘The Boleyns, a scandalous family’. I liked the focus on Thomas Boleyn and his politics. I disliked the framing of Mary as the victim and Anne as the scheming one. Mary’s absence at the French court and her lying with the French king make for a whole different story. Also no mention of her two children whose father possibly was Henry VIII.

Added to my TBR

I was looking for some more Greek myth retellings #sorrynotsorry.

Do you have any other Greek myth recommendations?