What I read in December 2023

December! I more or less went into goblin mode over the Christmas break, hunkering down to read and play online board games, only really venturing out to play board games IRL and plunder the Waterstones half-price hardback sale (five days later, I’ve already read two of the six books I bought, which isn’t bad going).

My weird speculative/sci-fi/non-fiction short story went down really well with the Emotional Madness crowd, so my current goal is to submit it somewhere. Keeping an eye out for suitable opportunities…

Detransition, Baby, The House of Whispers, Sertraline Dreams, The Rift

Detransition, Baby, by Torrey Peters - 4*

The House of Whispers, by Anna Mazzola - 4*

Sertraline Dreams, by Oli Jacobs - 4*

The Rift, by Nina Allan - 5*

Boys in the Valley, Resurrections, The Outside, The Scrapbook

Boys in the Valley, by Philip Fracassi - 4*

Resurrections, by Ada Hoffmann - 4.5*

The Outside, by Ada Hoffmann - yes, I did like my previous read so much that I immediately had to read something else by the same author. 4*

The Scrapbook, by Carly Holmes - 4.5*

Thief of Time, Christmas Days, The Long View, A Haunting in the Arctic

Thief of Time, by Terry Pratchett - 4.5*

Christmas Days, by Jeanette Winterson - 4*

The Long View, by Elizabeth Jane Howard - 4.5*

A Haunting in the Arctic, by C. J. Cooke - I loved the premise when it was revealed, but feel it would have worked better as a central conceit from the outset. Also, where was the editor? 3*

The Guests, The Gloaming, Robotic Ambitions, The Winter Spirits

The Guests, by Agnes Ratavn, translated by Rosie Hedger - review coming soon! 4*

The Gloaming, by Kirsty Logan - 4.5*

Robotic Ambitions, edited by Jason Sizemore and Lesley Conner - review coming soon! 4*

The Winter Spirits, by various authors - 4.5*

Looking ahead…

A Stroke of the Pen, Night Side of the River, Strong Female Character, The Infinite, Figurehead

Starting as I mean to go on, I’ve already finished a 5* book in 2024, by which I mean I read the last 50 pages of Past Lying, by Val McDermid, this morning (if I’d finished it last night, I’d have had to divide 17 titles into collages, which would have been a nightmare).

The blog tour machine is warming back up, and Strong Female Character, by Fern Brady, is something I’m particularly looking forward to reading and reviewing.

I’m planning to continue my exploration of the back catalogues of Carly Holmes and Ada Hoffmann, with Figurehead and The Infinite, respectively.

I’m also excited to read A Stroke of the Pen, by Terry Pratchett, and Night Side of the River: Ghost Stories, by Jeanette Winterson — another couple of spoils from my sales haul.

Happy new reading year!

Alice Violett's Picture

About Alice Violett

Writer of blogs and short stories, reader of books, player of board games, lover of cats, editor of web content, haver of PhD.

Colchester, UK https://www.draliceviolett.com