Welcome to the year 2023! I still get a bit surprised whenever the new year shows up because it seems like time just flies by sometimes. I also spend a majority of the first week remembering NOT to write the previous year down. I have some good feelings about this upcoming year. But that could also be me being optimistic since we’ve had a couple of hard years back to back. Still, whether I’m looking at the cup half filled or not, Let us toast to the year 2023 and have hope that it does turn out to be a pretty amazing year!

I’ll be honest, I struggled with my Goodreads Reading Challenge for 2022. My goal was to read 120 books. I made it, but it was a freaking sprint to the end for me. I was able to hit that final book count about 2 hours before the deadline. I think I crammed 5 books in the last 3 days. So this year’s Reading Challenge is me trying to find my goldilocks number. For 2021 I aimed for 100 and hit 117. So I’m going to shoot for:

115 books to read in 2023

I know, it is only 5 books less than what I perviously had. I think I will have better luck at this though. Especially considering how many books I was reading though towards the end. 5 books might not seem like a big difference and decrease; however, if you look at the amount of pages that it is, (about 300 pages per book on average for my usual reading list) I won’t be reading roughly 1,500 pages. Dang. put it into a big number like that and it makes me realize just how many pages readers go through in a year on average… wow!

Another thing that I am going to be trying for this year is a Monthly Theme Reading Challenge for the website. I have all the month’s themes picked out and listed on the Book Nook Page on the website. There is also a little “What does it mean” section to just incase my silly and witty monthly titles don’t explain what the current month’s theme is. I’ll also keep the book titles that feature in the monthly reading list on this chart too. For the most part, Each month will be focused on a particular idea, challenge, mood, or holiday depending on the month. I am pretty excited for the challenge this year! It is nice to challenge myself to read some new stories or people that I wouldn’t normally pick up or branch out time to read.

With that in mind, here is the first monthly reading theme.

Reading Theme: Just Beginning January

For the month of January I am going to go out and find New Authors or Lesser-Known Authors and shine some light on them. These are the ones that are trying their hand at the world of print and are growing their fan base one reader at a time. There were a ton of individuals to choose from, so these 5 books aren’t even scratching the surface of the amount of writers out there. I am excited to get started on their stories!

Happy Reading Everyone!

My Reading List for January 2023:

Poisoned in Provence By Cat Green

Provence: A magical start to bright new life…… garnished with buttery croissants, café au lait, and a delectable French chef. But when murder is on the menu, will she be the next victim?

Still reeling from a romantic betrayal, 22-year-old Nina travels to Provence, France to oversee her magazine’s chef competition. Kitchen heat sends her swooning into the arms of a scrumptious French contestant Jacques, a tasty Crème Brûlée of a chef she’d love to nibble. As Jacques gives Nina a tour of his family’s historic caves and magical gardens, secrets waft through the lilac-scented breeze. Secrets that come to light when the head judge shrieks “poison” during the competition’s climax.

Can Jacques be the culprit? Will Nina prove her creamy cuisiner’s innocence and discover the real culprit before it’s too late?

The Adventures of A Thief and A Princess By Bryan M. Powell

He was a thief, she was a princess but fate brought them together.

Shanghaied, shipwrecked, and stranded on the island of Madagascar, Aditya and Mia face an uncertain future. Desperate to return to their families, they strike out on an adventure which takes them up the east coast of Africa and across the Indian Ocean. Along the way, they are joined by a French pirate, a runaway slave, two Muslim brothers who argue over everything, and then there are the animals…

Each day brings new dangers and opportunities. However, the secret each of them carries soon threatens to tear them apart. Facing adversities from within and adversaries from without, the bedraggled travelers learn to overlook each other’s faults and discover the true meaning of love and forgiveness.

Scale of The Dragon By Richard Fierce

Her key to freedom is also her torment.

Mina is an outcast. A childhood accident left her scarred and with a curse that her master exploits to hunt dragons for sport.

She wants freedom, from both her master and the curse, but unless the right dragon is killed, she’ll be a bondservant for the rest of her days.

With Mina’s uncanny ability and her master’s magical strength, the beast responsible for her misery will fall … even if she has to take matters into her own hands.

Trip The Light Fantastic By Nicole Bea

Nothing heals a broken heart like an enticing new dance partner.

Eighteen-year-old freshman Chelsea DesRosiers is ready to reinvent herself. After an abysmal breakup with her cheating ex, Chelsea vows to step out of her comfort zone.

The answer? Swing dance classes. Maybe not the best idea for someone with two left feet, but the overwhelmed Chelsea soon finds herself in the arms of swoon-worthy campus dance president, Lux Colford. The attraction rises as the two spend their extra evenings practicing their moves until an old flame of Lux’s shows up.

Can Chelsea risk her heart again? Will Lux prove worthy of her trust, or will finding her inner strength mean walking away?

The Sylvan Horn By Robert Redinger

Before the days of men, there were elves. In a time they were great and powerful, the first dwellers, the brightest ray of dawn upon the earth. They brought light and music to the world and every breeze that stirs and wave that crashes still echoes with the wonder of the fair folk.
But a foulness is brewing in the east, where men deal in sorcery. They summon dire forces, unleashing a terrible power into the world. And the elves, once immortal, now fade from the earth. But knowing that all sorcery comes from Runes that were carved ages ago, Efkin, a young elf lord, races to find and destroy the hidden Runes before all is lost. He sets out to recover the horn of his ancestors that long ago summoned the forces that shaped the world. Only the horn has the power to break the Runes. He journeys into the east, but comes too close to the heart of sorcery and does not dare blow the horn. If he is tainted by the poison of the Runes the horn will sound a ruinous note that could spell the end of the earth.

What is your Reading Challenge of the Year?

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