2022 in Books

I spent more than half of the last year behind in my Goodreads goal for the year and saying I needed to read more of the shorter kids’ books on my TBR to fill in the gaps. It wasn’t until December that I finally pushed through some of those shorter books and wasn’t behind anymore.

I read 128 books in 2021, hitting my Goodreads challenge of 125 books on December 18th. My total page count was 38,809, making my average book length for the year 303 pages.

Below are the books I read in 2022. The link is to my review for that book, and a link to the book on Goodreads is at the bottom of each review.

January

A Map of Days by Ransom Riggs (4 / 5)
Weave a Circle Round** by Kari Maaren (3.5 / 5)
The Austere Academy by Lemony Snicket (2.5 / 5)
The Ladies of Ivy Cottage by Julie Klassen (4 / 5)
Genius Camp* by Chris Grabenstein (4 / 5)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban** by J.K. Rowling (3.5 / 5)
The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare by Lilian Jackson Braun (4 / 5)
Until Leaves Fall in Paris* by Sarah Sundin (5 / 5)
Project Hail Mary** by Andy Weir (5 / 5)
Kitty Hawk by Roland Smith (4 / 5)
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (4 / 5)
The Ersatz Elevator by Lemony Snicket (2 / 5)

February

In Search of a Prince* by Toni Shiloh (3.5 / 5)
Things We Couldn’t Say by Diet Eman with James Schaap (5 / 5)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire** by J.K. Rowling (4.5 / 5)
Winnie-the-Pooh**(*) by A.A. Milne (4.5 / 5)
The Vile Village by Lemony Snicket (3.5 / 5)
The Canyon Quest by Jim Ware (3 / 5)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix** by J.K. Rowling (4 / 5)
Already Gone by Ken Ham & Britt Beemer with Todd Hillard (5 / 5)
Swept into the Sea by Chris Brack & Sheila Seifert (3 / 5)
Crocodile on the Sandbank** by Elizabeth Peters (4.5 / 5)
The Hostile Hospital by Lemony Snicket (3.5 / 5)
The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse (2 / 5)

March

Pithea** by Kristi Drillien (5 / 5)
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince** by J.K. Rowling (4 / 5)
The Great Gatsby** by F. Scott Fitzgerald (2 / 5)
Outcast** by Kristi Drillien (5 / 5)
Journal 29 by Dimitris Chassapakis (2.5 / 5)
The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary (2 / 5)
The Carnivorous Carnival by Lemony Snicket (2.5 / 5)
The Conference of the Birds by Ransom Riggs (3 / 5)
Islands and Enemies* by Marianne Hering (3.5 / 5)

April

The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis (5 / 5)
Treasure Hunters by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (3 / 5)
Behind the Lights* by Helen Smallbone (4 / 5)
The Alamo by Roland Smith and Michael P. Spradlin (3.5 / 5)
The Last Sin Eater by Francine Rivers (4 / 5)
Gospel Reset by Ken Ham (4 / 5)
Between Heaven and the Real World by Steven Curtis Chapman with Ken Abraham (4.5 / 5)
A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle (4 / 5)

May

The Bride of Ivy Green by Julie Klassen (4.5 / 5)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows** by J.K. Rowling (4 / 5)
An Ivy Hill Christmas** by Julie Klassen (5 / 5)
Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (5 / 5)
The Slippery Slope by Lemony Snicket (3 / 5)
The Cat Who Sniffed Glue by Lilian Jackson Braun (4 / 5)
I Can Only Imagine by Bart Millard (5 / 5)
Creation Museum Signs by Answers in Genesis (5 / 5)
The Desolations of Devil’s Acre by Ransom Riggs (2 / 5)

June

Legend of the Desert Bigfoot by Jake & Luke Thoene (4 / 5)
The Curse of the Pharaohs** by Elizabeth Peters (4.5 / 5)
Caleb’s Story by Patricia MacLachlan (4 / 5)
Treasure Hunters: Down the Nile by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (3.5 / 5)
The Apostle’s Sister* by Angela Hunt (3.5 / 5)
Distant Stars* by Kassandra Garrison (3 / 5)
Night** by Elie Wiesel (5 / 5)
The Men We Need by Brant Hansen (5 / 5)
The Giver by Lois Lowry (5 / 5)

July

The Windy City by Roland Smith & Michael P. Spradlin (4 / 5)
The Grim Grotto by Lemony Snicket (3.5 / 5)
Secret of the Forbidden City by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (3.5 / 5)
The Story of the Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta von Trapp (4 / 5)
The Penultimate Peril by Lemony Snicket (3 / 5)
Mr. Lemoncello’s Very First Game* by Chris Grabenstein (4.5 / 5)
The Pirate Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo (3 / 5)
Peril at the Top of the World by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2 / 5)
The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis (4.5 / 5)
Quest for the City of Gold by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2.5 / 5)

August

The End by Lemony Snicket (2 / 5)
Freedom’s Song* by Kim Vogel Sawyer (3 / 5)
A Seven Letter Word by Kim Slater (3.5 / 5)
All-American Adventure by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2.5 / 5)
A Treacherous Tale* by Elizabeth Penney (2 / 5)
The Mummy Case by Elizabeth Peters (2 / 5)
The Debutante’s Code by Erica Vetsch (5 / 5)
Trapped in Hitler’s Hell by Anita Dittman with Jan Markell (4 / 5)

September

The Plunder Down Under by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (3 / 5)
The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau (5 / 5)
The Librarians and The Lost Lamp by Greg Cox (4 / 5)
Alcatraz by Roland Smith & Michael P. Spradlin (3.5 / 5)
Ready to Return by Ken Ham with Jeff Kinley (5 / 5)
The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle (3 / 5)
Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry (4 / 5)
Ready Player One** by Ernest Cline (3 / 5)
Millstone of Doubt* by Erica Vetsch (4 / 5)
The Cat Who Went Underground by Lilian Jackson Braun (3.5 / 5)
The Ultimate Quest* by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2 / 5)
Revenge of the Phantom Hot Rod by Robert Vernon (4.5 / 5)
Messenger by Lois Lowry (2.5 / 5)

October

I Want to Punch You in the Face But I Love Jesus** by Sherri Lynn (5 / 5)
Storm Front by Jim Butcher (4 / 5)
The People of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrau (3 / 5)
Jurassic Park** by Michael Crichton (5 / 5)
Quest for the King’s Crown* by Robert Vernon (4 / 5)
The Cat Who Talked to Ghosts** by Lilian Jackson Braun (4.5 / 5)
The Librarians and the Mother Goose Chase by Greg Cox (4 / 5)
The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep (3 / 5)
Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline (1 / 5)
The Cat Who Lived High by Lilian Jackson Braun (3.5 / 5)
The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis (3.5 / 5)

November

Fool Moon by Jim Butcher (3 / 5)
Lightning** by Dean Koontz (5 / 5)
The Librarians and the Pot of Gold by Greg Cox (3 / 5)
The Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans (4 / 5)
Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
Son by Lois Lowry (3 / 5)
Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
The Sisters of Sea View* by Julie Klassen (3.5 / 5)
Addie McCormick and the Stranger in the Attic** by Leanne Lucas (5 / 5)

December

The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal** by Lilian Jackson Braun (4.5 / 5)
On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness** by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (3.5 / 5)
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (5 / 5)
The Big Lie by Bill Myers (5 / 5)
Ruth by Ellen Gunderson Traylor (5 / 5)
Grave Peril by Jim Butcher (3.5 / 5)
North! or Be Eaten** by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary (5 / 5)
Cozy Up to Christmas by Colin Conway (2.5 / 5)
Addie McCormick and the Mystery of the Missing Scrapbook by Leanne Lucas (5 / 5)
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
The Monster in the Hollows** by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Greatest Gift: A Christmas Tale by Philip Van Doren Stern (3.5 / 5)
The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan (4 / 5)
The Warden and the Wolf King** by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Cat Who Moved a Mountain by Lilian Jackson Braun (4 / 5)
The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis (4 / 5)

This list includes 15 ARCs (marked with a *) and 26 re-reads (marked with a **). I’m not going to try to pick my single favorite book from the year, but I did post about my top 10 favorites already. During the last year, I started 17 series and finished 10 series, caught up on 8 series (meaning the author plans to release more in the future), and decided not to continue 3 series (after being at least 2 books into the series). I currently have 10 series in progress. And for the first time since I started blogging about reading in 2019, I did not DNF a single book!

Here is a break-down of the ratings I gave (there were a few books I read twice during the year, so I only counted them once each):
1 star: 1
1.5 stars: 0
2 stars: 9
2.5 stars: 7
3 stars: 18
3.5 stars: 17
4 stars: 29
4.5 stars: 9
5 stars: 24
Average rating: 3.75

Even though I was behind all month, I’m going to raise my reading goal up (but only by 5), setting my goal for the year on Goodreads at 130 books. Some of the short kids’ books I read were the first in a series, which means I should have an easier time getting those quick ones in. If I come to regret it, I can always lower it.

My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here. I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads, if anyone is interested in that.

What did you read last year? Let me know in the comments, and even feel free to link to your own summary post!

December in Review

I read 18 books last month, which beats my old record for books read in a month by 2. I mostly chalk it up to going into the month knowing I needed to read 15 more books to hit my Goodreads goal for the year and then proceeding to read a few short children’s books (which were part of my plan to hit that number anyway, but I hadn’t been getting to them throughout the year like I meant to). More astounding, though, is that I surpassed my previous amount of pages read per month by about 100 pages, so the smaller books do not mean that I didn’t read very much over all. That is most likely due to the speed with which I went through an entire 4-book series of audiobooks during the month. That series was 1500 pages by itself.

I hit my Goodreads goal on December 18th, 10 days earlier than I did last year. That means I read 15 books in the first 2 1/2 weeks of December and then only read 3 books in the last 2 weeks! This makes me laugh, but also makes sense, what with Christmas through New Year often being a busier time.

Here are the books I read in December:

The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal by Lilian Jackson Braun (4.5 / 5)
On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (3.5 / 5)
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson (5 / 5)
The Big Lie by Bill Myers (5 / 5)
Ruth by Ellen Gunderson Traylor (5 / 5)
Grave Peril by Jim Butcher (3.5 / 5)
North! or Be Eaten by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary (5 / 5)
Cozy Up to Christmas by Colin Conway (2.5 / 5)
Addie McCormick and the Mystery of the Missing Scrapbook by Leanne Lucas (5 / 5)
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
The Monster in the Hollows by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Greatest Gift: A Christmas Tale by Philip Van Doren Stern (3.5 / 5)
The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan (4 / 5)
The Warden and the Wolf King by Andrew Peterson (5 / 5)
The Cat Who Moved a Mountain by Lilian Jackson Braun (4 / 5)
The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis (4 / 5)

This list includes 5 re-reads (most of that was listening to the audiobooks of the entire Wingfeather Saga again). My favorite book from December (that wasn’t a re-read) was Ruth. I started 4 series, continued 4 series, and finished 2 series. My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here.

I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads. Despite my almost too-long TBR list, I’m always looking for more to add. Feel free to offer suggestions of your favorites or just recent reads you enjoyed.

November in Review

I read 9 books last month, which, I’ll be honest, was not ideal. Looking back over my monthly reading wrap-up posts from a majority of this year, pretty much every month I mentioned that I was getting behind in my Goodreads reading goal for the year, and that it was at least partly because I set the goal with the intention of reading a decent number of short young-audience books (like, 200 pages or less). I kept putting most of those off, and now I’m down to my last month and find myself needing to read 15 books this month to make my goal. I know it’s just a personal challenge, but it’s very difficult for me to let myself fail something like this, especially when it really is within my power to hit that goal. I just need to make sure to finish a book every 2 days. That may mean I’m reading a lot of kids’ books this month, but so be it.

Here are the books I read in November:

Fool Moon by Jim Butcher (3 / 5)
Lightning by Dean Koontz (5 / 5)
The Librarians and the Pot of Gold by Greg Cox (3 / 5)
The Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans (4 / 5)
Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
Son by Lois Lowry (3 / 5)
Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder (5 / 5)
The Sisters of Sea View by Julie Klassen (3.5 / 5)
Addie McCormick and the Stranger in the Attic by Leanne Lucas (review pending)

This list includes 1 ARC and 2 re-reads. My favorite book from November was Farmer Boy. I started 3 series, continued 1 series, and finished (or caught up on) 3 series. My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here.

I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads. Despite my almost too-long TBR list, I’m always looking for more to add. Feel free to offer suggestions of your favorites or just recent reads you enjoyed.

Book Review: The Sisters of Sea View

The Sisters of Sea View
On Devonshire Shores #1
by Julie Klassen

My rating: 3.5 / 5
Genre: Christian historical romance

Sisters Sarah, Emily, Viola, and Georgiana Summers agree (some more reluctantly than others) to turn their seaside home into a guest house to provide income for the family. They originally came to Devonshire in the hopes of curing their ailing mother, and then their father died. Now it is up to them to care for their mother and keep the family together.

I have mixed feelings about this book. After reading and enjoying the Tales from Ivy Hill trilogy by the same author, I was looking forward to another series of books with a sort of ensemble set of main characters. I did expect some romance, but there was a lot more in this book than I thought there would be. Then again, there are four women that need to find love, so it makes sense that one would find it in this book. However, I would have preferred a little more time spent developing the relationship. I also felt a little uncomfortable at the amount of skin shown in this book. Various male characters were without some or possibly all clothes multiple times when the women (or at least the one that would have any interest in that man) were there to see it. There’s a lot of blushing and thinking about broad shoulders and bare chests. That is not needed for romance, and for me, at least, it’s not welcome.

While the main characters were decently interesting, I think the side characters were the real gems in this book. The guests staying at Sea View, mainly, but also the elderly woman that Viola reads to, Major Hutton’s friend and brother—all of these people I hope to be able to see more of in the future books. Viola is the most dynamic character in this book, and I appreciated seeing the development to her own personality as well as her relationship with her family. Major Hutton, I felt, was weakly drawn. His friend and family members talk a lot about how gruff and ill-tempered he is, but I found him to be just a little unhappy (which is understandable, given his current circumstances) until suddenly he’s randomly an outright jerk for weird reasons. I get what the author was trying to show us about him, but it felt inconsistent.

Overall, I felt this was a rocky start to the series, but I have enjoyed the other books I’ve read by this author. And I definitely have interest in the world Klassen has set up in this book, so I’m looking forward to continuing the series in the future. Based on past experience, I have good reason to believe that most fans of Regency-era Christian romance will enjoy this book.

Thank you to Netgalley and Bethany House for providing me a copy of this book to review.
Publication date: December 6, 2022

Find out more about The Sisters of Sea View

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If you’ve read this book, or read it in the future, feel free to let me know what you think!

October in Review

I read 11 books last month, 1 book higher than my monthly average this year. I’m still a little behind in progress towards my Goodreads goal for the year, due to expecting to read a lot more particularly short children’s books than I’ve gotten to this year. I’ll have to be sure to insert more of those in the next two months.

Here are the books I read in October:

I Want to Punch You in the Face But I Love Jesus by Sherri Lynn (5 / 5)
Storm Front by Jim Butcher (4 / 5)
The People of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrau (3 / 5)
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton (5 / 5)
Quest for the King’s Crown by Robert Vernon (4 / 5)
The Cat Who Talked to Ghosts by Lilian Jackson Braun (4.5 / 5)
The Librarians and the Mother Goose Chase by Greg Cox (4 / 5)
The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep (3 / 5)
Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline (1 / 5)
The Cat Who Lived High by Lilian Jackson Braun (3.5 / 5)
The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis (review pending)

This list includes 1 ARC and 3 re-reads. My favorite book from October was Jurassic Park. I started 2 series, continued 4 series, and finished (or caught up on) 3 series*. My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here.

*This includes a series I didn’t reach the end of, but decided not to continue reading, after being at least 2 books into the series.

I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads. Despite my almost too-long TBR list, I’m always looking for more to add. Feel free to offer suggestions of your favorites or just recent reads you enjoyed.

Book Review: Quest for the King’s Crown

Quest for the King’s Crown
Last Chance Detectives #6/7*
by Robert Vernon

My rating: 4 / 5
Genre: Children’s Christian mystery, adventure

Mysterious strangers and very old skeletons launch the Last Chance Detectives into another case, this time searching for treasure!

This series takes place in the mid-90s, though I sometimes think the author takes some liberty with the technology available at the time. Still, this story is fun, with some twists and turns that keep it interesting. There are some things that happen that I feel are unlikely enough to lower the rating by a star, because while kids may not pick up on those issues, that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a story with a tighter plot. I also think the kids themselves and their personalities take a bit of a backseat to the grander plot, but overall, it’s a good addition to the series. I was leery of new books being written after so long, but now I’m glad to be able to read more about these young detectives from the 90s and really hope the author is planning more, especially considering the tiny crumb we’re given about Mike’s missing dad in this book.

Thank you to Netgalley and Tyndale House Publishers/Focus on the Family for providing me a copy of this book to review.

Find out more about Quest for the King’s Crown
Publication date: November 8, 2022
*There were 3 books in the series originally, back in the 90s, and then a prequel came out in 2004. For some reason, when the first more recent book was published in 2021, the first one was labeled as book #5 in the series, I guess making the prequel the new #1 and pushing the rest a book later. But the early ones are still labeled as 1-3 in many places, so now it’s just kind of a mess…

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If you’ve read this book, or read it in the future, feel free to let me know what you think!

September in Review

I read 13 books last month, which breaks my highest amount of books in 1 month this year by 1 book. However, the page count was not the highest for the year, which is not surprising, since I read quite a few shorter books this month. But that was on purpose, since I need to catch up a bit to hit my total books read goal by the end of the year.

Here are the books I read in September:

The Plunder Down Under by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (3 / 5)
The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau (5 / 5)
The Librarians and The Lost Lamp by Greg Cox (4 / 5)
Alcatraz by Roland Smith & Michael P. Spradlin (3.5 / 5)
Ready to Return by Ken Ham with Jeff Kinley (5 / 5)
The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle (3 / 5)
Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry (4 / 5)
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (3 / 5)
Millstone of Doubt by Erica Vetsch (4 / 5)
The Cat Who Went Underground by Lilian Jackson Braun (3.5 / 5)
The Ultimate Quest by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2 / 5)
Revenge of the Phantom Hot Rod by Robert Vernon (4.5 / 5)
Messenger by Lois Lowry (review pending)

This list includes 2 ARCs and 1 re-read. My favorite book from September was The City of Ember. I started 3 series, continued 4 series, and finished (or caught up on) 3 series. My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here.

I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads. Despite my almost too-long TBR list, I’m always looking for more to add. Feel free to offer suggestions of your favorites or just recent reads you enjoyed.

Book Review: The Ultimate Quest


Treasure Hunters Book #8
by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein

My rating: 2 / 5
Genre: Children’s adventure

Spoiler notice: The following review may contain some spoilers for the previous books in the series, starting with Treasure Hunters.

When the Kidd kids’ parents are kidnapped, it’s up to Bick, Beck, Tommy, and Storm to find the treasure that the kidnappers are after first, so they can save their parents.

I have hung in there for 8 books, but I think this is where I call it. I’ve grown weary of a family of treasure hunters that no longer keeps the treasure (and acts like that’s always been their m.o., even though it wasn’t that way in the early books of the series). Of the oldest son who treats every woman close to his age like an object. Of the sister who remembers everything she ever heard, smelled, or saw going back to when she was 4 years old. Of the twins that fight over stupid things at ridiculous times. Of every single person that the characters meet ultimately betraying them. It’s just…not fun anymore (it wasn’t fun by the third book, really).

In this book in particular, we also have Storm (the super-smart sibling with the “photographic” memory) flirting like Tommy does, and it made me roll my eyes. I also did not care for the “he/she/they” reference to God in a book meant for kids. I really don’t feel comfortable recommending this book or its predecessors to any age group, and I will not be continuing this series, which does appear to have another book being released at some point in the future. However, there are far more positive reviews for this book than negative, so I’m in the minority (I’m used to it). Please do check out other reviews for the book if you’re interested.

Thank you to Netgalley and Little, Brown Books for Young Readers for providing me a copy of this book to review.

Find out more about The Ultimate Quest

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If you’ve read this book, or read it in the future, feel free to let me know what you think!

Book Review: Millstone of Doubt

Millstone of Doubt
Thorndike & Swann Regency Mysteries #2
by Erica Vetsch

My rating: 4 / 5
Genre: Christian historical mystery

Both fledgling agents for the crown, Lady Juliette Thorndike and Bow Street runner Daniel Swann individually need to figure out their roles and places in the spy network as well as their “normal” lives. When Juliette’s best friend’s father is killed, Juliette is told to stay out of the investigation, but Daniel plunges headlong into it. Meanwhile, Juliette is still in the middle of her debut season, and Daniel’s lifelong patronage by a mysterious benefactor will soon be coming to an end, leaving him in an unknown position. How will they navigate these difficult situations and deal with their growing feelings for each other?

I may have rated this book a star less than the previous book in the series, but I still really enjoyed it. The overall world that Vetsch has set up in this series and the one it’s connected to, Serendipity & Secrets, is one I really hope I don’t have to leave any time soon. Juliette learning to become a spy, using her training in real-world settings while trying to get over her weaknesses, but still having to act the role of a debutante, is a fun mixture. Daniel’s combining of his police work with spycraft isn’t as much of a stretch, but it still allows for some panic moments as he tries to keep his secret. There was also a great moment when Daniel’s friend and co-worker Ed gives him a little speech about the goodness of God, even when we don’t see it in our lives, that I really liked.

The mystery was overall good. I liked the different paths they went down trying to solve it; mystery is a favorite genre of mine, and this one was enjoyable. I did guess who the killer was pretty early on, but wasn’t 100% sure I was right until a while later (but before it was revealed). There was another mysterious aspect unrelated to the murder that I also figured out early on, but I still liked the way it played out. The story slowed down enough in the middle that I detracted a star, but overall, I really liked this book. I highly recommend it for fans of this genre and time period, whether you like romance or not, though that aspect is more in focus in this book than the previous.

I received a free review copy from the publisher in exchange for my honest unedited feedback.

Find out more about Millstone of Doubt

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If you’ve read this book, or read it in the future, feel free to let me know what you think!

August in Review

I read 8 books last month, which is a tie for my lowest number of books in a month this year. Not my lowest amount by page count, though, so that’s something. I’m a bit behind in keeping up with my reading goal for the year, but I don’t think I’ve been reading nearly as many children’s books as I expected. I may need to slip some of those in over the next month to bring my total back up. As to the quality of the books I read last month…as you can see from my list below the cover pictures, it was not a great month for reading. Here’s hoping September will be better in more ways than one!

Here are the books I read in August:

The End by Lemony Snicket (2 / 5)
Freedom’s Song by Kim Vogel Sawyer (3 / 5)
A Seven Letter Word by Kim Slater (3.5 / 5)
All-American Adventure by James Patterson & Chris Grabenstein (2.5 / 5)
A Treacherous Tale by Elizabeth Penney (2 / 5)
The Mummy Case by Elizabeth Peters (2 / 5)
The Debutante’s Code by Erica Vetsch (5 / 5)
Trapped in Hitler’s Hell by Anita Dittman with Jan Markell (review pending)

This list includes 2 ARCs. My favorite book from August (by FAR) was The Debutante’s Code. I started 1 series, continued 1 series, and finished (or caught up on) 3 series*. My ever-changing short list of to-be-reads, as well as a flag for the book I’m currently reading and an ongoing list of those I’ve read and posted about can be found here.

*This includes a series I didn’t reach the end of, but decided not to continue reading, after being at least 2 books into the series.

I’m also keeping my Goodreads page updated with a more extensive list of to-be-reads. Despite my almost too-long TBR list, I’m always looking for more to add. Feel free to offer suggestions of your favorites or just recent reads you enjoyed.