January Mini-Review Recap

I haven’t done a mini-review recap post in exactly a year! Mainly because in February of last year I got insanely busy, and I never got organized enough to come back at the end of the month and do a recap. Things have slowed down a lot, so here we are!

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling – I didn’t review any of my Harry Potter re-reads, but of course this is a great end to a most awesome series.


Mr. Fox by Helen Oyeyemi – Confused the crap out of me so I can’t say I enjoyed the book overall, but there was some beautiful writing in here.


Salsa Nocturna by Daniel José Older – Fabulous ghost noir short story collection, and I’m excited that the main character of these stories now has a whole book starring him – Half-Resurrection Blues. Already bought it 🙂


Watson and Holmes: A Study in Black (volume 1) by Karl Bollers and Rick Leonardi – Sherlock, except in modern-day Harlem with black characters. Fantastic new take on a classic. Can’t wait for the second volume.


Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson – Children’s / YA book, a memoir told in verse. Wonderfully written, glad to have it on my shelf.


Ancillary Justice (Imperial Radch #1) by Ann Leckie – Space opera sci-fi that took me a little bit to get into, but ended up being really great. Collective consciousness in an A.I. ship and its soldiers is a really fun concept.


Adulthood Rites (Xenogenesis Trilogy #2) by Octavia Butler – Great sequel to Dawn, doesn’t suffer from second-book-syndrome at all. Excited to read the next book, Imago.



How to Be Black by Baratunde Thurston – Informative, hilarious, and sometimes painful. Partly satirical and largely autobiographical, this was a really great read. And Baratunde would encourage you to read it now, being Black History Month and all.

Deadpool Classic: Volume 2 by Joe Kelly, Ed McGuinness, etc. – I love Deadpool, but man I really don’t like the art in these runs. Still psyched to work my way through ALL of the volumes though 🙂

Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation by Bill Nye – I never got around to reviewing this, but it’s SUCH a fun audiobook read. Bill Nye cracks me up, and it is awesome that he narrates. And you know, the science-y stuff is good too. Yay evolution! Down with creationism!


The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead – Brilliant book about rival elevator inspectors and race. The first black female elevator inspector, Lila Mae Watson, is on the hunt for the person trying to frame her in an elevator accident. Great pulpy noir feel, and full of racial and social commentary.



Books read: 9

Female authors: 5 (55%!)

Non-white authors: 6 (66%!)

Format breakdown: 5 e-books, 3 print, 1 audiobooks

STATS – COMICS (including writers and illustrators)

Issues read: 24

Female authors/illustrators: 4

Non-white authors/illustrators: 6

Format breakdown: 21 print, 3 e-book


So basically, I’m kicking ass in stats, at least on the “books” front. It’s been hard to find more comics that aren’t written and illustrated by white men, but still. And I’m going by “issues read”, but some of those were collected trade formats. And I guess when I read graphic novels, I’ll count those as 1 “issue”. Man, comics make stats complicated.




  1. Wow, Sarah. Way to diversify your reading last month! I definitely want to read Brown Girl Dreaming, but really the only thing holding me back is that it’s written in verse. I kinda hate reading books like that, but everything else about the book outweighs that.


  2. Oooh I didn’t know Brown Girl Dreaming was in verse, I’ll have to add it to my library list.

    Comics stats ARE hard. Especially when you read something like Fables which lists about 10,000 people as illustrators.

    There’s a book called “Am I Black Enough For You” by an an Australian author named Anita Heiss which is a really fascinating memoir about growing up Aboriginal in the suburbs. Anyway it’s great, and the title How to be Black just reminded me of it.


      1. I hadn’t seen that, thanks for sharing!

        I’m so glad to hear Anita Heiss has made an impression overseas! It seems like Australian authors really struggle to get any kind of recognition outside of Aus unless they win won of the big awards.


      2. I think I added Anita Heiss to my list because you recommended her before 🙂 She has a shortish book called “I’m not racist, but…: A Collection of Social Observations” on the Kindle that I want to check out soon.


  3. Mr. Fox is soooo confusing. I posit that the best way to enjoy it is to let go of any expectations of its making sense, and just enjoy Oyeyemi’s writing and weirdness. That is what I did (though I admit I am a huge Oyeyemi partisan from way back and that is coloring my judgment).


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