What I Read in February

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

February was much more chill for me, reading-wise, than my 11-book January. I finished just (just?) seven books in February, which I've come to think of as a low number but which I suppose is fairly solid. 

I listened to more audiobooks than usual, tipping the scales at more audiobooks than Kindle books for the first month ever. I also read two of my favorite fiction books in a looooong time. 

So, as always, without further ado...

We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry

I haaaated this one when I started; I just couldn't make sense of this style of writing. By the end, though, I was obsessed with it, devastated to see it end. It was just so damn charming. The year is 1989, & the Danvers Falcons field hockey team will do anything to make it to state finals, even dabble in witchcraft. Bound by moonlight & the power of Emilio Estevez, they begin an unprecedented winning streak that makes believers of them all. ★★★★★

You'll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey by Amber Ruffin & Lacey Lamar

I confess that I'd never heard of Amber Ruffin before listening to this one, but I was intrigued by the concept of a sister duo doing a joint comedy memoir about racism. Now that's a format we haven't seen before! Their stories are frustrating & infuriating &, yes, funny, & they're all presented, as the book description says it, "with the perfect balance of levity and gravity. ★★★★✰

Local Woman Missing by Mary Kubica

First a pregnant woman was found murdered, then a loving mother committed suicide; her infant son was unharmed, but her young daughter was never located. Now, more than a decade later, the daughter has returned. But where has she been, & what the hell has happened to her? I really didn't like the ending of this one, but I couldn't put it down, so it was still worth the read. ★★★✰✰

Broken Horses by Brandi Carlile 

Here's another apparently-very-famous person I didn't know about before reading her memoir. My old boss said this was one of the best books he read in 2021, so I got it on audiobook & was delighted to find that it came with bonus musical content. Carlile has had a wild, magical, terrible life, & she writes about it quite beautifully, both in this book & in the lyrics of her songs. ★★★★★

While the City Slept by Eli Sanders

I learned about this horrible murder in Carlile's book, as she befriended the survivor, Jennifer Hopper. In 2009, Hopper & her fiancée, Theresa Butz, were held captive in their home & sexually assaulted by a troubled young man who, quite frankly, the system had failed. This book investigates how we treat people in mental health crises & the nightmares that can come from their abandonment. ★★★★★

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina by Zoraida Córdova

My God, this book is so beautiful, I wish I could read it again for the first time. Orquídea gather her progeny to tell them she is dying, but what she really does is turn into a tree. As she goes, some of them are blessed & others cursed; then, one by one, they start dying. What dark force is hunting them? They visit Orquídea's native Guatemala to try to unearth her past & protect their future. ★★★★★

This Is Your Brain on Anxiety by Faith G. Harper

This short audiobook was good enough that it got me thinking about the ways I manage (& sometimes fail to manage) my own anxiety, but it wasn't necessarily groundbreaking. And as much as I am prone to swearing, the author seemed to swear in very weird places where no swearing seemed to belong? ★★★✰✰

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My "What I Read In..." posts include Amazon affiliate links to the titles I discuss. If you buy a book using one of these links, I will receive a small percentage of the commission. Please don't feel any obligation to use these links, but if you do, it will help me buy more books.

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