The Book Basket | January


I’m here today with another new monthly series I’m starting this year. The Book Basket will be a chance to take a look at what I’ve been reading each month. I’ll also bring you mini reviews of each book, and let you know whether the book is staying or off to find a new home.


This month I read 7 physical books, and then 4 more on my Kindle. I’ve set myself the challenge of reading 52 books this year, so I’m starting off well but I’m sure that I won’t be keeping up this pace all through the year.


Night School

I’m sure you’ll agree it makes sense to do these as a series rather than as individual books. I purchased the first book as part of #readUKYA and I really enjoyed it, it was nothing like I expected. I assumed with a title like Night School it would have some sort of supernatural or paranormal element which it doesn’t have, and I loved that! It’s almost as though it’s about a school that you could join, we probably couldn’t as it is an elitist school.

Night School kicks off with some action where we join Allie, and because of her actions in this scene we join her in her parents send her off to Cimmeria Academy. A school which she believes is to reform those with bad behaviour, I’ll let you in on a secret, Allie’s wrong!

The books are packed full of action, but there’s some romance, friendship, and those typical elements of life for a teenage girl. There’s the bitchy girl who decided to hate you on sight, but you have your best friend so as long as you have them everything will be okay.

I’m now desperate for book 5, but it won’t be out for a few months yet. I think you can guess that these books will be staying.



Vendetta is another book I picked up for #readUKYA and again I loved it. I found myself hooked to the story and read it in one sitting. Vendetta is about Sophie who lives in a little town where everyone knows everyone, but then a new family move into town, in a house that has been abandoned for a few years. Sophie finds herself being told to stay away from the new family but of course she doesn’t listen, and so we have a story of star-crossed lovers.

I really enjoyed reading this, however I’m not sure I’ll read it again. I’m going to keep hold of it for now, but it may find itself off to a new home.

Last Voyage of the Valentina

The book is set in the sixties where Alba, a young woman in her early twenties knows very little about her mother, a mother who died while she was young and whom her father won’t talk about. Instead she grew up with her stepmum who she portrays as the evil stepmother who won’t allow her father to think about or talk about Alba’s mother. She lives on a houseboat and discovers a painting of her mother by her father and decides to set herself on the journey to discover more about the woman she never knew and the possible family she may have.

I know that I will pick this book up again to read, possibly during the summer as it’s a quick and easy read perfect for on the beach or in my case the garden!

A Meal in Winter

I picked this up on a whim in Waterstones, it just happened to be on a table and caught my eye. It is a short book of only 138 pages, and the story of is that of just 24 hours. It’s the story of 3 Nazi soldiers during WWII, it is set in early WWII in Poland before the creation of Auschwitz.

I’m finding it very hard to find the words to describe this book to you without giving away much of the story. The 3 Nazi soldiers work in a concentration camp but on this day they are outside of the camp but have to return again in the evening. This is the story of that day, and everything that occurred through the eyes of one of the soldiers.

Mortal Instruments

I’ve read the first 4 in the series on my Kindle this month, I had a free trial of Kindle Unlimited so wanted to make the most of it. I was impressed to see that these books were available, especially as they’re quite expensive to purchase on Kindle. I think most people are aware of the series, and I did read City of Bones last year but struggled to get into City of Ashes so left it. However I wanted to give them another go, as I find some books are easier to read on my Kindle.

I feel as though the series has been hyped up a lot across booktube and I found that I didn’t enjoy it as much as I expected. On Goodreads I only gave them 3 stars, they’re pretty average books. Clary isn’t a character I can see myself being and so I can’t get lost into her world the way I like to. I’m sure you’re thinking why read 4 books if you weren’t enjoying it, well I hoped it was going to get better and grip me so that I could understand why people love it so much. I have read other supernatural/paranormal books which I prefer and so if I had physical copies of these books I wouldn’t be keeping them.

Have you read any of these books, or is there anything you would recommend I read?

Beth x

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