The Mid-Year Check-In 2022

Hello everyone,

Would you believe we are already over halfway through 2022?! That means it is time for the mid-year check-in, the fun tag where I look back at some of my reading highlights of the year so far and what lies ahead in the months to come.

What I love about this tag and its prompts is that it makes me look at my reading in different ways and also helps to reinforce some of the silent targets that I set myself, so let’s get straight to it!

How much have you read?

I have read a total of 32 books so far in 2022 and have a further three on the go, which represents very solid progress indeed towards by Goodreads target of 55. It is more than I managed by this stage last year, which is a good achievement as the books I have read had a higher average number of pages, and my life has continued to be incredibly busy.

What have you been reading?

I always make sure to read a broad variety of genres and that has continued again this year. However, more specifically I have been trying to beat the backlog and work through my physical unread pile. There are still lots more to get through, but I have certainly made a healthy dent in it and I hope that continues through the remainder of the year.

Best Book You’ve Read So Far In 2022

This is a very difficult one! Of the ones I have finished, I cannot separate Our Violent Ends and Ariadne, but I am nearly finished Daughter Of The Moon Goddess and that definitely has a very strong claim to be the best book I have read so far this year.

The common theme with all of them has been gorgeous writing. I was caught up in the emotion and intensity of Our Violent Ends as it provided a stunning second half to a duology that ranks among my all-time favourites. And I just adored every moment of the story of Ariadne and her sister Phaedra.

Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2022

Well the answer to that is in the previous question – Our Violent Ends. Other than that, I liked The Hawthorne Legacy and currently I am enjoying As Good As Dead, the final chapter of A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder.

New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

The House Of Fortune was only released last week, but that is one of my most hotly anticipated reads and one that I plan to get to really soon, having absolutely adored The Miniaturist. I am also a big fan of Gillian McAllister’s thrillers and her newest one has received rave reviews.

Most anticipated release for the second part of the year

My most anticipated releases for the rest of the year are made up of two sequels and a spin-off, and it feels like every year my answer to this question shall include Chloe Gong’s next release. Everyone now knows how much I love the These Violent Delights duology, so Foul Lady Fortune cannot arrive soon enough!

After the truly gorgeous cover was revealed halfway through my reading of Daughter Of The Moon Goddess, I immediately added Heart Of The Sun Warrior to my TBR. I am also excited to read The Family Remains, sequel to Lisa Jewell’s The Family Upstairs, which is one of her best.

Biggest disappointment

In theory, Things In Jars looked to be right up my street – a quirky Gothic mystery with an interesting female protagonist. However, the story became too long-winded and I was somewhat alienated by the writing style.

The writing style was also a problem in Girl A, which seriously failed to live up to its considerable hype. The constant changes of timelines – often multiple times on the same page – was also a major issue.

Biggest surprise

I borrowed this one from the library in early 2020 and finally got around to reading it in May of this year. It was clear that I should not have delayed for anywhere near that long, as it exceeded my expectations with a deft exploration of feminism and compelling characters.

New favourite author (debut or new to you)

Two authors stand out very clearly here, whose books I have already mentioned in this post. Jennifer Saint tells the story of women in Greek mythology with gorgeous eloquence, while Sue Lynn Tan has written a tour de force in Daughter Of The Moon Goddess.

Also a shout-out to Susan Stokes Chapman, whose debut novel Pandora had a few issues in relation to the plot, but her writing is lustrous.

Underrated gems you’ve discovered recently

I have said many times on here that Sue Wallman is such an underrated young adult thriller author, whose books would be perfect for fans of authors such as Karen M. McManus. However, she does not get the attention she merits. I Know You Did It was another excellent read.

Rereads this year

I barely reread books, especially with a TBR to concentrate on. That said, I did recently revisit The Miniaturist on audiobook ahead of the release of The House Of Fortune.

Newest fictional crush

The answer to this question will always be no.

Newest favourite character

The main character Xingyin in Daughter Of The Moon Goddess is one of the best protagonists I have read in a long time. I also have to say Nat Davy from The Smallest Man by Frances Quinn – his story is impossible not to connect with.

Book that made you cry

I do not think I have cried at a book this year so far, but The Smallest Man and The Paris Library both had their emotional moments.

Book that made you happy

The story is actually pretty bleak, but the thing about reading this book which made me happy is that it is written by someone I know; one of my work colleagues. To get the chance to read a proof copy was an absolute privilege.

Favourite book to film adaptation

I honestly think the only adaptation I have watched this year is the new Death On The Nile, which was okay. However, the film of one of my favourite books, Where The Crawdads Sing, is out very soon and I will definitely be seeing that!

Most beautiful cover you’ve bought (or received) this year

There are a few stunning hardcover books I have acquired this year, but Pandora just about comes out on top.

Favourite posts you have done this year?

Let’s Chat

What is your favourite book of the year so far? Have you discovered any great reads that exceeded your expectations? Let me know in the comments!

If you have not done this tag yet this year and want to have a go – please do!

Happy reading 🙂

12 thoughts on “The Mid-Year Check-In 2022

  1. I had forgotten that I had seen Death on the Nile when I posted my answers to this tag!!!! I didn’t read Daughter of the moon goddess when it came out but I’ve seen so many good things about it that I think I need to.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I loved reading this post, Stephen! Looks like you’ve been making great progress with your reading challenge and it also looks like you’ve read some pretty great books. I read Gong’s series this year and I really enjoyed the duology! I still have Daughter of the Moon Goddess on my TBR but I’ve heard so many great things about it which makes me more excited to read it. The sequel looks absolutely stunning as well 😍 I hope you continue to have an amazing year of reading and enjoy all the books!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Dini! Overall I’m really happy with the books I have read so far this year, as they have been a good mix of new releases, debut authors, and backlist titles. Looking forward to hearing what you think of Daughter of the Moon Goddess! Happy reading 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post, Stephen! Our Violent Ends was amazing, and I’m so glad you enjoyed Daughter of the Moon Goddess, it was one I didn’t love, but I do think the authors writing style was beautiful. I hope you have a great rest of 2022.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Becky! A shame you didn’t love Daughter of the Moon Goddess as much as I did, but there are so many other books that you have reviewed and made me want to pick up, so hopefully I can read some of those before the end of the year. Hope the rest of the year goes well for you too!

      Liked by 1 person

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