Whatever you are celebrating (or not), I hope you have been enjoying the holiday season as much as you can, all things considered. I have two weeks off work and just enjoy hibernating. The weather has been wet and dark grey, so I’ve been huddled inside with books and games.

One of those games even had a literary theme. I’ve just finished solving The ABC Murders, a point and click mystery game I got in a Humble Bundle. I’d forgotten how the mystery plays out so I enjoyed looking for clues and trying to score ego points by acting like Poirot! I thought I’d mention it because it’s only ยฃ1.09 on Steam at the moment.

I’ve read a couple of festive books, In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren and Stay Another Day by Juno Dawson. The latter is certainly more new adult than young adult, centring around three siblings returning to the family home for Christmas. It talks about how Christmas can be an especially difficult time for those with eating disorders, but also has a lot of warm fuzzy feelings encased in its pages.

One of my goals for 2022 is to catch up with the October Day series, and I made a start by reading Once Broken Faith. I must have broken my reading at a good point because this instalment focuses on a conclave to discuss the elf-shot cure so it has everyone in it which served as a good reminder as to who everyone is and what’s been going on.


I read a couple of graphic novels too. Far Sector is by N.K. Jemisin and illustrated by Jamal Campbell and it didn’t matter one bit that I didn’t know anything about Green Lanterns, to me she was just law enforcement sent from Earth to solve a murder in a place that hasn’t seen a murder in a very long time. The messaging regarding police violence was a bit on the obvious side, but the mystery was engaging and there is some gorgeous artwork to be ogled.

Then I read the first volume of Lore Olympus by Rachel Smythe. I know this started out as a web comic but I didn’t know anything about it other than it’s a Persephone and Hades retelling, which is one of my favourite myths to read about. The art is beautiful and the story is both touching and funny. Will definitely be grabbing volume two next year!

Persephone from Lore Olympus pictured as a pink girl against blueI also read my first 2022 release for review, Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy (already out in the US). I loved this, and she made me cry again. At first I felt it was a bit us versus them, but as it progresses you see you are seeing it just from one perspective and I think she addressed that later in the story. Beware, contains domestic abuse, rape and animal deaths.

I’ve not been playing Animal Crossing so furiously of late, but I still do an occasional holiday home here and there. Plus I got some amiibo cards for Christmas including Shino, so I’ve got to move her in, and I need to get off my arse and catch my last fish before the month ends. I guess I’m back to being irritated by things being time locked in the main game again, which is why Happy Home Paradise is getting more of my time. I just want to sit and play a game in a big chunk of time rather than a little bit every day.

Animal Crossing game screenshot of Diana the deer next to steaming cauldron implying magic

New books acquired:

[gifted] Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
[gifted] Echo by Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Mata Oti by Lani Wendt Young (ebook)
The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren (ebook)
Still Life by Sarah Winman (ebook)
The Grace Year by Kim Liggett (ebook)
These Hollow Vows by Lexi Ryan (ebook)