An Open Book: January 2024

Starting the year off with a toddler and an almost-2-month-old, I finally needed to get serious about going to bed early. This has been a goal of mine for years, but nothing gets you motivated like having young children who wake early.

What could lure me to bed at an hour I would normally consider to be when the night is young? A good book! So, I started to cozy up with my Kindle and actually looked forward to going to bed. I’m starting to wonder, though, if I should revoke my own Kindle-in-bed privileges because now I’m losing sleep by staying up late reading! I read more books this month than I have in a very long time, and it reminded me of how much I love reading fiction. I’m always open to recommendations, so send them along.

Here’s what I read in January, divided by fiction and nonfiction.


The Charter Class

A specifically Catholic novel written by my editor, so of course I wanted to read it as soon as it was published! (She also wrote The Lacemaker, which is on my list). It’s a lovely read about the first group of women in the 1920s to attend a college in western Massachusetts. The story focuses on three women in particular who are navigating romance, family strife, illness, and all the wonderful goodness of going to college. Overview: Clean, virtuous, Catholic characters, some mental health topics explored.

Cupcakes for Christmas (Return to Willoughby Close #1)

I couldn’t remember when I bought this, so I looked it up and saw that it was over a year ago: December 2022 and it was free. Most likely, I found it through a free promo site for ebooks. So for authors wondering if those sites are effective, yes! But it can take time, as I can attest. Once I finished this book, I read the rest in the series and then started a different series of hers. It takes place in a fiction Cotswold town. Overview: Clean, sweet, and cozy but also with depth I didn’t expect; serious mental health topics.

Welcome Me to Willoughby Close (Return to Willoughby Close #2)

In the same tiny neighborhood, Willoughby Close, we follow the story of Emily this time. Her and Owen’s love story had me hooked. This was my favorite of the four in the series!

Christmas at Willoughby Close (Return to Willoughby Close #3)

Remember Me at Willoughby Close (Return to Willoughby Close #4)

A Casterglass Garden (Keeping Up With the Penryns Book 2)

This was a new series I started, but like some of Kate Hewitt’s other books, you don’t have to read in order. Each book can stand alone. Overview: Clean and sweet, lots of gardening references, features a widowed character.


Does the Bible count?

Interior Freedom by Fr. Jacques Philippe

Although I didn’t *finish* the book this month (I’m close!), I want to include it here because it’s so full of gems. A part of me doesn’t want to finish it because every time I open it, I’m comforted by the peace that the Lord wants all of us to experience everyday. If I were on a desert island and could only bring three books, this would be one of them!

#AnOpenBook linkup with #CatholicMom

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