Thursday, January 04, 2018

What I Read | December

A look back at what I read last month. #ASGbookshelf #whatIread #printable

Last year, I set a really big goal for myself. I wanted to read a whole lot of books in the year and in December, I met and exceeded that goal. I read some REALLY excellent books last month and I wanted to share them with you. A few of them, I am waaaaay late to the game on (see my must read and noteworthy picks below as an example,) but I finally gave them a go and I'm not sorry.

In my last What I Read post, I promised that I'd be sharing my reading list printable with you in this post and I am doing that. I also have a special, more detailed printable that I'm offering if you opt-in to my weekly newsletter. Both are free and the choice is yours. Keep reading for more details.

Must Read

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky | ★★★★★
The critically acclaimed debut novel from Stephen Chbosky, Perks follows observant “wallflower” Charlie as he charts a course through the strange world between adolescence and adulthood. First dates, family drama, and new friends. Sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Devastating loss, young love, and life on the fringes. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie must learn to navigate those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up. - Goodreads description

I loved this and found myself relating to Charlie so much. The writing was fantastic and I often reread passages and nodded my head along with them because the way Charlie described how certain things felt or looked resonated with me so much. Superb!


Ready Player One by Ernest Cline | ★★★★
In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he's jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade's devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world's digital confines, puzzles that are based on their creator's obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them. When Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade's going to survive, he'll have to win—and confront the real world he's always been so desperate to escape. - Goodreads description

This book... It could easily be one of my favorite books of the year. I loved everything about this book. The plot was fascinating. The characters were so relatable and I adored them all. And it was 80's fanfare to the extreme. The only reason it didn't get five stars from me was that the 80's references might have gone a tad overboard, but I will forgive that. Such a fun book.

Other mentions for the month of December:

Collected Poems in English by Joseph Brodsky  | ★★★★★
Wild and Free by Jess Connolly & Hayley Morgan  | ★★★★★
Writing & Selling Short Stories & Personal Essays by Windy Lynn Harris  | ★★★★★
Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri  | ★★★★
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy  | ★★★★
Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi  | ★★★★
A Round-Heeled Woman by Jane Juska  | ★★★★
Dirt Candy: A Cookbook by Amanda Cohen  | ★★★★
We are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby  | ★★★★
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith  | ★★★
The Time Machine by H.G. Wells  | ★★★
Animal Farm by George Orwell  | ★★★
In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende  | ★★★
We are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson  | ★★★
A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle  | ★★★
Catalina by Liska Jacobs  | ★★★
Your Dream, God's Plan by Tiffany Smiling  | ★★★
The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde  | ★★★

As promised, here are the details for the FREE reading list printable. I share these seasonally, so if you are like me and enjoy a little refresh every few months, you can download a copy for your personal use. Keep scrolling for download options!

What I Read | December + FREE Reading List Printable - A Simpler Grace

In addition to the standard reading list, I'm sharing a detailed list for my newsletter subscribers. This printable has spaces for you to keep track of your five-star rating for each book and a box to check when you've reviewed those books. It's a great printable to have if you love books like I do or do a lot of reading every season. (P.S. If you're already a subscriber, you'll want to check the newsletter hitting your inbox this weekend for the link to download. If you want it sooner, you can always shoot me an email and I'll give you early access.)

What I Read | December + FREE Reading List Printable - A Simpler Grace

Whichever printable you decide to use, I hope you enjoy it! I have been using these for two years and they've been such a help when keeping track of all the books on my to-be-read shelf! Don't forget to snap a pic of your completed list and tag me on social (@asimplergrace) so I can see what you're reading. As always, you can find me on Goodreads to check out all the books I'm reading this year and see what I thought of them all.

What did you enjoy reading last month?

The post What I Read | December first appeared on A Simpler Grace. If you enjoyed this article, please feel free to share it with your friends! Don't forget to join the ASG Tribe!


  1. I love reading lists, but I never get through them. I am going to try this year. I love to read, I just don't make the time and that makes me sad. Looks like you read some good ones in December!

  2. I've heard good things about Ready Player One so I think I'll be checking that out this year. I loved Scrappy Little Nobody so I hope you enjoy it when you get to read it!

  3. Shut up, shut up, shut up!!! Reading your post is SO FUNNY, because I just came back from my honeymoon, and I read three books. I actually haven't read a book in ages, almost a year!!! And the first book I read was Perks of Being a Wallflower and I LOVED IT!!!!!!!! Too funny this was the first book I read in over a year, and the first book on your list!!! Bookmarking your blog post for the future when I need a new book to read!

    The other two books I read on my honeymoon were "Scrappy Little Nobody," which was Anna Kendrick's autobiography. Got gonna like, I didn't enjoy it really. This book make me not like her as much and realize how spoiled and mean she is.

    The other book I read was the Astronauts Wives Club. Pretty good! Sometimes boring to read at times and didn't alway captivate my attention because there were so any characters to follow, but overall, it was good.

  4. So many books to add to my list now :) Not a complaint either! Thanks for all the suggestions!

  5. Lots of great books on this list! I'm trying to get my husband to read Ready Player One because I think he'd like it a lot!

  6. OOoooooooOOOOhhh!!! Thanks so much for sharing, Lecy! You know I'm always looking for good books to add to my growing list and well, I just wrote today about how it's basically hibernation season and I can't go anywhere, so the timing of this is perfect :) ha! Hope you are enjoying the New Year, sweet friend, and I love to see these printables! You are doing some incredible things with your blog :)

  7. This was great. I'm going to download the printable because I love reading. I read some good books last year and I've been putting a goal in my planner to read atleast 1 book a month, and I started that in October 2017 and so far I have done really well, and I'm continuing that into this year. Great post and can't wait to hear more of what you are reading.One of my favorite books I read last month was Year One by Nora Roberts...really recommend was Fantastic! I also read turtles all the way down and really enjoyed that and I read a lot of pride and prejudice by Jane Austen adaptations because I love that book, and all the book and movie collection is growing.

  8. Fun printables! I'm signing up now. I'm SO happy that you loved Perks of Being a Wallflower. That's an all-time favorite book of mine. I just think it's so relatable and I find I understand or relate to something new every time I read it. I used to re-read it about once a year, but it's been awhile now. I really need to re-read it again soon. SO many great quotes! :)


  9. I love book suggestions! I read The Perks of Being a Wallflower in 2015, I believe. I truly enjoyed it.

  10. I read Perks in high school and it's still one of my all-time faves! Love seeing your thoughts on so many others too!

  11. These printables are great Lecy! I usually scribble down what I've read at the back of a diary or journal but these are so useful!
    I saw Anna Kendrick's book at the bookstore the other day and meant to have a proper look. I see Beth enjoyed it :)

  12. I really enjoyed it, but I'm an 80's gamer nerd girl, so it was right up my alley. :)

  13. What a coincidence! I'm glad you liked it. It's one of my faves!

  14. You're welcome, friend! Hope you find a few you love!

  15. Guys (especially ones who are video game nerds) would love RP1. I can't wait to hear if he enjoys it!

  16. Yay! Hope you find a few books you love! Stay warm up there!

  17. Awesome! I'm glad you can use the printable. :)

  18. Hooray! Hope you enjoy using the printable! :)

  19. It's such a good book! Thanks for coming by to check out the post!

  20. Ready Player One was such a surprise fun read. I didn't think I'd like it, but I really enjoyed the book. Have you seen the movie?

  21. I haven't seen the movie yet, but I really want to now!

  22. Oh dang, you read a ton of books this month! I read Perks of Being a Wallflower in high school because I heard it was based on The Catcher in the Rye (which I really liked). Now I need to poke around and see your other favorite books :)

  23. I had never read Perks before this time around and I LOVED it! :)