Monthly Wrap-Up – August 2023

September 1, 2023 Challenges, Monthly Wrap-Up 5

Monthly Wrap-Up (logo)

Books Read – MONTH 2023


Rereads are indicated with an asterisk. The number after a book refers to how many spaces each book is worth on the gameboard for the COYER Upside Down, Chapter 2 challenge.

This month, I ended up binge-rereading a bunch of Celia Lake’s Albion books… again. But I also read some new

  1. Best Foot Forward (Celia Lake) – 4
  2. Murder Most Royal (S. J. Bennett) – ARC; 3
  3. Shoemaker’s Wife (Celia Lake) – 4
  4. Old As the Hills (Celia Lake) * – 4
  5. Upon a Summer’s Day (Celia Lake) * – 4
  6. The Fossil Door (Celia Lake) * – 4
  7. Three Tales of Gabe and Rathna (Celia Lake) * – 6 (author extra; no cover image)
  8. Eclipse (Celia Lake) * – 4
  9. Tea and Meetings (Celia Lake) * – 6 (author extra; no cover image)
  10. Magician’s Hoard (Celia Lake) * – 4
  11. Wards of the Roses (Celia Lake) * – 4
  12. Winter’s Charms (Celia Lake) * – 4
  13. Goblin Fruit (Celia Lake) * – 4
  14. On the Bias (Celia Lake) * – 4
  15. Unexplored Territory (Celia Lake) * – 6 (author extra; no cover image)
  16. Murder at the Merton Library (Andrea Penrose) – ARC; 3
  17. In the Cards (Celia Lake) * – 4

Note: Two of the author extras are at least novella length; the third (Unexplored Territory) is a novelette-length collection of scenes.


  1. Hunted (Kevin Hearne) – 1


These are the books I read for various challenges, but I have not written or posted all the reviews yet, so some will not show up on my 2023 Challenges tracking page. All title links go to my reviews.

Goodreads Challenge 2023: 18 books read in August (all titles above.) 125 books read or reread so far this year, toward my year-end goal of 175 books. (Titles listed above.) I am 25 books ahead of schedule.

#23in2023: No books read or reviewed in August. For the year, 6 books read and 1 books reviewed so far, toward my year-end goal of 23 books. I don’t think I’m going to make this goal this year.

Audiobook Challenge 2023: 1 books listened to in August (Hunted), but I haven’t reviewed it yet. For the year, 11 books read and 5 books reviewed so far, toward my goal of 6 books for the year.

The Backlist Reader Challenge 2023: Zero books read in or reviewed in August. For the year, 15 books read and 4 books reviewed so far, toward my year-end goal of reading and reviewing 16 books.

Library Love 2023: Zero books read in or reviewed in August. For the year, 2 books read and 1 books reviewed so far, toward my year-end goal of 12 books. I am really in trouble on this one!

NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge 2023: I read 2 review copies in August (Murder Most Royal; Murder at the Merton Library), but didn’t review any. (Actually, I have one or two reviews written for September posts, but they don’t count for August.) For the year, 20 books read and 5 books reviewed so far, toward my year-end goal of reading and reviewing 15 books. Current NetGalley percentage: 52%.

Read Christie 2023: I’ve kind of fallen off the wagon on this challenge this year. While I have been rereading, I haven’t been rereading Christie. For the year, 5 books read and 0 books reviewed so far, toward my year-end goal of 12 books.

COYER Upside Down Chapter 2: 18 books read in MONTH (all titles above.) But I didn’t post a single review this month. The “Chapter 2” challenge began on May 1 and ended on August 31. I read a total of 62 books and reviewed 6 of them. My goal for the 4-month challenge was to read and review 10 books by Aug 31. While I exceeded my reading goal by a factor of ten, I failed to review enough books to meet the reviewing goal. (All books read this month counted toward the challenge, though they were assigned different points for the gameboard.)

Assessment of other goals

For some reason, this ended up being another binge-rereading month, as I plowed through a bunch of Celia Lake books, many of which I had read within the last 9 months (or even less.) I’m not going to apologize for that; I’m on vacation, which means I get to read what I want. (Right?)

Reviewing more: Definitely didn’t happen.

Diversity: Celia Lake’s novels feature a number of characters who qualify as “diverse” in one or more ways: race/ethnicity, LGBTQIA+, neurodiversity, and disability/chronic illness. I believe the author also deals with chronic illness and neurodiversity, though I’m not absolutely certain. One of the two ARCs I read this month also features a BIPOC main character and a gay secondary character. So on the whole, my reading has been at least somewhat diverse this month.

Book-buying: In August, I bought (or downloaded for free) 1 harcdover book, 20 Kindlebooks, and 1 audiobook. I spent about $60 total. That’s higher than I would like to spend in a month, but the harcover was a preorder from a favorite author, and was kind of expensive. One of the Kindlebooks was a preorder also, though it was under $5; the rest of the Kindlebooks were on sale. I was fairly good about only buying books I really want to own, or books I want to read that aren’t available through the library. The latter included a bunch of 99-cent self-published fantasy books (each the first in a series.)

Reading my own books: Well, yes, since I was doing so much rereading of a self-published author whose books I had already bought.

5 Responses to “Monthly Wrap-Up – August 2023”

  1. Anne - Books of My Heart

    We all have to make choices about how we want to spend our limited time and limited reading time. I think I could spend the entire year just reading the next in the series I read and I would still read more than 90% of the readers out there. I’m thankful I read fairly quickly and have access to great books.

    The important thing is you read books you wanted and enjoyed yourself.
    Anne – Books of My Heart recently posted…Catch Her Death by Melinda Leigh @MelindaLeigh1 #MontlakeRomance @amazonpub @melindaleighauthorpage #KindleUnlimitedMy Profile

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      There are times I can happily read my way through a bunch of new books in a row, and times when I just really want to reread. Fortunately, I read pretty quickly, too, though my speed has slowed down as my eyesight has deteriorated a bit (in ways that glasses don’t really help. Apparently there are limits to how much they can correct astigmatism, for example. At least without making a person feel queasy.) Anyway, I manage to get through a fair number of new books as well as my rereads each year. 🙂

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I like them too! She’s got a good designer, and the two of them have worked to maintain a cohesive look for the whole collection. (She has several interrelated series, all set in the same world, and almost all the books can be read as standalones.)

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