A round-up of book blogging summary posts and reading challenges

I have noticed a number of bloggers have been reviewing the books they have read during the past year in some kind of round-up post. The first seven links in this post are from bloggers I follow in the WordPress Reader. These are in the order (or reverse order) they appeared in the Reader.

The first is from Zalka Csenge Virág a storyteller from Hungary, who is an A to Z in April blogger
The second is from an ACW member, Lucy, and includes some books I have read.

The third is about a goodreads reading challenge

The fourth is from another ACW friend, Sarah, who has also blogged from A to Z in April

A fun post from Margaret includes lots of book titles.

Jemima Pett is another writer who takes part in the A to Z Challenge.

Josephine Corcoran has also written a bookish post.

Shaz Goodwin, who always retweets my links to book reviews, has a list of fiction books she and two others have read and reviewed.

Paul Trembling has written a post from the viewpoint of a writer.

Another A to Z blogger has 20 top books.

No doubt there are many more blogs about books people have read in 2022.

Others are sharing their books read in threads on Twitter. Search the hashtags #amreading #BookTwitter and #bookreview. I really want to read the book mentioned below. The pic link will show the cover.

Reading Challenges

Nonfiction reader challenge

The 52 book club reading challenge


Gaia Nature challenge

Suzanne Rogerson’s reading challenge post

A challenge to read books from other countries – Read around the world challenge

One of my writing friends from ACW, Wendy H Jones, also runs a reading challenge on Facebook

Don’t forget my own lists of book reviews! They are on pages on this blog and linked below for convenience.

Books about nature and climate change

Books Sue has reviewed authors A-M

Books Sue has reviewed authors N-Z

If you know of other reading challenges, please let me know in the comments.

Happy reading in 2023!


Book review: Letters to William by Margaret Stevens

I was lent a copy of Margaret Stevens’ book, Letters to William. This book was published in 2022 and is available here.

Cover of Letters to William with text superimposed on a picture of a Victorian postbox mounted in a rural wall.

William is a fictional young adult, who has contacted an older relative to ask her about her faith. She is the only Roman Catholic in his family. Her side of their correspondence, which makes up most of the book, continues for a few years. The letters pick up enough from William’s letters to her for the reader to understand what is going on in his life. We learn about his friends and family, whereas his aunty mainly writes about her little dog. There is an interesting story in the background.

Letters to William is very well written, with warmth and enthusiasm. I found it helpful and informative about the RC Church. It also talks about protestant Churches; both the author and the letter writer have previously been Anglicans. I was interested to learn about why so many Roman Catholic churches are called Sacred Heart, and about how rosaries are used in family prayers.

The author is well-qualified to write about the Roman Catholic faith, having studied for a Diploma with Our Lady’s Catechists.

This is a book for adults interested in learning about the Roman Catholic Church and could also lead to greater understanding between people from various Christian denominations. (Although I am an Anglican, I enjoyed this book.) There are many references to the scriptures which our Churches share, and to the extra books in the Apocrypha, which are included in the Catholic Bible.

Book Review: Love in the Time of Bertie by Alexander McCall Smith

Love in the Time of Bertie was a library book I borrowed with The Book Share by Phaedra Patrick. My regular readers will know that Alexander McCall Smith is one of my favourite authors. Love in the Time of Bertie is the most recent book in the 44 Scotland Street series about a precocious child living in Edinburgh. There are many characters, who will be familiar from earlier books in the series described as ‘the world’s longest-running serial novel’. It was published in November 2021.

Photo of the library book. Alexander McCall Smith A 44 Scotland Street Novel Love in the time of Bertie.
Picture is of a dark blue sky with waves and swirls, a decorated kite flies above the title. It has a red tail pointing to a crescent of city buildings in front of which a boy is holding the string

New readers would not have any trouble joining the story part way through. I haven’t read every episode. The last page tickled me almost as much as some of the incidents. ‘THE END’ was followed by a proviso! The next book in the series is to be published on 3 November 2022.

Other books by Alexander McCall Smith I have read and reviewed:

The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party

The Careful Use of Compliments

 The uncommon appeal of clouds

Bertie plays the Blues

Trains and Lovers: The heart’s journey

The Novel Habits of Happiness

The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection

Tears of the Giraffe

Precious and the Monkeys Precious Ramotswe’s very first case

Precious and the Mystery of Meerkat Hill A new case for Precious Ramotswe.

The Bertie Project

The Unbearable Lightness of Scones

Your Inner Hedgehog

How to Raise an Elephant

The Pavilion in the Clouds