2019: My Year in Books

2019 has been a year of major change for me. After more than 10 years, I changed my employer, leading to new friends, new habits, and new teams! Joe’s and my first year of married life has been as marvelous as all the rest of them, and… we finally made it to Europe- Ireland, to be exact!

The required Temple Bar selfie

While I went through some serious lows and serious highs, in reflection I am so happy with where 2019 has led me. I read many great books, went on adventures, and pushed myself further while trying to remember to take time for self care.

One thing that helped me get through my lows, and even my highs, was emphasizing the importance of “self care”. I know that sounds so cliche but I think it’s cliche for a reason. It works. Whatever “self care” means to you, value it. For me, it’s balancing my introverted and extroverted tendencies. For example, I want to make sure I get alone time to read, write, clean, and just process, but then I also love to hang out and chat with friends, and I even joined a new book club this year! Working towards balancing these two aspects of my personality has gone a long way towards understanding myself and preventing burn-out.

As the year comes to a close, I reflect on my favorite personal motto – Byt Statečný, which means “Be Brave” in Czech. This became a mantra for me a couple years ago whenever I found myself considering taking a risk, an opportunity, a leap. This year, I really did take a leap, multiple leaps, in fact! And it was scary and uncomfortable, painful and uncertain, and it was ALWAYS worth it.

Moving into 2020, let’s remember that it is okay to be afraid. It is okay to feel uncomfortable and to even fall down. Half the battle is to remember that you can learn from failure, and the other half is actually learning and reflecting on it so you can try again next time. 

And you will probably still be afraid. As Carrie Fisher so aptly put it,

Stay afraid, but do it anyway.

So here’s to acknowledging fear, and doing it anyway in 2020!

Photo by VisionPic .net on Pexels.com

My Year in Books – 2019

January – March (Winter)

  1. The Celtic Twilight by W.B. Yeats
  2. The Wicked King by Holly Black
  3. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
  4. Ireland in Word and Image by Jay Adlersberg
  5. The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi
  6. Becoming by Michelle Obama
  7. The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Garvis Graves
  8. The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill
  9. Crown of Feathers byNicki PauPreto
  10. True Crime Addict by James Renner
  11. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

April – June (Spring)

  1. Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte
  2. The Cursed Sea by Lauren DeStefano
  3. Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan
  4. The Bird and the Blade by Megan Bannen
  5. We Hunt the Flame by Faizal Hafsah
  6. With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo
The Long Room, Trinity College. One of the many awe-inspiring spots we visited.

July – September (Summer)

  1. The Ravenmaster: My Life with Ravens at the Tower of London by Christopher Skaife
  2. Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark
  3. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
  4. Evil Has A Name: The Untold Story of the Golden State Killer Investigation by Paul Holes
  5. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  6. The Huntress by Kate Quinn
  7. Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson
  8. This is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare by Gabourey Sidibe
  9. For Every One by Jason Reynolds
  10. Rising Strong by Brene Brown
  11. Culture Smart! Ireland by John Scotney
  12. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
  13. Literary Ireland by Tom Kelly
  14. Sadie by Courtney Summers
  15. Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim
  16. Fierce Fairy Tales by Nikita Gill
  17. In A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

October – December (Fall)

  1. Tunnel of Bones by Victoria Schwab
  2. Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
  3. Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs by Caitlin Doughty
  4. The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones
  5. Camp Red Moon by R.L. Stine
  6. Carmilla by J. Sheridan Le Fanu
  7. The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
  8. The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black
  9. Sheets by Brenna Thummler
  10. Miracle on 5th Avenue by Sarah Morgan
  11. Lady Killers by Tori Telfer
  12. You Don’t Own Me by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke
  13. A Life in Parts by Bryan Cranston
  14. The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black
The Book Room at EPIC, the Irish Emigration Museum. Tilt an illuminated book and an audio excerpt from the book would play out loud!

Published by francinewonders

Hi! My name is Francine and I spend a lot of time wandering about while wondering about stuff. I like to talk about cats, books, travel, and all things w@nderful. Follow me on Instagram: @francinewonders

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