2022: November wrap-up


November went really fast. I was very bad at posting on my blog, even though I participated a bit in Nonfiction November and Novellas in November.

BUT I read a lot of short books (novellas), in six different genres. In fact, I am now at 107% of my yearly goal – 129/120 books.

Most importantly for me, I read my first novel in Italian, by Italo Calvino. Teaching myself to read Italian (mostly with Duolingo) had this one goal: read this wonderful author in the original text.
It was not easy Italian, but I learned a lot and so much enjoyed the experience that I’m planning on reading more in Italian, and also go back reading in Spanish.

My Japanese studies are going well, and I’m starting reading tiny little books for beginners – level 0! I am giving here the link to these free Japanese books by level. But if you are studying Japanese yourself, you probably already know about this famous resource.
Right now, I’m mostly using these 3 tools for Japanese: Duolingo, Anki (the JLPT 5 deck), and Wanikani (to learn kanji)

📚 Here is what I read in November:

15 books – most of these in translation or in language other than English
11 in print 
with 1,709 pages, a daily average of 56 pages/day
4 in audio
= 29H58
, a daily average of 59 minutes/day

5 in literary fiction:

  1. Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, by Nikolai Leskov – from the Russian
  2. The Lifted Veil, by George Eliot
  3. Bel-Ami, by Guy de Maupassant – in French, with a student
  4. Crimson Sails, by Alexander Grin  – from the Russian
  5. Le Petit Prince, by Antoine De Saint-Exupéry – in French, with a student

2 in historical fiction:

  1. The Snow Goose, by Paul Gallico
  2. The Scarlet Pimpernel, by Emmuska Orczy – audio, WITH THE FABULOUS NARRATOR RALPH COSHAM!!

2 in mystery:

  1. Respire, by Niko Tackian – in French, with a student
  2. Where’s There’s Love, There’s Hate, by Adolfo Bioy Casares – from the Spanish

2 in fantasy/literary fiction:

  1. The Heart of a Dog, by Mikhail Bulgakov – from the Russian
  2. Il visconte dimezzato, by Italo Calvino – in Italian

2 in children’s lit:

  1. The Story of the Treasure Seekers (Bastable Children #1), by E. Nesbit – audio
  2. Just So Stories, by Rudyard Kipling – audio

2 in nonfiction:

  1. Unbeaten Tracks in Japan, by Isabella Lucy Bird – audio
  2. Novelist as a Vocation, by Haruki Murakami – from the Japanese


Very very hard to pick only 2 this month.

Unbeaten tracks in Japan The Scarlet Pimpernel


Classics Club: 27/150 (from September 2022-until September 2027)
Japanese Literature Challenge: 9/12 books – During the year: 15
2022 TBR Pile Reading Challenge: 10/12 books
2022 books in translation reading challenge
: 29/10+

Total of books read in 2022 = 129/120 (107%)
Number of books added to my TBR this past month = 33 (several because of Nonfiction Nvember!)



Talk to me

click on the cover to access my review


The top 9 books to read in November 2022


Caffeinared reviewer
please go visit, there are a lot of good things there!


Karen at Booker Talk
Marianne at Let’s Read

Deb at Readerbuzz
please go and visit them,
they have great blogs


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Come back tomorrow to see the titles I’ll be reading in December
How was YOUR month of November?


Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction
has created a Month In Review meme
where you can link your monthly recap posts
Thanks Nicole!


22 thoughts on “2022: November wrap-up

  1. Emma, if you would like to read a book in Italian, I have a tip. I studied Italian for a year in university. Since I was doing a 4-year Honours degree in French and German, I found Italian fairly easy. In fact, I finished the three hour final exam in less than 20 minutes. I was the first one to leave the examination room and that was after stalling and re-checking my answers a half dozen times or more! I must have gotten close to 100% on it if not 100%, because I ended up with a way higher mark than my Italian boyfriend of the time and he came to Canada when he was 12! Back then, exams were not multiple choice.
    I found a copy of “The Godfather” by Mario Puzo, “Il Padrino”, in Italian in a bookstore in London, England. Foley’s to be precise. This was in 1974. Since I had already read the original and had seen both movies, I found that reading it in Italian was really easy. I looked up few words.


    • Thanks. For now I’d like to focus on Calvino, one of my favorite authors. In Il visconte dimezzato, he uses a lot of military vocabulary and words related to herbs, that’s why I had to check quite a few words. But reading on an ereader makes it easy to check words. Not like paging through a huge dictionary like in the od days.
      I think I’m going now to read his nonfiction book on classics, I know that will be much easier.
      Actually Italian has some tricky constructions, Spanish is much more straight forward.
      I have noticed that reading aloud makes it actally easier, because of so many words that actually have a sound close to French, even if the spelling is sometimes quite different. Fascinating

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great lists, and so many books in November. Amazing how you can read in another language after using language apps. Maybe I should try it. Thank you for your recommendations on novellas. I have already read Leskov, and downloaded some of your other recommendations. It is relaxing to read shorter stories sometimes.
    Amazing month, Emma.


  3. You had a great month of reading! November did go fast and I found it hard to motivate myself to get reviews written for my blog, so I understand about hardly posting. Sometimes I just want to read. It must be fascinating to read books in their original language. The Scarlet Pimpernel is one I really enjoyed and would like to reread. I had no idea she had written other books, but just discovered that and am interested in reading them. Have a great December!


  4. Good luck with learning Japanese! I find learning languages with Latin alphabets challenging enough, but I’m fascinated by others and might give one of them a try some day.


    • It’s really so fascinating. By the way, you do need to learn the 3 alphabets, as it’s rather common to have the 3 used in the same sentence! Kanji (“drawings” are used for concepts, like nouns, verbs, adjectives; hiragana is used for grammar, for instance adding a sign will put the sentence in the past tense; and katakana is used for all the words coming from English (there are a lot. I learned the word for pool today, it sounds like “pooroo” – there’s no letter l in Japanese) and other languages

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Does Italian have a special literary tense that books are written in, like French does (sorry, I’ve forgotten the name of the tense) and I think Spanish also has from flicking through some books? I’ve not found mention of it in Spanish Duolingo yet, although I’m planning to do some more formal language learning, too, which will hopefully cover it at some stage.


    • Ah ah, good question.
      In French, it’s called le passé simple, and is used yes for more literary texts – never used in conversation.
      Actually it’s very common in Spanish, it’s called il pretérito (preterit in English). And like in English, it’s a conjugation for the past tense where you do not need a helping verb (‘he played’ would be a preterit; instead of ‘he has played’). So very common in Spanish.
      It’s called passato remoto in Italian. It’s slowly getting less used it seems, though it depends on the region you live in!
      But I find these forms much easier to recognize in Spanish and Italian (meaning to see what infinitive verb they are coming from), than in French! I mean, I’m French, so I know them, but I can see why they are so puzzling sometimes for French students!


  6. Oohh, you reached your goal and then some! That’s so great! 🥂🎉🙌🏽🎈

    Dewey Decimal System Day was December 10. 📚
    “The only limit to your success is your own imagination” – Shondra Rhimes
    I most recently blogged about my upcoming book and launch party.
    I wish you a merry holiday ⛄ season, and a New Year full of peace, joy, and creativity.


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