Is ‘Holiday Reading’ a thing? #WOYBS

Welcome to another year of #WOYBS!

Here we are starting a whole new year of reading – isn’t it a wonderful feeling, not knowing what books you’ll discover, what you’ll like or dislike and how books will impact on your life in 2023? The world is your oyster so to speak!

What’s On Your Bookshelf Challenge (WOYBS) #whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge

Holiday Reading – particularly summer holidays

For my first WOYBS post for the year, and with most of Australia in summer holiday mode, (even us who are retired get to go on holidays), I decided to ask the question –

What does holiday reading mean to you?

To some, the idea of a “beach read” fits the dictionary definition: “A book you can take on holiday, which is good enough to keep you engaged but not so serious it will spoil your holiday.”

Google Search

and another search found this

holiday reading noun BRITISH

material that is read or is suitable for reading on holiday, in particular works of fiction that are entertaining rather than intellectually stimulating.

close up photo of Jane Austen assorted books
Maybe holiday reads don’t include the whole back catalogue of Jane Austen – Photo by Leah Kelley on

As I’m retired, it can feel like most of the year is spent in holiday mode :), but I do try to mix up my reading with light fiction and more intellectually stimulating books. I’m in two bookclubs and thoroughly enjoy the honest and enthusiastic discussions that ensue when reading books I may not necessarily have chosen to read myself, or books I haven’t overly enjoyed. I learn something new each time I read or listen to a book and even more so from talking to my fellow bookclubbers.

What do you think the term holiday reads mean? And what would you suggest as a perfect holiday read?

I’m not sure which books I’ve read lately would fall into the ‘holiday read’ category – but maybe the Tea Gardens by Fiona McIntosh and Nights of Rain and Stars by Maeve Binchy (it was a Christmas gift from the Mathematician), both fit the bill.

There’s nothing at all wrong with ‘holiday reads’ by the way, they certainly have their place and I love reading a variety of books whether they’re classed as holiday reads or not.

Books read so far in 2023 - January
Books read so far in 2023 – mid January

What have I enjoyed reading?

I’ve had time to read some fabulous books over summer and here are a few of my recent favourites.

  • The Tilt by Chris Hammer (a birthday gift) 5* – one of his best so far in my opinion.
  • The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell 5* – a great read after my favourite Hamnet a few years ago!
  • The Secret History of Christmas by Bill Bryson – we listened to this while on a road trip for Christmas with family and it was so interesting and entertaining! Audible and read by Bill 5*
  • Outback by Patricia Wolf – (#1 in DS Walker series) Kindle 4*
  • The Little Wartime Library by Kate Thompson Library book 5*

Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can save the World was a very interesting book, recommended by my sister last year some time. I ended up listening to it and have to say Tyson Yunkaporta has the most melodious voice to listen to and at times I was m ore mesmerised by his reading than what he was actually saying!! I enjoyed it and gave it 4* but I must admit to feeling out of my depth at times.

Most of all it’s about a very special way of thinking, of learning to see from a native perspective, one that is spiritually and physically tied to the earth around us, and how it can save our world.

End of 2022 reads

Last month I talked about my books of 2022 ‘with the most’ and I really appreciated all your thoughts and comments. Some of the books I finished in late December deserve to be included in this post, especially the ones listed in the previous paragraphs.

What I’m reading at the moment

You want to know what I did last summer??

During a lull in blogging over summer I’ve taken time to update a few things on my blog. I have updated my Books menu with pages for each of my annual reading challenges. I use Goodreads to keep track of my reading and often get good recommendations from friends.

I take the time to update these lists each month with what I’ve read, how many stars I rate them and what format I read it on.

The main formats I read are: paperbacks, Kindle, library books, BorrowBox (free library app for ebooks and audio books) and Audible. I am spending far less money on books than ever before, preferring to use the various free library options instead.

If you’re interested in looking at the lists of what I’ve read over the years, here are the links:

I also updated my bio at the bottom of most posts, added my Word(s) of the Year as a menu with links to past words – Gift, Bold, Jump, Time and fiddled around with the widgets in the side bar.

And…I took the plunge and started going through and deleting posts and photos from when I started blogging in 2012. I decided up[on reading some of my posts that they were surplus to requirements, badly written, out of date and many photos were just plane crappy!! So far I’ve deleted over 100 posts and made more room in my media library as a result of getting ride of unwanted photos. It’s all a bit time consuming and I have a long way to go as I’m only up to 2015, but I feel like it’s a start!

Where do you read?

hammock - as snug as a bug in a rug
hammock – as snug as a bug in a rug

Lately it’s been so hot I’ve taken to spending afternoons in the hammock – with a good book!

Let me know where you read – by the pool, in the pool, in the bath……

What’s on Your Bookshelf link party

I’m very happy to co-host this link party with my good friends, SueDonna,  & Jo and enjoy discovering new books to add to my ever increasing pile.

We all love reading and share different tastes in books so we’ll probably have something, between us all, that you’ll discover and could lead to a new author or genre!

Will you join us?

If you’re into reading, please join us, even if it’s just to leave a comment with what you’ve been reading lately, I always enjoy seeing what books are being read. We’ve added a linkup (at the end of my post) so you can add your posts directly there and see what others have posted about for the month as well.

Sue, Donna, Jo and I hope that you will join us in this fun series. I love making notes of new books to read as I go through everyone’s posts each month. Do you do that too?

You can read more from my stunning co-hosts here:

Sue from Women Living Well After 50

Donna from Retirement Reflections

Jo from And Anyways

We’re all in this together, sharing our love of reading 🙂

All my WOYBS posts can be found here – we started this series in August 2021 and the good news is that it’s still going strong!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter…

Happy reading!

Deb xx

Guidelines for WOYBS:

What: What’s On Your Bookshelf #whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge
When: Third Thursday PM (Northern Hemisphere)/ Third Friday AM (Southern Hemisphere). Next linkup: Friday 17 February 2023

Beginning January 2023. Third Thursday, 2 pm (PST)/Third Friday, 8 am (AEST).

  • January 19/20
  • February 16/17
  • March 16/17
  • April 20/21
  • May 18/19
  • June 15/16
  • July 20/21
  • Aug 18/19
  • Sept 14/15
  • Oct 19/20
  • Nov 16/17
  • Dec 14/15

Why: Share a love of reading.
Where: Linkup, Blog, Blog Comments, Instagram or other Social Media.
Who: This linkup is open to everyone.
How: You can share in the comments, with a blog post, or on other social media of your choice. You can use the hashtag #Whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge

You can also find Deb’s World in lots of other places – stay in touch by clicking any of the buttons below.

Debbie - mother of a 40 year old

Everyone has a story to tell! Deb is a young-at-heart & active 60+ blogger/retiree, after being made redundant from her 22-year career managing education programs in a men’s correctional centre (jail). She now spends her time reading, blogging, riding her ebike and travelling. Deb was awarded a Bravery Award from the Queen when she was 17 after a tragic accident – a definite life changing moment! She is married with 3 grown-up daughters & has 4 grandchildren. She never imagined being Granny Debs would bring so much joy to her life! You can read more of Deb’s story here

Copyright © 2023 – All rights reserved

39 Replies to “Is ‘Holiday Reading’ a thing? #WOYBS”

  1. That hammock looks the business. I’m off to the library this afternoon & hope no one nabs The Little Wartime Library from the shelves before I get there (and yes, I’ve already checked there’s a copy there…)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love a good holiday read Deb. Before retirement we would have at least one beach holiday and enjoyed visiting second hand book stores for holiday reads. I’m looking to join a book club at the local library in 2023 to complement our Stunners Book Club. I’m glad you enjoyed The Marriage Portrait as much as Hamnet. The Little Wartime Library sounds just my kind of book so will add it to the list. Thanks for being such a great co-host for #WOYBS and I learn so much from your posts. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Deb this is a really interesting g post. To me holiday reading is a novel that is light and easy to read without thinking to much. I don’t mean that as a criticism. I’ve had some fantastic lighter reads than usual over many holidays. Crime books can be great holiday reads. I’ve been thinking about this as I plan my reading for our week away. I have The Marriage Portrait and Outback on my kindle waiting for me. I’ve been tempted by The Little Wartime Libraey but wasn’t sure. After your review I will definitely be reading it soon

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I’m with you Jen, a holiday read is light and easy to read, not requiring too much thought. I love a good crime novel, and a series is even better! So good to meet you last week, enjoy your time away 🙂


  4. Hi, Debbie – Congratulations on your great start to your 2023 Reading Challenge.
    I usually think about a “Holiday Read” as a “Holiday-Themed Book”, e.g. Christmas or as a book that I would take on holiday (especially if it has any relation to the holiday that I am taking). However, reading the comments of others, I may be way off base here.
    I like your blog updates. You are my hero for being brave enough to delete old posts. I seriously need to do this and get my photos and storage space under control! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Donna, I’ve finally had the courage to start tackling the deleting of posts and photos and it was easier than I thought to do it! I do feel good when it works out the way I want it to but sometimes the technology gets the better of me.
      Your idea of holiday reading makes sense to me and I’ve never thought of them that way before, you could be onto something there that we’re all missing!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. You’re so organised! Good idea going back and deleting blogs and pics, making space, kind of like decluttering the wardrobe. I’ve read so many books over the years from light fiction to spiritual, self development and thriller books. Shame I haven’t kept lists but that’s okay, it’s all part of the journey. Happy reading in 2023 Deb. Enjoy. That hammock looks fabulous! xx 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m not sure what qualifies as a “beach” or “vacation” read. As long as it’s enjoyable :-). Thankfully I take a e-reader so if I don’t like the book, I can always return early to the library.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I have a beach holiday in June and always take a number of books, a combination of fiction and non fiction. I used to take more ” chicklit” but these days there are more crime thrillers. Thanks for the link-up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for joining in Gail, I’m also into crime thrillers and love a good series to get my teeth into a character. I read a wide range of books so most would fit the holiday reading list.


  8. Some good books as always Debbie. Before I go on Chris Hammer’s new book for me is called Dead Men’s Creek. Same book, I get mine from Amazon UK though. Strange. It’s on my TBR list.
    Holiday reading: well I definitely like something to keep me entertained and I also like to get stuck into it before I go. Nothing worse than starting a book and thinking oh no it’s a dud!
    I normally read on the sofa with my feet up, but if it’s a page turner then I’ll read it anywhere even standing up cooking.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I heard of books having different titles in different countries, very confusing! Yes to being entertained by holiday reads. Wow you’re keen reading while cooking dinner, I haven’t done that yet!


  9. Hi Debs – I’m not sure there should be set rules for holiday reads but for me they have to be thoroughly enjoyable and an easy read. There’s nothing worse than struggling through a book you aren’t enjoying just because you feel you should finish it. Well done you on tackling updating your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m with you Janine, enjoyable and easy to read works well for me most of the time. I’ve enjoyed my blog tweaking and feel like I’ve accomplished something! Thanks 🙂


  10. For me holiday reading is something you enjoy reading while on holiday. Simplistic view but I think while holiday reading for some could be light and fluffy, someone else might want to read war and peace. I used to read the Lord of the Rings every January for years and years. Currently, I’m only reading light stuff. I went through a long patch of not being able to read at all which was disconcerting for someone who has always loved books and reading. I finally started reading for pleasure again partway through last year. I missed a few years of the Goodreads challenge but I’m back ready to go this year. My goal is 10 books. Wish me luck.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I agree with you, anything you enjoy reading works as holiday reading! I’m glad you managed to get back into reading for pleasure again, and i wish you luck on your goal 🙂


  11. I tend to pack any and all sorts of books when I go on vacation but I think of a “beach read” as a book set on or near the beach or where the main character is on vacation themselves. Something light and fun and usually centered around romance.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OkK, that’s a new idea of holiday reads Joanne, it’s always interesting to see what others are thinking isn’t it? Light and fun and easy to read does it for me!


  12. I think holiday reads are books read when you have serious downtime. This is why I love my Kindle unlimited. It’s a library in my pocket so I can holiday read it up even if it’s just to escape a doctor appointment waiting for a few moments. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I am weird for many reasons but one book-related reason being I rarely read more than one book by an author. Usually disappointed when I read the second one an author has written. And I don’t ‘do’ series, of course, either. Kind of limiting, I guess.
    I keep seeing A Marriage Portrait showing up with great reviews by bloggers I follow. Had put it on the consideration list for my book club but it wasn’t the book the group selected. Going to check it out again.

    Liked by 1 person

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