Books I Read This Week 2020 – 17

Here are my goodreads reviews. If you’re on goodreads, add me as a friend so I can see your books too! I also have an instagram account where I join my love of reading with my love of art.

The Anxiety Skills Workbook (5 stars): “Hopefully at this point you are starting to realize that worry isn’t a reliable predictor of the future.”

If you, like me, tend to worry often and sometimes ceaselessly this workbook will be an invaluable tool for you. I’ve always been a worrier and before this book, I was familiar with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) so many of the CBT strategies in this book were not new to me.

There are two things that make this book magical, for me. One, it lays out the concepts in a really simple, easy to understand way. There are several examples that we visit again and again through each chapter, making it easy to find some ways to relate to the content and personalize it.

Two, the exercises themselves are invaluable. Being able to have a simple template to use to practice each concept and have ways to apply the concepts to my own individual life means that I am not just reading this book but I am using it and internalizing the concepts through practice.

“Worry is an unhelpful thinking response to a potential problem.”

If you suffer from anxiety and would like a practical set of tools to help you do the hard work, this book is going to go a long way in helping you. This is not a miracle cure, and it might not even be the methodology that works best for you, but for me, a lot of what’s in this book is incredibly helpful in being able to contextualize my thoughts and separate my thoughts and feelings from the facts.

With gratitude to netgalley and New Harbinger Publications for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

Truth or Beard (4 stars): I read this book in one swallow. I’d seen this series everywhere and so many people said they loved it. It was finally my turn at the library and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. It did not disappoint at all. I loved every minute I spent with these characters and I can’t wait to read more of this series.

You Are Not Alone (3.5 stars): This was a great mystery without all the twisty novels with all the unreliable narrators we seem to get lately. Instead it had the evil characters, high tension scenes, and slow unraveling the good mysteries have. I enjoyed my time with it!

The House in the Cerulean Sea (5 stars): I loved every single minute I spent with this amazing, unique story that has more heart than anything I’ve read in a long, long time. It was cute, sweet, kind, loving, and reminded me a bit of Seanan McGuire’s Wayward Children series but it wasn’t as bizarre and it had a lot more heart. I had read that this was the best novel to read during the pandemic and that’s 1000% right. A beautiful ray of light in these dark days.

Getting Schooled (3 stars): Quick, sweet story that felt really short but was a lovely distraction for a brief period of time.

I’d Give Anything (4 stars): “You really think they don’t?” asks Avery. “Not only that, but I’m beginning to believe that the bad might not take anything away from the love. I mean, it’s possible, isn’t it? They might care about us just exactly as much as we always thought.”

I’ve long been a fan of Marisa de los Santos. I love her storytelling and her characters. They always stay with me long after I finish the story and this one was no exception. This is the story of Ginny Beale who is very close to her brother and has a tight group of friends during high school. She ends up having a falling out with all of them. Except for one, with whom she ends up making up and staying lifelong friends.

At the very beginning of the story, she finds out her husband is part of a scandal and it unwinds her whole life. Making everything fall apart and when chance encounters cause her to realize all the misunderstandings she’s lived her life with, she starts putting the pieces back together.

“Lately, I’ve been thinking about it this way,” says Gray. “They love us. And they’ve done something bad that hurt us. You’d think those facts would cancel each other out, but the crazy thing is that they don’t.”

This is a story about the insidious nature of secrets. How they have a way of breaking people, families, friendships, and lives. A way of weaving thorns through your soul and ripping you from the inside out. It’s about forgiving. It’s about mending. It’s also about honesty and owning up to the truths of our lives.

It’s a beautiful story and I loved the time I spent with it.

with gratitude to edelweiss and William Morrow for an early copy in exchange for an honest review.

And there we go, grateful to be reading.

Books I Read this Week 2020 is a year-long project for 2019. You can read more about my projects for 2020 here. I am also tracking my books in real time on Good Reads here. If you’re on Good Reads add me so I can follow you, too! I’ve also started an instagram account where I join my love of reading with my love of art.

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