Books I Read This Week 2017 – 12

I started my week with Edgar and Lucy which I had been looking forward to. This book was really hard to get into for me. I didn’t connect with the characters and didn’t understand where the story was going. It goes back and forth in time and perspective which is especially hard on audio. But I decided to persist and moved back and forth between audio and reading. I’d say three quarters of the book ended up being reading because once I got into it, I didn’t want to stop and the audio just wasn’t fast enough at that point (even at 2x). By the end of the book, I really loved it. Even though it was haunting and sad and darker than I thought it would be, I am glad I read it..

I then decided to pickup Stranger in the Woods which I wasn’t sure I’d like. It was a short read and I will say that while the story is fascinating, the book was okay. Not amazing and not much better than a long magazine article would have been imho.

After that, I read The Rules Do Not Apply which I finished pretty much in one sitting. It was so sad and so beautifully written but I still felt like there was something missing for me. Something that stopped me from connecting with the author more. I am glad I read it anyway.

And then I moved to Ill Will. I’ve read Dan Chaon before and thought I would like it. This book is really unusual in style. Several chapters end in the middle of a sentence. There are random spaces in between words, etc. For this one, too, I went back and forth between reading and listening. I couldn’t decide if I hated the book and should put it down of if I wanted to finish. I finally finished after a long slog. In the end, I am glad I read this one, too. I disliked pretty much every single character but the book did make me think about memories and how we remember things. I usually dislike when things aren’t resolved but in this case it didn’t bother me as much.

None of the books I read this week were magnificent in my opinion. I am reading a book now that I am enjoying a lot and I have 20+ books checked out from the library so I am hoping next week’s bunch will be a better fit for me.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 11

I started my week with Gemina because I had it out from the library and it was a 7-day loan so I had to read it first. I knew David liked this one more than the first one and I agree with him. I felt like the last third of the book (which comes after an interesting twist, the first one in a long long time that didn’t bother me) is fantastic. The first part of the book, though, dragged a bit for me and could have been edited more heavily imho. Nonetheless, the twist and all the parts that came out of that made it worthwhile. I am glad I read it.

I then decided to tackle Version Control which I had checked out from library twice before but hadn’t gotten around to listening to. It’s quite a long one and I wasn’t sure it would hold my interest but I was totally wrong. Once I started, I was 100% absorbed in it and I loved all of it. Even though it was another book with similar physics themes that I’ve read several times in the last year, I loved it. This was my kind of book.

I then moved on to Exit West which I’d been waiting for excitedly. Exit West was a quick read and it was also thought provoking. I am not a rereader but this is a book I can see myself rereading. I loved the combination of light magical realism with the heavy historical subject matter. 

And then I moved to  The Roanoke Girls which I knew little about. I should have read more about it because really I didn’t need the disturbing story in my life. But once I started reading it, I could not put it down so there goes 5 hours of my life I won’t get back. It’s a fast read and even though you know very early on how disturbing it’s going to be it’s like an accident you can’t look away from. It doesn’t really even redeem itself in the end. I will admit that I wanted my hours back. You’ve been warned. ūüôā

I ended the week with I’m Judging You which I really really liked. It was funny but much more than funny, it was deep, insightful and thought provoking. A perfect combination in any book, if you ask me. 


Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017?here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 10

I started my week with Small Admissions because I had nothing interesting checked out from the library and this was one of my purchases from Audible. It was sweet, light and it reminded me a lot of what last year was like when we were going through this admissions process. This year it’s just Nathaniel so it’s been a lot less crazy. Here’s to hoping we don’t have to do this again until college.

I then decided to tackle Pachinko which was about to expire and I wasn’t sure I didn’t want to listen to it. I dragged myself through a lot of the book and started and stopped it many times but I finally persevered and I am so glad I did. I was very attached to the characters and even cried at the end of the story. This historical time was all new to me and I am really glad I read it.

Since I was already crying I decided to pickup You Will not Have my Hate which I knew was about the man who’d lost his wife in the French terrorism recently. They had a little baby. I knew this story would be heart-wrenching and it totally was but it was also beautiful. Loved it.

I was ready for something light so I picked up The Impossible Fortress which was a 7-day loan from the library so I read it all in one sitting. It was just my type of book. About the 80s, programming on a Commodore, funny, sweet, quirky. I love love loved it.

What Light was also in my list of “about to expire” books from Overdrive so I decided to finish it while I could. It was a lovely little Young Adult story. Not as good as Asher’s previous book but I still enjoyed it.

And finally, I was able to get Faithful out of the library and had no idea how much I was going to love this book. I did not want to turn it off. I loved the characters and though it didn’t feel like a a Hoffman story to me, it really really spoke to me and I am so very glad I read it.

That’s it for this week. A wide mix but no non-fiction this time. Faithful was my 47th book of 2017. 

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017?here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 09

After all the books last week, I started My Not So Perfect Life because I wanted something light and it was on my overdrive queue. As is typical of Kinsella, it was fun and sweet and quirky. 

On the way to LA, I listened to Six Wakes which was on my list since I’d read about it. I really liked it. If Science Fiction is your cup of tea, this is a mind-bending one. I love finding sci fi like this.

And finally, on the way back, I listened to The Futures which had been on my audible list for a while, now. I didn’t really know what this story was about and as it turns out, it’s about Wall St. and NYC and a lot of other things that rang familiar to me. It was a quick read but I am not sure it was amazing. I’m not sorry I read it but I also don’t know that I’d recommend it.

That’s it for this week. I’m in the process of reading three other books at the moment but none are finished yet.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017?here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 08

A lot of books this week.

I knew I wanted to read All Our Wrong Todays as soon as I heard about it. Time travel. Multiple worlds. Fun and scifi are definitely my cup of tea. And it was not a disappointment. I enjoyed this story and all the convoluted plot twists along the way.

Last week, I watched all the Bravel Girl Symposium talks and I fell in love with Erin Faith Allen. I then bought and swallowed The Underneath in one night. Painful and beautiful and thought provoking all at once.

I then shifted gears into A Truck Full of Money which was about to expire so if I planned to read it, it was now or never. I knew very little about Paul English but had of course heard of kayak. My husband interned at Interleaf when he was in highschool. It’s always a small world. I loved reading this story.

I wanted to read?This Close to Happy?and I got about halfway through before I decided it was too depressing and finally made the choice to put it down. I’ve read other books on depression but this one wasn’t my cup of tea.

I then listened to A Separation in one sitting. I can’t decide if I liked this book or not. It was a tough read. It didn’t have a lot of likeable characters and I am not sure what I took away from the whole thing but I still don’t regret reading it.

I heard of The Lonely Hearts Hotel from my library. When I looked up the book, it claimed to be similar to The Night Circus. I knew I wanted to read it as soon as I saw that. As it turned out, it wasn’t similar to the Night Circus at all. At all. However, I loved it anyway. I really loved the characters even though they seemed to go from one tragedy into another. I loved the atmosphere and the language. This book doesn’t sound like a book I’d like but I somehow loved it.

I then moved to Lincoln in the Bardo. It was my first Saunders and a weird one at that. I am still thinking about this one. The style was so weird. The plot comical and tragedy all at once. Weird, weird novel.

And finally I ended my week with The Three-Body Problem. When I was in Sydney, this book was recommended by my workmates. I checked it out from the library and decided it was finally time to tackle it. It was long and complicated and I didn’t understand most of the physics in it. But I did like it. I am glad I read it. I am not reading the sequel anytime soon.

That’s it for this week. Quite a few books this week in all sorts of genres.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017?here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 07

While in Sydney, I decided to give The Look of Love a go. I had it out from the library and I didn’t have the mental energy for anything more sophisticated. As it worked out, it was a lovely read. Very predictable but still enjoyable.

I wanted to read¬†Carve the Mark¬†because I loved Roth’s previous book, Divergent. This new book got a lot of controversial feedback and while I respect other people’s perspectives, I didn’t have that point of view when I read the book. I read it relatively quickly, mostly on the plane back from Sydney and found myself enjoying it. I like Veronica Roth. I like the stories she tells and I like the way she tells them. And Carve the Mark was no exception.

I only watched one movie on the 28 hours I spent on the airplane last week. It was called Denial and right after the movie was over, I read¬†Man’s Search for Meaning¬†which I had heard of many times over the years but hadn’t managed to read so far. The first part of the ¬†book is as heart-wrenching as I was worried it would be, but the second part where he talks about logotherapy¬†was fascinating and really thought-provoking and all new to me. I decided I needed to read a lot more about it. If you haven’t read this, it’s highly recommended (though a difficult read, of course.)

I then finished A Gathering of Shadows finally.

And that was it for this week. A light week.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 06

I started my week with Lilian Boxfish Takes a Walk. Which is definitely my favorite read of 2017 so far. I know it hasn’t been so long but still… it’s totally delightful. I can’t recommend it enough. Especially if you’ve lived in NYC.

I wanted to read¬†Lab Girl¬†because it’s been on my list for months but while I liked bits of it, i had a hard time getting through it. I found myself skipping around.

I had the Achievement Habit on hold at the library and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to read it. I feel like I already do a lot so I wasn’t sure if I need more “achievement” in my life. But I was totally wrong and I am so incredibly glad I read it. It’s by the co-creator of the Design Thinking class in Stanford and it’s full of wonderful, tangible pieces of advice and practices for self improvement. I will have to reread this one.

After I finished Achievement Habit, I grabbed Losing It from my library pile. Not sure what made me originally put this book on hold but i was on the airplane and didn’t want to overthink it. In the end it was meh. Not super mad I read it, but my life is not all that better because I read it either.

I also dabbled in both of the George and the Key to the Universe (and George and the Big Bang) books this week to see if we wanted to pick them for Lit Club. We decided we likely would not.

Not as much as usual, but it’s been a busy week.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 05

I started my week with Shrill because pretty much every end of the year book list had it. I kept resisting it for some reason but then finally broke down and put it on my hold list at the library. I am so glad I did. It was absolutely fantastic. It made me sad, it made me angry, it made me think. it made me cheer. it was really good. I highly recommend it.

I then read¬†In Defense of Food¬†because I saw it come up in the library’s list and I’ve been trying to educate myself about food. While I can’t get behind Gary Taubes’ recommendations because it’s just not possible for me to sustain eating like that, I really liked Pollan’s book. I like the idea of eating as fresh food as possible. I like shopping at our farmer’s market and decided to do it more. I don’t mind paying more for better food. My thought is that if it’s better, we will likely eat less of it to feel full and we will get much better nutrition. I’ve also signed up for a CSA¬†again and I am buying my eggs and fruits and veggies as fresh as I can. I had a long talk with the kids, too, and we will move to eating bread (sandwich) only for lunch and we will experiment with buying better bread until we can learn to make our own. (I just bought a breadmaker to see if we can give it a try.) I am also looking into solutions around moving away from the ritz and graham crackers my kids eat for snack. We are considering extra fruit and nuts. One step closer to eating healthier. I love the idea of eating food where we can pronounce all the ingredient’s names and food that has no more than 5 ingredients total. This will be an iterative process of course and I am sure we will make mistakes along the way. Let’s see how far we can get.

I then read¬†Chasing Secrets¬†because it’s the book we’re reading for our Lit Club so I needed to read it first. It takes place in the 1900s in San Francisco. It’s about the plague outbreak. It was a book I would have never chosen to read on my own, but I really enjoyed it quite a bit.

I then decided to tackle¬†The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck¬†because it also kept coming up as a recommendation. I knew nothing about the author and nothing about much of the premise. I decided I’d give it a shot and see if I liked it. I will say that even though I curse and colorful language doesn’t often bother me, I wasn’t a fan of some of the comments the author made. I didn’t care for all of his verbiage but I did like the book. I liked the idea of picking the things you value and choosing to care about those. And not care about the other things. You can’t care about all. You have to choose and I know this and it was a good reminder to keep it at the forefront of my mind.

And finally, I started reading A Gathering of Shadows because it was about to expire in my library so I was able to get about two thirds of the way there so I am going to have to finish it in a creative way. The third book is coming out in two months and I am looking forward to it.

A middle grade, one young adult, three nonfiction this week. Not terrible, though I miss reading literary fiction, too. Will have to grab some of those next week.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 04

I started my week with Scythe because my friend Amy said it was her favorite YA read last year and this book has no audio so I sat and read it and I really loved it. Shuserman is a wonderful writer and I really enjoyed the different premise of this book. The utopian take, the lack of love triangle, the few twists and turns and the fantastic ending. A really enjoyable read.

I then decided to tackle¬†The Diviners¬†which I’d been intending to read for two years but hadn’t managed to. This book is long and it took me quite a while to get through it. In the end, I am glad I read it but I don’t think I will read the others in the series. At least not yet.

I wanted something different after I finished the Diviners so I read The Future of Us because it was checked out on my Overdrive. It was a quick read and had some interesting ideas around how our choices, our perspectives and the trickling impact of small events.

And finally I read the¬†The Bear and the Nightingale because it was on Amazon’s top list for January. It wasn’t as smooth and easy to get through as I thought it would be. Maybe it’s because I listened to this one when I should have read it. But it was still interesting and the language is quite lovely. If fantastical stories are your thing, you might like this one. For me, it ended up being a slog and I could have done without it.

Not as much of a range this week. YA and fantasy/science fiction heavy. We’ll see what next week brings.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 03

I started my week with¬†Flawd¬†because one of my libraries had it and it looked interesting. I had never heard of it and had no idea what to expect. It’s written by a twenty year old and it’s about a project she started when she was a teen. It’s quite lovely and upbeat and just not what I expected.

I then moved on to ¬†The Whole Town’s Talking. Fried Green Tomatoes is one of my all-time favorite books and I had never read Fannie Flagg, so when this came out, I wanted to give it a whirl and I am so glad I did. I really enjoyed the whole story from beginning to end, even the crazy unexpected parts. It was just lovely. I am glad I picked it up.

I read¬†The Sleeper and the Spindle¬†because my friend Amysaid it was her favorite read of 2016 and she is one well-read lady. I am always worried when I pick up a Gaiman because he can be scary at times. I both read and listened to this one and the audio version was quite fantastic. The drawings in the book version were also fantastic so I guess I recommend both versions. My favorite quote from this short, wonderful story came toward the end: Learning how to be strong, to feel her own emotions and not another‚Äôs, had been hard; but once you learned the trick of it, you did not forget. (Here’s to hoping I can learn one day, too.)

I had attempted to read¬†Wolf in White Van¬†when it first came out but never managed to make my way through it, so when I found out that the author is coming out with a new story this year, I decided I wanted to read this and see if I like the author. It was a very tough book to read but I did like it. I’m still thinking about it, in fact.

My copy of ¬†Messy: The Power of Disorder to Transform Our Lives¬†was due back at the library in two days so I decided to listen to at least some of it and see if I liked it. And I did. I only listened to a few of the chapters and the premise of what I read so far is basically that life is messy and we shouldn’t try to create too much “fake” order out of it because we learn to deal with life’s mess better when we encounter mess along the way. I explained that badly but it’s a good book. Makes a lot of sensible points around autonomy, creating an environment where mess and creativity are encouraged, etc.

Still Life with Tornado¬†was also on my list for a while so when my turn came up in the library, I was looking forward to reading it, even though I didn’t know very much about what it was about. It was another tough, tough book to listen to even though the style was quite interesting and engrossing (though also a bit hard to keep track of in audio). It was a great book. It’s YA so if that’s not your cup of tea, skip it.

And, finally, I also had¬†Browsings:A Year of Reading, Collecting, and Living with Books¬†checked out from the library so I decided to dabble in that a bit, too. I listened to about half of this book and plan to listen to more occasionally because it’s meant to be like a tasting menu. I always love books about books and even though I prefer Schwalbe’s book, I just loved hearing about someone who loves books (and pens and notebooks) as much as I do.

That’s it for this week’s reading. A wide range and good mix this week.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 02

I had to read¬†Learning to Swear in America¬†for my Young Adult book club. I’d started reading it a few months ago, but wasn’t able to get into it. When my Audible credit came I decided it was my best chance of reading the book in time for the book club. I chided myself a bit for “wasting” my credit on a YA novel since those are usually shorter and really quick reads. But I am so glad I did. I loved the audio for this book and I loved the book so so much that by the last 40 pages, I just gave up on the audio so I could read the pages and go faster. I loved this sweet book quite a bit and I think the wonderful audio performance had a lot to do with it, too.

I then was looking for something new to read and glanced through my Overdrive checkouts and came back to the new Jodi Picoult book,¬†Small Great Things. I read Picoult’s My Sister’s Keeper many years ago and was so devastated with the twist at the end that I swore to never read her again. But then I read more of her over the years anyway. Though I was a lot more hesitant and picky. I didn’t like her previous book all that much and wasn’t sure I wanted to read this one. But I was working on a puzzle and needed a book and just figured I’ll give it a try. I am so glad I did. I swallowed this book up. I basically listened to it until I was completely finished with my puzzle and then read the rest of it into the late hours of the night. I loved the author’s note at the end and I really am glad I read this book.

I then moved on to¬†Mr. Terupt¬†because it’s the book we’re reading in the Lit Club I am co-leading in David’s school for the 3-4th grade group we have. David read this book when he was in third grade and loved it. I was looking forward to reading it but had no idea how much I was going to love it. If you have a middle grader, this is a lovely book with soul (though also some tough, sensitive subject-matter if your kids are sensitive, so keep that in mind.)

I had¬†Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us checked out and wasn’t sure if I wanted to read it but I decided to give it a shot. In the end, I ended up reading about a third of it. I am already off all the packaged goods so this was mostly a reminder that it was a good choice to turn to natural foods. And a good reminder that it’s going to be tough to get all these things out of my system, especially the sugar.

So unlike me to read not one but two non-fiction books in a month, let alone a week but I also had¬†Organize Tomorrow Today¬†in my Overdrive checkouts and I decided to check it out while I started my second puzzle of the weekend. I am already a pretty intentional and organized person, but this book was fantastic with specific tasks on how to be considerably more intentional and purposeful with my life. This is one I will come back to and reread as I implement it in pieces since there’s so so much in this little book.

That’s it for this week’s reading. A wide range and good mix this week.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.

Books I Read This Week 2017 – 01

I started the year by finishing The Regional Office is Under Attack!¬†I had read in several end of year lists that it was an amazing book. That it was a bit like Hitchicker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I have this pet peeve about how books should just never be compared to classics. I hate it when I read that a book is like Catcher in the Rye or another book I love. I feel like it’s just setting the author up for disappointment. While I might have liked this book on its own, I will now be comparing it to this completely different book. Not wise. Anyhow, this book was ok. It was funny in parts and not so funny in other parts. It was definitely quirky and different. I feel it started strong and funny and sort of fizzled out in the end.

I then read Wolf by Wolf¬†because I had it for an upcoming book club meeting. I had no idea what it was about and hadn’t read the blurb before I started it (which is quite rare for me.) So I didn’t know it was about WWII. I usually avoid books about World War II but each year seem to end up reading a few. This was wildly different than any other one I’ve read and I really really enjoyed it. It’s YA so the pacing was quite fast and action filled. And there was a bit of a supernatural bend to it. I really enjoyed this one and am glad I read it.

Books I Read this Week 2017 is a year-long project for 2017. You can read more about my projects for 2017 here.