A Book a Week – Vanishing Girls

I read Vanishing Girls because I loved Lauren Oliver’s “Before I Fall” so very much. But I didn’t like the Delirium series all that much. Nor did I love Panic. But I keep giving her chances because her writing is so good.

Alas, I hated this book.

Hated it.

There is a major twist at the end and it was so stupid. I hate books that do a twist where the whole book feels super gimmicky. What’s even worse is that this exact gimmick was done in another YA book I read this year and I hated it then, too. So it was extra frustrating when it happened again.

Here’s to hoping she does better.

A Book a Week – The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy

I read The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy for my Young Adult book club. It was incredibly tough to get through. Incredibly. I read the same page 11 times. I didn’t like the name, the cover, or the book itself. There were some interesting bits but overall it’s not a book I would recommend in this day and age where there are so very many great Young Adult books.

A Book a Week – Powerless

I read Powerless because David’s class was starting a book club and this was our first pick. I read this to be in solidarity with David. It was a quick, fun and easy read. It made some interesting points about what it means to be a superhero and what your powers are.

There are two others in the series and David read both of them. He loved all three so if you have a middle grader, these are recommended.

A Book a Week – The Buried Giant

I read The Buried Giant because amazon said it was the best book of 2014 and even though I kept resisting it, I finally just gave in and bought it.

Man, am I glad I did.

This was an excellent book. A tough tough one to read but really well written and such interesting thoughts about parenting, families, siblings, and more.

A really thought provoking read and I am really glad I stopped being stubborn and finally tackled it.

A Book a Week – A Spool of Blue Thread

I read A Spool of Blue Thread because I love Anne Tyler. Love love love love her. Her way of storytelling speaks to me. Her characters are always lovely and stay with me long after I finish her books. There was no way I wouldn’t love this one.

And I wasn’t wrong.

I loved it. It was so typical Anne Tyler.

If you love her as much as I do, it will not disappoint.

A Book a Week – The Sixth Extinction

I read The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History for my book club. Yet another book that could have been a long, interesting article. Instead, it’s a long, repetitive book. And a bit alarmist. Even if what you’re saying is true, if you say it in a way where it sounds so extreme, i am more likely to write you off than to listen. It’s better to make your point in a way I can digest and in a way I feel like I can do something about it.

Maybe it’s unnecessarily harsh of me. This book is interesting. It makes some legitimate and scary points. But I would have preferred to read the article version instead.

A Book a Week – The Book of Strange New Things

I read The Book of Strange New Things because amazon kept telling me about it again and again. I decided it was time to finally sit down and try to tackle it.

And it required so much work to get through this book.

It was strange and strange and strange.

It’s one of the most unusual books I’ve read in…. maybe ever.

It was strange enough that I couldn’t even decide if I liked it or didn’t like it, in the end. But I will say that I am glad I read it. Not even sure why, though. I just feel like I am glad I stuck with it.

A Book a Week – All the Bright Places

I read All the Bright Places for my Young Adult book club. It was so sad. So so so sad. But also such a good read. I read it all in one breath. And I really enjoyed it.

After all the dystopian YA novels, now there seems to be a slew of “terribly sad” YA about mental and emotional challenges of teenagers. In fairness, these issues are likely more realistic. They deserve attention and thought. They are more likely to happen than the Maze Runner scenario.

But that’s also why they are so much harder to take.

December Daily 2015 - Day 22

And here we are for day twenty-two.

I wanted to document a little bit about who we are in this moment. So I took several journaling pages and wrote what I like right now, what the kids and Jake like, too and then one for our highlights of 2015. I actually might do a bigger one that’s for 2015 highlights since i love looking back on those later, too.

I really like how this one turned out. These multi-pocket pages are really fun to look at and to do.

A Book a Week – The Girl on the Train

I read The Girl on the Train because there was a lot of hype around it. Amazon recommended it. It was supposed to be like Gone Girl but much better. I am not sure why that convinced me since I hated Gone Girl so much.

But I picked it up anyway. I read it really fast. I liked it better than Gone Girl. Partly because the ending wasn’t such a twist ending for me. But I still don’t think it was a good book. I am so done with books where all the characters are unlikeable. What’s the point? What does it teach me about life?


Not recommended.

A Book a Week – Us

I read Us because it was on the Man Booker Prize Longlist. It took me a long time to make my way through the book. I felt like it was so sad that it dragged on and on.

Having said that, I thought it was also pithy and heartbreaking. I loved the ending. I was interested in and invested in the characters. It was just sad enough that I didn’t feel like going back and reading more and more of it.

In the end, I am glad I read it. Some of the book’s thoughts stayed with me still now.

A Book a Week – Grasshopper Jungle

I read Grasshopper Jungle for my Young Adult book club and man oh man was it insane. It was incredibly painful to even make it through this book. There is a ton of creepy, weird, gross stuff in this book and I am not even sure I get the point of the book.

It was my first Andrew Smith book and I’m told his others are different. But I don’t think I’ll be reading any more of him for a while.