For the last few years, it has been my goal to read more. I was always the friend with her nose in a book, but life has a way of making me feel really *busy* at times, and then I notice that I haven’t read anything of substance in a while. I think we all read small clips of articles or news each day via social media and other apps, but it’s a much different experience than reading a newspaper or book!
In 2017, I didn’t put any pressure on myself to read a certain number of books, but I did commit to tracking my reads on Goodreads, if for no other purpose than to just know the number of books I read during the year! Since you can track start to finish date on this website, looking back I see times where I read constantly, and other times where I read one book per month. I like this log and have already continued into 2018. The Type A part of me loves this organization. So as I start book #10 this year, I want to share my thoughts on my reads so far.
– Books That I Loved –
My top three books so far are Year of Yes, The Hate U Give, and Capital Gaines.
Year of Yes is an autobiography and that is one of my favorite kinds of books to read! I love hearing from people about their own lives. It’s probably why I like reading blogs so much. Other people’s thoughts are just interesting to me. 🙂 Plus, I am a huge fan of Shonda’s shows, so I feel like I’ve gotten to “know” her over the years. I have a whole list of fun facts about Shonda Rhimes in my brain after reading this book so somebody quiz me!
The Hate U Give follows the life of a sixteen year old girl who attends a fancy prep school, and witnesses one of her childhood friends get shot by a policeman on the way home from a party one night. Unfortunately, this is a scenario that we have seen on the news many times in the last few years, and it was really interesting to see the story from someone else’s point of view, although it is a fictional story. I have nothing but great things to say about the story and I can’t wait to see how they portray this in a movie next year.
And of course, Capital Gaines…I just loved this. I read The Magnolia Story by Joanna last year, and I loved reading this second book from Chip’s point of view. Although everyone under the sun loves Fixer Upper and the Gainses’, I just have to say I have been watching since the first season way before anyone knew who they were. 😉
– Books That Were Good –
Little Fires Everywhere is a book that I have heard so much about, but I really had no idea what it was about before reading it. This story is about a single mom and daughter who move to an Ohio town that is essentially a utopia, and they are in close relationship with the seemingly perfect Richardson family. There were a lot of secrets among the 9 “main” characters, yet I still found myself waiting for something shocking to happen.
I have heard so many great things about Taylor Jenkins Reid, so recently I’ve read One True Loves and Maybe In Another Life. I really enjoyed Maybe In Another Life because after the first part of the storyline was set up, each chapter alternated back and forth between two different paths the main character could have taken in life. The author never revealed which path the character took, and yet it wasn’t like one of those “choose your adventure books” either because you never chose what happened next. I really had to think about which scenario I saw the character in, because it seemed like she could have gone either way and I wasn’t sure if I preferred one to the other!
One True Loves was about a woman who married her high school sweetheart, only to become a widow on their first anniversary when his helicopter crashed. Once she has moved on and gotten re-engaged, her first husband is found. I mean! I did enjoy seeing how this story played out because again, I wasn’t sure if I preferred one relationship to the other. I don’t know if I will continue reading this author. They are light, easy reads, but I always seem to leave the book feeling so-so.
– Books I Abandoned –
“Abandoning” a book is something that I used to teach as a second grade teacher. 🙂 I am not very good at this myself, but essentially, abandoning a book gives you permission to quit reading when you realize you aren’t really that interested. I think most of us will admit we have pushed through books just to count it as “read” before!
I abandoned You Don’t Have To Live Like This by Benjamin Markovits. I think it was recommended to me in my library app, so I put it on reserve and went to pick it up the next day. However, I never found myself connecting with the main character and I couldn’t get a sense of where the story was going. It also only has a rating of 2.9 on Goodreads. Oh, well!
– Book Confessions –
I “read” Single State of Mind by Andi Dorfman on Audible. Listening to her narrate her story was like listening to a 9 hour podcast. I loved every minute, and now when I watch her Instagram story, it feels like a friend is talking. Hahaha
I read the first 100 and last 70 pages of a book, and seriously thought about quitting there. I have never in my life skipped ahead and read the end of a book, but The Break Down by B.A. Paris had me so nervous I had to know what was going to happen! I realized recently that I can read mysterious or “scary” books if the main character is strong and confident (i.e. The Woman In Cabin 10 and Behind Closed Doors. Both main characters are constantly thinking about how to get out of their situations). If the main character is nervous and freaking out, then so am I. In this case, the main character was about losing her mind, and I couldn’t even get out of bed for fear of someone grabbing my feet! Once I read the end, I went back the next day and read the middle, and I was much less nervous. 🙂 YAY for reading a scary book. Haha!