I’ve accepted that I will just not be reading as many books this year. In past quarters, I’ve been up in the thirties. This time, I barely hit twenty. I blame my children (they don’t read my blog anyway).
Still, I feel like I’ve been reading more books that I quite enjoy because I just don’t have the time to give to books that don’t engage me. And I’m pleased with what a wide variety of books I’ve read here – food books, history, historical fiction, middle-grade, a couple of YA books, a few audiobooks, and adult non-fiction. Not bad for twenty books.
- Reached by Ally Condie
I thought that, after how bad the middle book in this series was, the last book would be awesome. I was wrong.
- Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin
I’ve meant to write a review of this book for the past year. But I have not, so just know that it’s excellent. Enough so that I’ve read it twice.
- The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal (full review)
I kind of need a cheat sheet of the main ideas in this book tattooed on my arm.
- American Wasteland: How America Throws Away Nearly Half of Its Food by Jonathan Bloom
This was EXCELLENT. Some similarities to The American Way of Eating, but I liked this better. Someday I may get around to writing about this book (I kept renewing it in hopes I do so, but I never did).
- Touch & Go by Lisa Gardner (full review)
This was just a fun little mystery novel, but I’m surprised by how often I find myself thinking about it still.
- Rereadings: Seventeen Writers Revisit Books They Love, edited by Anne Fadiman
This was a bookclub book. I had heard of NONE of the authors and only two of the books they wrote about. And pretty much none of the essays made me want to read either the books or anything by those authors. I kept going back to the table of contents to see how many of the 17 I had left to read. Needless to say, not my favorite book.
- Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor (full review)
This book was just so ridiculously good. Go read it.
- The Secrets of Happy Families by Bruce Feiler (full review)
Fun, interesting non-fiction. Kind of a cross between Malcolm Gladwell and Gretchen Rubin (although, to be totally honest, I like both of their books a bit better than this one).
- Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
I know everyone loved her Between Shades of Gray book, but I was only somewhat enamored with it (truly, my most clear memory of it is that I cleaned the toilet while listening to it). This one, though, I devoured in a weekend. Who doesn’t want to read about the daughter of a prostitute in post-WWII New Orleans?
- The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate (full review)
I’ve mentioned how much I like this one, right? A very worthy Newbery title.
- Bomb: The Race to Make – and Steal – the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin (full review)
I will never think about that atomic bomb the same way. And all my friends probably wish I would stop talking about it. Too bad.
- 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam
Part of the middle of this book rubbed me the wrong way, but overall, I thought it was really interesting and quite useful. I feel like I take responsibility for how I use most of my time more than I did before.
- Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise by Ruth Reichl
I’d never even heard of her (long-time restaurant critic for the NYTimes), but I loved this book. Also, every recipe I’ve tried of hers has been fabulous. So, you know, I am a fan for life. Her pancakes with 12 tablespoons of butter? Amazing (as they darn well better be).
- The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan
This book renewed my faith in YA lit. I love a good boarding school book. Also, how many books have YOU read with a love triangle featuring an albino boy? (That’s what I thought). A full review will come at some point, hopefully. But I make no promises.
- French Twist: An American Mom’s Experiment in Parisian Parenting by Catherine Crawford
Not as good as Bringing Up Bebe, but interesting and made me crack back down on Ella’s eating (she probably wishes I hadn’t read it).
- To Sell is Human by Daniel Pink
There were a few interesting bits, but overall, I just find that I have a hard time getting into Pink’s books.
- Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
I almost gave this book up a couple of times, but in the end it was rather charming. Still, probably not worth the long early slog.
- Navigating Early by Clare Vanderpool
This woman can write. It’s not quite as good as Moon Over Manifest, but. . . what is? I just really loved reading this.
Anyone read anything good lately? Consider this the very low-key version of “Tell Me What to Read.”