Book Lists Book Reviews

In My Book Bag: Liz of Say Yes

March 27, 2014

I’ve been reading Say Yes for years (back when it was Say Yes to Hoboken!).

Liz does beautiful and simple DIY projects (I’m especially in love with these hand-printed tea cloths), has the most gorgeous home (and it doesn’t make me feel discouraged about my own house), and her Sites and Bites series makes me want to visit San Francisco tomorrow.

Also, this grilled peach pizza? It’s fantastic.

Then, I met Erica a couple of years ago and discovered that she and Liz were sisters-in-law. So obviously, I felt like I basically knew Liz.

I finally met her in real life at Alt Summit in January and she was even nicer than I could have imagined. We swapped stories about sleeping on Erica’s futon in New York and talked about books (she wrote a great post about reading with her six-year-old son a few months ago). 
It goes without saying that I was delighted when she shared some of her favorite (and not favorite) books (also, the idea of an upstairs attic room? Pretty much my dream childhood, right there): 

I grew up devouring every imaginative and heartwarming fiction book by Roald Dahl and plowing through the Anne of Green Gables series in my upstairs attic room into the wee hours of the night, but now I find myself drawn to fascinating non-fictions. I’ve become so crazed about efficiency as an adult that I’ve convinced myself I should be using my small and precious reading time to shine some light on real intriguing topics and humans and experiences.

Childhood Favorite: Matilda. I absolutely loved everything by Roald Dahl. So imaginative and exciting.

Currently Reading: Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls. Meh. Her first novel was better. Looking forward to finishing it and starting Freedom, also sitting on my bedside table by Jonathan Franzen

Comfort Reading: Maybe something fuzzy like Anne of Green Gables series. Nothing like a little nostalgia for a rainy Saturday afternoon under the comforter.

A Book Everyone Else Seemed to Love, But I Didn’t Finish: I don’t finish a lot of books actually, I get so impatient about 3/4ths of the way through and excited about the next one. Twilight was one of those books I wanted to like the but writing was so terrible, I couldn’t get through it!

A Book on My To-Read List: Both Packing for Mars by Mary Roach and her other book, Gulp (I love fascinating non fictions).

Book I’m Most Likely to Recommend to Someone Else: Something touching and reflective of the universal human struggle and experience like Peace like a River bt Leif Enger or a fascinating nonfiction like The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

Thanks, Liz!

P.S. You can check out other posts in this series here!

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  • Reply smalldog March 27, 2014 at 11:03 am

    I really enjoy this series, it's so fun to get a glimpse of someone's reading tastes and get book ideas for my own To Read list. I find that almost everyone's bookshelf at some point contains a book or series that I would never have guessed, or that we share a love for a common childhood favorite.

  • Reply Betsy March 27, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    I just love this series! Of course I love to learn what everyone is reading and recommending, but I'm also being introduced to bloggers I don't know. I've become a fast fan of Modern Mrs. Darcy since Anne was featured here. Thanks for that!

  • Reply Angela Muir March 27, 2014 at 4:07 pm

    I loved the immortal life of henrietta lacks! and i also thought the same thing about half broke horses, the glass castle was much better! so fun to see what others are reading 🙂

  • Reply Magdalena March 27, 2014 at 5:49 pm

    Yes! Anything by Mary Roach is worth reading if you're looking for fun non-fiction. Her books are what science writing should be…funny, engaging, thoroughly fact-checked and researched. I'm enjoying this series very much, although I also enjoyed your city series. However, I'm far more likely to be able to find and read recommended books than easily travel to all the highlighted cities. 🙂

  • Reply Erica March 27, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    i'm so happy that my pathetic, little futon brings people together. 🙂

  • Reply Kimberly March 27, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    I could wax poetic about Mary Roach. In case anyone is wondering, my favorite of hers so far was actually Boink, though everything she writes is fascinating. I get sad frequently that it makes such a questionable book club or gift choice depending on the audience, though, because I really thought it was intriguing. P.S. My husband met Mary Roach when she visited the University of Alabama while doing research for Gulp. He's a little miffed he didn't make the credits, what with thinking he had been hilarious throughout the entire experiment (which involved dissecting snakes, if I remember correctly…the perfect situation for hilarity, apparently).

  • Reply Amy G March 27, 2014 at 11:48 pm

    I'm a huge Mary Roach fan. She has definitely mastered the art of interesting nonfiction writing!

  • Reply Liz Stanley March 28, 2014 at 2:33 am

    Thanks for having me, it was fun!

  • Reply Feisty Harriet April 1, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    I can vouch for Erica's futon and she and Spencer's insanely fabulous hospitality.

    Also, I really loved The Glass Castle and liked Half-Broke Horses, but wish I had read it first, not second. I love Matilda, and Packing for Mars was a book club read last year (as well as Glass Castle, actually).

    Love this series!

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