Book Lists

In My Book Bag: Anne of Modern Mrs. Darcy

First off, is “Modern Mrs. Darcy” the best name for a blog you’ve ever heard, or is it the best name for a blog you ever heard?

I think so too.

I discovered Anne’s blog last summer when someone on Twitter mentioned her 2013 Summer Reading Guide (I am one of those people who CANNOT resist a reading list of any kind).

And I was immediately hooked. We have fairly similar reading taste – lots of kid-lit classics (she mentions later in this post that she loved Emily of New Moon as a child, which is one of my all-time favorite books. I can see my battered and beloved trilogy from my desk chair), and a love of food-related non-fiction.

She does these fantastic posts each month called “Twitterature” where she writes a very very brief review and recommendation of books she’s read recently. Every month, I’m maxing out my hold list three minutes after finishing her post.

And she’s an audiobook fiend too (here are 40 of her favorites). Of course I love her.

Plus, she talks about all sorts of other interesting things (I loved this post last week about why women don’t show up), and basically every single post she writes.

I wish I knew her in real life – it’d be a quiet friendship since we’re both introverts, but I’m certain we’d share a lot of books.


I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love to read. I read for fun and for bibliotherapy: it’s my favorite introvert coping mechanism. It’s what I do to recharge after a morning with my noisy kids and to unwind before bed. 

My to-read stack has morphed over the years from a polite stack to a terrifying teetering tower. Blogging has NOT been good for this: I find so many book recommendations online, and get so many from my readers, that I’ll never make much of a dent in my to-read list. But it’s worth it, because right after reading itself, talking about books–over coffee or in the blogosphere–is one of my very favorite things. – Anne

Childhood Favorite: My first loyalties were to the tween girl trifecta of The Baby-Sitters Club, Sweet Valley High, and Nancy Drew … but the first book I stayed up half the night reading was Emily of New Moon, by L. M. Montgomery. My taste has definitely gotten better with age.

Currently Reading: I’m usually reading through 5 or 6 books at any given time. Currently I’m working on The Red Tent, My Berlin Kitchen, How to Teach Your Children Shakespeare, and Clutterfree with Kids. And my 8-year-old asked me to read The Borrowers, so I’m reading The Borrowers.

Comfort Reading: I catch myself re-reading when I’m stressed out or sad–especially Kid Lit or anything cookbook-ish. This is when you’ll find me reading through all the Anne of Green Gables or Betsy-Tacy books, or all of Ruth Reichl’s foodie memoirs.

A Book Everyone Else Seemed to Love, But I Didn’t Like: I might be the only person on the planet who hated Gone Girl. The writer in me wants to appreciate the way Gillian Flynn structured it, but I can’t quite get there. She pulled a cheap trick, and it feels very gimmicky to me.

A Book on My To-Read List: Um, Goodreads says I have 130 books on my to-read list, and it’s not even complete! I’ll share two books I’m dying to read: Delancey, Molly Wizenberg’s latest foodie memoir, and Delicious, Ruth Reichl’s first novel. Both are due out in May and I can’t wait.

Book I’m Most Likely to Recommend to Someone Else: I’m constantly recommending books to people and have to check myself so I don’t get pushy about it! I’ve recommended the heck out of Quiet and Bread and Wine over this past year, because they’re wonderfully written and so timely. My go-to, crowd-pleasing fiction recommendation is Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day.

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  • Reply Kayris February 27, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    I hated Gone Girl too. People said it would blow my mind and it didn't. I saw the ending coming and I really just hated the whole book. And now there's a movie. Ugh.

  • Reply Lauren @The Little Things We Do.... February 27, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    Have you read any of Shauna Niequist's stuff? I've really been wanting to read "Bread & Wine" because I really do love her writing. "Cold Tangerines" is one of my favorites!

    • Reply Anne @ Modern Mrs Darcy February 27, 2014 at 7:22 pm

      I think each new Shauna Niequist book has been better than the one before. If you loved Cold Tangerines I would definitely recommend picking up the others!

  • Reply Jenna@CallHerHappy February 27, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    I used to search and search for good bok recs – I'm quite picky but I LOVE to read. It's a serious problem. But, since finding Anne, life has become easier. I still live the struggle, but she has a lot to choose from, and she understands that just because I enjoyed Hunger Games doesn't mean I want to read Divergent next. Ok, I liked Divergent too, but you get it.

  • Reply Saskia February 27, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    Miss Pettigrew is one of my all-time favorite books.

  • Reply Elizabeth Kane February 27, 2014 at 11:25 pm

    Oh, The Babysitter's Club. Claudia is still awesome is my book. 🙂

    I have to admit, I abandoned Gone Girl early into a few chapters. I wasn't getting into it the way I imagined and it felt easier to not finish when I heard a good number of people saying they didn't like the ending.

  • Reply Ash February 28, 2014 at 1:09 am

    I'm glad I read this before my trip to the library today! I checked out How to Teach Your Children Shakespeare and I'm hoping it will give me some ideas for my English classes! =)

  • Reply Rory O'Connor February 28, 2014 at 6:08 am

    That is one of the best blog names! I hated Gone Girl too, so you're not alone.

    Nancy Drew started my love of reading too, I still remember The Secret at Shadow Ranch with fondness.

  • Reply Melissa Camara Wilkins February 28, 2014 at 7:38 am

    I loved Quiet and Bread & Wine, but I haven't read Miss Pettigrew! And so the TBR pile grows… 😉

  • Reply Meghan March 5, 2014 at 3:42 am

    How is the teach your child to read shakespeare book?

  • Reply Anne @ Modern Mrs Darcy March 8, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    It makes me want to teach my children Shakespeare! Although some of the passages he picks are questionable (so many racy jokes in Shakespeare, and my kids are grade school and younger). I wrote more about it here:

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