The New Year brought about a binge reading spree which is still going strong. Like most avid book readers, one thing I love most is stepping into someone else’s shoes to experience the world through their eyes and emotions. Most of the books I’ve read this year have not disappointed.

This week I finished “All the light we cannot see” in a Marta commute and one evening (I’m a fast reader and I had an uninterrupted 4 hours to read). Per how fast I finished it, you can tell I devoured this 500+ plus page novel. The characters were engaging, the story intriguing, and presented yet another perspective of individuals in WWII.

Last week I plowed through “The Red Tent.” The name should have indicated that it was going to be heavy on the graphic side (I’m a whimp, BTW) but I couldn’t put it down. This fiction book expounded upon biblical characters and their life experience. Again, it was fiction, but it did present a hint at what life was like for women thousands of years ago. As I was reading my heart broke anew at the fall—one line of the book indicated that men could not be successful without women, yet women were the “weaker ones” and in most instances, a mere commodity.

I grabbed “Station 18” from a popular Instagrammer’s recommendation and oh. My. Gosh. I took the book with me on the ski tip and when I read the dust jacket I thought…meh, why did I only bring this book, this looks lame. Um…NO. I could not put the book down, and I am still thinking about it nearly two months later. The seamless integration of the story and characters around one character who died in the first chapter was amazing.

Stella Bain” Also a book I grabbed from a blogger’s recommendation and it was one that once I finished I thought, “well crap. Now I’m dumber.” It was BAD y’all. The writing was shoddy, the character development nearly non-existent, and the plot holes huge. The only reason I pushed through was that it took me about 2.5 hours to read and I kept thinking to myself, “surely it’ll get better.” Spoiler: it did not.

The Long Road North” was a book that I could not finish. Also grabbed from an Instagrammer’s recommendation, I thought this would be a good one based on the award on its cover. I am sure to some they may find it awesome, but I found it heavy-laden and extremely depressing. I did not expect the book to be a picker-upper, as that it was about a POW camp in Japan in WWII but I found the main character to be well…an expletive. The book started with him in the midst of an affair (he was a serial womanizer) and that should have been my first clue to walk away. While I was talking to the Mr. about how I much I did not enjoy the book he goes, “don’t you hate any hint of adultery?” Oh yeah. The descriptions of the camp were vile (as the camps undoubtedly were) and explicit, and when I gave up in the middle, the book was only getting darker.

Rising Strong” by Brene Brown; I’m a fan of Brown’s message and I’ve read a couple other of her books. It could be that I was just not in the mood for self-improvement, but I only made it through about half of this book before calling it a day.

Also read:

The Martian. If you have not read it yet, go put in a hold at your library for it or find it on sale. I found this book hilarious and a fantastic read.

The Beekeepers Apprentice. Completely delightful and well written.


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