Friday, October 23, 2015

Third Quarter Reading

I read 11 books last quarter. I've gotten into a pattern where I read one fiction book and then a non-fiction book. The fiction (usually chick lit books) are my favorite and I go through them much quicker than the non-fiction books. But I like to break up the more fun reading with a little non-fiction to make me smarter (or at least that's what I tell myself). Also I've been reading the How to Train Your Dragon series with Corbyn. We read a chapter almost every night before bed which definitely helps boost my numbers. (And I can't believe it has taken me so long to get this posted!)

1. The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan - This is a highly fictionalized version of Prince William and Kate Middleton's courtship. I liked the first half well enough, but after I got to the second half I could not put it down. It was the perfect summer read. Although it did open my eyes to what it might be like to be a celebrity and made me feel so so bad for them. I haven't looked at the tabloids in the grocery store the same ever since!

2. The Last Anniversary by Liane Moriarty - Sophie unexpectedly inherits the house of one of her ex-boyfriend's aunts and suddenly becomes part of a rather unconventional family on Scribbly Gum Island - home of the famously unsolved Munro Baby mystery. The mystery hooked me from the beginning and it ended up being one of my favorites of Moriarty's books - right up there with What Alice Forgot.

3. The Life Intended by Kristin Harmel - Kate has spent the past 12 years mourning her first husband's death, but she's just become engaged to a new man and is finally ready to move on with her life. That is until she starts having extremely vivid dreams about her first husband and the life they would have had if he hadn't unexpectedly passed away just months after they were married. When some of the details from her dreams show up in real life, she starts to wonder if there is some kind of a message behind the dreams. It was a pretty light read, but it had enough substance to it that it gave you something to think about.

4. This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen - Having grown up with a mother who is constantly getting married and divorced, Remy doesn't believe in love. But then she meets Dexter (who is completely different from the guys she normally dates) and things start to change. After reading Saint Anything last quarter, I wanted to read another of Sarah Dessen's novels. This one did not disappoint. It has solid characters, a good story, and a great romance to top it all off!

5. Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership, and the Olympic Games by Mitt Romney - I have a slight obsession with Mitt Romney and since I was living in Utah during the 2002 Olympics, this book really appealed to me. It was fascinating to read how Mitt turned everything around and saved the games. Did you know he wouldn't take a paycheck unless the games finished in the black? (Disclaimer: He talks a lot about budgets which was interesting to me with my accounting background, but that part may not appeal to you if you aren't into that sort of thing.) It did make me incredibly sad that I was living in Utah during the games and I didn't get to attend a single event - especially since one of Mitt's goals was to make the Olympics accessible to the general public. (I did get to experience some of the Olympic magic - the torch ran right past my high school and they had the cheerleaders dress in our uniforms and cheer as it ran by - just not as much as I should have!) The very best part was reading about how the actual games went from Mitt's perspective - they were spectacular and he deserves every bit of credit for them.

6, 7, 8. How to Train Your Dragon, How to be a Pirate, How to Speak Dragonese by Cressida Cowell - These books are much different than the movies. The chief of the vikings has a scrawny son that is friendly with dragons, but the similarities pretty much end there. They are just plain fun - Corbyn loves them and will randomly quote parts of them throughout the day. And even though they are written for kids, I genuinely enjoy them. They are well written and it's fun for me to have something special to share with Corbyn.

9. Fit2Fat2Fit: The Unexpected Lessons from Gaining and Losing 75 Pounds on Purpose - by Drew Manning - I find Drew's story fascinating. I mean, who would gain 75 pounds on purpose to understand what your clients go through? The book was good, but it didn't really include too much that I hadn't already heard from listening to him talk at Pinner's Conference 2 years ago and following him on Instagram. I laughed when he described me perfectly - a runner that just wants to run.

10. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Condo - So many people raved about this book, but I just wasn't into it. I thought Marie is kind of crazy and a little unrealistic in her approach. I agree with the idea that you should get rid of anything you don't absolutely love, but don't agree that you shouldn't keep anything from the past or for the future. I hated that she is so insistent that her way of organizing is the only right way. Also, so many times as I was reading I thought, "You obviously don't have kids!" I'm not afraid of getting rid of stuff and am excited to go through our whole house as we pack it up to move next spring, but I just can't bring myself to talk to my possessions or do some of the other things she suggests.

11. Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek by Maya Van Wagenen - 8th grader, Maya, is a social outcast. When her father finds an old copy of Betty Cornell's Teen-Age Popularity Guide (published in the 1950s), she decides to test the theories presented in it and write a book about her experience. I read this for book club and I didn't hate it. BUT I could definitely tell it was written by an 8th grader (yes, a pretty mature 8th grader) and a lot of the time that was really annoying to me. I was impressed with her insights about what it really means to be popular. I just couldn't get past the middle school writing style.


Rachel said...

Ah, this fall has been crazy. I still haven't written my 3rd quarter books! I'm totally going to read Mitt's book, I'm listening to Ann's book and I love love love it. Also, I really really need to read The Last Anniversary

Britt Hanson said...

I always love seeing what you've been reading. Do you have a goodreads account? You should definitely get one, if not! Or add me if you do :) I am a big fan of Sarah Dessen, and I'm kind of glad to hear you didn't love the KonMari book, ha. I haven't read it, but I figure I've read enough on the internet to get me by ;)