March Reading List

sunday coffee reading

Happy April everyone! March went by a lot faster than usual this year, at least for me, and was full with so many good books. I continued with my New Year’s goal of reading more non-fiction, fit in a few rom-com’s, a mystery and some good novels. Here’s my book list and review -

The Banker’s Wife - 3/5 - This is a fast moving mystery, which was outside the box for me since I don’t usually read mysteries. The book was fun and fast paced, a great read for vacation or plane rides. It’s the story of a Swiss Banker’s wife and what happens after her husband dies in a plane crash, along with the story of the Swiss Bank’s shady clients. I can’t share the reason I gave it 3/5 instead of 5 without spoiling it, so let me just say that while parts of it are not the most realistic, it was a great fun read that I recommend!

Commonwealth - 5/5 - This is another book by Ann Patchett, who wrote Bel Canto (which I read earlier this year). I’ve really enjoyed going through her novels. Commonwealth tells the story of two families united and divided by marriage and divorce. Later on in the children’s life an author writes a novel about them which sets off a chain reaction of events that further unite and divide the characters. I think she’s an excellent writer - her characters are all perfectly flawed without feeling like cartoons, and you feel like you feel a deep connection with all of them.

99 Perent Mine - 2/5 - This is another romance novel by Sally Thorne (she wrote The Hating Game, which I thoroughly enjoyed). Unfortunately, this book just didn’t do it for me. I didn’t like the main character that much, and found it quite predictable. It’s a fast read, however, so if you are in the mood for a sappy love story or a good beach book I say give it a go since you won’t kill much time if you don’t like it.

I Owe You One - 3/5 - This is another romance novel. I thought it was sweet, and had a great meet cute, but that otherwise it was fine. I didn’t dislike it, I just didn’t love it. I think part of the problem was that I just wasn’t super in the mood for a com rom, but since my library hold was going to expire I read it anyway. Again, if you are in the mood for a rom com or a good beach read it’s cute and quick to finish.

Educated: A Memoir - 5/5 - Oh my goodness, I loved this book. Memoir isn’t normally my genre of choice, but this book just blew me away. It is about the author’s childhood in a very, very, very strict Mormon household that doesn’t believe in modern medicine or schools. The author never attends school until she steps food on the BYU campus as a freshman, and manages to graduate with a doctorate from Cambridge University. Her story, and her views on what makes up an education, make this book a must read.

Where The Crawdads Sing - 3/5 - This is a novel about a young girl from the North Carolina marshes who is abandoned by her family and raises herself. She faces so much prejudice from the town, but still manages to grow up into a remarkable young woman who knows the Marsh better than anyone. When a local town hero is found dead, however, the town remembers everything strange about her instead of everything good about her and accuse her of murder. The story unfolds very smoothly, and I loved the description of the marsh wildlife. Despite all that, I just didn’t love it, though I do recommend it!

Have you read any good books lately? Please share! Also, I put all the books I’ve read over on the Book List tab : )

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February Reading List

In February I read a good mix of historical fiction, non-fiction, modern literary classics and fantasy. My goal this year is to read more literature and non-fiction, so I’m glad I’m sticking to that. And, I’m even more glad that it’s been extremely enjoyable and not at all like a chore. Here is what I read, including my rating and a brief synopsis-

best books of February

Bel Canto 5/5 - This book by Ann Patchett is so beautifully written. It is the story of guests to a dinner party where a famous soprano is singing. The party is taken hostage, and the hostages and the captors live together in the Vice Presidential mansion for many weeks. Over this time the characters get to know people from all over the globe and all different walks of life, and realize that love and art can tie us all together no matter how different our backgrounds are.

A Well Behaved Woman 3/5 - This is the story of Ava Vanderbilt, who married into the Vanderbilt family before the turn of the century. The book takes us from the beginning of her marriage to the marriage of her daughter. I really enjoyed learning more about the history of New York City, as well as reading about balls and events in the Victorian age. I had a hard time connecting with the main character, however, and found the beginning rather slow. It picks up at the end however, and was worth the read.

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry 4/5 - This novel is by the author of A Man Called Ove, which I loved. I liked this book almost as much, and highly recommend it! It is the story of a little girl named Elsa who is a bit of a social outcast - she loves superheroes and fantasy novels and is tied at the hip with her grandmother. When her grandmother passes away, she leaves Elsa a quest to tell a number of people that she’s sorry. As Elsa completes the tasks her grandmother left her we meet a vibrant cast of characters and discover that there was so much more than meets the eye to the grandmother.

The Little Book of Hygge 5/5 - I loved this book! As I talked about in my post about Hygge, the book talks about the Danish philosophy of Hygge (which loosely translates into a sense of coziness and warmth) and how to incorporate it into your daily life. I loved reading about how other cultures find happiness in their daily lives. I also found the book to be very readable, unlike a lot of guides, and I can’t wait to make the recipes in it!

Tower of Dawn 3/5 - This is the sixth book in the Throne of Glass series. It’s a young adult fantasy novel (thought parts of it are quite grown-up) that I love. It’s not exactly literature, but it’s full of action and magic and adventure. If you love fantasy books, I highly recommend this series! This installment takes you on a side quest with some of the supporting characters, and I loved meeting the new heroes.

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Happy Friday

We made it through another week! I don't know about you, but mine was busy, and fun, and stressful and lovely and I am excited for the weekend! We saw Avengers last night, and I won't spoil it for anyone, other than to say 10/10. Now tonight we are laying low and packing for a whirlwind weekend - up to Pensacola early tomorrow morning and back Sunday night for a wedding. It will be the first wedding we attend as a married couple and it is going to be so fun! 

Tulips growing in the Boston Common

Things I'm loving this week -

Gal Meets Glam dresses! I know I mentioned this last week, but my dresses came in the mail over the week and they are so beautiful and well crafted. I can't get over how gorgeous and flattering they are. Julia truly knocked it out of the park! Here are my favorites from the collection; don't get too discouraged by out of stock notices, I'm sure they will get more inventory from returns soon.

2. The author of The Nightingale, Kristin Hannah, just came out with a new book. I loved the Nightingale and am so excited to read The Great Alone, which takes place in 1970s Alaska. 

3. The final season of New Girl started a few weeks ago. I'm not sure how I feel about it. Has anyone watched it? What do you think? 

4. I'm seeing a lot of light orange toes for spring and I really like the look! Essie makes some lovely ones, I love Looks to Thrill, Pinks and Peaches, and Peach Side Babe.

5. There's a new prince! How adorable is Princess Charlotte waving to the crowd when she goes to meet her baby brother? 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I can't wait to share my look for the wedding next week! 

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