I meant to share this big fat post on the official first day of summer to kick off your SUMMER READING! But I forgot. So here you go, at least in time for the weekend!
Last Breath by Karin Slaughter. She’s going to get a restraining order against me. I got SUPER excited about this because it stars the same characters as one of my favorite books of hers (The Good Daughter) so I thought I was incorrect in my assumption that that one was a standalone novel. It still kind of is. She published this as a prequel and it’s more of a novella than a full novel. Still good though!
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. This book had so many holds on it at the library that I would be 50 years old by the time I got to read it. So Sheila graciously shared her Audible account with me so I could listen. I had read and felt lukewarm enjoyment over her earlier book Everything I Never Told You, but people have been going nuts over this one. Reese Witherspoon bought the rights so we’ll probably see it on HBO or in a theater near you in 2019. I would say I enjoyed it but didn’t have OMGLOVEYOUHAVETOREADIT feelings.
Dear Madam President: An Open Letter to the Women Who Will Run the World by Jennifer Palmieri. My Aunt Pat gave me this book and I really enjoyed it. It’s a quick read- maybe only an hour- but super interesting. Jennifer Palmieri was the White House Director of Communications for the Obama administration and served as the Director of Communications for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. I won’t get political here, but it was a very interesting perspective to read about and I’m all about anything feminist. #girlpower
This is How it Always Is by Laurie Frankel. I would describe this book as delightfully mundane. It’s admittedly slow, but I loved it. It’s about a family with a transgender child and I couldn’t get enough of the day to day details, the big decisions and the little things you would never think about. I read a book back in high school about a transgender teen (it’s called Luna by Julie Ann Peters) and this was equally as thought-provoking. It’s one of those books that should be read by everyone, but will probably not be read by the people who need to read it the most.
Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I really tried. I am not into this show even though I know 95% of America is obsessed with it. I tried watching the first 3-4 episodes, and told the GS I couldn’t get past siblings having sex with each other. He said “only one set of siblings has sex with each other!” One too many for me. As a bibliophile I thought maybe the books would be my gateway into this trend, but alas I read this for 3 weeks and was not even halfway through it. I had to call it quits.
The Knockoff by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza. This is the same duo that wrote Fitness Junkie which I quite enjoyed. This one was just okay. It has similar vibes: NYC, predominately lady boss characters, references to expensive trends and fashion. I just didn’t think the satire part quite worked. And it bothered me that the main character was British. Partly because I found it an unnecessary detail, and partly because the narrator of the audiobook really annoyed me.
Everything is Perfect When You’re a Liar by Kelly Oxford. A memoir by this “Canadian author, screenwriter, and social media influencer.” Thanks, Google. She is probably most well known for her Twitter (how does this happen?) and has written two books now. I liked it, didn’t love it. She’s kind of an awful person but I mostly appreciate her sense of humor. I just think the insta-fame has gone to her head a bit. I’ll probably still read her second book (When You Find Out the World is Against You).
My Ex-Life by Steven McCauley. This is our Grown Up Conversation book club book for June! I listened to it on a trip to West Virginia. I liked it but didn’t love it. There are some random parts that were absolutely spot-on life observations that I loved and really connected with, but the overall story line was just kind of blah. I would read another one of his books, though, because I really like the writing style.
The Alice Network by Kate Quinn. My friend Kate recommended this to me and I swear as soon as she did I started seeing people carrying it around everywhere. And I can see why! I really liked it. It’s about a network of female spies in France during WWI, and I thought it was complete fiction (entertaining, but fiction) but I was happy to read that a lot of it was based on real events. #GirlsWhoRunTheWorld
Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta. Sheila gave me her Audible login so I’m basically just listening to her whole library. This was kind of humdrum and weird but I still liked it. The chapters are told from the perspective of multiple characters and they had different actors for each one which I think added a lot to the story. Not sure I would have liked it as much if I read it.
The Only Girl in the World by Maude Julien. This is an INSANE memoir about this girl who was raised in France by some crazy parents who thought they were teaching her to become a superhuman. Spoiler alert- they weren’t and she’s not. It is pretty tragic but also fascinating and I really like how she writes.
My Not-So-Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella. Sophie’s books are always on the lighter, beach read side (i.e. Confessions of a Shopaholic) but this one was particularly moronic. Should have known from the dumb title. Hard pass.
PS I promise to do a wedding post once I have the pictures!