Tuesday, December 27, 2016

my favorite books of 2016

I'm terrible at retaining books. Thank goodness for Goodreads and rating systems. Here are the books that stayed with me in 2016 and a little bit about why.

Books You've Probably Already Read
The Royal We - it's fun to think about what it would be like to date and marry a prince!
The Storied Life of AJ Fikry - I put this book off because I found the title and description boring,  but it's a great story. Read it if you haven't already.

Nonfiction Worth Your Time
Seinfeldia - tons of tidbits about how the show was made, received, and behind the scenes stories. Read it if you're a fan.
Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman - This book is important. From fat shaming to abortion to internet trolls, Lindy West covers how all kinds of issues have impacted her life with humor and truth. I don't like buying books but I asked for this one because I want to reread it and pass it around.

Stories That Stayed With Me
The Girl You Left Behind - I liked the intertwined stories and thought of the characters after I finished the book.
All This Life - Another book with intertwined stories. It shows how a single event can shape us and social media can connect us.
Indiscretion - The narration is different than many other books. The cover makes it look like a romance novel, but it isn't. There's a storytelling device used that I will never, ever forget.

That's the quick version since I've already talked about these in more detail. I never found a book that I loved and recommended to everyone this year, so I'm hoping to get some recommendations today. Linking up with Steph and Jana as usual!

Monday, December 26, 2016

books for the end of 2016

We went on vacation in October and in the weeks leading up to it, I didn't want to read. Then there was vacation and the ridiculousness known as the election and I just lost my reading mojo and read articles and listened to podcasts for most of the rest of the year. But, I do want to document the last few books I read in 2016, mostly just for me.

I'm Glad About You - This book basically told the story of the one that got away. A couple spent their teen and college years together only to break up and the book follows his life as a doctor with a perfect wife and hers as a TV actress and the way their relationship with one another continues to affect their lives. I loved the origin of the title - basically there's a Native American way to say I love you that translates to "I'm glad about you," as in I'm grateful that you have been in my life. This wasn't a must read, but it was interesting to get into the minds of two seemingly perfect people. I just wish it had delved deeper.

(A) Indiscretion - I saw this book described as Gatsby-esque since it's about a perfect couple and their life but told from the point of view of the wife's best friend since childhood, a man who is admittedly in love with her. I think it would probably be a good beach read since it's set in The Hamptons (or a town like it) and many of the characters are wealthy. Some of the narration goes on unnecessary tangents, and there are a few 50 Shades sections, but the payoff is a twist that happens near the end. I don't even know if I could call it a twist, but it was a decision the author made that made me unable to get the book out of my head for several days after finishing it. It may not be my favorite book ever, but I liked it because it was so different from anything I've read lately. I really want more people to read it because I want to talk about it.

Swear On This Life - I remember bloggers going crazy for this, so after two months of not reading anything, when it was my time for it at the library, I thought I would be silly to let it go. I read it in one sitting. I felt that the book-within-a-book needed stronger writing since it took up so much of the story, and some of it was way too drawn out, but it was interesting enough for me to stay up late to finish. It's more of a 3.5 for me because I could see the end coming, but I was interested to see the path the author took.

This took me to 54 books finished in 2016 - not too bad, and my goal was 50. I read 70 last year, but I think finding so many podcasts that I love affected how much I read this year. I'm excited to read about everyone else's favorites of 2016 to get my reading list going - favorites of the year post to come!