March 2017 Wrap-Up

Six books for the month of March. This seems small but is sort of astounding to me, given that we had a brand new baby at the beginning of the month, and then said baby spent a week in the NICU. All but two of these books were audio book listens because of previously listed reasons. March was also the second month in a row full of Maggie Stiefvater books! No regrets, she is amazing.

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-25 at 3.58.58 PMI absolutely adored the Raven Cycle Series, which featured one of the best audio narrations I’ve ever listened to. Will Patton truly brought this series to life in a way that I’m certain I wouldn’t have been able to on my own. The Raven King is the final installment of the series and brought a perfect conclusion to these characters I’ve become so attached to. You should definitely check these out if you haven’t yet!

 

letpretendthisneverhappened11

 

 

Another highlight from this month was Jenny Lawson’s, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. This was my second of Lawson’s books, and if possible is even funnier than the first. I brought it with me to the hospital and legitimately laughed through my contractions. I cannot recommend her books highly enough.

 

 

 

The whole line up…

 

We Were Liars – 4 crowns

The Raven King – 5 crowns

Shiver – 4 crowns

Linger – 3 crowns

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened – 5 crowns

Forever – 3 crowns

 

Into the Water – Paula Hawkins

61OLegHQzvL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Publisher: Riverhead Books

Publication Date: May 2nd, 2017

Page Count: 400 (Hardcover)

From the Jacket:

A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged.

Left behind is a lonely fifteen-year-old girl. Parentless and friendless, she now finds herself in the care of her mother’s sister, a fearful stranger who has been dragged back to the place she deliberately ran from—a place to which she vowed she’d never return.

With the same propulsive writing and acute understanding of human instincts that captivated millions of readers around the world in her explosive debut thriller, The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins delivers an urgent, twisting, deeply satisfying read that hinges on the deceptiveness of emotion and memory, as well as the devastating ways that the past can reach a long arm into the present.

Beware a calm surface—you never know what lies beneath.

Like every other literate human on the planet Earth, I had my first taste of Paula Hawkins reading The Girl on the Train. I told myself I wouldn’t compare the two, but I found myself unable to help it. Where the former takes the reader on a psychological thrill ride, the latter finds the reader watching the characters take one. After experiencing both, I think I have more fun being taken on the ride, however, Hawkins is truly masterful from both perspectives.

Into the Water, starts slow, building up the history of the river from the multiple points of view of the women who make up its story. I saw several critiques before I began reading, lamenting this fact. The other readers were confused and frustrated, and had a hard time keeping track of all of the characters being introduced. I did not find this to be a problem, but perhaps that can be attributed to the fact that I went in expecting to be, and thus paid extra attention to detail. Also helpful, was the fact that the version I read had the name of the narrating character printed at the top of every other page.

The first half was slow but engaging, making it a more relaxing reading experience than most of the thrillers I have read. This changed rather abruptly for me about halfway through, and I found myself unable to put it down. I brought it with me everywhere I went in the hopes that I could squeeze a few pages in. Library due dates are also a very powerful motivator when even a great plot cannot combat the sleep deprivation that only having a tiny newborn at home can bring.

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Final Thoughts: I went into this one with high expectations, and I think it lived up to the hype. This was a different kind of thriller; one full of unique and memorable personalities, deep history, an atmospheric setting, and a slow burn leading up to a fast paced ending that was (at least for me) truly a surprise.

Rating: Screen Shot 2016-03-12 at 11.10.19 PM

Favorite Characters: Lena

Memorable Quotes:

No one liked to think about the fact that the water in that river was infected with the blood and bile of persecuted women, unhappy women; they drank it every day

Beckford is not a suicide spot. Beckford is a place to get rid of troublesome women.

February 2017 Wrap-Up

February was a pretty decent month for reading. It was crazy times around here while we prepared for the birth of our 5th and last baby, and had a few false alarms that sent us rushing to the doctor. The fact that I’m posting this wrap-up in June should give you a solid idea of what life has been like with 4 kids and a newborn.

There’s a 3-way tie for favorite reads of the month between The Nix, A Conjuring of Light, and Furiously Happy.

Screen Shot 2017-06-14 at 7.31.40 PM.pngThe Nix – 5 crowns

The Nix is an incredibly timely read and joined my list of top all time favorite books. This multigenerational family saga is full of sharp insight about politics and behavior in America. The more I think on it, the more I find to love about it. Definitely check it out!

 

 

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A Conjuring of Light – 5 crowns

Oh I was so excited to finally have a conclusion to the A Darker Shade of Magic series and Schwab did NOT disappoint. I loved every minute of it and even though I didn’t want it to end, the conclusion brought a fitting ending to these beloved characters.

 

 

 

 

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Furiously Happy – 5 crowns

This is without a single doubt the funniest book I’ve ever read. It brought me to tears, breathless from laughter on more than one occasion. I want to find Jenny Lawson and convince her to be my best friend forever.

 

 

 

The rest of the line up….

 

 

The Raven Boys – 5 crowns

The Smartest Kids in the World – 4 crowns

The Dream Thieves – 5 crowns

Blue Lily Lily Blue – 5 crowns

The Regional Office Is Under Attack – 3 crowns