Thursday, November 30, 2017

November Books

One of my goals for 2017 was to read 17 books. Well, had I known my reading speed (or the fact that the library would quickly become one of my new best friends) I probably would have adjusted that number slightly ;)

In case you missed the recent posts, I blogged about the books I read in January HERE, February HERE, March HERE, April HERE, May HERE, June HERE, July HERE, August HERE, September HERE and October HERE. There were SEVENTY-SIX in the first ten months, so when I add November's SEVEN that brings the total for the year thus far to EIGHTY-THREE! In case you're interested in what I read (and how I'd rate them) or need some suggestions on a book to grab, make sure to give my previous write-ups a quick glance over when you have a minute!


  • The Dorito Effect by Mark Schatzker - Let me start out by saying that I believe I am a fairly health conscious person. The hubby and I are both vegetarians, we try to eat local when possible, we love the environment, etc. When I saw this book I figured I'd pick it up (even though I had ZERO knowledge about it prior to reserving it at the library). I feel like we are pretty well informed when it comes to the cons about meat-eating (health-wise, environmental problems, etc), but I never thought about the ideas this book brings up... Like when we as a society went to mass producing food we lost the FLAVOR due to dilution. Or how adding "natural" flavor can be the exact same chemicals as "artificial" flavor but done in a different mode. Although they talk frequently about chicken and the issue in that market, it translates to all food. I wouldn't say this totally revolutionized the way I think about food, but it will make me think longer and harder when making choices in the future. I would give it an 8 out of 10.


  • The Long Mile Home by Jenna Russell and Scott Helman - If you were around my neck of the woods earlier this year, you may remember that seeing Patriots Day rocked me harder than I was expecting. I have been wanting to read this book, but wasn't sure if I would be able to handle it. I finally decided to pick it up (and figured that if it was "too much" that I could always put it down). This book is very well written (by reporters from The Boston Globe) and follow different people through their experience of the Boston Marathon bombing. It took me longer than I was expecting to read it, but I could only read a couple chapters at a time before getting hit with all the emotions and needing to take a break from it. I appreciate all of the detail given and the different perspectives you understand the experience from. I would give it a 9 out of 10.


  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - Although I have read this one before (or at least I think I remember reading it in High School), I thought I would grab it again. And not only grab the book, but grab the audiobook. You see, the hubby and I were going to Las Vegas for a couple races (the Rock 'N' Roll 5K and Half Marathon) and I wanted something to listen to on the drive there and back. This is a short book so I figured it'd be perfect length for one way. I really enjoyed the story and seeing how everyone was interconnected. Some of it is a little "old-timey", but I still like it. I would give it a 7 out of 10.


  • Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling - This was another audiobook I grabbed for our Vegas trip (I figured The Great Gatsby on the way there and this one on the way home). I don't know a ton about Mindy (other than she was on The Office), but the hubby and I really liked Amy Schumer's book we listened to a few months ago so I thought we could give this one a try. I was very surprised to find out that Mindy is not just that annoying boy-crazy girl on The Office, but was actually one of the writers for the show (as well as writes and stars in her own show now). I wouldn't say I walked away with some great words of wisdom or deeper understanding of anything profound, but the stories she told were entertaining and I especially appreciated that the audio was read by her. I would give it an 8 out of 10.


  • Wonder by R.J. Palacio - This one was recommended to me by a childhood friend. He didn't really give me much detail, but just asked if I had read it on one of my "motivational/ inspirational" quote posts that I try to share. It had been checked out at the library for a few weeks, but once it became available I grabbed it up. It was a super quick read (maybe because it is actually supposed to be for "tweens"), but I really enjoyed it. I thought the author hit the nail on the head with all of the characters (and human nature). In the end goodness wins and it was a great reminder to be KIND! I saw the book has since been made into a movie (and also has some follow up books as well). Not sure I'll watch the film, but I think this is a great book for anyone to pick up! I would give it a 9 out of 10.


  • Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee - If you read my July Books post, you might remember that the hubby and I listened to the audio book version of To Kill A Mockingbird (the first time I had "read" the book) on our way to San Francisco. I didn't realize that there was a follow-up book, so when the hubby and I had another road trip on the calendar (this time it was Zion National Park for the Thanksgiving holiday), I grabbed the audio book version to give it a listen. Now, let me preface this by saying I gave To Kill A Mockingbird a 10 out of 10. With that said, I would say that this book didn't live up to that standard, but I still really enjoyed it. It was a coming of age story with many of the same characters from To Kill A Mockingbird (set 20 years later when Jean Louise comes back to Maycomb to visit her ailing dad, Atticus). This book is about fallen heroes and disillusionment. Jean Louise realizes through this novel that her dad is not to god she built him to be in her mind and had to do the hard work of coming to terms with her own world views. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed in Atticus and Hank, but do love the woman Jean Louise became. (PS Reese Witherspoon was the one who read the book and she did an amazing job!) I would give it a 9 out of 10.


  • It's A Long Story by Willie Nelson - We needed a second audio book for our way back from Zion and I knew the hubby would enjoy this one so I grabbed it from the library. I have to admit, I didn't know much about Willie Nelson before listening to this book, but from everything I heard, I really like him. I loved hearing about the "behind-the-scenes" details of the music industry, some of his famous friends, etc. I wouldn't say this would be a book I would have normally read, but it kept my attention and gave me a new appreciation for the artist. At the time he wrote this book he was 82 (can you imagine still performing and touring at that age?!). The only parts I felt were a little off were some of the sections where lyrics were included (maybe this was because having lyrics read and not sung sounded a bit strange). I would give it a 7 out of 10.


And with that, my November reading has come to a close. If you have any suggestions on books to grab, let me know! I'm always down to throw them in the ever growing library "for later" queue!

What are you currently reading?

1 comment:

essay writing company said...

thanks you for sharing this books suggestion though I am not sure if I can be able to beat your record of 17 books that quite a big deal but I will definitely make time to read a couple carlee