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It’s been awhile since I updated you guys on the books I’ve been reading this year! My New Years Resolution was to read 1 book and listen to 1 audiobook every month. Some months I’ve crushed this goal and finished several, other months I’ve struggled and had to roll the books over. Either way, it’s been great to pay more attention to how much I’m reading vs. just staring at social media on my phone/laptop. If you’re also looking for a break from your electronics, here are several books to put on your reading list right now.
And if you stick around until the bottom of this post, you’ll find a surprise giveaway!
The Martian – Audiobook
The Martian is also known as the most expensive (non textbook) book I’ve ever bought. I loved this book. It changed my mind on listening to fiction in the car. In the past when I’ve listened to fiction it was hard to follow and get into the story. But The Martian was so good that I kept my app on when I would get home and listen while cooking dinner, cleaning the house, or waiting for someone to come over (instead of turning on the TV).
It was pretty long, but the story was so good that I didn’t want it to end. The characters felt like friends and I wanted to know how they would end up in life. I laughed, a lot. I cried, a few times.
And I got so wrapped up in the story that I accidentally sped through a school zone with a speed camera. I have driven through this school zone for a year and a half. I always thought it was for the crosswalk, not for speed, because there’s a sign that looks like people crossing the street next to it. So I think the fact that this was my first ticket there shows how dedicated I am to not speeding through school zones. I hit the breaks almost immediately upon entering, but it was too late. About $130.00 later, this is definitely the most expensive book I’ve ever read. And you know what, I still think The Martian is a must-read or must-listen.
All the Light We Cannot See – Physical Book
I LOOOOVED this book. I think about it often since finishing it a few months ago. It was beautifully written and is a tragically lovely story about family, pain, and how people coped with the reality of living through war. All the Light We Cannot See follows a young girl and a young boy through World War II. Marie-Laure and her dad have an incredible bond. Her curiosity and bravery after going blind at age 6 are so inspiring. Her trust in her father is heartwarming. And her survival through the occupation of France is incredible. Author Doerr paints a picture of the home and neighborhood they live in that is lively, exciting and absolutely imaginable as you read through her life.
Werner and his little sister live in an orphanage in Germany after losing their father to a mine accident. Eventually, his genius skills in electronic building and repair catch the eye of a high ranking Nazi military personnel and he ends up following a path you’d never imagine for a young, sweet and intelligent boy. Waiting for their stories to crash together was a major part of the suspense of this book. It’s never clearly stated if it will or not, but you can just feel it as you read! The ending was all around surprising, but getting there still took me hours to digest. I had never considered what the children during WWII must have experienced so to see life from the eyes of two, in two vastly different countries, was incredibly enlightening.
Plus, a portion of it takes place in Brittany, so I figured it was fate that I read it!
All the Light We Cannot See has won several awards and I would venture a guess that it will be a book that people read and talk about for a loooong time.
Maybe in Another Life – Audiobook
I would not recommend this audiobook. However, I would definitely give it another shot in paperback. I’ve written a little about this generally in other posts, but not in detail. I really liked the story line, but the writing leaves a little bit to be desired. The author leaves nothing to the imagination and walks the readers through every step of every interaction discussed. It’s tedious to listen to, but would be easy to skim over in hard copy. Additionally, the narrator only has one male voice, which makes it hard to picture any of the characters in any way except a laid back skater with messy hair.
I couldn’t get past any of these things. I was a couple of hours into the audiobook when I finally quit listening. The story was getting REALLY good, and I want to find out what happens to Hannah and her BFF Gabby. So I’m not willing to give up on the story line, even though I’m considering this a lost audible credit.
Taylor Jenkins Reid has written several books and I plan to check out the others after I grab a copy of the paperback of Maybe in Another Life and give it another shot.
After You – Physical Book
I had a hard time getting into this book. I’m still not over what happened in Me Before You. Thank God I read that book before it came out in theaters. I ugly cried in my own room instead of in a room full of people. I almost never go see movies, but I really wanted to see how they reinvented Me Before You. I had already finished After You by then, but it took me a few tries to really dive in here.
But once I was about 4-5 chapters in, I was hooked on the story again. I felt like JoJo Moyes stayed really true to her characters, which is really impressive. They followed through with the first book and their emotions and responses felt very real. If you’re looking for an identical story line to Me Before You, After You isn’t going to fit the bill. But if you want to follow along with the characters we fell in love with from book 1, and watch them grow and mature in different life situations, definitely check it out!
Books Currently in Progress:
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – I would probably be done with this one by now if I hadn’t forgotten it in San Diego. ugh!
The Best Yes – physical book
Crash the Chatterbox – audiobook
Books I’m not allowed to start until I finish the ones above:
Wild and Free – This one is sitting on my dining room table, taunting me. I want to start it so bad!
The Year of Yes – audiobook
My Brilliant Friend – audiobook
Smarter Faster Better – audiobook
First Comes Love – physical book
The Story: NIV – audiobook – I don’t intend to rush through this. I figure I will listen from time to time.
As you can tell, I have a shortage of fiction books on my list. If you have any recommendations, I’d love to hear them!
Here’s the good news for you if you also have a book addiction, or just an Amazon addiction: I wanted to give you guys a little surprise and am giving away a $40 Amazon gift card! Simply use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter! Congratulations to Meredith for winning the $40 Amazon gift card!! Make sure to subscribe to or follow WMSB so that you don’t miss out on future giveaways!
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