What I've Been Reading Lately

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In case you don't know or participate, Steph and Jana host a very popular link up on the second Tuesday of every month called Show Us Your Books.  It's the best place to find ideas about what to read next and what to avoid, as well as share your own recently read list.  I don't link up every month because if I've been slow at reading books or haven't read anything really great or really terrible that's worth sharing, I skip it and save up my recommendations for the next round.  So this is my first this year; here's what I've been reading:

The Golden Compass.  Let's start with a pretty simple one, The Golden Compass.  They made it into a movie, but it's a series and they aren't going to make any more of the movies, despite how much I love watching Nicole Kidman play such perfectly evil yet poised characters, so of course I had to start the book series to find out what happens.  If you've read them all, don't tell me.  I'll get there.  I like it and I need to read the others.  If you also like young adult fantasy, you'll like this one too.  And if you also only watched the movie, the book is different and also way better.

Strange the Dreamer.  Ends on a dang cliffhanger but I'm next on the wait list for the 2nd book.  I really liked this one, it's beautifully written.  It's typical fantasy with made up worlds and words so like Game of Thrones, you think you might not be following the story at the beginning, but you are, so keep reading.  I think I really liked this one because I'm a blogger, writer, avid reader, English major... not that you need to be those things to like it but it might seem slow to you otherwise.  The writing is so pretty.  Just these really great, detailed, beautiful descriptions and nice sentences.  Grammar lovers know what I mean.  Laini Taylor can write.  I do think, though, that it can slow down the story and people who don't appreciate that kind of writing or just want to read something faster paced and get on to their next book are going to find this too slow and overly detailed, in ways that aren't essential for the story line.  But I don't care, it's just too pretty not to love.

The Great Alone Another beautifully written book.  Everyone's already read this and loved it, so I don't think any further explanation is necessary.  I don't know why it took me so long to get to it, but I finally picked it up, and of course it's totally worth all the high ratings it gets across the board.  My slight, barely worth mentioning qualm with this book is that the ending feels rushed, but no matter.  If you're like me and still haven't gotten around to it, move it up on your list.

The Death of Mrs. Westaway.  This took a surprisingly long time to become available my library!  It's not brand new so I was surprised by that.  It's a decent mystery/thriller, and it did feel creepy and twisty, which I like.  I didn't love the pace.  It felt slow in some parts and I needed a heavy dose of suspension of disbelief for others.  But still, it ranks better than middle of the road in terms of this genre so I still recommend it.  Maybe around Halloween time though, so it feels spookier.

Dark Places.  Just one I never got around to reading (this is years old after all), for some reason, but finally did.  And I didn't ever watch the movie (which is now on Netflix), so I had no idea what to expect other than Gillian Flynn is great at being uber-creepy.  And she delivered.  This book is gruesome so definitely not for everyone, but apparently I'm dark and twisted and have no issues with reading about horrible people doing even more dark and twisted things, so I read this literally without ever putting it down.

I just listed those from most fantastical to absolute darkness without meaning to.  Interesting.  And now for one that's totally off that scale:

The Storm Gourmet.  I'm counting it.  This thing is fascinating.  It's not for everyone but I really want to spend a weekend without tech and most modern conveniences, just to detox from social media and television and relying on too many things.  Camping without actually camping, if you will, because camping is the worst thing I've ever heard of.  I like my bed and four walls, I just won't be heating or air conditioning them for a weekend.  Anyway.  I thought it might be interesting to also see what I could do about food without using refrigeration or the stove and definitely no microwave.  Not that it would be the end of the world to use those things, that's not really the kind of tech stuff I'm trying to detox from (while it's not enjoyable, I am aware of how to start fires and cook over them.)  But I just want to test my skills.  Like preppers do.  I can't be a prepper because I can't bring myself to store that much shit in my house, but I find them so interesting.  Don't ask why this is on my 2019 goals list, it just is.  I get weird ideas into my head and then have to see them through.  And this book has lots of weird ideas to get me through my tech detox weekend and more, and I'm glad I read it.

Have you read anything on my list, or plan to soon?  Don't forget to link up your own posts with Steph and Jana.

Life According to Steph


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