“Reading is a way for me to expand my mind, open my eyes and fill up my heart.” Oprah Winfrey
This year has been the year of reading for me. My goal for the year was 36 books and I have already reached my goal! Today I am reviewing 5 of my 2018 reads.
So far, I have read the following titles (absolute favorites in bold): O’s Little Guide to the Big Questions / Congratulations, By The Way / Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions / Rework / Man’s Search for Meaning / Oh, The Places You’ll Go / Faithful / Baracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo” / Little Fires Everywhere / How to Make It / Food Rules / Tiny Crimes / The Little Book of Tidying / The Mindful Way to a Goodnights Sleep / Survival Lessons / A Short Guide to a Long Life / The Catcher in the Rye / Night Shift / Of Thee I Sing / The Old Man and the Sea / And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer / The Hate U Give / Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine / The Last Mrs. Parrish / Everything Everything / Stay with Me / Dear Madam President / The Ostrich and Other Lost Things / The Twelve Tribes of Hattie / Lagom: The Swedish Art of Living a Balanced, Happy Life / The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time / The Last Lecture / History of Wolves / The Little Book of Lykke: The Danish Search for the World’s Happiest People / Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk / Destination: Simple – Rituals and Rhythms for a Simpler Daily Life / We Should All Be Feminists / Tuesdays with Morrie / The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well / The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo / The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up / Creative Confidence / What Now? / Where’d You Go, Bernadette / Make Good Art / They Both Die At The End / Today Will Be Different / Into The Water / The Rosie Project / A Simplified Life / Anniliation / The Mothers / Sing, Unburied, Sing / Turtles All The Way Down / Imagine: How Creativity Works / Exit West
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(3/5) I picked up this Alice Hoffman book after reading (and loving!) her non-fiction book Survival Lessons. I wouldn’t say I was disappointed in this book because having never read an Alice Hoffman novel, I didn’t have any expectations. However, I wasn’t inspired to pick up any of her other beloved novels after reading this one. While I thought it was well written, I just didn’t connect much with the different characters and felt the plot line wasn’t that strong. That being said, it was a quick read (and I didn’t absolutely hate it) so I gave it an average rating.
Little Fires Everywhere
(3/5) Oh, how I wanted to love this book. Unfortunately, I thought it was just okay. Similar to Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine I had heard really great things about this novel and was excited to finally get to read it. But, again, it just fell a little bit short for me. The story was really intriguing and much needed, but it read really slow and I just thought it wasn’t completely fleshed out. It left me wanting a more thoughtful conclusion. Ultimately, I would say it was worth reading but it is not one I would pick up and re-read.
(4/5) One of the first thoughts I had about this book was, “This would have been really differently perceived if a woman had written it.” Putting that aside, the content of the book I actually found interesting and insightful. Having used Basecamp for work, I felt a connection with the authors, the creators of 37Signals, the brand behind Basecamp. The premise of this book is to throw out traditional business advice and sometimes do the opposite. It is a case of we succeeded this way, so can you. Still, I would recommend this book because there are a few bits in there that felt meaningful and applicable and I actually enjoyed the format of the book as well.
Man’s Search for Meaning
Viktor E. Frankl
(3/5) This book has been one of the most highly-recommended books in history, so, naturally, I wanted to read it. The author was a prisoner at Auschwitz, and the first half of the book is an account of his time at several different camps during the war. In addition, Viktor Frankl is also a psychologist who invented logotherapy, and the second half of the book is a recap of logotherapy and how it can be applied to the emotional and mental state of the prisoners. To be honest, that part of the book went over my head because it was very technical, but the first half the of this book is definitely worth the read.
(3/5) This is a review filled with three-star ratings! Again, I liked but didn’t love this book. I will at some point read the other two books in the series (although I will admit I watched the movie in hopes it would include the other two books, so I wouldn’t have to read them) but for now, I have only read book one, Annihilation. I thought this story and writing style was very unique and I enjoyed the plot a lot, however, it felt slow and I did have a hard time envisioning a lot of what was happening. To note, the film really deviates a lot from the book, and I would 100% say the book is much better.