Sunday, July 15, 2018

What I've Been Reading Lately (Quick Lit)

Today I'm linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy's Quick Lit to bring you some short and sweet reviews of what I've read in the past month. For longer reviews, you can always find me on Goodreads.

Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise by Ruth Reichl: Ruth Reichl was the restaurant critic for The New York Times for much of the 1990s, and in order to get accurate experiences of the average diner, she developed a series of guises and personalities, which are catalogued in this book. This is a light, easy read, occasionally funny and occasionally profound.

Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David D. Burns, M.D.: This is a powerful, practical guide to mood regulation through combating faulty thinking patterns. There's a reason it's been recommended by psychologists for decades. It's a bit on the long side, but it's worth it, whether you struggle with depression, know someone who does, or just want more tools to deal with the frustrations of everyday life.

Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again by Rachel Held Evans: I have read all of Evans' books to date, and this is definitely her best, most mature writing. If you're looking for a middle ground between trying to silence your discomfort with certain parts of Scripture and deciding to mentally devalue the entire thing, this is a challenging, fascinating, beautiful journey through reading the Bible with new eyes.

The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson: I admire what Adam Johnson was attempting to do with this book, but the main character just seemed so devoid of emotion that I couldn't ever get invested in what happened to him. Despite the Pulitzer and high ratings, I'd rather read a memoir of someone escaped from North Korea than this American's imagined version of the country.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater: I was hesitant going in, but this really did stand up to all the high praise I'd heard for it. The characters are well-rounded, the many plot lines are jugged skillfully, and the incorporation of both magic and romance is done in an understated, believable way. It's been a while since I wanted to binge read a series, but I'm happy to have found one!

Eragon by Christopher Paolini: I can definitely see why this is a favorite of a lot of young boys, as it has all the elements of your typical high fantasy, from a male Chosen One to a quest for revenge to dragons and elves and dwarves. The story is well written (especially since Paolini was a teenager when he wrote it!) but it never veers far from the expected of this genre. So while it's not a bad read, I don't feel the need to continue with the series.

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater: It's difficult to create a sequel that's as compelling and inventive as the original, but this came pretty darn close. It was different enough from the first book while having the same features that I liked in the first. The audiobook narrator for the series is excellent as well.

Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater: I honestly may have loved the third book of the series the best of all so far, which I feel is kind of unusual. It was genuinely creepy at several points, but it also made me laugh out loud more than the first two books. I love the characters so much!

What have you been reading this month? Share over at Modern Mrs. Darcy!

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Looking back:
One year ago I was reading: A Piece of the World
Five years ago I was reading: Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, The Book Thief, and Thinking, Fast and Slow
Ten years ago I was reading: The Left Hand of Darkness

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