Home Sweet Sarah

1Q17 books

I am making a conscious effort to read more books this year. I say that every year, but this year I am really focusing on reading when I would normally be doing other things. Like today, when I spent most of the morning on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat, I could have been reading Pines, by Blake Crouch. See? It's working well!

Here's what I read during the first three months of the year...

A Summer Affair, by Elin Hilderbrand

This is another of the Nantucket-based housewife drama stories that Hilderbrand is known for. In general (for all books, not just Hilderbrand's), the whole, "I'm a wife and mother and now I've lost my purpose" trope is eye-rolly for me, so I was meh on the main character and more interested in the supporting characters--the Irish sister-in-law, the rockstar ex-boyfriend, the former friend. Their stories were more intriguing and while we did get small glimpses into their lives, the crux of the story was with the main character and her annoying life. Anyway, it was a quick and easy read.

Winter Storms, by Elin Hilderbrand

This is the final book of Hilderbrand's winter trilogy and it was a nice little bow on an overall enjoyable reading package. (CHRISTMAS-RELATED REFERENCE INTENDED!) This is the kind of book where everything gets sorted out at the end--not necessarily in a positive way, but there's closure nonetheless--and it's a quick, quick read. Throughout the trilogy, I found all the characters to be likeable in their own ways and would definitely read another book centered around this family or any of the individual characters.

The Passenger, by Lisa Lutz

Similar in style to all the 'Girl' books--Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, etc.--this quick read centers around a gal on the run. Mystery abounds--why is she running?, what is her real name?--but the mysteries get solved piece by piece as you read the book. This is nice, so you're not sitting around until the very end to get all the closure. And, up until the end, tiny twists keep coming, which is also fun. Overall, it was an interesting look on going on the run unnoticed. How easy would it be to just disappear?

Not That Kind Of Girl, by Lena Dunham

Lena can do no wrong for me. I love that she's having the conversations that need to be had, no matter how uncomfortable. I found her book of essays very relatable and often and inspiring. As a performer or creative person, there are times when you have to take chances and make choices and sometimes things don't land. That doesn't mean you run offstage or stop trying to make your point or change the things you're trying to change. We're all human and we sometimes say things that are dumb, but we are trying. How else are we supposed to grow and learn and further causes (or make people laugh) if we don't bomb every now and again? Lena's fighting the good fight. *Chris Crocker voice* LEAVE LENA ALONE. Anyway, as far as this book, there were many times when I was like, "OMG me too!" and that's always fun in a book.

A Gentleman In Moscow, by Amor Towles

I looooooooved Towles's first book, Rules of Civility, when I read it a couple years ago and have been patiently waiting for him to write another book. This one--about a gentleman in Moscow, you don't say!--takes place in one hotel over many decades. Towles's writing is truly beautiful, although after all the "quick and easy" books above, it took a a little getting used to for me. Once I got in it, though, I was IN IT and I loved this book. How can a book where the setting does not change be good? I don't know! That's the magic of Amor Towles, I guess. Also the historical look at Russia was fascinating, given our current state. REC. OM. MEND.

Superficial, by Andy Cohen

This is the first book I've read by Andy Cohen and what fun it was! This is his second installment of diary entries and here were the biggest takeaways for me:

  • If you're a Bravo/Housewives fan, you'll love it
  • Andy parties a lot; I don't know how he does it
  • Andy's mom is amazing
  • I want a glass of rosé

Dark Matter, by Blake Crouch

This was really weird and really good. I heard it's been optioned by Sony for a movie, and I'm excited to see that movie because hopefully the director will be able to visualize some of the more confusing parts of the book. I don't want to say much because I feel it would give away the whole plot of the book, but there's some weird science-y stuff and major life drama ensues. So weird, so good. Recommend.

What are you reading right now? And you should sign up for my friend Hillary's newest venture, Make America Read Again! I don't subscribe to any newsletters except hers and they are fantastic.

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