This was an interesting month in reading. Somehow I managed to read a couple "self-help" style books and a couple YA novels. I'm not usually much of a YA reader but I've found that the books are usually pretty quick and satisfying and they transport me back to my younger self. I have LOVED books by Rainbow Rowell but the ones I read this month didn't quite stack up. Read below for my take on my month of reading:
Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed (audiobook version)
This was by far my favorite book of the month. I'll admit, I've never read "Wild", which is the book that made Cheryl Strayed a household name, but I was completely floored by this collection of advice columns that she wrote anonymously under the moniker of Sugar. She writes with such compassion and wisdom, and isn't prone to glossing over the messiness and beauty of life. I cried. A lot. I met a girl at a party recently who described this book as her bible. I think if you are in need of a bible, this would be a great place to start. Oh, and make sure you listen to the podcast, which is ongoing. It's definitely not to be missed.
Rating: 5/5 gold stars
I Thought it Was Just Me: Women Reclaiming Power and Courage in a Culture of Shame by Brene Brown (audiobook version)
really like Brene Brown's work and I think she has a really good perspective about how we can rise above fear and shame in a culture that seems to do nothing but tell us that we're not good enough. However, I found this book to be a bit repetitive and preachy at times. Brene Brown is a researcher and it shows. I'd say this is great for Social Work and Psychology students but just o.k. for the casual reader. There are probably a lot of people who would argue with me on that (just look at the awesome ratings on Goodreads and Amazon), but if there's one thing I've learned from the book, it's not to be shamed into being quiet about my opinions :)
Rating: 3/5 gold stars
Reality Boy by A.S. King
Overall, I quite liked this one. I don't think it was perfect, there were some places where I felt I was trying pretty damn hard to suspend my disbelief. But there were other parts in the book where I felt sucked back into what it felt like to be a teenager. I am always amazed when adult authors can so perfectly encapsulate and experience that to me seems so distant. It was a quick read but did start feeling like kind of a slog near the end, which is why I had to knock off a couple of stars.
Rating: 3/5 gold stars
Sabriel by Garth Nix
Speaking of a slog, I had trouble getting through this one. Again, it gets rave reviews on Goodreads but I almost gave up on it several times. There is a lot of action in this book but, to me, it seemed like there was very little depth. In spite of battles with zombie-like creatures and travels into the land of the dead, this book didn't do a great job of keeping my attention.
Rating: 2/5 stars
And that's my reading wrap-up for March! Lately, I've been drawn to nonfiction and self-help so we'll see what I get into for April. I'd love to hear about what you've been reading in the comments below!