Wednesday, February 01, 2017

January: What I Read

I told Goodreads I wanted to read 120 books this year because that seemed like a nice round number, and according to my official Goodreads reading challenge page, I am 9% there.

I read some big name books this month that I actually didn't like very much, which always makes me feel like an idiot, but what are you going to do?  I'll tell you what I am not going to do.  I am not going to lie to you about the books just to make myself look smarter because I really liked Tana French and Jodi Picoult this month because WHY NOT.  If I have the reading habits of a chubby Wisconsin housewife it;s because I AM ONE, at least 2.5 days a week.

11. The Whole30: The Official 30-day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom by Melissa Hartwig and Dallas Hartwig:  Something that drove me totally bat shit crazy about this book was that they repeatedly called the nutritional research behind their diet plan "science-y."  But, the more I read, the more I realized it actually is probably based on total crap pseudo-science, and then I decided to be annoyed by the forty thousand reference to my Sugar Dragon.  Still, It was nicely laid out and informative, and I am ready to eat no fucking sugar this month, so bring it.

10.  Talking as Fast as I Can by Lauren Graham:  The part where she goes through filming each episode of the new Gilmore Girls and sums up each season of the old show is great.  But, she talks and talks about her English degree and her writing experience. and this book does not necessarily reflect that experience.

9.  Nicotine by Nell Zink:  You guys.  I just didn't love it.

8.  Swing Time by Zadie Smith:  Same.

7.  Darling Days by iO Wright Tillett:  This is a helluvua disturbing memoir. It made a drive from Madison to Pekin fly by.  iO's parents did a lot of things wrong, but helping their child understand and express gender fluidity was not one of them.

6. The Trespasser by Tana French:  Loved it-- a thriller that's right up my alley and part of a series, which is always good to discover.

5.  Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult:  Dude, you guys, I like Jodi Picoult.  I know the fact that she has written a billion NYT bestsellers can be a turn off for a book snob, but her books are fun to read.  Even this one whose handling of race was ham handed and trite had a wonderfully paced plot and was a page-turner right to the end.

4.  You'll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein:  Really, really, really funny.  And then at the end, poignant.  My favorite.

3.  The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena:  This was scary and I read it in less than 2 hours, also my favorite.

2.  Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly:  I really did like this because the stories were compelling and came together in unexpected ways at the end.  But it was kind of every Holocaust book stereotype ever in one story.  Still, it's a thick book, and I read it really quickly because it was so engrossing.  And also the story of the character who is arrested for working on the Polish resistance is totally horrifying read against out current events background.  Is it wrong that I kind of hate Holocaust stories that aren't about Jews?  I mean, I know there were other people in the camps, but when you think about the Whitehouse's all-lives-matter-y statement on Holocaust Remembrance Day, you think maybe we need to read a few more books about the systematic murder of six million Jews, you know?

1.  Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, John Thorne, and John Tiffany:  Oh, this was wonderful.  Like being reunited with all of my old friends.  To say I devoured it is an actual understatement.



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