Friday, August 31, 2012

reading recap: july + august

Some of my favorite memories from my childhood were reading a book under my covers at night with a flashlight. To me, a books have always been a way to escape the world and travel, even when you can't go anywhere.  There is a magic in books that can't be found anywhere else.

I don't talk about reading much on my blog, but in real life, one of my favorite things to do is curl  up with a good book. Rainy day? I'm reading. Cool evening? I'm on the porch reading.  Bus ride to work? I'm reading.

So, I've made the decision to share (monthly or bi-monthly) all the things I've read and my thoughts on them.  If you're a reader too, I'd love to hear your opinion or what's on your list.  AND let's be goodreads friends.  You say you don't know what goodreads is? Ah, it's book heaven. Facebook for books. With recommendations based on what you've read.

Book: Those Who Save Us
Finished: Early July

I picked this book up after reading this post by Elizabeth, and  it has been one of the best books I've read in a long while. It takes a real and honest look at the relationship between a mother and daughter during WW11. Writing from the perspective of the German civilians, it's a book that makes you look at perspective. The character depth was rewarding--I felt and sympathized with both Anna and her daughter, Trudy.

Book: The Weird Sisters
Finished: Early August

This book took me a while to get into,and not just because of the unknown narrator and juvenile behavior of the characters. I found the unknown narrator irritating-at first I thought I might have missed who was doing the narrating and kept going back to see, but then I realized the book was supposed to be like that, that there was no one narrator. For the majority of the book, I didn't connect with the characters or find them interpreting. I thought their lives and problems were flat and simple, very one dimensional. It wasn't really worth the read--but once I was 100 pages in, I felt invested and hoped for a great ending. I wouldn't recommend it to a friend.

Book: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Finished: Early July 

This book initially appealed to me because of my interest in cancer research, but once I finished it, I was recommending this book to anyone who would let me talk about it. It's the story of a woman, Henrietta Lacks, whose cancer cells were unknowingly taken from her during her treatments, and revolutionized cancer research. The medical advances and height of advancements made from Henrietta's cells is contrasted to the life of her family--poor and struggling to make ends meet, with no knowledge of the life of their mothers' cells.  This story is so important and overwhelming, and on many levels, sad and depressing. There were parts of this book where I found myself holding my breath in horror, parts where I cried and sympathized with her family, and parts where I was in awe of the advancements made. It's worth the read.

The Hobbit
Finished: Late August 

I've read this book before, in middle school, but with the movie coming out in December, I wanted to read it again.  Some books are almost impossible to review. If a book is bad, how easily can we dwell on its flaws! But if the book is good, how do you give any recommendation that is equal the book? The Hobbit lives up to all the talk about it-and more. From a hole in the ground came one of my favorite characters of all time, the very reluctant and unassuming hero of the story, Bilbo Baggins. As a child, The Hobbit sparked my young imagination, causing wonderful daydreams and horrible nightmares. As a teen, the book made me want to become a writer of fantastical tales...or go shoeless, live in the hole and smoke a pipe. I will continue to read The Hobbit again and again, for the road goes ever, ever on...


  1. I read the Hobbit and all three Lord of the Rings this summer for the millionth time - Love it.
    I am currently reading War of the Worlds

    1. Are you liking War of the Worlds? I thought about adding it to my to-read list, but I'm on the fence about it!

  2. Thanks for the book recommends. I too am reading on rainy nights, on the bus, at beach...etc, etc.

    I have never read the Hobbit & I think the time has come!


    1. Absolutely! It's never too late to start the Hobbit.


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