What I’ve Been Reading: July 2019

What I’ve Been Reading: July 2019

Hello there! Each month I share short and sweet book reviews of what I’ve been reading lately. July felt like a bit of a slog, to be honest.  While I finished ten books, and enjoyed most of them, I didn’t have any books that I just couldn’t put down.

What un-putdownable book(s) have you read lately?

If you’re a reader, you may like my other book review posts.

Here’s what I’ve been reading lately:

Boston Jane by Jennifer L. Holm

This was a fun YA historical fiction. Somewhat predictable, but enjoyable and a perfect beach read for our annual family trip to Lake Powell.  I enjoyed watching Jane’s progression throughout the book and how she genuinely came into her own by the end.  Looking forward to reading the others in the trilogy.

The Cabin Faced West by Jean Fritz

I have never read this slim novel based on true events before, but  just finished reading it aloud to my kids.  It was engaging for all ages and I loved the subtle moral that we all have the opportuninty to be courageous in our own lives and circumstances.

The Brave Learner by Julie Bogart

I have given up parenting books for the most part.  I used to read them often but felt like our family didn’t really fit nicely into any of the philosophies I’d read about.  The Brave Learner is not necessarily a parenting book, though I did gain some tremendous insights into my own parenting style.  I found a lot of encouragement and a lot of ideas in this book. Did I skip over a few sections? Yes.  But overall I devoured every word and have already implemented a few ideas into our family.

Daddy Long-legs by Jean Webster

I completely enjoyed this classic novel.  The totally delightful and endearing main character is just a step or two below Anne Shirley for me.  I was familiar with the story already, the ending was not at all a surprise, but it was still very engaging.  

Get Well Soon: History’s Worst Plagues and the Heroes Who Fought Them by Jennifer Wright

I listened to this engrossing non-fiction work about the worst plagues in history.  It is packed full of information, but told in a very approachable way.  At times laugh-out-loud funny, and fascinating from beginning to end.  I immediately pressed this into my husband’s hands.  He loved it as well and searched for more from the author. I can’t wait to dive into her other book(s).

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

This is a multi-generational family epic.  Similar in feel to Roots by Alex Haley, it begins in Africa and ends in America.  There were definitely some difficult parts to read.  Heartbreaking and upsetting.  But in the end I was amazed to see how everything came together.

Atomic Habits by James Clear

This has been on my list for a long time.  I am already a big believer in the power of habits and routines that add up over time.  This book solidified the idea for me.  I’ll recommend this too anyone looking to actually and permanently change your life or add meaningful work into your days. 

A Light in the Window by Jan Karon

I loved the first book in this series so much when I read it years ago.  I picked this up expecting to love it equally, but was disappointed.  It just didn’t have quite the same charm as the first.  I was annoyed with the love story (seriously! why can’t we just talk about things instead of having a misunderstanding that gets blown out of proportion every three pages?!). I did end up finishing it, but I won’t be reading any more in the series.

Gaijin by Matt Faulkner

My niece recommended this beautiful graphic novel while she was staying with us.  It’s a slim book and I read it in one sitting.  It’s a great, gentle introduction to the US internment camps during WWII. Nothing too graphic, but a good way to begin talking to older kids about that awful time in history.

A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving

Another modern classic that’s been on my list forever.  I have heard this listed on many people’s favorite books of all time lists.  I enjoyed it (despite the horrible language and some icky bits), and I still find myself thinking about it.  But I’m not sure it will be a favorite.  The writing is incredibly vivid and the characters so layered and interesting.  I can see why so many people love it.

What have you been reading lately?

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