Bad Feminist 

I chose this book to go with my month theme of reading books written by woman. This has allowed me to expand my reading outside of my comfort zone, while discovering some talented authors.

“Bad Feminist” is the first book I have read that was a collection of essays, allowing me to step outside of my reading comfort zone. From this I learned this style of writing is not for me. However, I did still find bits of it entertaining.

When I first started this book, I was excited to see what was in store for me as a reader. There were some topics I felt like I identified with Roxanne Gay, others where she opened up my eyes to new ideas, and I even learned a few new things. However, as I continued to read the essays I began to lose interest. I just didn’t feel captured as a reader throughout the entire book.

I think the biggest drawback for me was that I felt like I could put this book down, read another one, and then pick it up like I didn’t miss anything in the mean time. I felt like there was a lot of jumping from one essay to the next with no rhyme or reason to it besides it being what the author wanted.

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My Life on the Road

To be honest, I chose this book at random by sitting in front of my bookshelf trying to figure out what to read next. After enjoying “Love Warrior”, I decided to go with another book written by a woman. I am happy with my choice.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading “My Life on the Road”. The words flowed with each section of the book connecting. In the introduction, Gloria Steinem encourages the reader to spend some time traveling. As I sat there reading her stories about the people she met, and some of the places she visited, it awakened my desire to travel. The experiences that she described were incredible, and the places sounded beautiful. I think it would be hard not to be influenced by the beauty of her stories.

“My Life on the Road” left me with a few lessons. The first lesson is to find something that ignites a passion within you, and to do something that you enjoy. Another important lesson is to spend time in a place that leaves you with a feeling of belonging. For Gloria Steinem, her interest seemed to be in being an organizer. This lead to her meeting so many amazing people, and sharing such wonderful stories in this book. My guess is her passion, or at least main interest, is in equality for everybody, race or gender makes no difference.

I’m not sure I can recommend this book enough. When they say books have the power to change people, this one should be included. “My Life on the Road” is an example of a book that moves the reader.

Dead Letters

BMDP1696After reading several non-fiction books, I decided it was time for a change of pace with a thriller.

Throughout the book I was captured in the journey as Ava went through the clues to discover the truth about her sister Zelda. As she is doing this, she is forced back into a life that she tried to escape from, and goes on a sort of self-discovery journey of her own. Ava’s past is revealed as the clues are discovered, so that the reader learns what she decided to run away from. In some aspects, it seems that she channels her twin and picks up on some of her habits so that people mistake her for which twin she really is.

Caite Dolan-Leach had me from the first page, capturing my attention and keeping me guessing at what would be revealed when I finally reached the end. Throughout the story I felt as though the verdict could go either way, leaving me guessing until it was finally revealed.

One aspect that I really enjoyed about this book, was how I was left wondering even after I turned the last page. Caite Dolan-Leach wrapped up many pieces of the story, some of them in surprising ways, but left some parts to the imagination of the reader. As I sit here writing this review I’m wondering about the possibilities of what the characters are up to after the last page.

 

Love Warrior

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Recently, I decided to start checking out some of the books that Oprah recommends and “Love Warrior” was the first one. In my time spent on the internet, I’ve come across a mention of her book club and reading lists, so I thought I would start mixing them in.

If I had to describe this book in one word it would have to be real. I was struck by the beauty of the writing and how easily the story seemed to just flow.

“Love Warrior” is a story of beauty. Glennon Doyle Melton brought to life, in her view, the struggles of being a girl, or just sometimes the struggles of life. I enjoyed reading about how she found herself along the way and she didn’t quit. The fact that she never gave up is inspiration alone.

Yes, this is another short review, but I am having difficulties trying to find a way to write about this book any more than I have. This is a book that just needs to be read.

Eat Pray Love

img_20170213_093729_647If you’re looking for a book to read about somebody going on a sort of soul searching, discover yourself journey this would be a good choice for you. I found this book to be a rather heart warming read and an inspiration for if I ever decide to do a similar journey for myself.
As I was reading Eat Pray Love I found myself wishing I had a highlighter in hand for a few sentences. This is very unlike me to want to mark up a book, but this one had some passages I wanted to take with me. Next time I read this book I will have a highlighter at the ready.

When the story started out in Italy Elizabeth Gilbert had me confused with the time jumps. I honestly sat there wondering if the story of how she came to the journey may have been better off is a prologue rather than mixed in where it was. Then again, maybe this reflected more of her story where she placed it. After that the story line was easy to follow. It was a lot of fun to read about all the pleasure that she found while staying there.

Next stop on her journey was India. This section had me in awe and wonder at the power behind her meditation and yoga practice. The power behind the mind can leave me speechless and that is how I felt when reading about all the various experiences she had throughout her meditation practice and while performing jobs at the Ashram. I also loved how real and open she was with her feelings and desire to go back to previous relationships with men.

When she arrives at Indonesia this part of the journey seemed like an afterthought from the way she wrote about it.There was a lot of happiness, caring and love in this part of the journey that brought it together in a full circle sort of manor. Each place provided her with something different, and by the time she reached the end she seemed like an improved version of herself.

Gone Girl

img_20170121_182806_390Gone Girl was a thriller of a book, and I was hooked with curiosity early on. The twists and turns that Gillian Flynn included were just what I was in the mood for, and there were multiple times I went “huh” or “what?!?” while I was reading the book.

I’m so glad I finally decided to read this book. In all honesty, as sad as it may be to admit, I only knew about this book from the movie. A few years ago when the movie came out I was making a care package for a friend and thought the trailer looked good so I included the book without reading it first. I know, it wasn’t my greatest book gifting moment. Any who…this book lived up to its reputation in my mind of being gripping like the trailer for the movie.

The thing that I enjoyed most about this book was how captivated I was by the story. Gillian Flynn did an excellent job of leaving out just the right amount of details, and then revealing them later on in the story. As I was reading I would sit there and wonder what was I not being told about the characters lives.

Spoiler alert! One of my other favorite aspects was the plot twists that made the story what it was. Gillian Flynn did a most excellent job with this. Right when I thought Nick was going to get busted for what he did to his wife Amy, we find out she is alive and actually framed him because he’s not the greatest husband there ever was.

Another spoiler alert! I was disappointed by Nick’s character at the end of the story. I was hoping he would get his wife for what she did to Desi, that with some secret plotting behind her back justice would finally be had. Instead he became the man who doesn’t have a pair balls and stays with his psychotic wife.

Americanah

img_20161205_235412Full disclosure, I was not happy with the ending. I actually came close to throwing the book across the room which is unusual for me.

Now that I got that out of the way, I’m ready to get down to business. In my eyes, Americanah, is a coming of age story with one of the most beautiful and unexpected love stories I’ve ever read mixed in. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie portrays the characters in an easily relatable manner with her beautiful writing style. There was an easy flow of reading, especially with the story jumping from the past to the present.

One of my favorite aspects of Americanah is how my eyes were opened up to another view on American life. When Ifemelu moves to America to go to school, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie put me in her shoes and I began to see the oddities that we consider normal. As Ifemelu spends more time in America, attending school and eventually starting a blog I started to think she had a real future in America. Then she moved back and I was left thinking “Why would she do something like that?” While, at the same time I sympathize and relate to her going back home where she can be herself and feel whole again. That is not an easy thing to do at times in this day and age.