The Busy Giffs: January Book Reads

February 1, 2019

January Book Reads

This year, I'm really focused on doing things that make me happy and a huge thing for me, is reading. I love reading and am making a conscious decision to read more this year. In the past, I read 50 books during the year and while that's a lofty goal for this year, I do want to read more, whatever that number may be. So I did what any normal person would do... I typed #books into Instagram and then placed the first 20 that looked interesting, based on the covers and photos alone, rather than on any content of the book, on hold at my local library.  It's a good start and will be so exciting to see what these books are like.

This month I read:

Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown

This is one that I placed on hold blindly.  I didn't read the subtitle and honestly assumed it was a fiction story similar to Wild, and expected a wilderness ridden thriller, but instead, I found myself reading a self-help book. Had I read it years ago, I may have considered it to be life changing, but with where I am now, it was more affirming. So many things that Brown comments on are things I've said out loud or thought and to hear someone else say it was a nice reminder that I am where I want to be in my life.
I highly recommend this book to others and have already told multiple people that they should read it.  Some may need it to be life changing and others may find it reaffirming but Brown's easy going, conversation-like writing made it a simple read that I got through in a few hours.

When the Lights Go Out by Mary Kubica

I grabbed this book off the shelf when I went to pick up Braving the Wilderness, having no idea what it was about. This is one of the first books I could not figure out. I pride myself on figuring out books (and movies) before the end but this book had so many twists that every time I thought I had figured it out, something new was mentioned and I realized that my thoughts were wrong. It was truly a gripping story and I wanted to keep reading to see if I was correct.  The end presented such a major twist that I never could have guessed.
Again, I highly recommend this book to others that want a thriller that is hard to put down. There are some things that may be triggers for others: death of family members, kidnapping of children, IVF/infertility, and miscarriages to name a few. Kubica does a great job keeping the reader engaged, guessing what really happened.

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

This is one of the first to arrive based on my experiment and since I had heard of the TV show, I was excited to read it. This book quickly drew me in, introducing characters and leaving cliffhangers at the end of each chapter.  I found myself interested in what would happen next, hoping that my predictions were correct.
It's an easy to read story and while there are many characters, it was easy to keep track of.  I finished the book in a day, after spending the rainy day curled up on the couch.
I'm excited to check out the tv show now!

The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker

Even after finishing the story, I'm not sure I like it. The ending felt rushed and honestly, I'm not sure I got the closure I needed in a story. The story itself is told about multiple people, and I enjoy that type of narration but the story seemed convoluted at times and I struggled to understand where the realness and fantasy of each person's story began and ended.
It was a quick read, only 250 pages, but I don't think I would ever pick it up again.

I read much more than I expected to this month and am excited to see how many books I finish this year!

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