I loved everything that I read this month! That doesn’t happen very often. I read 5 books that were all different from each other. I bet you’ll find something in here that strikes your fancy!
PS: I always link the title back to the Amazon in case you want to get the book, too! I don’t always buy my books on Amazon; I love using the library whenever I can But sometimes if the wait list is really long (it was for the first one I read this month) I’ll just buy it on Amazon for my kindle.
1. HOMEGOING BY YAA GYASI
This is one of the best books I’ve read in months! I LOVED it and flew threw it, and I’m currently recommending it to everyone I can. I didn’t mean to read it during Black History Month, but that coincidence made it even more meaninful of a book journey.
The story follows two half-sisters who were born into different villages on the Gold Coast of Africa. One is married to an Englishman who oversees the British trade quarters in what later becomes Ghana, and the other is captured by the British and eventually shipped as a slave to America. Each chapter follows a new generation of each sister’s lineage, showing what eventually happens to each family based on where they started throughout about 250 years of history.
It was sobering and enlightening. I honestly think that everyone needs to read this book. Oh, and something I didn’t realize while I was reading it was that this author was 26 when she wrote this book! *GASP.*
PS: just saw that this one is on sale on Amazon for $9.82 (normally $16.00)!
2. WE CROSSED A BRIDGE AND IT TREMBLED: VOICE FROM SYRIA BY WENDY PEARLMAN
I got this book suggestion from Anita. I trust that girl’s book recommendations, because she’s a deep thinker and doesn’t shy away from what is true and what needs to be said.
Ok friends….this was a hard book to read. Because of that, I think it was an extremely important one to read. We Crossed A Bridge And It Trembled is a collection of wartime testimonies from Syrians whose lives have been destroyed by the long struggle in their country.
I’ve heard the news reports of the horrible things going on in Syria, but it wasn’t until I read the dozens of true, first-person accounts in this book that I was able to really feel something in the deepest part of my soul for those people.
I’m going to be on the hunt for more books like this one. If you have any suggestions, please let me know!
This one is also on sale right now on Amazon: $13.48 (normally $24.99).
3. AFTER I DO BY TAYLOR JENKINS REID
Ok, moving on to a totally different mood! I read my first book by Taylor Jenkins Reid in January, and it was so cute and fun and light that I decided to get another one. Now that I’ve read two of her books, I have a fairly good idea of her characters and style of writing, and I would bet that any of her novels would make fun vacation books/beach reads!
“After I Do” is about a Lauren and Ryan, a couple who fell in love in college and got married young. After about a decade together, they’re not sure they have what it takes to keep their marriage going. They decide to take a break, and there’s only one rule: neither is allowed to contact the other one for 12 months. Other than that, anything is fair game.
This book is about lasting love, the meaning of marriage, and the different ways that generations view relationships. It was especially meaningful for me to read as I’m coming up on my first wedding anniversary with Nate. Even though I feel like we’re still newlyweds (and I think I’ll feel like that for at least a few more years), I’m interested in thinking about how relationships shift throughout the years and what it takes to keep a committed, loving relationship going.
4. MISTRESS OF ROME BY KATE QUINN
Alright…the truth is, I wasn’t expecting to like this one at all. I only read it because it had been on my library queue for weeks, and I felt guilty about waiting that long and not even taking advantage of my 3 weeks with this book.
And then this ended up being the book that I couldn’t put down! I actually gave up watching some olympic events so I could curl up with this book, and I definitely didn’t get enough sleep for the 3 days while I was reading this. I stayed up way past my normal bedtime to read “just one more chapter.”
It’s full of gladiators, romance, love, death, deceit, mystery….haha. Now that I’m typing it all out, this sounds very much like a soap opera. But I promise you, this book kept me turning pages right up to the very end.
It’s a long(ish) one, so this book would be great to bring on a long vacation, like if you have an overseas flight coming up anytime soon. This is by the author who wrote The Alice Network, which is still on my to-read list.
5. CLAUDE THE GREASE MONKEY BY CONI RHUDY
I’ve never included a children’s book in my blog posts, but I just had to add this one in because it’s so darn cute! Jordan, my college roommate who now lives in Florida, texted me to let me know her mom had just authored a children’s book, and could she send a copy to me.
Claude the Grease Monkey showed up in my mailbox, and I tore open the package and settled down on the couch to read the entire thing. If you have kiddos, this is such a sweet little story about about a young girl (the author when she was 6-years-old) who wakes up on Christmas morning to find a monkey under her Christmas tree! The illustrations by Chandra Bill-Rabenekcer are darling. I’m keeping this one on my bookshelf so all the young siblings of my violin students can read it as they come through my studio each week.
Find out more at her website: claudethegreasemonkey.com
Please send me any and all book suggestions you have! I have a vacation coming up in March to celebrate my 1 year anniversary with Nate, and I’m planning on completely unplugging from social media/blogging for a full week so that I can enjoy time with him and relax. When I’m most relaxed, I read a lot of books! I need to fill up my kindle for this trip. 🙂