What I’ve Been Reading

I know it’s been a while since I’ve written a book review, but believe me when I say that it’s not for a lack of reading. My goodreads challenge for 2016 was 50 books which I narrowly missed two years in a row. This year, I’m already at 60 and counting! I’m trying to get as many titles in as possible before baby arrives just in case she keeps me too busy. 😉

Instead of reviewing one book today, I thought I’d give you guys an overview of multiple titles I read from the summer up until now. I never got a chance to talk about all of them, so I figured I’d do an abbreviated review for each … sort of like speed dating. Hehe. Enjoy and happy reading!

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Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
My review: 5/5 stars
I could go on and on for hours about how incredible Gillian Flynn is. This book proves no different. As usual, her suspenseful story sucks you into its grasp and never lets you go. She’s an engaging writer with such a mastery of suspense! I can’t get enough. I highly recommend Sharp Objects for anyone in need of a good thrill. You’ll find that it has a similar feel to both Gone Girl and Dark Places in terms of style and of course genre, but it is still a unique story that will leave you wanting more with every turn of the page. Bravo, as per usual, Flynn!

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn
My review: 3/5 stars
This is the first Gillian Flynn story that I was not absolutely floored by. Still, it’s her writing style that I’m in love with. If you’re a fan, you’ll probably find The Grownup to be less than stellar in comparison to her other incredible reads, but you’ll probably enjoy the short story nonetheless. I certainly did.

Along For The Ride by Sarah Dessen
My review: 4/5 stars
Nothing extraordinary. A charming little coming-of-age story with all the basic elements: young love, teenage angst, etc. I had to knock off one star because I found the main character quite unrelatable and even irritating until she “shapes up” later on in the story. Up until then, I truly wanted to punch her in the face. Just saying.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
My review: 4/5 stars
A close friend of mine has been telling me to read this book forever. It’s actually her absolute favorite. Seeing as we disagree on pretty much everything (still love her), I doubted that I would be into it. Surprisingly though, I really enjoyed it! Historical fiction is a wonderful genre when it’s done properly. By properly, I mean that the story is both fantastical and believable. This book is absolutely that. On a side note, I’ve always loved the word fantastical because it’s a real word that seems made up. How fitting when you think of it, right? Sorry. It’s the nerdy English major in me. Anyhow, I now fully believe that it is very possible that Abraham Lincoln was, in fact, a vampire hunter.

The Last American Vampire by Seth Grahame-Smith
My review: 3/5 stars
Another fun read by Mr. Grahame-Smith. I will say that Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter was marginally better, but perhaps that’s because I didn’t understand all of the references in this follow-up work.  Having to look up certain people/places in order to better understand the story took a little bit away from the reading experience, but I suppose that’s my own fault for not paying attention in history class. Still, a good and well-written story and another wonderful title in the historical fiction genre.

Mayo Clinic Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy by Roger W. Harms
My review: 4/5 stars
I know this is sort of textbooky (totally not a word), but I absolutely recommend this book to any first-time moms out there. In fact, I would say if you only read one maternity book throughout your pregnancy, then this should be it. I read a handful, but none were so helpful as Mayo Clinic. The best part is that you can skip around in the chapters depending on what month you’re in or what information you’re looking for. You can read about your bodily changes or the baby’s growth on a week to week basis. You can look up every symptom under the sun. It’s all in here! I read it cover to cover because I found the information invaluable. This is a must-have for any mommy-to-be.

Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy
My review: 3/5 stars
So, needless to say, this isn’t a legendary work of literature or anything. What it is is honest, hilarious, and signature Jenny McCarthy. Some might read through these chapters and think “T.M.I.”, but I read though them and thought, “Tell me more!” McCarthy’s brutal honesty regarding her pregnancy was so refreshing. I recommend this read for any preggo in need of a good laugh or two!

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
My review: 3/5 stars
For the record, I absolutely adored Stardust when I read it last year. I think I loved it even more after I saw the movie and watched Gaiman’s fantasy world come to life. I was really interested to read more of his work after that and finally got around to it this year. Neverwhere was good, but not nearly as good as the gem that is Stardust. Still, it was enjoyable. The book had a Through The Looking Glass vibe, albeit quite a bit darker. It’s strange and bold and whimsical in a creepy sort of way. I won’t sit here and say it’s the best book I’ve ever read, but it had a story that kept me on my toes and characters that I was genuinely interested in. Can’t ask for much more than that.

Good Omens: The Nice & Accurate Prophecies Of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman
My review: 2/5 stars
I’m going to go ahead and say it. I don’t think I’m smart enough to understand the “genius” behind this book. I know it’s a fan favorite. I know it’s meant to be witty and deep and a (satirical) reflection of society, but still. I just couldn’t get into it. I’m sorry. It’s not the book, it’s me … maybe.

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