When I sat down to write a quick list of the books I’ve read this month, I realized that everything I wanted to say kept coming back to the same five books. Of all the books I read, these five kept me up late turning pages to see what would happen next or left me thinking about them long after the last line:
The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner. My love for The Thief should not come as a surprise to regular readers of this blog. When I found myself without a read aloud for school this month and no time to run to the library, I grabbed The Thief off the shelf to see if my third-grader was ready. He loved it! Even though I’ve read it before, I found myself sneaking a peek at the next chapter after we were done reading together (and isn’t that the ultimate sign of a good book?).
Uprooted by Naomi Novik. It took me a few chapters to be completely absorbed in the story, but I couldn’t put it down after page 50. My four-year-old is obsessed with just about every version of the Baba Yaga folktale, so I especially enjoyed the references to Baba Yaga and other Scandinavian folklore. There is one scene that keeps me from recommending this book to everyone I know, but it’s pretty easy to see it coming if you’re a prude like I am.
Still Life by Louise Penny. I was finally convinced to give Louise Penny a try after hearing so many guests mention her on the What Should I Read Next? podcast. I’m a novice mystery reader, but I can definitely see the appeal. I have a request in at the library for the next book in the series, and I’m looking forward to heading back to Three Pines. My full review of the novel is here.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows and Mary Anne Shaffer was a reread for book club this month. I read it when it first came out, but I couldn’t remember anything past the basic premise. I listened to the audio version this time and can’t wait to talk about it at book club tonight. I was concerned that I’d get lost in all the letter writing without a book to look at, but the audio narration was fabulous.
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel was not what I expected. In fact, I even returned the book 75 pages in because I’d hit my maximum renewals at the library. I ended up checking it out again soon after, and I’m glad I did. The second time around, I was much more engaged in the plot. I’m not usually a fan of apocalyptic novels (I often finish them hoping that I’ll be one of the numberless masses who die in the first winter), but Station Eleven left me musing about the kind of person I’d want be in the case of a total collapse. I don’t have a great memory, but I finished the book thinking I’d like to have a few more sections of favorite books memorized in case I get stranded on a liferaft or in a world without libraries (or just stuck in traffic without a new podcast).
What have you been reading lately?