My Year in Books

A website I love and use almost every day is Goodreads.com. It is a place where you can keep track of books you have read, books you want to read, quotes you like, and receive book recommendations.  You can connect with friends and see their virtual bookshelves, too! Normally I am an avid reader, but this past year has been jam packed with two jobs, trying to exercise, wedding planning, and writing this blog, so my reading has seriously been slacking. I am constantly adding books to my “to read” shelf and I guess that makes me feel like I’m actually reading and being productive.  Kind of similar to how pinning things on Pinterest can make a person feel crafty and like a gourmet chef when you haven’t left your computer chair.

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My Books of 2012:

Bossypants by Tina Fey

bossypants
My Goodreads Rating: 5 stars
Overall: Awesome book, it is one of my absolute favorites! Her writing style, sense of humor, and stories about her personal life and career track are completely captivating. I wish I could find more memoirs as wonderful as this one. I’ll probably be reading it again in 2013!

These Things Hidden by Heather Gudenkauf

hidden

My Goodreads Rating: 4 stars
Overall: I really enjoyed this book, it was a dark mystery thriller! I am really picky when it comes to mystery books, but this one did it for me. It is a quick and easy read with interesting plot twists! Worth checking out.

Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

sarahskey

My Goodreads Rating: 3 stars
Overall: The review I wrote on goodreads said “I liked this book a lot but felt the last 50 pages dragged on. It felt like a blah ending for a book that had been very exciting and interesting. It did however open my eyes to the tragedy that took place in Paris in 1942. I liked how the story shifted between the 40′s and present day. Overall a good and moving story!!”

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling
kaling

My Goodreads Rating: 1 star
Overall: I really like Mindy Kaling’s character on The Office and I heard this book being compared to Tina Fey’s Bossypants, so I figured I’d give this a try. Here is my Goodreads review: “Hmm I’m starting to think something is wrong with me. I keep reading raving reviews about this book and I just don’t get it!! Another Goodreads member reviewed this book perfectly in one sentence: it feels like you are reading a 10-year old’s diary. I LOVE the show The Office and really appreciate Mindy Kaling’s character, so I thought I would definitely like her memoir. That wasn’t the case. It felt like she was trying to be witty in every single sentence, and was failing miserably.”

White Girl Problems by Babe Walker
probsMy Goodreads Rating:
1 star
Overall:
Ugh, another atrocious book. The horribly awkward story of how I purchased the book was all for nothing! I had a lot of feelings about this one so I wrote a long review on the site:

“What a disappointing book. I know, I shouldn’t have expected TOO MUCH with a title like “White Girl Problems” but not only was this book unfunny, it actually made me angry! White Girl Problems is labeled as a memoir, however 20 pages in I thought “there is no way this is true.” Come to find out, it is not a memoir at all. The book was written by two men and their gal pal. The “author” Babe Walker is not a real person.

The actual writing itself is extremely annoying and shallow. Part of the fun in reading memoirs (even made up memoirs) is finding areas in which you can relate to the author. Even if you cannot relate to the exact situation the author is describing, you can normally relate to the feelings that are produced because of the situation. With White Girl Problems, I just became disgusted and thanked God that I couldn’t relate to any of it. This is not a book about “white girl problems” (whatever those may be), it is a book about a spoiled, self-absorbed, materialistic, socialite. Even knowing that, the stories are nowhere near believable. And this is coming from someone whose imagination is in overdrive most days!

Clearly some people have found humor in this book, but in good conscience I cannot recommend this book to anybody. Instead, read a memoir that is actually a memoir, written by a real author!”

Finger Lickin’ Fifteen (Stephanie Plum#15) by Janet Evanovich

15My Goodreads Rating: 1 (this may have been a little harsh, it may be a 2)
Overall: I have never been a huge Evanovich fan, but figured I’d give this book a try. It was a fun one to have while I was at the beach and wanted something mindless to read, so I was happy to have it then! Once I returned home, I had no real desire to keep reading it.

The Drowning World (The Aquantis Series) by Brenda Peterson
worldMy Goodreads Rating:
In progress! I am currently reading this book and am loving it. My aunt is actually the author, pretty awesome!
Overall: Here is what the about section on Goodreads says: Two different people from two very different worlds. Can a mermaid and a human boy find love? Can they survive in his world and hers?

A regal and highly trained young mermaid, Marina, is on her first spy mission to Skyeworld in 2020. She comes ashore on Siesta Key, Florida where she meets feisty Lukas, a proud Cuban refugee. Marina will have to choose between the advanced civilization of Aquantis, where she has been chosen as a High Priestess, and her love for Lukas and his dangerously polluted SkyeWorld.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie
bkMy Goodreads Rating:
5 stars
Overall: Do I really need to talk about how much I love, adore, and cherish this book? I read it over 2 years ago and have not put it down since. I’m always rereading it and finding new perspective and ways to find freedom and happiness. Just put “Byron Katie” in the search bar on my blog and you’ll see what she has done for me!

Those are the books of 2012! I currently have 104 books on my “to read” shelf, here are some of my goals for 2013:

Bobblehead Dad: 25 Life Lessons I Forgot I Knew by Jim Higley
Mental by Eddie Sarfaty
The Bus Driver Who Wanted to be God and Other Short Stories by Etgar Keret
Red Letters: Living a Faith That Bleeds by Tom Davis
Memoirs of a Violent Sleeper by Matt Micheli (is it a surprise that I want/need to read this?)
Why We Believe in God(s): A Concise Guide to the Science of Faith by Thompson, Aukofer, and Dawkins
Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain by David Eagleman
What is the What by Dave Eggers
Stories I Only Tell My Friends by Rob Lowe
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
Sun Stand Still: What Happens When You Dare to Ask God for the Impossible by Steven Furtick
Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales From an Allergic Life by Sandra Beasley (I’m SO MAD that I didn’t think of this book title for my maybe-going-to-happen-future-memoir. This allergic girl sounds just like me! This is another must read!)

12 books for 2013, that is my goal. I’m hoping to achieve it, and hopefully move even more books from my “to read” to “read” virtual shelf! I also have a “Favorites” shelf on my Goodreads account, books I have read in my lifetime that I adore. That is a blog post in itself and will be coming soon!

What’s on your “to read” list for 2013? Did you read any good ones this past year?

18 thoughts on “My Year in Books

  1. Sorry I’m just getting to this, I saved up a whole bunch of blogs over the holidays. Good list. I haven’t read many of these but I did read Sarah’s Key. The tragedy of the round up of Jews at the Paris velodrome is heartbreaking and I never knew it happened. I really liked this book except for the romance part of it. I found it syrupy and contrived. I understand the movie leaves that out. I want to see the movie but think I need to be in the right frame of mind for that.

    Nice post.

    • Oh please, no apology necessary. I write a lot of random posts and don’t expect everyone to read or comment on each one! That being said, thanks for your comment haha!

      I feel you, I haven’t seen the movie yet but I do want to. Eventually. That stuff all just makes me a little sick to my stomach, but I think it is important to learn more about.

    • I’m the same way, I wish I could read 24/7 and I hate that it’s so hard to make time for it! My 2011 on goodreads shows that I read 17 books! I need that life back…. hahaha

      Glad to hear from another Bossy Pants lover!! At least one of the two books you read was amazing!

        • Ohhh gotcha, haha! Yeah if I were to list every book I’ve ever read it would be an insanely long and probably embarrassing list.

          My favorite story involving Goodreads is when my dad added a book to his “to read” list not knowing that his settings made it so every single one of his followers would receive an email showing what books he had added. The book he thought he was privately adding was titled something along the lines of “how to deal with your menopausal wife”….so a ton of people INCLUDING my mother got this notification. I was laughing so hard when he told me that story. He said he immediately went and removed it from his “shelf.”

            • Actually the way the site works, you can just click the books that you’ve read and it automatically adds it to your “read” shelf. You don’t have to put when you read it.

              From the point you join the website, start reading books, and move them from your “currently reading” to “read” shelf, it will keep track of them. So that’s why I can look back and see which books I read in 2012, 2011, 2010, and 2009. Before that, all the books I read are just in one big lump of “previously read.” Does that make sense?

  2. I love Goodreads. I finally got round to reading the Twilight series this year (I know I’m only 5 or 6 years behind right?). I’m planning on starting the year off with The Life of Pi.

    • What did you think about the Twilight Series? I loved them, but really don’t like the movies. I think they had so much potential, but dang Kristen Stewart ruins it for me. I also want to read Life of Pi, I’ve only heard good things.

      • I’m half way through Eclipse so I’m not finished yet, but I enjoyed them a lot more than I thought I would.

        I saw the first film when it came out, I fell asleep. Kristen Stewart only seems to have one expression which is a cross between confused and disgusted.

      • Yes, EXACTLY. I wish they had given her role to a nice piece of cardboard or maybe a sheet of wax paper. Either would have been as good if not a tad better than her?

  3. I use GoodReads too – love it! Otherwise, I’d have no clue what I’ve read! Sarah’s Key was one of the books I read this year as well. My favorites from this year were: Sophie’s Choice (long, but amazing), Native Son (also so so amazing) and …. Their Eyes Were Watching God. I’ll have to check out Loving What Is!

    • I know! Some of the books I read even a few months ago I had forgotten about. I LOVE goodreads for that!

      I’ve always wanted to read Sophie’s Choice, in fact it’s on my “to read” list :) Native Son I haven’t heard of, I’ll check it out now though!

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