So admittedly, I’ve been terrible at reading these past couple of months. I set a goal of reading 100 books this year and am 7 books behind. Yikes! I decided to join in Megan at Semi-Charmed Kind of Life with her Winter Book Challenge in hopes of jump-starting my reading again!
What I Read in October
Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bojilian – ★★★★ – This has got to be one of the oddest book plots I’ve read. A homeless girl living in an igloo in Vermont, both of her parents are dead, and it was all their fault. As the daughter as the most hated man, she’s left to pick up the pieces. What’s so tragic about this story is this poor girl is spinning out of control, and there’s no one that can help her. A really captivating read that pulls at your emotions for poor Emily.
Nest by Esther Ehrlich – ★★★★ – This is a little younger than I typically read (Middle Grade) but honestly, you wouldn’t have known this was meant for younger young people. I really enjoyed this sweet yet very sad and tragic story. It’s about a girl who’s faced with tragedy – first her mother is diagnosed with a debilitating disease, then begins having mental health problems and is institutionalized. The voice is really strong, and the characters just break your heart.
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver – ★★★ – This book had a really creative premise – it starts out with the death of the main character, and she re-lives her “ending” 7 times. However, something about this just felt weird and I didn’t totally get into it until the end. It’s really hard to stay tuned in for the first half of the book, but once it gets going you can get past some of the “teen drama” brought at the beginning. A solid three stars.
The Heiresses by Sara Shepard – ★★ – After reading the Pretty Little Liars series, also by Sara Shepard, I was excited to see what was in store with this one. I’m not sure if this is written by someone else pretending to be her or what, but this was NOTHING like PLL. Seriously. This does not read like a YA. There are so many characters in this book I couldn’t keep all of them and their families straight. Basically, I stuck it out, but this was not a book I would recommend.
The Book of You by Claire Kendal – ★★★★ – Oh my gosh, this was so creepy. This is a thriller, about a man who is stalking a woman, whom he’s created (in his mind) an elaborate relationship with. Clarissa writes the Book of You to him, her stalker, and catalogs all of his run ins with her. Paralleling her story of her stalking, she is a member of the jury in a trial about another stalking victim and sees how poorly the court system treat another woman in a similar position. I would recommend avoiding this one if stalking or rape is a trigger, but otherwise this will have you questioning your own thoughts and reactions if you were in Clarissa’s shoes.
Semi-Charmed Winter Book Challenge
5 points: Freebie! Read any book that fits the general rules.
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
10 points: Read a book written by an author who has published at least 10 books.
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
10 points: Read a book of short stories.
A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
10 points: Read a book with a food in the title.
The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street by Susan Jane Gilman
15 points: Read the first book in a series that is new to you (so no rereads for this one!)
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
15 points: Read a book that was originally written in a language that is not your native language.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
15 points: Read a book written by a local author.
Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion
20 points: Read a “bookish book” (in which books play an important role.)
Miss Buncle’s Book by D.E. Stevenson
20 points: Read a book with a direction in the title (e.g. north, south, east, west or any combination of those).
Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz
25 points: Read a book from a genre you don’t usually read.
Delicious by Susan Mallery (Romance)
25 points: Read a book with a song lyric in the title. Be sure to tell us the song name and artist as well!
The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes
30 points: Read two books with a different meal in each title (e.g. breakfast, lunch, dinner, supper, brunch).
The Oakdale Dinner Club by Kim Moritsugu & Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.: Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and the Dawn of the Modern Woman by Sam Wasson
My Reading Updates
Total Books this month: 8
Total Books read this year: 73 / 100
Total Books read for the Reading Pile Challenge: 40 / 40 Completed!
Wow, The Book of You sounds amazing! Will have to check that out at some point.
Love your challenge list. I really liked If I Stay (and had no idea Gayle Forman had written over 10 books!).
The Book of You is really creepy but really interesting. It’s not something I would choose to read again, but it’s definitely different then anything I’ve read lately.
Gayle Forman has written 8 fiction books, 2 short stories, and 1 nonfiction book. I guess if short stories don’t count, then I may be having to find a replacement!
I’ve heard good things about a lot of these- good list!
wow the book of you sounds creepy as heck. i hope you enjoy the rosie project, i liked it very much – and I loved Cinder, well I loved the whole series. I read the girl with the dragon tattoo so many years ago I barely remember it, except that it was very good :) good luck with your 100 books challenge!
It was super creepy!
Thanks, I’m excited to read all three of those. Crossing my fingers I complete both the SCWBC and the 100 books! Eek.
I’d be really interested to hear what you think about If I Stay by Gayle Foreman. Our book club read it. :)
I will definitely let you know, but what did you think about it? I’ve heard some mixed reviews!
I loved Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the second one was slightly harder to get through, and I still haven’t finished the third one. But I think the first one stands on it’s own, so I hope you enjoy it. It was my first thought for that category, but I don’t really re-read books.
Thanks Breenah, I hope so too! I actually own the whole series, but never got around to reading it (like so many other books I own… oops!)
These all sound sooooo good. I’ll have to put a few on my “to read” list. Thanks for sharing!
~Ashley @ A Cute Angle
Glad you found some that sounded interesting! Let me know if you end up reading any of them!
I am so impressed that you are trying to read 100 books this year. I really enjoyed Girl With A Dragon Tattoo. It was a very captivating read!
Haha, I think I may have bit off a bit more than I can chew, but then again I do have a couple of holiday breaks coming up from work… so we shall see! I’m excited to finally read Girl With a Dragon Tattoo, I’ve owned it for years!
Wow! You have some awesome books on your list and several of the books you read in October sound really interesting. I loved Cinder so I hope you enjoy it as well!
Good luck with the challenge!
Thanks, so do I! And thank you, I’m going to need it. I have yet to complete a challenge other than the Reading Pile one ;)
Your challenge list is so great! I have many of those books on my to-read list. I loved Cinder and the sequels-just a fun, quick read. :)
And by “just” I meant “such.” Haha.
ha, i knew what ya meant! ;)
Glad you liked Cinder! I’ve heard nothing but good things (and already own it!) so figured this was a great opportunity to read it.
Thanks for sharing these, Jenn. I’m adding more books to my to-be-read shelf! I haven’t finished a book this October, and it’s telling something.
Oh no, you’ll have to get reading something exciting to get you back into the swing of it!
I will find time this week or the next. I miss reading!
I started Nest a couple of months ago, and really liked it, but got sidetracked and still need to finish it! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it! Also, great picks for the book challenge! This one was definitely a bit harder than ones in the past, so I’m still working on my list!
Ah yes, I definitely recommend going back and finishing it, though depending on how far into it you are, you may not be very surprised by what happens.
I’m going to have to check and see if you’ve posted your book list yet, love seeing what others choose! :)
I have heard about the shepherdess and might download it for the weekend, it sounds great!
Awesome, let me know what you think!
I’m impressed by how many books you’ve read! I’ve lost count of how many books I have sitting around half-read, rather depressing! :(
Thanks Mica! I read errr listen to most of them in the car or during slow times at the office, otherwise there is no way I could read this many, have a full time job, AND blog haha! :)
“Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands” sounds really exciting. I’m gonna go get that one and start reading it today :)
Hope you enjoy it, Moana-Marie! :)