Y’all, I killed it in May and read 8 books. Most of them were fluffy. One of them was a graphic novel that I read in an afternoon. BUT STILL. I read 8 books.

I’ve read 16 of the 24 for Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge. This month I totally stalled out trying to read The Last of the Mohicans as my book published before 1830. Anyone have a recommendation for that category that might strike my fancy a little better?

Also pretty much abandoned this month: The Zen of Social Media Marketing. Nonfiction has to be really good to keep my attention.

I enjoyed this one enough to give it 4 stars, though I think Weiner’s wit and verve come through a bit better in some of her other books (i.e. I really like Cannie Shapiro). It would be a great beach read, but it’s not overly fluffy. The relationships have enough heft to them that they give you food for thought.

Goodreads reviewer Susan nailed the review of this one:

We didn’t like this book. We don’t like stories told in first person plural. We felt this made the story unnecessarily vague and lacking the personalization that would endear the story to the reader. We felt that the author perhaps told the story in this manner to avoid having to be detailed. But we felt that lack of detail lessened the impact of what was taking place.

I read a similar book about the wives of the first astronauts, and it was the individual details that made it fascinating. I did learn a lot I didn’t know about Los Alamos, and I flew through the book while on a backpacking trip, but it wasn’t particularly enjoyable. 2 stars on Goodreads.

This was a fun, light read. I like Sophie’s voice a lot. It felt as familiar as reading a blog, which makes sense since she is a blogger! I found the Scripture mentions to be a bit jarring. It was clear from the whole book that the author is a person of faith, but the exact Scripture references felt forced, as if “Oh, this is being published by a Christian publishing house, we’d better put some Scripture in!” Other than that I enjoyed the book.

This was a lovely, engrossing book. I’ve read it described as a teenage love story, but I think that’s far too reductive. It was quiet, but in an enjoyable way. May’s book club read (though we aren’t meeting to discuss it until June!)

I probably don’t appreciate the illustrations as much as I should (I am the girl, after all, who, as a child, told her mother, who had bought her beautifully illustrated books, “I just want to look at the WORDS!”), but I’ve enjoyed both of the Maus books. It’s an interesting take on a fascinating and horrific survival story. Very readable, and quick to get through. I wonder if there will ever be a third! My heart sort of broke over the father-son relationship and how distressed the father always seemed to be.

Another beach-y read. I’ve never read any Dorothea Benton Frank before because I had written her off as total fluff (although, who am I kidding, acting like I’m above that), but this was really enjoyable. Except for the habit Frank has of writing dialogue where the speaker starts every sentence with “Ashley?” or whatever the listener’s name is. That drove me a little crazy!

I really liked this book. As a blogger myself, it was fun to read about a character who was a blogger (though I was jealous of how easily she seemed to grow her audience!). I loved the main character’s voice, and the sense of place evoked in each new location she called home. My only reasoning for the 4 stars I gave it on Goodreads is that I felt the ending was a bit too easy. I won’t spoil anything, but I thought the relationship that becomes central to the book deserved some more weight when it was rekindled. BUT, I now really want to read Adichie’s other books!

An absolutely delightful book! I honestly can’t come up with a single critical thing to say about it, except maybe for the fact that it defies description, because no summary of it I’d ever read before had made me want to pick it up. It always sounded weird and vaguely creepy and not like something I would enjoy. It was Modern Mrs. Darcy’s inclusion of it on the summer reading guide that finally convinced me to give it a shot, and boy am I glad I did! I would follow that woman into the pages of any book.

Currently reading: Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis by Lauren Winner. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to say about that one.

Next week I am going to the actual beach and have purchased a book that I intend to read on said beach, which darn well better be beachy!

Laura Lindeman

Laura Lindeman