I recently filled out all the blanks in my first blog about reading, which you should go back and check out here. It only gets me up to 25, so at this rate I’ll be lucky to hit 50 books by year’s end, let alone 100, but I have to say reading has indeed become an immense pleasure for me again, and that is better than trying to hit a meaningless number goal (says she who knows she can’t hit said meaningless number goal.) Anyway, I wanted to take a minute to also highly recommend a few of the books I’ve read recently, which are surprisingly mainly non-fiction. Most of the fiction I’ve read lately has disappointed me. Go figure. It’s been a crazy time in life and oddly enough, reading is the only thing that allows me to focus and be still lately. Anyway my top 5 of the past few months:
The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner
Dishwasher by Pete Jordan
God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Sightseeing by Rattawut Lapcharoensap
What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Marukami (although if you aren’t running a marathon, you probably won’t care.)
Moving forward, here is space for the next 25 entries. Hopefully it will be full by the end of the year.
(I’m embarrassed to admit that I’m currently reading The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown, which simultaneously makes me want to gouge my eyes out and turn the page to see what happens next. So, I guess that’s a kind of talent…)
26. Now and Zen- Linda C. Gerber. Very light young adult fiction featuring travel. I would have loved them when I was 14, now I find it a little heavy-handed. But good fluffy reading for when my brain is too full.
27. Dishwasher – Pete Jordan. Heard about this guy on This American Life, which never leads me astray. Really entertaining stories of a dude who dreams of washing dishes in all 50 states. I just thoroughly enjoyed it, man.
28. Sightseeing – Rattawut Lapcharoensap. A collection of short stories by a Thai-American author, read on my trip. They are just really simple, lovely tales of family and compromise.
29. Fieldwork – Mischa Berlinski. Another novel about Thailand I bought for my trip, I mostly really enjoyed this one, though I did find it a little overwritten when it came to the anthropology parts. But still a pretty compelling read.
30. The Lost Symbol – Dan Brown. Oi. You know I enjoyed The DaVinci Code for the pseudo-intelletual thriller that it was. I was entertained. But this book was boring. I just didn’t care. It took me a month to read. I wish I could put things down when I don’t like them without that need to finish what I start I bought this because I thought it would be a quick read…not so much when you’re not interested.
31. Mockingjay – Suzanne Collins. Yay for completing trilogies! Team Peeta forever!
32. Runaway – Alice Munro. A collection of short stories that I had read a lot of good things about but that I was mostly tepid about. Some stories were sort of a slow burn, but so slow that I had a hard time picking the book up to read at all.
33. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Another book that sneaks up on you so that you’re so immersed you cry when it’s over. Truly beautiful writing. I like pretty sentences.
34. The Yiddish Policeman’s Union – Michael Chabon. I love Michael Chabon. I liked this book a lot. He makes me jealous the way he uses words to create images. The ending might have been a little underwhelming, but I still thoroughly enjoyed it.