Saturday, April 4, 2015

Quarterly Reading Wrap-Up

I seriously feel guilty about typing up the entire list of books I've read during the first quarter of 2015.  But then I think of how much I've enjoyed the list that Janssen has provided at Everyday Reading every quarter, and I feel considerably less guilty.  I had a good first quarter, finishing 64 books.  

So, in order they were completed with a few additional notes, here we go:

  • Sister of Heart and Snow by Margaret Dilloway - adult fiction - I loved the story between the sisters, but not the samurai part 
  • The Smartest Kids in the World by Amanda Ripley - non fiction- this look at education in the United States could easily make my top 10 best books of the year list.  
  • I'm Glad I Did by Cynthia Weil - YA fiction - a fun mystery set in the 1960s. 
  • Food: A Love Story by Jim Gaffigan - humor- best in short snippets, I liked the humor a lot
  • The Same Sky by Amanda Eyre Ward- women's fiction - a woman who wants to have a baby and can't, and a girl who is trying to come to the United States from Mexico to make a better life - on my kindle
  • The Question of Miracles by Elana Arnold - middle grade realistic fiction - a perfect novel that deal with some tough questions
  • Inside the O'Briens by Lisa Genova- fiction - another winner by Genova, this time dealing with Huntington's Disease- on kindle
  • Bad Little Falls by Paul Doiron- mystery- another installment into this series featuring a game warden living in Maine
  • Living Well, Spending Less by Ruth Soukup, self-help, I've heard other books by Soukup are better, but this is the only one I've read and I found her advice practical and interesting - on kindle
  • Falling into Place by Amy Zhang -young adult and apparently forgettable. I couldn't even recall the cover
  • The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson - moving back and forth in time, a woman tries to determine which reality she is living in is real.
  • The War that Saved by Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley- tween historical fiction - a great novel of World War II, featuring a protagonist who benefited from the war
  • A Quilt for Christmas by Sandra Dallas - a fast little Christmas story by Dallas that could be enjoyed year round
  • My Father's Wives by Mike Greenberg- fiction which is not horribly memorable to me, but was mildly entertaining
  • We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas - fiction - a five star read spanning one man's life that should make my best of 2015 list this year
  • The Bridge From Me to You by Lisa Schroeder - a good solid tween read
  • Glory O'Brien's History of the Future by AS King- young adult and my first experience with King; Glory can see the past and future and is uncertain what her own future holds
  • All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven - young adult - a wonderful story of two friends dealing with the tough topic of mental illness (Kindle)
  • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah - World War II novel of two sisters who both go about assisting the Resistance in the only ways they can find.  Hannah at her best (Kindle)
  • Dreamer Wisher Liar by Cherise Mericle Harper - middle grade - Ash is dreading this summer, but a jar in her basement allows her to see into a friendship of two girls from the past
  • Read Between the Lines by Jo Knowles - young adult- interconnected stories where the middle finger plays a part
  • Boston Girl by Anita Diamant- adult fiction- this isn't the Red Tent, but it could easily be the story of my grandmother's life, or yours.
  • Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult - fiction - a fantastic five star read.  Jenna Metcalf is searching for her mother, a scientist who studies elephants.  Her search takes her to a variety of places but the twist at the end (even knowing Picoult's writing and that there will be a twist at the end) totally surprised me.
  • Paper Things by Jennifer Richard Jacobson - tween novel about siblings and their need to strike out on their own, leaving them homeless.  
  • The Undertaker's Daughter- memoir - having lived in a funeral home I could understand and relate to her memories of life in a small town and the way the funeral home business worked (kindle)
  • Us by David Nicholls - fiction -Douglas and Connie have been married for nearly thirty years. When Connie tells him she wants a divorce, Douglas doesn't understand why. The two are brought back together as they search for their son Albie who is travelling around Europe.
  • All The Rage by Courtney Summers-young adult-  Romy has been branded a slut in her school. She seeks refuge in the diner where she works. Her silence over what really happened to her may cause other girls to get hurt.
  • More Love, Less Panic by Claude Knobler - non-fiction - part memoir, Knobler recounts the international adoption of his son, offering wisdom on parenting to all readers
  • The Life We Bury by Allen Eskins -fiction - a college student while writing the life story of a man from death row decides to prove his innocence 
  • Golden State by Stephanie Kagen- fiction -  a series of bombings at universities makes Natalie begin thinking that the notes the bomber leaves sound a lot like her estranged brother (kindle)
  • Finding Jake by Bryan Reardon - fiction- a new twist on Nineteen Minutes by Picoult, Jake is thought to have been involved with a school shooting and is now missing, something his parents can't bring themselves to believe.
  • Honey by Sarah Weeks- tween fiction -a sweet story of a girl looking for happiness
  • A Bear Called Paddington by Michael Bond- -children's fiction- I've read this one many times, this time to my youngest daughter
  • Beautiful Eyes by Paul Austin- memoir- Austin writes of his daughter's Down's Syndrome and how it has affected their family
  • Her by Harriet Lane- fiction - a fast psychological thriller that had me turning the pages as fast as I could
  • Happiness For Beginners by Katherine Center -fiction- Helen signs up for a wilderness survival course looking for a bit of happiness after her divorce.
  • Writer to Writer: Think to Ink by Gail Carson Levine- children's non-fiction -a how-to for writers with great writing prompts
  • More Than Happy: The Wisdom of Amish Parenting by Serena Miller- adult non-fiction - Miller gives practical advice on parenting after spending significant time in an Amish community and seeing firsthand their success with raising their children (kindle)
  • Global Mom by Melissa Dalton Bradford- memoir- Bradford and her family have moved around the world and she shares their experiences in this memoir
  • This Side of Home by Renee Watson-young adult fiction - Twins Nikki and Maya feel differently about the way their lives and community are changing
  • The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand- young adult fiction- Lex can't help shutting everyone out after her brother killed himself, and feels responsible. 
  • A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler -I loved the first half of this book, the second half not so much.
  • Etta and Otto and Russell and James by Emma Hooper -fiction - Etta leaves a note for her husband as she embarks on a walk to find water. He understands as  he himself once went on his own journey during World War I.
  • The Upstairs Wife by Rafia Zakaria - nonfiction- Zakaria's book is part memoir of a family and part memoir of Pakistan
  • All of a Kind Family by Sydney Taylor- children's fiction- read aloud to Little Sister, this is a favorite to share with my girls
  • Taking Hold by Francisco Jimenez- memoir- a fourth installment in Jimenez's memoirs
  • My Sister's Grave by Robert Dugoni - mystery- Tracy has spent twenty years looking for her sister's murder and now that she is with the Seattle PD, she has a chance to exact justice
  • Ghettoside: A Story of Murder in America by Jill Leovy - nonfiction - an interesting and very readable non-fiction account of the way young black men are murdered at a much higher rate than white men, and how infrequently these cases are solved. (kindle)
  • Fish In A Tree by Linda Mullaly Hunt- children's fiction - a five star read - dealing with dyslexia and not fitting in
  • The Martian by Andrew Weir - I'm not a science fiction reader, but this is one of my favorites about an astronaut who is stuck on Mars when his space ship leaves without him
  • The Paper Cowboy by Kristin Levine - tween historical fiction -another amazing book by this author; McCarthyism, postpartum depression, bullying - this book is full of good stuff
  • Second Life by SJ Watson - fiction - a bit creepy, involving the internet and not really knowing who you can trust
  • Girl in the Dark by Anna Lyndsey - memoir- Lyndsey has a rare condition which causes her to live her life in a blacked out room, otherwise suffering the effects of light touching any part of her skin. (kindle)
  • The Given World by Marian Palaia - fiction - spanning decades a woman searches for peace after her brother goes missing in Vietnam
  • A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear - fiction - the most recent in the Maisie Dobbs series, which makes me want to get to the rest of them that are still on my TBR list
  • Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins- psychological thriller- another great book in this genre I am coming to love.  
  • The Real Thing by Ellen McCarthy- non-fiction McCarthy explores love, offering advice on each stage of relationships
  • Top of the Morning by Brian Stelter- non-fiction - I loved the inside look at morning TV and the whole Ann Curry debacle.
  • More All of a Kind Family by Sydney Taylor - children's fiction - I've never read more than the first in this series, so this read aloud with Little Sister is letting me know more about this family of five sisters, too. (kindle)
  • Dear Hank Williams by Kimberly Willis Holt - children's fiction- a young girl picks rising star Hank Williams as her pen-pal, and a way to share her thoughts and feelings
  • Head Case by Cole Cohen- memoir- Cohen has struggled all her life with certain tasks only to realize after years of tests that there is a lemon sized hole in her brain
  • Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky -tween fiction -Grayson has always enjoyed things most girls enjoy, something that sets him apart from his male peers.  
  • It's What I Do by Lynsey Addario -memoir- Addario travels the world to get a story, something she finds as necessary as breathing
  • Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver- young adult fiction - Oliver needs to be added to my list of authors to read. After finishing Vanishing Girls, I realized I have never read her work.
I'm not sure how the second quarter could top the first in 2015; I have read some amazing books.  Are there any from this list you've read? Join the fun, and link up with Janssen at Everyday Reading. Share your list!


Kay said...

You are a wild reading woman! I read exactly half of what you read - and I don't work outside the home - and I'm an empty nester. Here's hoping that your 2nd quarter is just as fun!

Peaceful Reader said...

Your reading always amazes me. I also read The Same Sky and Greg is reading Girl on the train. I'm glad to hear you had a great Easter!