Books I Read April/May 2019

I’ve been reading. But I’ve also been moving and applying for jobs and working and riding my bike and fixing my car. So I haven’t been writing. So these are the books I read in April and May.

Image from Amazon.com

The Perfect Child is a book to read if you want to read something creepy and unsettling. It’s about a married couple who wanted to adopt because they weren’t able to conceive. They both work in a hospital and an abused girl is found and quickly forms a bond with the husband. They decide to adopt her and learn her issues along the way. But things just go haywire. The little girl is malicious toward the wife and the husband denies that anything is wrong. She eventually becomes pregnant and gives birth to a little boy, the whole time worrying about her child’s safety around their adopted daughter. This book makes you wonder the entire time. It’s upsetting to see a wedge divided in a marital relationship. So many things happen. I won’t tell you all of them.

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Normal People I got from Book of the Month. I loved it. It follows two characters who enter and leave each other’s lives as friends and romantically. The author did a great job in detailing mental health issues and emotional disorders. The story keeps you rooting for them. There are so many ups and downs. Don’t be sad though.

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The Nest is another book that I’ve been putting off reading for a while. I finally decided to pick it up at the Florence Library. It’s about a family who are very close to coming into their inheritance. They all have plans on what they’re going to do with it, but their oldest brother may have jeopardized most of the inheritance already through a big misstep in his life. This book was frustrating and heart wrenching, but definitely worth the read.

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How Not to Die Alone is so funny and ridiculous. It’s another one I got from Book of the Month. It follows Andrew, a middle aged homebody who works as a property assessor for people who have died alone. His job is to find any next of kin or anything of value that can pay for a funeral.
Everyone at Andrew’s work believes that he is married and has two kids. However, neither of these things are true. Andrew is okay with everyone believing it to be true though, because it gives him an excuse to not go out. But then a new woman starts working with him and changes everything. He has to decide how much the lie is worth.

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Necessary People I also got from Book of the Month. It was suspenseful and makes you wonder who you’re supposed to root for. It’s about Violet and Stella, two best friends from completely different lifestyles. Violet grew up poor but brilliant and went to a prestigious college far from where she grew up. Stella is from a ridiculously rich family and always gets what she wants. They meet in college and Stella brings Violet fully into her life and allows her to live as her shadow. After college Violet lands a great job working for a television production company. Stella becomes jealous that Violet is doing so well and is no longer in her shadow, so she finds a way to become an anchor at the same company. A deeper and deeper wedge is driven between the two until Violet has to make the hardest decision of her life while worrying that she may lose everything.

What I Read: March 2019

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A Lily in the Light was a book I got from Amazon First Reads. It’s about a little sister that disappears and the family that is left behind. The main character, Esme, was 11 when her four-year-old sister disappeared. Esme was a promising ballerina, and her parents became depressed and almost unable to cope, so her ballet teacher offered to take her in. Esme auditions to go to a private boarding school for dancers and wins a full ride scholarship. The book then fast forwards to when Esme is 19, dancing in Paris. They found a girl that could be her missing sister, and she’s alive.
This book was better than I expected. It did a really great job of showing someone grappling with guilt over such a great loss. It highlights Esme’s depression and her reasons behind different actions. I’m definitely glad I chose it.

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This is another book I got from Book of the Month. They have really been able to deliver in their selections and I definitely recommend trying it out if you’ve been curious.
The story follows Hen, an artist, and her husband right after they move into a new house in the suburbs. Hen is bipolar and has a history of episodes where she becomes obsessed with different murder cases. Her last episode came right after their neighbor on their old street was murdered. It was made to look like a robbery, but the victim’s fencing trophy was also stolen. The killer was never caught.
Hen’s new next door neighbors invite them over for dinner and she sees a fencing trophy just like the missing one sitting on the neighbor’s mantel. Hen then becomes convinced that her neighbor is a serial killer, but with her previous history, who would believe her accusations?
This book had so many twists and turns and I loved every minute of it. The author perfectly captured what it’s like to suffer from mental illness. I especially loved the twist at the end. I won’t spoil it though.

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I’ve been wanting to read this book since it came out because I had heard good things about it. I had been reading a lot of murder and dark stories, so I decided to try something else. I picked it up at the local library and almost didn’t put it down. It reminded me why I want to be a therapist. It reminded me why I want to help people tell their stories.
The story is about Greer Kadetsky and her discovery of feminism. She is sucked in by Faith Frank in college and wants nothing more than to change lives for the better in the name of feminism. The book also tells the story from the point of view of several different characters.
There is so much growth and change in each character. It was so realistic. I should go to the library more often.

Books I read in February 2019

February was filled with new distractions, so I only read three books, but I’m still reaching my goal to read more this year.

These are the books I read last month:

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In January I wrote a post about Marie Kondo’s show Tidying Up on Netflix. I mentioned that I had wanted to read her book for a while. My dad saw that post and bought me the book. I have a pretty cool dad.

I liked this book and found it to be a helpful resource. What is difficult for me right now in the organizing my house category is that it is hard to find motivation when I know I am about to pack up my house and move across the country. I have been effective in going through my clothes and books and have gotten rid of them. I plan to use everything I learned in our next destination. I’m trying to feel positive, but it’s hard to feel that way right now. I’m still a lazy human.

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This was my book of the month pick.
I really enjoyed this book. The main character’s sister was murdered and her case was never solved. She always suspected that her sister’s boyfriend was to blame, and when she returns home to take care of her mother she discovers that he’s a nurse at her mother’s cancer facility. She starts searching for truth, starting with the boyfriend, and finds out so many things surrounding the case that she never would have known.
I keep reading books with a lot of mystery and murder in them. I get sucked in so easily, and I sometimes wonder how this is affecting my mental health, but it’s also hard to care. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves mysteries surrounding families and murders.

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This is another book that I got from amazon first reads. I’m always apprehensive to read books I get from first reads, because it seems like the majority of my choices have been duds or have just been really hard to get through. I don’t really like reading boring books.
Luckily, this book was awesome. It’s from the perspective of Katie, whose father was arrested six years before after being convicted of statutory rape. Katie’s then best friend was the accuser, and Katie never believed her father was guilty. The book starts off right before her father is released from prison and is filled with flashbacks from the summer the crime was supposedly committed. Katie finally starts to discover different things about the case that she had been kept in the dark about as a teenager.
This book has such a good plot and shows so much character development. Katie begins to understand why she does the things she does and reacts in certain ways. It was really interesting from a counseling perspective. Definitely glad I chose this book.

Books I Read in January 2019

I’m trying to get into the habit of reading more, and so far I’ve done well. I subscribed to Book of the Month Club, and I’ve really like what they’ve delivered.

These are the books I read in January:

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I only bought this book because it was $3 at Books a Million. You Should Have Known was about a therapist who believed that she could see if a relationship was doomed from the start. She wrote a book telling women that all of the problems in their relationship or issues that their male partners had were evidenced from the beginning. Her books is about to be published and she’s planning a book tour when a mother at her son’s private school is murdered and her husband disappears. She soon realizes that she had it all wrong and that her husband was not who she thought he was, and she changes her whole life. I thought the main character seemed a little clueless at the beginning, but this book turned out to be more than I expected.

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I got Bleak Harbor on my kindle for free from Amazon First Reads. These books are usually hit or miss. This story specifically was confusing. The premise of the story was really intriguing; a woman’s autistic 15 year old went missing right before his 16th birthday. The whole book is spent trying to find him and figure out who took him. Every time it seemed like they had the answer, something else would come to light. The ending had such a twist. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend Bleak Harbor, but it wasn’t the worst book.

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The Woman in the Window was my first book from Book of the Month, and by far my favorite of the month. Apparently it is coming out as a movie this year, so I’ll definitely be going to see it. The premise is similar to Rear Window, a woman stays inside her house and watches her neighbors. However, she stays inside because she is agoraphobic. She is convinced that she witnessed a crime across the street, but no one believes her and she wonders if she’s going crazy. This book had so many twists and turns and I was sucked in the entire time.

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I also got The Silent Patient from Book of the Month. It started out a little slow, but picked up pace, and the story was was never going where I thought it was. A talented artist murders her husband and goes silent, and she ends up in a mental hospital. The narrator is a therapist who is intrigued by the case and wants to help her. He gets hired at the hospital with hopes of getting her to break her silence. This book was so crazy, but so good.

What books did you read this month?

2019- A Year For Words

I used to read a lot. And I used to read quickly. I devoured words and had so much inspiration to spin more. But I’ve been distracted for so long. I go through phases, but I don’t want reading and inspiration to be just a faze. So I’m going to try to make 2019 a year for reading, a year for words.

I made a decision that I’ve been thinking about for a long time. I decided to sign up for Book of the Month. This means I’ll at least read one book a month.

I tried last year to do the Amazon First Reads on my Kindle, but I just don’t like reading on my kindle very much. It’s useful for school books and for traveling, but there’s just something about real books with pages I can turn. I can see how close to the end I am getting. And the pages don’t make my eyes as tired.

I’ve also decided that if I don’t like a book, I’m not going to kill myself trying to finish it. That’s what makes reading so exhausting. Not every writing style is as easy for me to read. Everyone likes what they like.

I’m going to do my best to do what I like. Because for a while now I haven’t been doing what I like. I haven’t been doing that many things that make me happy. Alabama has not made me happy. It’s time that I start taking care of myself through and through, starting with reading again.

Carrying On

I don’t want to read anything.  It’s all just become words on a page, or on a screen, and can only catch my eye for a few moments before all interest flickers away.  But I want to be interested.  I want to be informed.  I want to be enlightened.  I want to be refreshed.

I don’t feel like eating anything.  Even though my body needs sustenance.  I find myself abstaining, but not entirely.  I’ve just lost my appetite.  Food makes me sick.  I make myself sick.

I haven’t written anything.  Where did my meaning go?  I know that I have to have something left.  I am not lost.  I am not broken.  I will carry on.

Because that’s what you do.  That’s what I do.  Carrying on is always worth it. There is always something better just around the corner.  So even if everything doesn’t seem like it’s going the way I want it to; even if I’m stressed down to my core, I will carry on.  I will make it through.  Because I always have before.

It’s all gone now

I sometimes wonder if we’re even friends anymore.  It seems that every time I reach out you put up a wall, like maybe I’m not good enough for you anymore.  It makes me wonder if my burden became too much to carry, and you decided it was too hard to be close to me.  Or even worse, that when it became easy you realized you weren’t up for the challenge.

You say I give up too easily, but I don’t want to keep trying anymore.  I will always give up.  If there is no evident end in sight, if there is no positive outcome, why should I keep going.  If I call out your name, if I show up in front of you, I feel like more of an annoyance than anything.  I tried to be transparent, but it’s like I’ve made myself invisible.

I don’t know how to open my mouth to tell you words that are weighing me down.  I never see you anymore, I can’t feel you anymore, and whenever I’m invited along, it’s when you know I can never come.  I’ll never be there.  You’ll never be there.  We are on opposite sides of the spectrum, heading in the same direction, but parallel so we’ll never actually meet.  And this might be too sad.

I know sometimes you read me like a book, but you’ll never realize the lines I’ve written are for you.  I need you to remember me again.  I need you to notice me again, because sometimes you were the only hope I lived for.  And I know I should never live for you, that I never really could live for you, because you give me nothing and I am nothing to you.  I know you would never live for me.  But I can hope.  I had hope.  And it’s all gone now.