Ever since I was little I’ve been a reader. The first “big” book I remember reading was “Anne of Avonlea” and summer joy was a giant stack of books I picked out from the library. I can’t help but be in the middle of a book…or 6. My oldest daughter is the same way. These days when she is acting like a tween, her penalty is a time out from books. Also known as sheer torture. (I honestly never ever thought, while struggling to teach her to read, that we would come to point where not reading was a punishment.)
As a reader, I set a yearly goal of books to read. Last years 100 was easily done and surpassed. This year I am behind but to me it’s more quality vs. quantity. If you are a occasional reader or a voracious reader seeing what others are reading, what they thought of a particular book, or what they recommend is something you might enjoy. I know I do so I thought you might like to see what I read in May and what I’m planning to read in June.
Finished in May:
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood: This book is now a made for tv movie on HULU. After seeing previews, I was intrigued by the story and knew that if I ever wanted to see the show then I wanted to read the book first. On Goodreads I gave this book 2/5 stars. Here’s a brief synopsis: the U.S. as we know it is in the past. Due to “islamic supremacism” (actually written in 1985 this part of the story was kind of eery to me) the government has returned the U.S. back to Biblical ideologies. Except the ideologies of a patriarchal, rules-based society. Daily people are seen hanging for their so-called “crimes” such as not renouncing Catholicism. The government and it’s people function on a caste system. Commanders and their wives are the leaders. Martha’s are the housekeepers/cooks. You get the picture. The handmaid’s are women you are not biologically tainted by the world’s use of pesticides etc. and are still able to conceive. They live with the Commanders and participate in a ceremony (for G-rated sake I won’t go into that) to produce a child for the Commander and his wife. Creepy. The story-line was interesting, a kind of peek into a world of crazy not unlike the world created by the Hunger Games author. However, the writing is based on it being a journal of the handmaiden known as Offred. As such, it was often hard to follow and included flashbacks before the new regime etc. Plus, as a Christian some of the scenes were not PG-rated. There was also swearing. After reading it, I’m not sure I’m even interested in seeing the movie.
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn: Synopsis from Goodreads, “Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice” of Kinnakee, Kansas. She survived-and famously testified that her 15 year old brother, Ben, was the killer.” Now 25 years later, Libby is contacted by a secret society obsessed with notorious crimes. Their objective is to not only get details from her but convince her that she framed an innocent man. This story is told from 3 different perspectives: Libby, her mother and Ben the jailed and accused murderer. What happened that day? Did Ben really do it? Why? Did Libby accuse the wrong person? All these questions are answered well in this story. The mystery is a good one. I rated it 2/5 stars because honestly there was sex and swearing. And because I was anxious to find out the answers. Overall, I really liked the plot and the mystery. Definitely described the 80’s and I especially liked that part of it.
On my to-read list for June:
Nap read (on my table next to the rocking chair to read while I rock baby girl H down for a nap): Preparing Him for the Other Woman: A Mother’s Guide to Raising Her Son to Love A Wife and Lead a Family. So far I’m really liking this. The short chapters work for the time I have to read it. At the end of the chapter there are practical how-to’s to follow after hearing her advice and I love that she shares stories of her own family.
Read-aloud (with the kids): Matilda. This is our first Roald Dahl book and as an adult I am LOVING it. I don’t think there are many kids books where I have laughed outloud quite as frequently. It’s like going to a really good kid’s movie where the kid’s are entertained but so are the adults. So much so that even you would watch it again. That is where I would put Matilda. I even find myself reading portions outloud for my husband and friends. I also love to read books to my kids where we “celebrate” by watching the movie.
Self-help: Laying Down the Rails for Yourself by Sonya Shafer. I saw Mrs. Shafer at a homeschool conference and appreciated her lecture about habit training so much that I bought her book on the subject. So far, while not mind-blowing, it has made me thinking about how I CAN change by creating new habits and how to do so. I have a few goals in mind that I would like to implement using her teachings. I also want to get her first book on creating habits in kids.
Beach read: A Home in Mitford (Mitford Years #1) by Jan Karon. Now that school is over I am in full summer mode and planning many a lazy day. Luckily, we’ve already been able to go to a friend’s house on the lake and the same friend recommended this book and the rest of the series as an excellent read. I’m only a chapter in so I can’t give an adequate report yet.
Also on the list:
Books to finish (I told you I read 6 at a time:)
*The Nesting Place: It Doesn’t Have to Be Perfect to Be Beautiful by Myquillyn Smithy. This has actually been a wonderful read. It’s on my Kindle so this is harder for me to get to.
*Teaching From Rest by Sarah Mackenzie. I’ve only read half a chapter but keep getting side tracked by life. I have ONLY heard GOOD things about this from other homeschoolers so I look forward to finishing it.
*She’s Got Issues: Seriously Good News for Stressed-out, Secretly Scared Control Freaks Like Us by Nicole Unice. This is a book I bought as part of a independent Bible study I want to do. Can I get an amen on the subtitle!! It totally reeled me in. Starting tomorrow!
Eight books is my monthly goal and I promised my sister I would pass this book off to her next so the final book on my list is For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School by Susan Schaffer Macaulay. I’ve only read a chapter so I have no formal opinion.
Fluff: I am a Christian romance lover. Therefore, I am always reading what I will fluff. I liken it to a favorite Netflix show. Nothing I’m gaining anything substantial from other then an enjoyable read and relaxation.
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