Monday, May 30, 2016

May 2016 Reads

The Disney Book by Jim Fanning

I didn't have this book in my plans - it was a library drive-by when I was picking up other things on request. Of course I had to see what it was all about, though. It is laid out and reads a lot like a text book, but it's the most entertaining text book I've ever read! I love learning about the history of Disney - the man, the movies, the parks - all of it! This was great, and my kids loved the big, bright pictures. If you love all things Disney, definitely check this out!

The Lifegiving Home by Sally & Sarah Clarkson

I've recently been wondering if I will ever make peace with cleaning and housekeeping, so I picked up this book hoping to be enlightened. Part of it inspired me and helped me see things with a new perspective, but part of it really annoyed me, too. It was a bit too preachy at points, and the perfect collection of things this family does "right" seems unbelievable. It wasn't life-changing, but this book still served enough of the purpose I needed it to. Worth a read if you need domestic encouragement, with a grain or two of salt.

The Crown by Kiera Cass

I am obsessed with The Selection series, so it's disappointing to say that this was the least exciting book of them all. There was a lot of growth and tying up and decisions being made here, and while it was satisfying and conclusive, it read like a hurried description of this family's happily ever after. There was no tension or conflict or excitement. Even when Eadlyn made a controversial decision, there was so little emotion tied to it. I'm happy with where it went, but I wish it was done as excitingly as the other books had been.

The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte

Put simply, this was the most helpful and impactful self-help book I have ever read. The book is half instruction, half workbook, and the entire thing is a wild exploration into the way we live our daily lives and how we feel about them. The basic idea is that we need to ask ourselves what we want to feel rather than what we want to accomplish. It changes everything! Must, must read.

One With You by Sylvia Day

Of all the ridiculous, smutty series out there, crossfire is my favorite, and this book turned out to be my favorite of the series. It was entertaining and though frivolous at times, more realistic than previous books (and other series.) There was awesome relationship development, and a lot less silly shock-value moments. However, I still had to limit my rating to 3 stars for dealing with gross pet names like "Angel" and "Fiend" (gross, no one says those things) and at the end of the day, it's still smut. ;)

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld

Eligible drove me a little bit crazy in that while I desperately wanted to love it, I was having a hard time being pulled in. I was so disappointed - Curtis Sittenfeld is one of my very favorite authors and I'm usually instantly hooked on her stories. It makes sense, since this is a modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice and I've never meshed well with the classics. I found it incredibly difficult to keep track of the characters and it took quite a few pages before their personalities finally emerged. However, once they did, it was SO. GOOD.  I devoured the rest of the story in a few hours-long binges, during which I couldn't stop seeking what came next. If you can handle the slow, casual start, the rest is so worth the effort!

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