In September I read a lot more than I have been, and an interesting range of books. I keep a never-ending list of recommended books, so I also have something to look for when I need a new book. Here is what I read this month:
- All Adult Here by Emma Straub – I loved this book! I needed a fun, well-written read about great characters! I appreciated how the author was able to weave in natural storylines that included transgender and LGBTQ ideas. The characters were believeable, flawed, and likeable.
- Party of Two by Jasmine Guillory – This was a fun romantic comedy! Olivia and Max, an unlikely duo, fell in love and created a semi-long distance, interracial relationship. I appreciate a love story where the woman is as successful as the man, and where she doesn’t have to give up her dreams to be with a man.
- Four Seasons in Rome: On Twins, Insomnia, and the Biggest Funeral in the History of the World by Anthony Doerr – A friend who loves to travel and read as much as I do recommended this book. It’s a love story about Rome, and a young family’s yearlong adventure living there. It made me look back through my photos from a 1999 trip to Italy, and it made me long for the end of this pandemic and a time when I can book international travel again. I loved much of the description of the city, the nature, and the people of Rome, though lengthy description is not my favorite. In fact, I couldn’t get through an audio version of one of the author’s novels because of his lengthy description. I enjoyed this, I think, because of my love of travel and my memories of Rome.
- Love Lettering by Kate Clayborn – I think I read about this book on a recommended books for summer list, back in the spring. I needed another fun romantic comedy for some light weekend reading. The story of Meg, an artist who loves lettering, and Reid, a stuffy math nerd, walking all around NYC to find hand-lettered signs, was so much fun! This made me want to go on a walk to find my favorite letters, to play the games they played with signs as they got to know each other. This was a sweet story with a few turns that made for richer characters.
- The Last Flight by Julie Clark – I’m not sure where I heard about this book (I think a blog post), but I’m so glad I found it! This was a fun, fast-paced mystery about two women trying to escape their lives and the negative circumstances they were in. Switched flight tickets, disguises, secrets, and lies, as we learn more about the past of each woman and what drove her to abandon her life. Great read!
- Hidden Valley Road by Robert Kolker- this was a non-fiction recommendation from Laura Tremaine. It is the life story of a family with 12 children, six of whom developed schizophrenia. It was a fascinating story about a troubled family, before mental illness was a regular topic of conversation, and it also dealt with the scientific research around identifying and treating schizophrenia.
Life Will Be the Death of Me
- by Chelsea Handler [audiobook] – I have listened to some of Handler’s books before, and they are always an entertaining mix of celebrity gossip, family stories, and comedy. This one was a bit different because it chronicles Chelsea’s time in therapy, as she was devastated after the 2016 election and finally able to grieve the death of her brother 30 years earlier. Despite the heavy topics, she adds levity with dog stories, the making of her drug documentary and drug line, and more silliness. She shares the value of going to therapy, of listening more, and getting out of our echo chambers.
This year I’m also keeping track of the stats of the books I read. Here are August’s stats:
Young Adolescent: 0
Author is of or plot addresses a different race/ethnicity, orientation, religion than me: 1
Female author: 5
Male Author: 2
Nonbinary Author: 0 (I have gotten one recommendation, but I haven’t read it yet!)