Books I’ve Read Recently

I have a weird reading pattern lately. I can’t seem to read steadily. Either I will gobble a bunch of books one after the other, or have long stretches of time where I just cannot get into any book.

The good news though is that I actually reached my Goodreads challenge with this recent batch!

The Passion of Dolssa by Julie Berry

I really wanted to break free of my reading slump, so I went to my library’s Overdrive to find whatever was available, in a genre that I don’t usually read, since the usual kind of books I do read wasn’t doing it for me. The Passion of Dolssa is a historical young-adult fiction about a girl who was branded as a heretic during the Spanish/French inquisition, and the three sisters who decided to help her even though they would get in trouble. This book was an excellent read, and exactly what I needed to get me out of my slump. It was mostly a cozy, slice of life type of story, until we get near the end. The ending was a bit tragic for me, but I think I needed that shock to remind me what a really good book can do.

The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down

This was the very first audiobook I listened to (and managed to finish)! I previously had this notion that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with an audiobook, because I’d be distracted and would miss whatever was being said. But I discovered that I can listen to audiobooks really well while I’m drawing! It made such a great substitute for music, because lately, music has been triggering my maladaptive daydreaming, and I couldn’t get any work done. This book is about mindfulness. It is less about meditating, and more about lessons in life and advice for taking it easy. It was a cozy listen.

The Heiress Effect by Courtney Milan

Courtney Milan is my go-to romance author. I just love the way she writes her characters, her twisty plots, and how she tackles social issues in that time period. The Heiress Effect was no exception. There are two love stories in this book, actually. I really loved the addition of Emily and Anjan’s romance. It was unexpected, but very refreshing to have a character like Anjan included.

Nomad by RJ Anderson

I read Swift back in May, and enjoyed it very much. This second trilogy of Faery Rebels deals with the thorny issue of ethnic conflict, and Nomad explores that in greater detail. I really love Ivy as a protagonist. She’s level-headed, serious but not snobby, and she is brave enough to acknowledge and correct her mistakes. I’d be hard-pressed to think of another character who is as self-aware as Ivy is. I also just really love the entire cast, especially the ones from the first trilogy that appear here again.

Successful Self-Publishing by Joanna Penn

I’m still not as informed as I should be about the self-publishing industry, so I picked up this book hoping to learn more. This wasn’t exactly what I was looking for. It was more about the technicalities of publishing a book, rather than the whole business around it and the activities that support it. But perhaps other people might find it useful.

The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking

I’ve never heard of the word ‘hygge’ before, and I know very little about Danish culture, so this was a very educational book for me. I love the concept of hygge, and I think I already practice it to some extent.

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

After finishing my first audiobook, I knew I needed to listen to another one. We Have Always Lived in the Castle seemed like the perfect choice for the season. I read Jackson’s most famous book, The Haunting of Hill House, several years ago. I didn’t think this book was as creepy or spooky as that one. It left me a little confused, though I think the author intended to perplex the reader.

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