All the Light We Cannot See

Author: Anthony Doerr
Publisher: Scribner

Goodreads Summary: Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure's agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall. 

In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up with his younger sister, Jutta, both enchanted by a crude radio Werner finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy and, ultimately, makes him a highly specialized tracker of the Resistance. Werner travels through the heart of Hitler Youth to the far-flung outskirts of Russia, and finally into Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure.

On My Nightstand // Nov. 2017

via Krystal Schlegel

Today I'm joining Modern Mrs.Darcy in my very first book link-up, sharing what I've been reading this past month. While I normally am someone who sticks to one book at a time I've found that between adding in some work books, my normal reading, & trying to get through the classics I'm now balancing multiple books at once. The pile on my actual nightstand is getting a little large!

Anna Karenina // Leo Tolstoy

I have a long list of classic novels to get through but never seem to actually just pick them up & read. So I decided to make a goal of 50 pages a week & to slowly start to get into the habit of reserving one evening solely for the classics. Anna Karenina may be an ambitious start to this goal but I figured start off big!

I actually got inspired after listening to this Rough Translation podcast.(Also one of my favorite new podcasts- go download!).

The Cuckoo's Calling

Author: Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
Publisher: Mulholland Books

Goodreads Summary: After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office.

Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morgenstern
Publisher: Anchor Books

Summary: A magical circus that is only open at night, the striped black & white tents appearing with no warning or notice. Inside the tents are a labyrinth of stunning new worlds & logic defying performers. Le Cirque des RĂªves (the Circus of Dreams) leaves just as suddenly as it appears, taking with it the secrets of why the circus exists & how. 

Behind the scenes the circus is being controlled & created by two young magicians, Celia & Marco, who are bonded into a challenge from a young age. Neither one knows the rules, including who their opponent is or how the challenge actually ends. They secretly use their magic to create one fantastical tent after another, feeding off of each other's creativity & raising the stakes while still unaware of exactly what that means. Others involved begin to notice some strange things that are happening to them since the circus has opened & those odd occurrences begin to slowly affect the circus itself. 

The Chaperone

Author: Laura Moriarty 
Publisher: Riverhead Books 

Summary: Louise Brooks was to become the most famous silent movie star but her first venture outside of Kansas was to study at the Denishawn School of Dancing. Cora Carlisle, a married middle-aged woman from Louise's hometown, volunteers to chaperone the young teenager in New York City and also to get some answers from her own past. Once they arrive it is very clear that Cora underestimated Louise's drive and rebellious spirit, as well as her own sheltered views of how the twentieth century was changing.

The Chaperone is a pleasant if not particularly memorable historical fiction-ish book. The plot focuses mainly on Cora and her desire to find out more about her past, which is based on true event of the time. The side story of Louise and her antics while at the Denishawn Company serve as a backdrop and almost a catalyst for Cora to shake up her life.

The Literary Lifestyle

image Gal Meets Glam

As I've started to discover more book blogs I've come across the term "literary lifestyle". The Ardent Biblio describes it as:

Living a literary lifestyle is a way of interacting with the world through a literary lens. It's weaving books and reading into the fabric of your everyday life, and celebrating that in all ways, big or small.

This term has really resonated with me because reading is such a integral part of my life. The idea that being a book lover is a part of your lifestyle & not merely a hobby or something to do to help you sleep is a wonderful concept.

Reading can be such a solitary activity but part of the literary lifestyle idea is that you're sharing your love of books with other. From book clubs to conversations with friends to scouting out unique book stores- all of it involves sharing a love of books with others.

As a mom the sharing my love of reading has become a bigger priority. I've also struggled a bit with finding friends in my neighborhood since we moved 3 years ago & recently had a light bulb moment of starting a book club. What better way to connect with new people than through books?

So as I move forward with this blog I want to have more posts with this loose concept in mind- sharing the book club adventures plus some literary lifestyle inspiration!

Do you love this term as much as me?

Fates and Furies

Author: Lauren Groff 
Publisher: Riverhead Books 

Summary: There are two sides to every story and, in this case, to every marriage. Told from the perspective of first the husband and then the wife, this novel examines how two people can experience very different moments in their relationship.

Lotto spots Mathilde across the room at a college party, falls instantly in love and marries her as they begin their adult lives in New York City. Their marriage is the envy of all their friends but as they get older it gets more and more complicated.

Review: This is one of those novels you love or hate, it seems. I loved it while also recognizing why people did not. At times it did seem overwritten and there were passages I needed to reread to figure out exactly what she meant by a metaphor or description. And many of those times it really seemed unnecessary to not just write outright what she meant (if that makes sense).

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All the Light We Cannot See