Summer Reading List

Summertime reading may be one of my favorites whether it's being lazy on vacation or just my childhood memories of laying on my bed, buried in a good book. Clearly, I was a nerd. But taking the time to dive into fascinating (& sometimes frivolous) stories is the best & I have a long list of books to get through! Most of these are new releases but I also uncovered some of the previous books from these authors that I immediately put on my wishlist.

It's all novels- some historical fiction, other trending towards "chick lit". I figure it's a good time to fully indulge & save the educational or non-fiction reading for the fall!

Goal Setting for Spring // A Personal Note

image via Damsel in Dior

Even though this is a book blog there are times I do miss writing for a general lifestyle blog. And since I make the rules around here I decided to start writing some more of those types of posts when I feel like it!

Today's post was inspired by one of my favorite bloggers, Victoria McGinley, who I have been following for years. I do set monthly & seasonal goals through the (more on that below- I am a dedicated user of the Cultivate What Matters Powersheets ) but with a packed spring I want to get some things done that I keep putting off.

1. Create a garden with my daughter.
She has been enthralled with gardens & is so excited to have her own with Mommy.Which is great except for the fact Mommy is terrible at gardening. So we're starting small with a potted garden on our deck & hopefully keeping something alive. Our yard in general isn't the most beautiful as we figure out what exactly we want to do with it & when to budget for that. So trying to do a few small things to make it presentable this year!

Book Flight: The Odyssey

My method for selecting books to read is pretty random: whatever is on my list, available, & what I feel like reading at that moment. I do not really give it much thought ahead of time. However I have seen that others do "book flights" where they read connected books together. And having stumbled upon some book based on The Odyssey that look really interesting I thought it was a great chance to try out my own book flight!

The Immortalists

Author: Chloe Benjamin
Amazon Summary:  It's 1969 in New York City's Lower East Side, and word has spread of the arrival of a mystical woman, a traveling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the day they will die. The Gold children—four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness—sneak out to hear their fortunes.

The prophecies inform their next five decades. Golden-boy Simon escapes to the West Coast, searching for love in '80s San Francisco; dreamy Klara becomes a Las Vegas magician, obsessed with blurring reality and fantasy; eldest son Daniel seeks security as an army doctor post-9/11; and bookish Varya throws herself into longevity research, where she tests the boundary between science and immortality.

4 Ways for Making Reading a Part of Your Routine

"How do you find so much time to read?" is something that I get asked a lot. The short answer is that I prioritize reading. For me it's the easiest and best way to decompress so climbing into bed with a book is the evening norm. But I've also started to pick up a book more often at random times so thought I'd share some of the times I incorporate reading into my routine.

1. Downtime while the kids play. Unless you don't have kids & this is turned into just down time (make it happen!). But thanks to my kids becoming more independent & wanting to play with each other more, I've found that I have some time to "myself" where I need to be near them but am not actually needed/wanted in terms of interacting with them (so it begins).

I've started to use this time to pick up a physical book to read. There's always some chores to do but taking some time to just model reading a book is a good thing for kids to see, so it's a justified way to take a break! (I've been relying more on actual books versus my Kindle app so they don't just see me with a tablet).

2. Weekday mornings. At first my goal was to get up early & work out. But since I'm not a morning person this is a struggle. I've decided the first step is to just consistently wake up early & have been reading a book instead (working out then in the evening).

Even waking up 30 minutes earlier to spend a little quiet & peaceful time reading is a great way to relax yourself before a busy day. I use the Kiwake app to make sure I don't snooze (& it's cured my oversleeping tendencies!).

On My Nightstand // 3.15.18

It's been a while since I've stopped in - while I have been reading away, I have neglected sharing it! So let's catch up!

The Immortalists // This book has been everywhere on Instagram & the premise was intriguing so I was really excited to read this. Guys, I hated it. It was depressing & dreary in tone, I didn't enjoy the characters so much, & I just wasn't emotionally invested at all in the last two sibling stories. But it seems to be getting overall positive reviews so what am I missing?

The Woman in the Window // As with any of the next Gone Girl's or Girl on the Train's, I was apprehensive about how good this book was going to be. But it actually lived up to the hype- it was a good mystery & I actually enjoyed the protagonist more than with Girl on the Train.

The Alice Network

Author: Kate Quinn
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks

Goodreads Summary: 1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her "little problem" taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the "Queen of Spies", who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the matter where it leads.

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Summer Reading List