WELCOME TO MY LIBRARY 2015

Looking for a good book? I can’t promise I read one this year you’ll be interested in reading, but below are short writeups of what I’ve read so far. If you’re still looking, checkout what I read in:

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The Maze Runner (Maze Runner, #1)The Maze Runner by James Dashner
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am a sucker for these YA three book series where a bunch of kids have to find a way to solve this horrible post apocalyptic world they find themselves living in. No matter how author’s change up the characters, the world the kids find themselves in, or the mission they’re aiming to solve, I can’t get enough.

With The Maze Runner I actually saw the movie first, and I was shocked as I read how many things they changed in the movie, right down to how the kids solve the maze. I will be interested as I read the next two books to see how drastically they change the entire structure of the books to the movie. Divergent and Hunger Games make small adjustments, but didn’t completely change the way in which the world’s exist between the book and the movies.

Interested to see what lies next for the survivors of The Glade. My guess is, it’s not great.

The Dog StarsThe Dog Stars by Peter Heller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The first thing I was warned about was the writing style. And I agree, the lack of punctuation, especially the lack of quotation marks would become an issue for me sometimes if I was trying to read really fast, find out what was happening next, and dialogue would run together, thoughts of a character vs words of a character sometimes running together. Basically, slow and steady wins this book.

Beyond the style, I loved this book. It’s almost impossible not to leak spoilers with this book… basically I fell into this little world. I cried, I smiled, I wished the best for them always, and I gasped when I thought the worst was happening. I will admit I was shocked with the ending. Which is all I can saw without giving it all away. When/if you’ve read it, let me know, is that the world you expected in the end? Were you holding your breath for a big twist?

If you find yourself drawn to apocalyptic narratives, you’ll want to add this one to your “to-read” shelf.

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest BestiarySquirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary by David Sedaris
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

WHY?!?!?!?!?!?! I mean, I get that he’s trying to make some critique on the nuances of daily life, kinda, but with animals? I fear Sedaris may have said all he has to say, and this is him scraping the bottom of the barrel to keep his name out there.

 

The Water in Between: A Journey at SeaThe Water in Between: A Journey at Sea by Kevin Patterson
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I wanted to like this book as I’ve read other ocean crossing books and loved the danger and the sense of isolation that a crew encounters on their journey. Sadly this book just didn’t have as much of that as I’d hoped for. Although Patterson wanted to give the reader background information into his life and what brought him to his cross ocean journey, each time he left the boat and dove into the past I found myself extremely uninterested. As well, the large stretches of ocean voyage history felt so disconnected and dry I found myself skipping over them completely towards the end of the book. For a book that featured so many days and weeks on the sea, there was such a small proportion of the crossings in the book to make it even interesting. Needless to say I was happy when it was over.

House RulesHouse Rules by Jodi Picoult
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I want to be a book snob, I really do. I want to say I didn’t love House Rules but you know what, I did. I loved it. I devoured it. I easily sat for hours at a time as hundreds of pages flew by and I just really really enjoyed it. The style, the mystery, the ending. An interesting read.

 

The Scorch Trials (Maze Runner, #2)The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a change from The Maze. It was impossible to predict where things were headed next, or which items were planned or variables or who knows what. The book is another quick read, and my only issue was the ending of book two felt a little too formulaic. I definitely couldn’t predict what in the world will happen in book three, but I’m hoping the mold is broken a little as we move into the third phase and we learn a little more about life before The Maze.

I Didn't Come Here to Make Friends: Confessions of a Reality Show VillainI Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends: Confessions of a Reality Show Villain by Courtney Robertson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have never watched The Bachelor, but after hearing Courtney Robertson interviewed on a podcast talking about her book and how she was trying to show the other side of being the reality star villain, I was intrigued. After a few chapters I decided I wanted to watch the show first and read the book to get the behind the scene details. After binging on her season I tore through the book. The book lacks substance as you’d imagine, the show is loveable reality trash, and in the end it was interesting to hear some behind the scenes details about what it’s like to be on one of the weirdest reality shows of all time.

The Girl on the TrainThe Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is fascinating. It has the perfect combination of watching someone’s life fall apart, murder, intrigue, twists and turns, and the can’t look away feeling you get as you watch someone destroy their own life. It’s a super fast read and you can’t help but settle in to try to get to the bottom of this twisted story. Definitely a great read.

 

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a lovely and super fast read that one can’t help but hear Mindy Kaling narrate through the whole story. As a fan of The Mindy Show it felt a little like sitting down for a drink with a favorite character. It’s a shame it was written before she went on to create The Mindy Show or even before The Office finished because I feel like there would be some great essays of the end of one show, and the steps it took to move on to creating her own show. The book isn’t necessarily deep, but I didn’t expect it to have the same sort of preaching in it as Tina Fey’s book. The book is pretty free of name dropping which is refreshing, and you can’t help but think that the closest people to Mindy are still her friends who knew her before she was famous. She still seems like the kind of person who you’d want to come over to her house and watch The Real Housewives with. A super fun quick read for Mindy fans.

The Death Cure (Maze Runner, #3)The Death Cure by James Dashner
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Looking back, I think I liked The Death Cure more than The Scorch Trials because it felt like we were finally getting to the meat of the issue. That being said, there’s something about the third book in these series that always just leaves you feeling empty. I felt the same about the final book in the Hunger Games as well as the Divergent series. You sort of finish the book and go, “That’s it?” All things aside it was a fun ride, and after a break from the series I’ll probably read the prequel just to learn a little more about the weirdness that is WICKED. Will definitely be keeping an eye out for the next movie in the meantime.

Like Water for ChocolateLike Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’ve had this book on my list to-read for years and was happy to finally check this ‘classic’ off my list. I enjoyed the magic and storytelling style of the book. How one could imagine this tale told by a Grandmother over the course of a lifetime. A lovely read.

 

Flight BehaviorFlight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In typical Barbara Kingsolver fashion Flight Behavior is as perfect as you’d imagine. This book is about global warming and how what we’ve done to the planet is wrecking the planet and causing irreparable changes for species. But how the book reads is a story of a simple woman, living on a farm where she feels trapped in her life, in her marriage, in her world. As much as this book is about the way global warming is going to eventually lead to the extinction of the monarch butterfly, it’s also a beautiful character piece about a woman who feels stuck in her life. The two messages and stories weave together and you find yourself rooting for both. The butterflies, and Dellarobia, our heroine. An absolutely beautiful book and a must read.

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Want to know EVEN MORE about the books I’ve read, am reading, and even maybe the ones on my to-read shelf? Then hop over to my goodreads account and lets be book nerd friends! 

Dying for even more Accidental Olympian book nonsense? Well, would you like to hear a funny story about how goodreads made me look like an idiot? You do? Great. I hope you enjoy every minute of my humiliation.