The Bookshelf Test

You know how you can get to know someone just by looking at their bookshelves? These are my most favorite books of all time—in no particular order—the ones I love and own and can’t resist touching when I walk past them in the library or the bookstore. If they’re on your shelf too, or if you want them…

Books I Own But Haven’t Read

Check out Top Ten Tuesday at The Broke and the Bookish. For a while I was trying to be better about this, but I think at this point it’s something I have to accept about myself: I will always collect books faster than I can read them. I actually think I’ve been much worse than usual lately,…

Rashomon and Seventeen Other Stories, by Ryunosuke Akutagawa

Four stars, read in July 2016. This was gorgeous. I can’t believe how closely I relate with the autobiographical stories. “Spinning Gears,” especially the ending, was amazing—sort of hauntingly visual—it almost felt like a movie. I’m not sure why I went with four stars instead of five, but I’ll stick with it for now. I particularly…

Shrill: Notes From a Loud Woman, by Lindy West

Five stars, read in August 2016. This was every bit as brilliant as I knew it would be. I kept track of so many quotes I wanted to share, and by quotes I mean chapters, basically. I should probably just link to “Hello, I Am Fat,” because every word of it is gold, and I…

Black Rabbit Hall, by Eve Chase

Four stars, read in August 2016. Spoiler warning, as this was a review I couldn’t write without them. The first and last paragraphs are safe; everything else mentions specific details. Maybe it’s the fact that this is a debut novel. I’ve read so many brilliant ones, and I really did love this, too. But maybe…

New

I have never been a real book blogger the way many of you are. I’ve always written about books because they are the single biggest influence in my life, and I have a terrible memory so I actually need to write down my thoughts in order to remember the book later. But mostly, I started…

A to Z Survey

Author you’ve read the most books from: Excluding children’s picture books (sorry Mo Willems), it’s Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, because of the 28 books in the Alice series. But if we could go back in time and count all the Baby-sitters Club books I read before Goodreads, I think Ann M. Martin would top the list….

Things Reading a Book Has Made Me Want to Do or Learn

Check out Top Ten Tuesday at The Broke and the Bookish. I thought this would be a much longer list, because I feel like this is always happening to me! I get really interested in whatever I’m reading, and I always want to learn more about it. But I ended up only with a few…

Planning My TBR

I really liked it the last time I did one of these posts—I obviously have way too many books on my TBR list, and thinking it through this way is surprisingly helpful. These are a subset of the books I have on my physical TBR shelf, the one right inside my front door where I…

Books Set Outside the U.S.

Check out Top Ten Tuesday at The Broke and the Bookish. Also known as the majority of my favorite books! I haven’t done Top Ten Tuesday in a while, but I can’t pass this one up, and as usual my list will probably end up with a random number like seventeen, or ninety (whenever I can…

The Sympathizer, by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Five stars, read in July 2016. This is a book about a Communist spy during the Vietnam War. That premise was intriguing enough for me to pick it up, but while it continued to be an engaging plot throughout the book, for me the plot became secondary to the smart, insightful narrative voice. We never learn the narrator’s…

Howl

. . . who lounged hungry and lonesome through Houston seeking jazz or sex or soup . . . Allen Ginsberg I did not care much for his poetry, I have to be honest. But this is just such a perfect string of words.