My Year in Books
This year I used the GoodReads app to keep track of the books I read and which were on my list (which seems to grow at a much faster pace than I can read them). I set myself a goal of reading 15 books this year. I ended up surpassing that with 21 books - 22 by the end of 2017, if all goes according to plan! I also started 4 books that I just couldn't finish. Here is a recap of some of my favorites, and a few not-so-favorites.
Best beach read: Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
This is one of a few books I flew through during our honeymoon. I loved the romantic story and the imagery of the Italian coastline.
Best historical fiction: The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah
One of my favorite genres and probably my favorite book I read this year!
The book that changed my outlook: Subtle art of not giving a f***: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson
When I started this book, I didn't really take it seriously and was just hoping to get a few laughs. But I could write an entire blog post devoted to this book and all the wonderful life lessons it has. It's not really about being indifferent or apathetic about things, but more about saving your f*cks for the important things in life and letting the rest roll off. I constantly struggle with anxiety over stupid things, so this book really spoke to me.
Book I most unexpectedly enjoyed: Two Paths by John Kasich
I've blogged about this book before. I definitely recommend occasionally stepping outside of your "political comfort zone" and getting some exposure outside of your Fox News or New York Times bubble. This dude is very moderate and I actually like many of his ideas.
Best book written by a comedian: Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
This year I read a lot of books written by comedians, and they were all great, so this was a tough choice. Trevor Noah is one of my favorite late-night hosts, and it was fascinating to read all about his childhood. He is a pretty amazing storyteller. Close runners up in this category include Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer.
Book I thought was most over-rated: The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
This book is super popular, so I had really high expectations. I was able to get through it all, and I didn't hate it, but I just never saw what all the fuss was about. I read this in early 2017 and all I can remember is that it was about a dysfunctional family and that all the characters got on my nerves by the end of it.
A book I gave up on: The Water by Paula Hawkins
I know I'm in the minority here given that this was named one of the best books of 2017. I wanted so badly to get into it, especially because I loved Girl on the Train. One of the things I loved about Girl on the Train was how it switched perspectives every chapter, which always kept me wanting to keep going. This book was written similarly, except there were wayyyyy more characters. It made my head hurt and I just couldn't keep up. Maybe I'll try again next year?
Books at the top of my list to read in 2018:
1. Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kedtrick
2. The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish
3. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
4. Natural Disaster: I Cover Them, I Am One by Ginger Zee
5. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil Degrasse Tyson
Have you read any of these yet? What did you think?