August 31, 2015

What I Read This Summer

Whenever I am reading or watching Netflix, Dave always teases me that it probably has a strong female lead. My favorite TV shows, movies and books all center around women who take charge, solve problems and change their circumstances. 

This summer was full of that kind of reading, and surprisingly had a lot of non-fiction too. My favorite genre to read is historical fiction, but I have really been trying to focus on some self improvement too. You can follow along with my reading progress throughout the year on Goodreads.

Books I Read this Summer

Paper Towns by John Green  This was a Between the Lines selection, that I didn't have a chance to join in the discussion. I was kind of underwhelmed by the story, after really liking The Fault in Our Stars. I didn't think the characters were very developed or likable, and the plot itself was kind of dumb. I am definitely not going to be seeing the movie. 

The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin  I picked this up at Goodwill, and really liked it. It is about Cora Cash, who Cora in Downton Abbey is sort of based on, and it gives us a look into her as a young woman. The whole idea of American heiresses marrying European nobility (who are sometimes poor!) is fascinating.

Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls by David Sedaris ★ I listened to this as an audio book on a road trip to Rochester, and I was laughing out loud at some parts. Others were pretty dry, but I thought it was pretty good. The stories about David's father are absolutely hysterical. I'll be getting some more of these. 

Hot Body Year Round by Cassey Ho ★ This book is full of delicious recipes and awesome Pop Pilates routines, which are geared toward the four seasons. I think the recipes are the best thing about this book, and I can't wait to try some of the fall themed treats with cinnamon and pumpkin once the weather is a little cooler. I first heard about Cassey and Pop Pilates on YouTube, so I knew I had to get this book for her recipes and to read her tips first hand. 
*I received this book for review from Blogging for Books.

A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, #4) by George R. R. Martin ★ This was the hardest of the Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) books for me to get through, and it took the most time. I am still loving them, and I can't wait to catch up on the TV show. We are starting season three next week!

#Girlboss by Sophia Amoruso  This book was amazing. Sophia reads this one to you on audio book, and it was like she was speaking to my soul to get my butt in gear with my career. I cannot recommend this enough to any woman (or man, actually) who is looking to push forward in their career. You don't have to be an entrepreneur to appreciate her tips. She is just inspiring. 

A Woman of Independent Means by Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey ★ This was another Goodwill purchase, and at first I wasn't in love with it. I am not a fan of books that are written in letter format (Where'd You Go, Bernadette was like that), and this book is only told through the protagonist's point of view. You think that Bess is very dependent on men, but really she is very independent. Which is rare for the turn of the century. It was interesting to see how such an independent and strong willed woman walked through life at that time.

Nice Girls Still Don't Get The Corner Office by E. Lockhart  After I read #Girlboss, I was so inspired to keep it up on the career development books. I picked this up on Audible, and listened to it quickly. Frankel has a list of mistakes that women make in the office that make them seem like "girls" instead of "women." It was interesting to hear her take on how women will be respected in an office environment more than girls, but that we are conditioned by society to act like girls. I recommend this for any career woman-- you might be doing these things unconsciously (I was/am doing a lot of them!).

The Art of Asking; or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help by Amanda Palmer ★ I have heard A LOT about this book, and A LOT about Amanda Palmer. I am still not sure how I feel about this book. I read it initially because she is an artist, and I work in the arts. She raised thousands of dollars, and fundraising is truly a large component of my field of work. Amanda raises lots of good points in her book about asking for help. Why are we afraid to ask for things when we need it? If you truly need a helping hand, you should ask. But I think she really goes overboard, and I don't think her time as a living statue makes her an expert on the subject.

Do you have any recommendations on what I should read this Fall? What have you been reading lately? 

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