It’s been a while since I did a blog post about what I’m reading, and to be honest that’s because it had been a while since I’d read a single book. Terrible! Between our move back to the east coast and wedding planning taking over for a few months, reading was the last thing on my mind. But Will and I decided to listen to a few books together on Audible over our honeymoon and it reminded me that there’s really nothing better than a good book. Here are the books I’ve finished in the past few months. I’d love to hear what you’re reading as well!
Five books I loved:
- You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero. I’m a sucker for a good self-help book. Don’t we all have a little room for improvement? But this one became an instant favorite thanks not only to the motivation within but the hilarious writing and occasional cursing. A self-help author with a sense of humor? That’s the kind of girl I want to be friends with.
- The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. Okay, so it might be nearly a year since I read this book, but I still find myself reflecting on the key takeaways from this book. Now that our wedding is behind us, I’m hoping to take a few days to really organize the you-know-what out of our house using the method outlined in the book.
- In A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware. A totally creepy story about a bachelorette party gone awry. The main character drove me a little crazy to be honest, but the story kept me guessing until the very end.
- The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena. Another psychological thriller about a mysterious kidnapping. I love a suspenseful page-turner and this one had me staying up to read just a few more pages.
- The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. My friend Kelly recommended this book on her blog and Will and I devoured it on one of our flights within Africa. He has to wake up early every day for work so I’m not sure he found it totally groundbreaking, but it totally motivated me to rework my sleep schedule post-honeymoon and incorporate some personal development practices into my morning routine. There are parts of the book that are pretty cheesy, but I loved that the author provides specific steps he believes are crucial to living your best life. I found myself taking notes and have since made real changes to my daily schedule. I’m excited to talk more about this quest to become a morning person in a later post!
Four books I liked:
- Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist. A few of you recommend this book after my post about losing luggage and gaining perspective and I loved the overall message about slowing down and really enjoying life instead of driving ourselves crazy chasing after one milestone or the next. That said, I wanted the book to be a little more instructional — that is, not just the story of how the author’s lifestyle changes benefitted her, but more suggestions on how the reader might achieve similar benefits in her own life.
- The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware. Will agreed to listen to one psychological thriller on our honeymoon and I was sort of bummed I wasted my pick on this book. I thought it’d be just as shocking as the author’s In A Dark, Dark Wood, which I’d read earlier this year, but the ending felt a little convenient, too tidy… like there were clues from earlier in the book that never came full circle. It held our interest and is still worth reading, but it didn’t knock my socks off.
- You Are A Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero. I love a motivational business read and after falling in love with this author’s voice in her debut book above, I downloaded this one for our honeymoon as well. The book is full of inspiring anecdotes and while I struggled to relate to some of the author’s mixed feelings about making money in the early chapters (choosing not to succeed because she thought money was a dirty word), I did find it eye-opening and I’ve already recommended it to a couple of my girlfriends.
- The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein. This book about transforming fear into faith was a little more hippie-dippie than I was expecting. A self-proclaimed “spirit junkie,” the author shares her repeated efforts to align herself with the universe and choose love over self-doubt and frustration with others. While I don’t think I’ll be identifying as a spirit junkie anytime soon, the book did make me think about trying to incorporate meditation into my morning routine and trying to reframe trying experiences in a more positive light.
One book I wouldn’t recommend:
- Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck. Will recommended this read about the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. And while the science for adopting a growth mindset is convincing, I was sold on the concept in the first 50 pages and kept waiting for the “how to change your mindset” section only to realize by the end of the book that it didn’t exist. I’m a list-maker and someone who likes to follow steps, so convincing me to change my mindset and then acting like it’s a simple flip of the switch didn’t exactly blow me away.
P.S. If you want more book recommendations, check out this post on 21 books I loved, five I liked, and three I wouldn’t recommend.
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