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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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:

  1. 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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22 thoughts on “10 BOOKS I’VE READ RECENTLY

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  1. I haven’t read a book in far too long and honestly miss getting lost in one! I just haven’t found one that I don’t keep putting down. I’ll be checking out some from this list!! 🙂

    -Sophie xx
    Cherries & Perfume 

  2. You always inspire me to read more self-improvement books, as I’m basically reading novels 95% of the time. But the best book I’ve read this year so far is nonfiction: Ta-Nehisi Coates’s “Between the World and Me”

    I think it should be mandatory reading for everyone – but especially for white people. It really broadened my perspective/world view. I also just heard him speak in Brooklyn at Kings Theatre and it was awesome! Highly, highly recommend.

  3. I recommend Cooking for Picasso by Camille Aubrey! Just finished this- while there were parts of the plot line I didn’t love, the details about Picasso’s life, the descriptive imagery, and ability to be mentally transported to Cote d’Azur are all pluses in my book (pun intended) 😉

  4. Thanks so much for including me + TMM!

    Um, this was a reminder to me to get back into it. I got off TMM train after not feeling well, but what I’ve realized is that if I push through to keep doing it anyway, I’ll feel better quicker.

    Also, the author Hal Elrod is battling cancer right now and if he can stick to it, I sure as hell should be able to.


  5. I must add The Miracle Morning to my reading list! I’m in the process of my one month experiment of changing to an early morning person and I must say that I am doing far better than I had first expected!! Hopefully this will help me keep it in my routine 🙂

    1. You totally should! Some of the lessons are obvious, but it helped me to see the author’s recommended routine in list form. I’d love to hear any of your other tips and tricks! 🙂

  6. Adding The Miracle Morning to my list ASAP! I have been trying (and failing) to rework my morning routine- keep us posted on your progress please!

  7. Do you have a Goodreads account? Also, after a spring and summer filled with fiction I’ve started Sapiens: A brief history of humankind; very easy to digest and helps fill in the gaps where high school/undergrad knowledge have waned over the years. I’m also reading The Power of Habit, the author is a NYT journalist so I found it easy to read and (so far) very insightful. As cheesy as this sounds, lots of Oprah “Ah ha!” moments 🙂

    1. I don’t have a Goodreads account (should I?) but I’m going to try to write more about what I’m reading on the blog! The Power of Habit sounds right up my alley — I love a cliché “ah ha!” moment!

  8. I’m so glad I stumbled upon this post! I read Ruth Ware’s “In A Dark, Dark Wood” and also LOVED it. I still might pick up “The Woman in Cabin 10,” but I’ll keep your thoughts in mind!

    I also plan on picking up “The Couple Next Door.” I love a good thriller!

    1. Wasn’t it amazing?! It gives me chills just to think about it. Definitely read The Couple Next Door before The Woman in Cabin 10 — they’re both good but the first is particularly scary haha!

  9. I totally agree about The Woman in Cabin 10! I thought the narrator’s constant state of inebriation called into question too many plot points, made her very unreliable, and also made certain circumstances feel too convenient. The Girl on the Train handled alcohol as the main character’s vice so well, but this book did not.