I used to write a post monthly about the books I read, but for the last year or so I just can’t seem to get my act together to do this. The last time I posted Recent Reads was back in August. And although I swore I created a draft here to keep track, now I can’t find it.
So here’s my addled-brain, cobbled together “sorta” list of what I’ve recently read.
Committed: A Love Story by Elizabeth Gilbert. Being a huge Gilbert fan, I decided to check out this memoir slash historical jaunt. Gilbert, a die-hard marriage-phobe, has to marry the love of her life (Felipe, who we met in Eat, Pray, Love and wondered … what happened!?). Because customs. This book was fun.
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert. After reading Eat, Pray Love and watching her wonderful TED talks, I just couldn’t get enough, so I ordered this book and devoured it… almost. Have you ever loved reading a book so much that you didn’t want it to end, so you either put off reading it or didn’t allow yourself to finish? Yeah. Apparently you can’t read your book and have it too. This book confirms what I’ve always believed about creativity – that it has an energy, a life of its own.
The Orchardist: A Novel by Amanda Coplin. I wanted to love this book, I really did. But most of the characters were either unlovable or unknowable, and it was achingly slow in places.
Trim Healthy Mama Plan: The Easy-Does-It Approach to Vibrant Health and a Slim Waistline by Pearl Barrett and Serene Allison. Oh, no. I’ve done drank the THM Kool-Aid. After making fun of the concept for months in my mind, I decided to take the plunge and actually read it. While the writing style of these two ladies really works my nerves (just SAY it already, enough of the cutesy stuff!), the science does make sense. (I admit – my first impression of these two was that they were backwoods fundie weirdos who proffered marital advice along with diet, but as it turns out, they’re a couple of Aussie transplants who wear fashionable clothing – not a jean skirt in the bunch – which makes them way cooler.)
Coming Clean: A Memoir by Kimberly Rae Miller. Imagine living in a home in which the family dog protects you from the rats, a homeless man takes up residence in your attic and nobody notices. This memoir is how Miller came to terms with her loving but highly unusual/bordering on abusive upbringing. She learns that it’s entirely possible to be angry with your parents and still love them deeply.
Since one of my favorite genres is les francaises, I enjoyed these titles as well:
At Home with Madame Chic: Becoming a Connoisseur of Daily Life by Jennifer L. Scott. I’ve read all three of Scott’s books and absolutely love them. We met Madame Chic, Scott’s mother host in Paris when she was an exchange student, and learned how to dress, shop and groom like a French lady. This book is all about savoring the day, and it really works. Reading this book is like drinking a cup of Earl Grey tea while listening to classical music. (And I may have been doing those two things a lot recently after reading it!)
Paris Letters by Janice MacLeod. Girl moves to France. Girl meets charming, attentive French guy. Lives (mostly) happily ever after. This trope never gets old for me. In this case, MacLeod first saves for a year so she wouldn’t have to worry about money (the chapter on how she lived frugally and saved all that dough is alone worth the cost of the book!), then met a handsome Polish guy (who speaks French, so who’s counting?) and started a business on Etsy – Paris Letters – which became wildly successful. Ate this one up.
The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious Adventures in the World’s Most Glorious – and Perplexing – City by David Lebovitz. Speaking of eating, who better to write a memoir about his life in Paris than a pastry chef? Portions of this book had me laughing so hard I spit out my pain du chocolat.
What have you been reading lately? Did I mention my new book, Gluten-Free and Family Friendly: Gluten-free, family-approved recipes to please your palate – and your budget?