Thursday, December 7, 2017

Books Lately '17: October & November

The past few months have been busy and I only "read" two books in October, so instead of writing a full post about my measly 2 books, I decided to put it off an combine October and November's reads so that it looks like I accomplished more reading than I actually did.  I mean, not like anyone is keeping score or anything.  Besides myself.  Anyway, here's what I've read recently:


We Should All Be Feminists, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Description from Amazon:
"The highly acclaimed, provocative New York Times bestseller—a personal, eloquently-argued essay, adapted from the much-admired TEDx talk of the same name—from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, award-winning author of Americanah. Here she offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century, one rooted in inclusion and awareness. Drawing extensively on her own experiences and her deep understanding of the often masked realities of sexual politics, here is one remarkable author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman now—and an of-the-moment rallying cry for why we should all be feminists."

Such an amazing and powerful book that I think everyone should read.   Though it was short, it definitely opened my eyes to things I say and do that have a negative effect on the female gender.  Being a mother with two daughters, I want them to grow up knowing that they are equal to men, despite what society may insinuate.  It's never too late to change the way we think and the way we act.

Start with Why, by Simon Sinek

Description from Amazon:
"In 2009, Simon Sinek started a movement to help people become more inspired at work, and in turn inspire their colleagues and customers. Since then, millions have been touched by the power of his ideas, including more than 28 million who’ve watched his TED Talk based on START WITH WHY -- the third most popular TED video of all time.

Sinek starts with a fundamental question: Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their success over and over?

People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with WHY. They realized that people won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it. 

START WITH WHY shows that the leaders who've had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way -- and it's the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with WHY"

I listened to the audio version of this and I didn't care much for it.  There were some strong points and I learned a lot about companies like Apple and Walmart, but the author references these companies a LOT throughout this book and it got so redundant that I started to lose interest in it.   I feel like the whole point of the book (WHY to start with why) was in the first few chapters and the rest of it was just trying to drill it in.

Golden Son (The Red Rising Series, Book 2), by Pierce Brown

Description from Amazon:
"A New York Times Bestselling Author The Red Rising Trilogy (Book 2) As Reds, Darrow and his kind have been betrayed and denied by their elitist masters, the Golds. In the name of the greater good for which Eo, his true love and inspiration, laid down her own life, Darrow becomes a Gold to destroy their privileged realm from within. On a path fraught with danger and deceit, Darrow must strive not for violent revolt but hopeful rebirth, and choose to follow Eo's principles of love and justice to free his people. He must live for more."

So many crazy things happen in this book which begins a couple years after Darrow finishes at the Academy.  There were so many new characters introduced along with the old characters so it confused me just a bit in the beginning.  Also, it had been a couple months since I read the first book so my memory wasn't as clear.  In the first book, Darrow was so clear on his goal and his reason for trying to destroy the Golds.  In this second book, the lines are blurred because he considers some of them friends and sees the human side to their race since he has been living among them for so long.  The ending really surprised me and made me want to dive into the third book right away.

The Silent Child, by Sarah A. Denzil

Description from Amazon:
"In the summer of 2006, Emma Price watched helplessly as her six-year-old son’s red coat was fished out of the River Ouse. It was the tragic story of the year – a little boy, Aiden, wandered away from school during a terrible flood, fell into the river, and drowned. His body was never recovered. Ten years later, Emma has finally rediscovered the joy in life. She’s married, pregnant, and in control again... ... until Aiden returns. Too traumatized to speak, he raises endless questions and answers none. Only his body tells the story of his decade-long disappearance. The historic broken bones and injuries cast a mere glimpse into the horrors Aiden has experienced. Aiden never drowned. Aiden was taken. As Emma attempts to reconnect with her now teenage son, she must unmask the monster who took him away from her. But who, in their tiny village, could be capable of such a crime? It's Aiden who has the answers, but he cannot tell the unspeakable. This dark and disturbing psychological novel will appeal to fans of The Widow and The Butterfly Garden."

I read this book from cover to cover in one sitting.  This is one of those stories that pulls you in from the get-go and won't let you breathe until the end.  There were so many interesting twists and secrets that I could not put it down until I finished it, all the while wondering what secrets Aiden was keeping and when he would finally talk.

Big Magic, by Elizabeth Gilbert

Description from Amazon:
"Readers of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration and empowerment from Elizabeth Gilbert’s books for years. Now this beloved author digs deep into her own generative process to share her wisdom and unique perspective about creativity. With profound empathy and radiant generosity, she offers potent insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She asks us to embrace our curiosity and let go of needless suffering. She shows us how to tackle what we most love, and how to face down what we most fear. She discusses the attitudes, approaches, and habits we need in order to live our most creative lives. Balancing between soulful spirituality and cheerful pragmatism, Gilbert encourages us to uncover the “strange jewels” that are hidden within each of us. Whether we are looking to write a book, make art, find new ways to address challenges in our work,  embark on a dream long deferred, or simply infuse our everyday lives with more mindfulness and passion, Big Magic cracks open a world of wonder and joy."

I did the audiobook of this one and I enjoyed it enough.  A little woo-woo for my taste, but it was interesting to listen to.  Thinking back on it, there wasn't really one part that stuck out and inspired me but maybe it's because I listened to the audiobook instead of actually reading it.  All in all, it was an okay book.  Nothing big or magical about it, but a good way to pass the time.

1 comment:

  1. oooh i can't wait to hear what you think of morning star when you get to it :) i barely remember golden son lol but i liked the series overall. and yes to We Should All Be Feminists - loved it, think everyone should read it!


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