Thursday, November 05, 2015

A bumper reading month

I had a great reading month in October. I suppose there's got to be an upside to the heatwave and not wanting to move my body one little bit.

I have 16 books to read to reach my goal of 70 for the year. 8 a month is a lot, even for me, but I think I'll make it if I get this exam done first time around :)

And if I don't faff around on Instagram. I deleted Facebook from my phone already so things are looking up.

I also made some rules for myself which I wrote on my "mouse pad". Let me tell you about this mouse pad - it's a pad of writing paper. Some of you are asking, "who even has writing paper?" That would be me. When I was Konmari-ing, I found three pads. Lovely stuff that sparks joy so I'm keeping but using them.

I wrote some letters (real letters!) to two friends (one Insta-friend) with some, and this one writing pad is my mouse pad, so I write myself notes on the paper.

Back to the rules: study 30 minutes a day, first blog, then read blogs, Instagram daily (on my Organising Queen account.

Back to the quick book review:

1. Three amazing things about you

Lovely book - a solid 4 but still not as enjoyable (for me) as other Jill Mansell books have been.

2. Tangled lives - Hilary Boyd

I LOVED this book. This author reminds me of Joanna Trollope. If you don't know who Joanna Trollope is, she writes amazing British fiction but the best thing about her is how well she notices relationship nuances.

So this author has got that same thing going. This really was a great book. I sat myself down for most of a Sat or Sun and didn't move for about 4 hours and only then, because the kids wanted food.

3. The woman next door - Barbara Delinsky

Same as the one I read from this author last month. Nice enough (3) but don't go out of your way to get these books.

4. I know how she does it - Laura vanderkam

Jeanette, you should read this and we can do lunch to dissect it :)

I read this woman's blog. I don't like some of what she says generally but I stay subscribed because it always challenges my thinking.

I liked one thing very much about this book and others really annoyed me (the income thing, for one!), but I'm going to write a few posts on the Organising Queen blog so keep your eyes out for that.

 5. One Summer - David Baldacci

I actually love David Baldacci's other writing - proper thriller/ crime-type things and normally I'd be annoyed and say "stick with what you're good at" until I read Big Magic.She says something really interesting in there which is that artists should write anything they want without being scared that it won't be good. Normally the ones who wait for the brilliance only end up tortured and creatively stifled, etc. So for that reason I say, good on you, David Baldacci, but I really still like your other stuff best ;)

6. Summer of love - Katie Fforde

This is the opposite story as the one above. I normally don't like Katie Fforde's books very much but this one I really liked a lot.

It got 3 stars from me; I would have given 4 if the main character didn't annoy me in places.

Cat, I saw you didn't like this one :)

7. Big Magic - Liz Gilbert

This book was SOOO good on so many levels.

First of all, I love this lady's voice (I bought the audible version) and I love her podcast, and I super love her creative bend coupled with such practicality.

I really think everyone should buy/ listen to it. It's not just for creatives although more so for them.

Are we not all creatives? I decided while listening that while I've resisted the adjective of creative for many years now (it always comes up as a strength in my psychometric tests) because it seemed too airy-fairy for me, I actually am creative. Her kind of "work hard and you may get those moments of Big Magic happening. Work hard anyway" does it for me.

Reminded me of photography where I spend 20 minutes taking pics of things and when I'm editing I see 2 - 3 that catch my breath, and I think, "wow, was that me?" (those are my moments of Big Magic)

Fun fact - Eat Pray Love was her 4th published novel; the others were all picked up by proper publishing houses too but that one was the one that seemed to resonate with millions of people. I loved the book but apparently people don't all love it. Why are some people so judgmental about her journey to the 3 countries? I've read that she is a navel-gazing, selfish woman. My word - if you've got the money and you're not abandoning your responsibilities to go and do your thing, then I'm all for self-exploration and healing.

Um, I didn't mean to gush about Big Magic. Anyway, get it :) and listen to it in the car. You will love the audible version.

What have you been reading lately? Or listening to?

Of course, I've been listening to Roisin Ingle's podcast - all the time!


  1. I really should do a better job of keeping track of how much I read a month. Last week I devoured the Old Souls trilogy by Deborah Harkness, and they're pretty fat reads. It seems that my binging on easy 1 hour Mills&Boons( and swoons :p) reads has gotten my reading speed back to what it was pre Keiden.

    I think I'll go low tech to track how much I read, just keep a page and marks for counting. I've been done with facebook for ages, and do not miss it as all. From your post on your other blog I have realised that I shoul limit my twitter time, but it's a struggle. It's how I get to chat to grown-ups.

    1. Cassey, sign up for a goodreads account. AMAZING to keep track of things - I actually have a post just on goodreads on the other blog :)

    2. I have one somewhere, and a library thing, but that's another thing for me to check. And I want to stop waffling time away online.

  2. Have you read "Committed"? I think it's her best and something every married person should read. I can not remember that Katie Fforde? Also can not find that I read it in my goodreads or blog? Help me out here, I am intrigued

    1. Oh I just saw - another Cat ! 29 years old - gosh, I would love to be 29 now

    2. Julia gave me her copy of Committed and it is still on my shelf to read. Okay, I will read it!

    3. Also Katie Fforde ftw! :)

  3. I abandoned blogging to a good book and early nights this week... I am reading Recipes for Love and Murder by Sally Andrew, somehow I feel I have to bake something to review it... I will review it next weekend. So good, and I especially loved the localness of it. Otherwise the father person and I are listening to "The Girl on the Train" oh my... so very good. We have this habit of dashing on an errand and listening to a book together on the way, well we find ourselves going round and round the block before we go home, because we can't stop listening to this one!!!

  4. one day be able to read a lot again. I only get time over holidays and I try to read for an hour before I fall asleep. It still goes slowly...but when I start reading I can't put a book down and I don't get to anything else.


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