2016 Reading Challenge Update: April Part 1

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“It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone


As promised early this week in the middle of a coffee date, here are first half of the seven awesome books I have read last April. (YES! I finally read Harry Potter!)

22nd – A book about a culture you’re unfamiliar with – Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Attachments

Rating: 💖 💖 💖 💖 (Good read, definitely!)

What is it about: Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It’s company policy.) But they can’t quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.

Meanwhile, Lincoln O’Neill can’t believe this is his job now- reading other people’s e-mail. When he applied to be “internet security officer,” he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.

When Lincoln comes across Beth’s and Jennifer’s messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can’t help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.

By the time Lincoln realizes he’s falling for Beth, it’s way too late to introduce himself.

What I Love: Rainbow Rowell’s trademark of easy, light read. The email exchanges between Beth and Jennifer are my favorite parts. They are packed with wit and friendship-love in between.

What I Don’t Love Much: There are some a bit boring parts.

Wise Words: 

23rd – An autobiography – When a Good God Allows Rape by Joy Tan-Chi Mendoza

When a Good God Allows Rape

Rating: 💖 💖 💖 💖 (Good read, definitely!)

What is it about: There are a lot of horrible things that happen in this world. But one of the worst is when an innocent gets violated. Why does God allow such things to happen?

What Joy Tan-Chi Mendoza went through when she was 15 has been a very public and strong statement of pain, healing, and grace. She has now put her story into a book that she hopes will show people that there is hope, healing, and wholeness for those who have experienced abuse and this kind of pain. What Satan meant for harm, God meant for good.

What I Love: This book is a blessing. It is empowering and eye-opening. The author and her family’s unrelenting faith is strengthening.

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing. 🙂

Wise Words: 

“We don’t question the purpose of suffering when we think someone deservers it… But we find it irreconcilable, hard to understand, when bad things happen to good people. The math doesn’t add up; it just doesn’t make sense to us.”

“Would I allow this tragedy to define my faith? Or, would I allow faith to define this tragedy?”

“The reality is we live in a fallen world where we are victims of people’s sinful choices, including our own.”

24th – The first book you see in a bookstore – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter, #1)  by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)

Rating: 💖 💖 💖 💖 💖(GREAT READ!)

Why only now: I replaced What is it About? to Why Only Now? because I am sure EVERYONE knows what this book is about.

You know I’ve been a reader for years but I am not really fond of magic and fantasy (because I think my imagination is limited), thus, I really have no plans on reading Harry Potter books neither watching its films. Then for my 2016 Resolutions, I wrote that this year I will (finally) give this series I try. And so I did!

I will not say this because I fear of being mobbed by the millions (or maybe billions) of Potterheads but I am really glad that I finally read it. It is indeed a GREAT READ. ❤

What I Love: Everything. The opening chapter is engrossing.

I love the poetic mystical notes in between action-packed and witty paragraphs.

I love how a complicated world (for me) was explained beautifully.

I love that it is endearing, and then it’s also funny, and then it’s also exciting, and then it’s also creepy and then it’s also wise.

I love the twist!!!

I love its wholeness and everything in  between. Rowling truly has a great gift with words.<3

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing.

Wise Words: 

“To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.”

“The truth.” Dumbledore sighed. “It is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution.”

“Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself.”

25th – A book written by a comedian – Bossypants by Tina Fey

Bossypants

Rating: 💖 💖 💖 (Good read!)

What is it about: From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon — from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.

Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we’ve all suspected: you’re no one until someone calls you bossy.

What I Love: It’s a wise read. A fun read, too. Fey is blatantly honest and I like it.

What I Don’t Love Much: The explicit words.

Wise Words: 

“But the Rule of Agreement reminds you to “respect what your partner has created” and to at least start from an open-minded place. Start with a YES and see where that takes you.”

“People are going to try to trick you. To make you feel that you are in competition with one another. You’re not in competition with other women. You’re in competition with everyone.”

“Sometimes if you have a difficult decision to make, just stall until the answer presents itself.”

“When it’s true, it doesn’t need to be said.”

“…the best thing a mom can do to be a better mom is to carve out a little time for herself.”

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.

Photo credit: Pop SugarGoodreadsQuotesgram and Pinterest

Story Summary: Goodreads


What are you favorite reads this month?

Have you read any of this?

Do you agree with me?

:)

Let’s talk!

P.S. Part two next week! 😀

Ten Newly-Added Books in My TBR

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If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking. – Haruki Murakami

The Broke and the Bookish‘s Top Ten Tuesday today is  Top Ten Books I’ve Recently Added To My TBR.

I’ll be quick (’cause I have a client meeting today! :D)

Treat this as my very first update for Pop Sugar’s 2016 Reading Challenge.

update

Here they are…

1. A book based on fairytale – The Crown (The Selection, #5) by Kiera Cass

The Crown (The Selection, #5)

Twenty years have passed since the events of The One, and America and Maxon’s daughter is the first princess to hold a Selection of her own. Princess Eadlyn didn’t think she would find a real partner among the Selection’s thirty-five suitors, let alone true love. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and now Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more difficult—and more important—than she ever expected.

(I am not fan of The Heir, but I will still read this book because I want to finish the entire series. :))

2. A National Book Award winner – Fortune Smiles by Adam Johnson

Fortune Smiles

In post-Katrina Louisiana, a young man and his new girlfriend search for the mother of his son. In Palo Alto, a computer programmer whose wife has a rare disease finds solace in a digital copy of the recently assassinated President. In contemporary Berlin a former Stasi agent ponders his past.

And in “”Interesting Facts”, a woman with cancer rages against the idea of her family without her.

Hugely inventive and endlessly energetic, this is a heart wrenching, surprising collection of stories that show Johnson at the top of his form.

3. A book translated to English – Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

Norwegian Wood

Toru, a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before.  Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there, but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable.  As she retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman.

4. A book set in Europe – After You (Me Before You, #2) by Jojo Moyes

After You (Me Before You, #2)

After You is the sequel to the beloved New York Times million-copy bestseller, Me Before You.

5. A book that’s under 150 pages – The Possession by Annie Ernaux

The Possession

Self-regard, in the works of Annie Ernaux, is always an excruciatingly painful and exact process. Here, she revisits the peculiar kind of self-fulfillment possible when we examine ourselves in the aftermath of a love affair, and sometimes, even, through the eyes of the lost beloved.

6. A New York Times bestseller – The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

The Nightingale

With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah takes her talented pen to the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France–a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel for a lifetime.

7. A book that’s becoming a movie this year – The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

The Girl on the Train
Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

8. A dystopian novel – More Than This by Patrick Ness

More Than This

A boy drowns, desperate and alone in his final moments. He dies.

Then he wakes, naked and bruised and thirsty, but alive.

How can this be? And what is this strange deserted place?

As he struggles to understand what is happening, the boy dares to hope. Might this not be the end? Might there be more to this life, or perhaps this afterlife?

( I quit reading YA dystopia last year, but now I am giving it another try. Let’s see…)

9. A book of poetry – Love & Misadventure by Lang Leav

Love & Misadventure

Beautifully illustrated and thoughtfully conceived, Love and Misadventure will take you on a rollercoaster ride through an ill-fated love affair- from the initial butterflies to the soaring heights- through to the devastating plunge. Lang Leav has an unnerving ability to see inside the hearts and minds of her readers. Her talent for translating complex emotions with astonishing simplicity has won her a cult following of devoted fans from all over the world.

(I posted on my Facebook that this is the book that I want for my birthday this week. 😀 I hope someone heard me! :D)

10. An autobiography – When A Good God Allows Rape by Joy Tan Chi – Mendoza

When A Good God Allows Rape

What Satan meant for harm, God meant for good. God’s grace transformed pain, emotional distress, and suffering into a vibrant, purposeful, and rich life. Refusing to hide behind the dark memories that wanted to hold her captive, Joy Tan-Chi Mendoza shares her story, helping her readers towards strength, encouragement, and the healing of sexual trauma and abuse.

(I got goosebumps when I heard of this courageous and inspiring story. My friend and workmate, Shie, will share me a copy and I am excited to know how will this book move me.)

That will be all!

What are the newest addition to your TBR?

Let me know! 😀

~