It finally snowed here this weekend, so the coooold weather (-5 below yesterday morning!) is the perfect excuse to cozy up by the fire with a good book. That’s about the only thing I like about winter!
Halloween is this weekend and I’m lucky enough to have a daughter that still goes crazy for costumes and trick-or-treating. My son bailed on the tradition years ago, so I’m going to soak this in. For her costume, we waited too long to order a part so I’m going back to my elementary days and teaching her how to paper mâché…and honestly, don’t be shocked if I start making fake paper mâchéd animal heads to decorate my house! I forgot how fun it kind of is! 😂
Now, onto the books I read last week…
Last Week’s Reads:
*** A Knock at Midnight by Brittany K. Barnett
I believe this book will be for me this year what Know My Name was for me last year…the most powerful and impactful book I’ve read all year.
Not only is this memoir a glimpse into Barnett’s personal life, it’s also a look at the systemic racism at the heart of the United States’ justice system, specifically when it applies to drug offenses, and more specifically when talking about crack cocaine. Because her mother was in the prison system under a harsher sentence than her crime deserved, Barnett was motivated to help as many unfairly sentenced drug convictions as she could. Under a clemency initiative under President Obama, Barnett was able to free seven people before he left office in 2016.
Barnett and the people she helped free have commited their lives to social justice. She writes with such compassion and inspiration; I feel like I’m a better person for having read her book. I immediately followed Barnett on Instagram, as I really want to keep tabs on what she’s up to. The world would surely be a better place if we had more people like her – selflessly committing to right wrongs and to treat people with kindness. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Winter Counts by David Heska Wanbli Weiden
While I usually think it’s fun to read a book with familiar places, street names, and resturants, for some reason, I found it annoying in this story. (Casa Bonita…really!?!?!? Ugh.)
I thought this one was fine. I really loved reading about reservation life and some of the historical information was new to me. But the plot was predictable and a little to low-key for my liking.
A lot of others have really enjoyed this one, so I may just be in the minority. Definitely seek out some more reviews before making a final decision! ⭐️⭐️⭐️
*** Horrow Lake by Kat Ellis
Lola is the daughter of a famous horror movie director. When her father is attacked, she is sent to her grandmother in Horrow Lake so her father can recover. While there, Lola begins to understand that her past, which she thought knew, has actually been one big lie. As she uncovers the truth in this creepy town, she is also trying to outrun Mr. Jitters (click, click, click).
I enjoyed this YA thriller…it had all the creepy elements: an unsettled and atmospheric town with its own myths and legends to contend with, multiple whacked out characters that keep the reader guessing, and just enough mystery to keep the pages turning.
It was the perfect Halloween Week read! ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫
*** I’m so Effing Tired: A Proven Plan to Beat Burnout, Boost Your Energy, and Reclaim Your Life by Amy Shah, M.D.
I am sooooo close to finishing this one! It’s not out until March 2021, but I have really enjoyed the information it presents. Honestly, I have read a lot of it before, but I still find it educational and I’m really anxious to get to the recipes/WTF plan! A review will be ready by next week!
*** The Midnight Library by Matt Hiag
I’m still trying to fit in a few more magical/Halloweeny vibes, and I’m not sure if this fits the category or not, but the first few pages have been good! We’ll see!
*** Memorial Drive: A Daughter’s Memoir by Natasha Trethewey
I haven’t picked this one up since finishing A Knock at Midnight (see above)…it feels way too similar for this moment in my reading, but I will definitely pick it up before the year ends!
*** A Very Punchable Face by Colin Jost
Eh. Two things happening here: 1.) I’m just really not much of an audiobook listener. A book has to be really, really good to hook me and make me choose it over podcasts! 2.) Maybe I don’t appreciate humor, or maybe I’m not a funny person, but I chose this one for the humor…and I’m not feeling the humor (or lack thereof). I’m sure I’ll come back to this one…just not sure when.
DNF (aka: Not For Me and/or Skipping For Now):
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
What a bummer! I’m so sad this one didn’t work for me! 😭 Clearly, I’m the only one in the world because, quite literally, EVERYONE is loving this one.
I gave it a valiant try – I made it all the way to 42% and I just couldn’t do it anymore. I was bored and felt like it was just Groundhog Day over and over again…I wanted some action and I wanted something that resembled an actual plot. Honestly, this felt very similar to A Witch in Time, which I read earlier this month, and that may be a big reason I didn’t enjoy this one. It’s hard to read similar books back to back…and I enjoyed A Witch in Time so much more anyway!