September 2016 Reads

This month has come and gone in the blink of an eye. Seriously, I feel like if you blinked you missed it. Tomorrow is October first, meaning we’re entering the last quarter of the year. It’s a big one for me. My fiance and I are moving to a new apartment in a new city. He’s starting a new job, his dream job to be exact. The holidays are approaching and I’ve already started making a list of gifts I plan to give.

Despite all the stress that has been consuming my thoughts in the last few weeks, I still found time to knock several books off my list of must-reads. My goal at the beginning of the year was to read four books a month. That didn’t exactly happen, but I decided September was a good month to try it out (remember my earlier post about this month being the time of year I decide to revisit my goals? I really did commit to it).

Basically, instead of trying to binge watch a lot of Netflix content, I took a break and binged read books. And drank a ton of coffee.

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All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr was hands down my favorite book of the batch. In fact, it’s in my top 10 favorite books of all time. It’s set during World War II and follows two different characters, whose stories come together by the end. I’m not usually one for period stories, but this one sucked me in from the first page. It’s heart-wrenching, fascinating, terrifying, and satisfying. It’s a book to be read again and again, each time bringing forth new thoughts and meanings. All I want to do is loan my copy to every person I know so they can be blessed with its beauty. So this is me telling you to read it now.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes ripped my heart to shreds. I read through the book in less than a day, but it took me a week to recover from the depression it put me in. The issue of right to die has been a touchy topic of conversation for a long time, and this book really touches upon both sides of it. I tend to really absorb the books I read, so this was a difficult subject for me to process by the end. As much as I adore both Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin, I just don’t have the strength to get through the movie adaption (which seems pretty well adapted from the previews I’ve seen).

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The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah was originally a birthday gift to my mother-in-law. The previous two books were given to me by her, and so she continued the tradition by passing on her birthday gift to me after she was done reading it. I really enjoyed it. It was heart-breaking, too, though thankfully not as much as Me Before You. This was also another book that I was able to read in a day, and it follows the story of a man of rapidly declining healthy in hospice care. He plays a game that involves coming up with a part of the body for each letter of the alphabet, and then coming up with a story that associates with each body part. It was really intriguing from the get-go. You can get the sense of how it’s going to end as you keep reading, but this book always kept me interested and on my toes regardless of that.

Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams: Short Stories, Prose, and Diary Excerpts by Sylvia Plath is a book I’ve had for four years. I attempted to read it shortly after I got it, but college course work kept me too busy to fully enjoy the stories. Sylvia Plath is one of my favorite people to have ever lived, and I often feel too well connected to the person she was. Her life history has always fascinated me, as much as her writing. While some of her stories are a bit slow, maybe even a tad pointless at times, I really enjoyed reading them. With the help of the introduction by her husband Ted Hughes, you can really draw insight into her life and her mind as you read her work, especially her journal entries.My fascination of this woman continues.

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I’m looking forward to what I hope will be another month of successful reading. I’m also hoping to find a balance of reading books and watching Netflix. We’ll see how I manage with all the busy days I have ahead of me! Do you have book recommendations for me? I’d love to check them out! Let me know in the comments.

-Ciara

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