Books Lately

 

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Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

This book’s about: an 11 year old sleuthing chemist, Flavia deLuce. She happens upon the victim of a murder outside her very own home. Instead of being scared, she’s rather excited and immediately gets to work to discover just what happened.

What I Thought:

  • The rhythm of this book was a little hard for me to get the hang of. Its wording is so unpredictable that it kind of tripped me up and as a result I had a hard time getting into it at first. But after powering through the first bit, I really did get into the story.
  • Flavia deLuce is such a hilarious and unexpected character. It was definitely a fresh read because of how unique a protagonist she is.
  • The book is written in first person and some of the things that Flavia says come straight out of left field and leave you laughing out loud. She has some seriously outlandish analogies.
  • The book has seemingly real characters with unique personalities…always a good thing.

Should You Read it?: I really enjoyed this book and I think it’s worth giving it a try! I did have a hard time getting into it, but once I did, it was a quick and entertaining read. This is the first in its series (I believe the series currently has 9 books) and I didn’t jump right into book #2…but with this fall weather I’m thinking I’m ready for another witty mystery to read. It’s entertaining, clean and clever.

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Cravings by Chrissy Tiegen

This book’s about: Food! It’s a cookbook:)

What I thought:

  • I just wanted to mention this book because I LOVE IT!!!!!!!! I’d been hearing about it all over online so I checked it out from our library and it is a gem!
  • I’m the weirdo who reads cookbooks cover to cover and this one is awesome and hilarious! I had no clue who Chrissy Tiegen was before I opened this book but it turns out she cracks me up! She does swear throughout the book, just FYI.
  • The recipes are so creative but also very simple. They don’t require weird ingredients or a ton of time. And they all look so good! Like so good that in the 2 weeks I had it checked out from the library I made almost a dozen of the recipes!
  • This cookbook was at the top of my birthday wish list and I was so excited that Ben got it for me!!! Definitely a cookbook worth owning.
  • I just really really REALLY want you guys to understand my love for this cookbook so I’m including this last but unnecessary bullet point. This book is so so good. The only sad part is that it doesn’t have a dessert section ๐Ÿ˜ฆ but other than that I’d say it’s pretty close to perfect (as I’m sure was communicated by my excessive use of exclamation points).

Should You Read It?: Obviously, I highly recommend it!

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All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

This book’s about: two separate people-a boy and girl-in the midst of World War II and how their vastly different lives are interconnected. The orphan boy, Werner, is living in Germany and trying to wade through the conflict of doing what’s right and doing what’s expected. Maurie-Laure is a blind girl who is learning how to cope with the changing world around her in occupied France.

What I thought:

  • This is the kind of book that I just had to let simmer for awhile before I could decide what I thought about it. There were so many good parts of the book but there were also parts that really bothered me, and, biggest of all, I just wasn’t sure how I felt about the ending. It left me a little unsatisfied. This is the kind of book that book clubs are made for.
  • Probably one of my favorite things about the book was the imagery. As mentioned above, one of the main characters is blind and it was so impressive to me how Doerr handled that. He really explains things using the 4 senses we’re not as used to reading about. It really put things into perspective to me.
  • I also absolutely loved the relationships he built within the book. The characters seemed so real to me with older, wiser relationships as well as young and insecure ones.
  • The story, in my opinion, was fairly unique with a mystical standpoint involving a cursed diamond. I personally enjoyed this little twist. And I also really enjoyed the layout of the book.
  • Not to end with the bad…but that’s exactly what I’m doing. There were so many impressive aspects to this novel that the things that didn’t jive with me really stood out in a bad way. As with any WWII novel, there are some incredibly unpleasant scenes, which is fine and even necessary. However, I felt like a few of the scenes that Doerr chose to add were completely unnecessary appendages, added only to shock the reader. That wasn’t my fave. And, as mentioned above, the ending really threw me off. The message was completely clear, but I was kind of like, “You wrote this entire (mostly) beautiful novel just to end it like that?”
  • Did any of you guys read it? And what did you think? I finished it months ago now, but I’m still not sure where I stand with it (insert eye roll emoji)…

Should You Read It?: I’m leaning more toward recommending this book than not recommending it. I think it has some great things to offer…just know that I didn’t love ALL of it.

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Your Baby’s First Year by The American Academy of Pediatrics

This book’s about: all the information you might need concerning your baby during his/her first year.

What I Thought:

  • My pediatrics office gave us this book on our first visit and it has turned out to be such a lifesaver for me! I know there are lots of people who love and feel comfortable turning to Google when they’ve got a question about their baby. I am not that person. I feel like, more often than not, my Google searches end in me reading some outlandish (and absolutely incorrect) information that turns me into a puddle of fear and worry. Luckily, this book covers just about everything you could ever worry about and since it was written by pediatricians, I feel like I can trust the information it gives me. When I see an issue or want more information about something regarding my baby, I first turn to the book. If I can’t find an answer there, I ask a family member or friend who is also a mother. If I still have questions I might turn to Google but I’m just as likely to write the question down and ask the doctor at our next visit. I can’t tell you the peace this has brought me because those mommy forums can get mean and crazy and, like I mentioned, totally inaccurate.
  • Just as an FYI, I have not read this book in full, nor do I plan to-I just read the sections I’m curious about.

Should You Read It?:ย If you fit into the category of new mom with a baby, I’d absolutely recommend buying yourself a copy-especially if you get sick of navigating your way through what the internet has to say about your baby.

7 thoughts on “Books Lately

  1. Oh man, I wish I had that baby book when I was a brand new mom. When I Google, I get the same reaction as you-fear. I also have a list of questions I take to my Dr during Antman’s appointments

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  2. I’ve read both The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie and All the Light We Cannot See.
    1- I ADORE the entire Flavia de Luce series. Like you mentioned, it’s a quirky little read that can be a little hard to get into. I just love her character so much that it’s kept me coming back each time a new book comes out. She’s such a fun little thing. I particularly love how the author creates this intelligent, witty little creature who is still very much a pre-teen girl with pre-teen girl thoughts. Just such light, entertaining reads.
    2- All the Light We Cannot See is just such a beautiful,poignant read. I agree that the ending haunted me. The writing style was just so beautiful. I reminded me a little bit of The Book Thief… where the writing almost seems like poetry, even through all of the sadness. I would recommend the book, but let them know it’s definitely not a sunshiney read.

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    1. I still need to read The Book Thief! Whitney!!! You have got to start blogging again! And you need to have posts about the books you read! I read a LOT but I’m positive that you read waaaaay more than me! It’s always nice to have a trusted place to find book recommendations:)

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      1. haha! I know I should, it’s the truth. One day ๐Ÿ™‚

        Glad I can help! Mostly I’m crap at giving recommendations (it’s SO HARD to know what people will enjoy!) but I do so love it when we find the sweet spot and I can pass on recommendations. I keep you in mind when I find another good one ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. Yes! Total mixed feelings about All the Light We Cannot See! I felt like I found some themes/lessons through out but…idk…really sad in some parts (I like that you said “unnecessary”)…. ummm…I have liked other historical fiction books set at that time a lot better. But I did forget about the rock! That was a great part of the story. And Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie – couldn’t get into it!! I tried! I really did! She WAS funny but I just couldn’t do it ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I’ll have to try the other two.

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  4. I just want to say I agree with all of the above! Flavian is such a funky character but itโ€™s fun at the same time. And I absolutely adored All the light we cannot see…. until the end. And the war. Seriously did they say the f bomb so many times then? And that heartbreaking chapter… and the ending was very blah. Literally the whole book spent telling stories and inching the two characters together and then pretty much nothing happens. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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