Before I had a child, I was an devoted reader, mostly because I had the time! Over the past 3 years, my reading rate slowly dropped off to 2-3 books a summer and maybe 1 during the winter. However, as I've recently shared, we've implemented some lifestyle changes including cutting cable and changing our nightly routines. These changes re-kindled my love, and allowed time, for reading and I'm only happier for it.
My reading philosophy:
Paul and I typically get Roswelle to bed by 8pm and our entire house shuts down for the night by 8:30pm! Paul and I both go up to our bedroom to get ready for the night and have at least an hour (if we fall asleep around 10pm) to read - although we both often only last 20 minutes before falling asleep with our books on our faces. The point is, its been amazing! We love winding down this way, and I'm certain we sleep better because of it (and we are now morning people:)
Also, make plans around reading! My girlfriends recently started a book club where we are planning to meet once a month, with the host of the month selecting the book we read. This gives me encouragement to prioritize finishing the book and allows me to make time for myself, my friends, and my mind!
How I Read
I ONLY read hardcover books, finding the pages and substantial weight of the book comforting and relaxing. If I know that I am going to an appointment solo (doctor appt/oil change/nail salon) I will toss my book in my bag opting to read it rather than scrolling on my phone while I wait.
If you become an avid reader, it can be expensive to buy the books. With more and more friends using their kindles, I have less books to borrow. I renewed my membership at our local library (after paying $51 in late fees/lost books (whoops!)) and always look forward to the emails that my requested book is ready for pick-up! Roswelle and I make a trip out of picking up my books, and she has so much fun in the children's space. We usually checkout a couple books for her as well.
Know your genre and stick with it. Most of the time, if someone tells me they just don't enjoy reading, I assume they haven't found the right genre. I love chick-lit and fictional mysteries so that's what I read and I don't apologize for it. Paul and I couldn't have more different preferences when it comes to reading (as you will see below) and that's ok. This is about restoration and time for yourself - so you do you! Once you find the genre you love, you will be more likely to actually read, which is the whole point.
Below are some lists of what I've recently read (and my review of the books), what's next on my list to read, and what Paul is reading (just to give y'all a broader context of some books out there).
Happy reading, y'all!
What I've read recently:
- The Nest, by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney - fun, entertaining and makes you wonder which sibling you would be when a large sum of money is to be inherited.
- Fates and Furies, by Lauren Groff- definitely a step above my reading level, but I enjoyed the challenge. I had to focus when reading it so it's not something I would suggest while you sit on the beach with the kids. It takes a "furious" twist at the end that I found refreshing from the typical happy ending novels I read.
- Rich and Pretty, by Rumaan Alam - to be honest, I really did not like this one. I found the writing style choppy and I kept waiting for something to actually happen. Mostly read it because I saw it on someone else's list, but didn't even finish the last few chapters! Only including it because it is, in fact, something I've recently read.
- Before the Fall, by Noah Hawley - If you like to wonder what really happened until the very end - you will enjoy this. A small plain crash occurs killing two rich and important families, leaving only a small boy, who is heir to his father's wealth, and an artist who was hitch-hiking a ride, to survive. There are many plausible theories as to how and why the plane went down with an unexpected, but satisfying ending.
- Big Little Lies, by Liane Moriarty - LOVED this and honestly love the HBO series based on the book just as much. All about chaos amongst parents in a wealthy area of California. You spend the entire book learning the little lies everyone is telling and ultimately trying to find out who dies in the end and how.
- Into the Water, by Paula Hawkins - The best thriller I have read in a long time and I think better than her first novel, Girl on the Train. I finished this book in one week which is impressive for me and had nightmares 1 or 2 nights from it. I plan to lend it out (I actually purchased this one), with fair warning on the creepiness.
Next on my list:
- Small Great Things, by Jodi Piccoult
- The Couple Next Door, by Shari Lapena
- The Girl Before, by JP Delaney
- All the Missing Girls, by Megan Miranda
- The Nix, by Nathan Hill
(for some balance to my chick-lit/mystery)
- Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters, by Meg Meeker (a "must" for Dad's of daughters, according to Paul)
- The Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson
- Dynamic Aging, by Katy Bowman
- A Walk in the Woods, by Bill Bryson
- Under the Banner of Heaven, by Jon Krakauer