10.12.2015

What I Read In September

Before we get into all the books I read, I wanted to let you know that I'm hosting an online Usborne Books party. I LOVE these books for my boys! If you have to buy gifts for kids aged 0-14 this holiday season, check it out! We especially love all the non-fiction books. My party will be open until noon on Friday, just select my name right here and start shopping!

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Somewhere in mid-September I completed my Goodreads challenge of 110 books, like a psycho. I know for sure that I've never read that many books in one year before. I blame you guys. Everything in this link up looked so good I had to keep adding books to my list! Then I kept checking out too many books from the library and forcing myself to finish them before they were due. I also started listening to audiobooks, which means I can "read" while I clean and drive and do all sorts of other boring things. Anyway, here's what I read last month.


Intimacy Idiot I really enjoyed this collection of stories by Issac Oliver, who is a single gay man living in NYC, working at a theater ticket booth. His observations about the city and it's people are hilarious and the essays about his love life are honest and awkward. I think he's witty and love his self-depreciating humor. I breezed through this book in one day. 


Ready Player One (Audiobook) In a dystopian 2044, teenager Wade Watts, along with the rest of the world, is on a scavenger hunt taking place in a virtual reality-type environment with the prize of a late billionaire's empire. This isn't the kind of book I usually read, but it's being made into a movie by Steven Spielberg, so I had to check it out. The '80s references were fun, the online world was interesting, I enjoyed the characters, and it was narrated by Wil Wheaton. I liked it, but I don't know that I'm geeky enough to really, truly get it. 


Summerlong (Audiobook) This book revolves around an unhappy married couple and takes place over one summer when their lives are flipped upside-down after each meeting someone new on the exact same night. It reminded me of all those TV shows with middle-aged, middle to upper class suburbanites who hate life for no real reason. The characters weren't dark or deep and it was hard to relate to their self-absorption, but it was very well-written and kinda depressing, in a good way. 


A Thousand Splendid Suns The characters of Mariam and Laila are a generation apart but their lives become intertwined after drastic events. They form a friendship and support each other under the most horrifying circumstances. It wasn't boring or slow by any means, and of course it was really hard to read at times, but it wasn't as compelling to me as most people feel it is. 



The Grownup I felt like Flynn's homage to a classic ghost story is unlike anything she's written before. I read it in thirty minutes and it left me wondering what really happened and who was really to blame. Though none of the characters are very likable, I enjoyed it! 


Why Not Me? (Audiobook) I'm one of those people who wants to be BFFs with Mindy so of course I loved her second book, though not as much as the first. It's a lot shorter and more random. She gives glimpses inside her Hollywood life, love life, and friendships, and touches on self confidence, work ethic, and body image. I loved the essay comparing and contrasting herself with her character on The Mindy Project


The Rumor This story of two Nantucket families takes place over one summer when their lives seem to fall apart and everyone in town is talking about them. It was soapy and predictable, mindless and breezy, and I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. I'll definitely look for more by this author. 


The Admissions This book follows one seemingly perfect, successful California family as the oldest daughter applies to Harvard. It's such a great look at the expectations placed on kids these days and how hard it is for parents to deal with it. It was slow and detailed, even monotonous at times, but I thought it had funny moments and liked it overall.     


Disclaimer (Audiobook) Catherine is sent a novel written about her and an event that took place twenty years ago. It doesn't paint in her the best light and now she must come to terms with her past. I really liked this quick, twisty psychological thriller. It was slow at times and the change in time and narrator confused me a little because I was listening to the audiobook, but it definitely kept me guessing. 

I also read these five books from NetGalley. Check out my reviews here.






 I can't wait to see what you read!


Life According to Steph

27 comments:

Kimmi said...

I just got Mindy's new book but have yet to start it! I have Ready Player One on Audible but still haven't listened to it either! I need to get on the ball!

Joey @ Hodgespodges said...

Dang, woman! I'm impressed with how much you read/listened to! Mindy's book is on my to read (well, to listen) list. I got Before We Were Strangers from netgalley but didn't download it in time before it got archived!

Heather said...

I can't wait to listen to Mindy's second book! While I'm not a die-hard fan, I really enjoyed her first one. Before We Were Strangers has been pretty hyped in the Contemporary Romance world, but I'm really enjoying the books that don't thrive on the misunderstandings so I'm not rushing to read that one. I surpassed my goal for this year, too! Congrats!!

Heather @ Heathers Hurrah said...

After reading this post, I think I might check out Ready Player One in audiobook format instead of print...it's on my TBR list this fall!! I can't wait to read Mindy's new book too. Congrats on reaching your Goodreads goal!!

SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

I've been waiting for Summerlong for what feels like a decade. GET IT TOGETHER, LIBRARY.

Julie said...

I've been wanting to check out Ready Player One. I've heard really good things about it from a few friends but they are gamer types so I'm wondering if I will truly appreciate it. We'll see, I guess. I read Before We Were Stranger too but I ended up enjoying it. I think I liked it so much because I read a really bad book right before that, so it probably only seemed better. haha!

Michael said...

Elin Hilderbrand is one of my absolute favorites so I'm glad to see you enjoyed The Rumor. I haven't read it yet (so behind). The Grownup sounds good so I'll look out for that. I wasn't a huge fan of Mindy's first book but I liked it enough to want to read this new one.

Karen Koblan said...

I'm happy to hear that you really liked Mindy Kaling's second book. I really liked her first book but I haven't picked up this one yet. Good to know! I'm interested to check out the Gillian Flynn book too.

Food, Booze, & Baggage said...

I'm the same way with having to "rush" or "push" myself to read books to keep up with my hold list at the library :) And it is ALL b/c of the linkup. I read Ready Player One this past month too and really enjoyed it. I'm still on hold for Kalings first book.

Tiffany said...

110 books! Girl, you are a machine. I think I've hit many like 10 this year and I was proud of myself...haha. I'm adding Disclaimer to my list!

Jana @ Jana Says said...

YOU READ A DEAN BAKOPOULOS BOOK!!! YAY!!! I love him.

I have a bunch of these on my TBR already and I'm waiting for the library to finally get me Ready Player One. It's taking way too long.

NY Foodie Family said...

Wow you read a lot this month! I've added a bunch to my goodreads list! I've read Ready Player One and enjoyed it a lot, especially since I wasn't expecting to like it. I'm picking up Mindy Kaling's new book this weekend from the library.

Karen Peterson said...

Some of these sound really good! I didn't realize Wil Wheaton narrated the audiobook for Ready Player One. I think I'll have to listen to that instead of read it.

alyssa said...

I've heard good things about a lot of these but nothing has yet inspired me to add them to my TBR list, but your reviews have definitely piqued my interest again :) I'm on a waiting list for Mindy's latest and cannot wait to read it!

Kerry @ Till Then Smile Often said...

DIsclaimer and SUmmerlong sounds really good. I have Why Not Me and I am going to read it this month, glad you liked it. My heart breaks that you didn't like The Life Intended, I really loved it.

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

Recently I have had problems getting my grandson Blain to do his nightly reading he is just not interested in it and it so frustrating

Alison @ Puppies and Pretties said...

Wow, 110 books! That is awesome and crazy. I was excited when I beat my goal this month, but mine was only 50 :)

Elle Sees said...

thanks for all of the reviews! i truly appreciate the time spent reading and listening to these! and thanks for the audiobook reccs. i commute 30-45 coming home (my morning commute is 15-20 min. ugh traffic) and listen to audiobooks then!

Kristen said...

I read Disclaimer this time around as well. I only gave it 3 stars because I didn't like it as much as I thought I would and some parts really dragged for me, but I loved the way Renee Knight chose to end the story.

I had no idea that Gillian Flynn had written a short story! I've read all three of her novels (and enjoyed them!), so I'll have to check this out at some point.

Summerlong is on my "To Read" list already, so I'm glad to see another positive review.

Ready Player One has popped up as a recommendation for me on Goodreads a few times recently, but I wasn't sure if it would be something I'd really like. I may give it a try at some point, though, especially since you said it wasn't your usual type of book and you still enjoyed it.

Erin of TexErin-in-SydneyLand said...

Disclaimer has me intrigued. Added to my tbr. Way to go girlie for hitting (and surpassing) the 110 book mark!

Teh Megan said...

When I saw Ready Player One was going to be a movie, I considered adding it to my TBR list.. not that I'll watch the movie, but ya know, to be up on the time, lol.
I didn't love A Thousand Splendid Sons as much as I loved Kite Runner. Hosseini has a way of writing that really gives me all the feels, which is impressive since I'm mostly heartless.
I enjoyed Mindy's first book and will be adding her 2nd to my TBR list.

Crystal said...

Added Intimacy Idiot and Summerlong to my to-read list! Might have to keep an eye out for Flynn's short story, too!

Kimberlee VDW said...

110 books?! Good lord. I'm lucky if I get through 10 this year lol I'm curious about Mindy's book. I think audio books might be better with some celebs so you can hear their tone of voice.

Nicole Marica said...

I read Ready Player One last summer and loved it, but it's definitely a niche kind of book. His second book was okay, not as great, in my opinion, as RPO

Kristen @ See You In A Porridge said...

congrats on completing your goodreads challenge!! yay!!

ready player one is on my list, but i don't know if i am geeky enough to truly get it. my husband probably is, i will ask him all the things i don't understand. thats cool about the audiobook though, i'll have to try and snag that rather than read the book.

i haven't read a thousand splendid suns. i liked the kite runner but i don't think i have another one of his books in me for like 10 years lol

okay, you are intriguing me with that gillian flynn book! i will have to put that on my list.

i haven't read any of Elin Hilderbrand's books, but I like a good mindless read every now and again.

Disclaimer sounds really interesting.. and creepy.

Oh I saw someone else LOVED the life intended, it was on my list but 2 stars makes me think perhaps not.

Gwen said...

I already have most of these on my to-read list! A Thousand Splendid Suns is actually one of my favorite books.

Thanks so much for the audiobook recommendations! I listened to Luckiest Girl Alive on the way to the beach, and Where'd You Go Bernadette on the way home. They were lifesavers! And I see myself listening to more audiobooks for sure.

Rose @ Ramblin' Rose said...

Wow! You've rocked this year. I can't believe you've read 110 books already. I've read all of Hosseini's books. I still think I liked Kite Runner the best. I'm going to check out The Grown Up and the Intimacy Idiot. I really need to get around to reading Ready Player One.