It’s the first day of 2019, and the first thing I did when I got out of bed this morning was grab a new book to start reading. This isn’t all that different from how I start most days, but once I read a couple chapters, I realized that I hadn’t set any reading goals for 2019 yet. So, here we go!
Since there’s only one day left in 2017, it’s time to sit down and plan out my 2018 Reading Challenge goals!
I did it, friends! I successfully completed my 2017 Reading Challenge on Goodreads! This year I challenged myself to read 35 new books, and finished in record time. I didn’t think I could do it, but here we are again. Now, for the third year in a row, I’m going to challenge myself to write one-sentence reviews all of 35 new books I read (so far) this year! I can’t promise that these will be well-written sentences, but if you’re looking for something new to read this Fall, check out my list below. And if something catches your eye but my one-liner doesn’t convince you to check it out, let me know and I can give you a full review.
This year I challenged myself to read more new books than ever before. I was worried I wouldn’t have time to achieve this goal, but I surprised myself. I was able to read 30 new books before Halloween! Now my Goodreads account is congratulating me.
I’m going to once again challenge myself to write one sentence reviews of each book, so if you’re looking for some new literary adventures to finish your year off check out what I’ve read in the past ten months.
Yes, I realize that it is actually January, but I’ve been so busy for the past month working and drinking egg nog that I haven’t been able to write about all my literary romps! So, fellow book nerds, feel free to check out these short reviews about some of the books I read in the past few weeks!
Room, by Emma Donoghue
This book starts off like an episode of Criminal Minds, but better. Why? Because 1) it’s a book (duh) and 2) it gets into the minds of the victims: a young mother and her five year old son who are being held in a single room. Jack was born and raised in the room, has never left, and is content with his life; he has no idea what is outside the four walls he knows so well. His mother, on the other hand, remembers everything about her former life and wants nothing more to escape. I wasn’t sure about whether or not I would enjoy Room, but I did. It was a beautiful, powerful story about survival and love, and it’s told from Jack’s point-of-view, which is both heartwarming and frustrating. I’d recommend Room to almost anyone.
The Girl With All The Gifts, by M.R. Carey
Have you ever heard of Ophiocordyceps unilateralis? It’s this weird fungal disease that more or less turns ants into zombies. The fungus attacks the ant’s brain, and begins to manipulate its behaviour. Once the ant dies, it releases a disgusting looking spore from its head, which then later infects more ants. What makes this disease even more interesting is that it only infects certain hosts.
What does this have to do with a book? Well, imagine if this disease evolved into a form that was able to infect humans, because that’s the setting of The Girl With All The Gifts.
In this post-apocalyptic tale, humans that have become infected with the new strain of ophiocordyceps are referred to as “hungries,” and they attack and eat other people. Those that have gone unaffected live in heavily protected areas. A few military personnel, however, live at a base and conduct experiments on children who have been infected but do not display typical “hungry” behaviour.
What sets these children apart? Why are they able to (sometimes) resist the desire to attack and eat humans? Do they hold the cure to this infectious disease? You’ll have to read the book to find out!
Yes Please, by Amy Poehler
I’m going to be honest and admit that I am not familiar with any of Amy Poehler’s work (other than her role as “the cool mom” in Mean Girls). I saw her book on a lot of “You Need To Read These Books” lists and decided to give it a go.
Best. Decision. Ever.
Amy Poehler is a queen. Her book is filled with solid advice that will also make you a queen. She spills a lot of tough truths while simultaneously making you laugh. Read this book. Just do it.
PS — if you want to see everything I’ve been reading, check out my Goodreads account.
This year I challenged myself to read 25 new books, and kept track of my progress through my Goodreads account. I am proud to say that as of last week, I successfully completed this challenge! Now I can spend my December re-reading some of my all-time favourites (I’m coming for you again, Gatsby!).
Today, I decided to re-visit all the books I read this past year, and challenged myself to write one-sentence reviews. If you’re looking for some new reads to wrap up your year, check these out!
Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures, by Vincent Lam
Written by a Toronto-based doctor about being a medical student in Toronto: this book gives you more insight into the world of medical care than Grey’s Anatomy ever could.
Not That Kind of Girl, by Lena Dunham
While some excerpts were great, others weren’t, so I defiantly wouldn’t say that it defines a generation.
2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke
I don’t even know how to begin explaining my love for Clarke’s work, or 2001: he spins a masterful tale about life on Earth and beyond.
The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath
This book is full of female, twenty-something angst, and I love it; funny and sad, Plath will welcome you into her world and make you feel at home.
The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway
Hemingway makes me feel in a way that no other author can, and this book is no exception; I don’t even know how to describe it except by saying “it’s real.”
A Dance With Dragons, by George R. R. Martin
I still hate all the Starks.
2010: Odyssey Two, by Arthur C. Clarke
Dave Bowman comes back!
Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn
I really don’t understand the hype around this book — it was only alright.
A Long Way Down, by Nick Hornby
Another book full of angst, but also ripe with strange friendships that develop over a pact to not commit suicide.
2061: Odyssey Three, by Arthur C. Clarke
You never know what you’re going to find in space!
Into The Wild, by Jon Krakauer
One of the greatest pieces of non-fiction I’ve ever read, and a compelling story about one young man’s journey to find himself.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, by Tom Stoppard
If you want to know what the character’s in Shakespeare’s Hamlet do while off-stage, read this play, because it’s hilarious.
The War of the Worlds, by H. G. Wells
Martians that can’t cope with Earth’s atmosphere or various diseases, so despite their invasion, humans still come out as victors.
Annihilation, by Jeff Vandermeer
Area X is full of secrets that will drive you mad, potentially to the point of death.
Armada, by Ernest Cline
This book is full of totally awesome nerdy references, but the ending falls short.
Breakfast of Champions, by Kurt Vonnegut
Only Kurt Vonnegut writes like Kurt Vonnegut, and you don’t realize how true his satire is until it’s over.
Choke, by Chuck Palahniuk
This book made me pretty uncomfortable, but that’s what Chuck Palahniuk does, so I’d still call it a success.
Jurassic Park, by Michael Crichton
The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P., by Adelle Waldman
Hipster romances in Brooklyn.
The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern
This book tells the story of a wonderful world of magic, but tries too hard to make a sub-par romance spark.
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, by Washington Irving
I’m still concerned about what actually happened to Ichabod Crane.
The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman
This story will melt your heart in a spooky way.
Bird Box, by Josh Malerman
The story is gripping, and will leave you turning pages and trying to figure out what is happening, but in the end, you’ll be let down.
A Study in Scarlett, by Arthur Conan Doyle
Sherlock and Watson meet for the first time and it’s hilarious.
Fans of the Impossible Life, by Kate Scelsa
Very similar to The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and would have probably been better if I was still 16.