book report: may 2018

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I got quite a bit of reading done this month and happened to read several books I loved! I read a total of seven books, some in a lounge chair by the pool and others while cozy in my bed. Hope you find some you might like!

Goal Progress: 16/50

Here We Lie by Paula Treick DeBoard
This book was about two college roommates: Megan, who is from a modest upbringing in the Midwest, and Lauren, the daughter of a wealthy Connecticut senator. Their lives become intertwined and something happens during the summer when Megan goes to visit Lauren's family on their private island off of Maine. The scandal comes back to haunt them later in life. I honestly didn't love this one. The ending was predictable and I didn't really connect to either characters. 

11/22/63 by Stephen King
This was the first Stephen King book I've ever read and wow, I loved it! The story is about a high school teacher, Jake Epping, living in 2011 who goes back in time to try to save JFK from his assassination. The story is a long one (850 pages!), so there are plenty of other stories before you eventually get to the JFK plot. Despite being super long, I was really impressed by King's storytelling because it never felt slow or boring. There's even a really sweet romance that I enjoyed a lot. I truly couldn't put this one down!

Influence by Mary Kate & Ashley Olsen
As a huge MK & Ashley fan, I'm shocked that I had never picked up their book from 2008 until now. I randomly saw it at the library and am so glad. They did a bunch of little interviews with people like Lauren Hutton, Diane von Furstenberg, Richard Prince, Peter Beard, and more. I loved reading through this book and hearing about all of the things that inspire the artists that were interviewed. It made me really nostalgic for a time before social media changed the creative climate of the world.

Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan
I'll start by saying this was a rather strange book. You go into it thinking it's a thriller but it ends up being something else entirely. The book jacket describes the plot as being about a group of college friends who go off to explore an abandoned prison, then one of the friends disappears and several years later, a secret resurfaces that brings them all back together. This was definitely more of a literary novel than a thriller and it was beautifully written. However engaged I was, I wasn't that entertained by the story and by the final fourth of the book, I was ready for it to be over. If you're looking for beautiful prose though, this has it.

Feel Free: Essays by Zadie Smith
This book of essays was so, so wonderful. This is coming from a person who doesn't often get too into books o essays or short stories, so my endorsement should mean a lot! She covers many topics so intelligently, from Facebook and Justin Bieber to Renaissance art and race in London. Some of my favorites were 'Fences: A Brexit Diary', 'On Optimism and Despair', 'Getting In and Out', and 'Love in the Gardens'. 

Kintsugi Wellness by Candice Kumai
I really enjoyed this book about Japanese wellness. It covered all sorts of Japanese concepts, featured beautiful recipes, and had a great little travel guide in the back.

The Queen of Hearts by Kimmery Martin
If you like Grey's Anatomy, I think you'll like this about two doctors who have been friends since medical school. When a former colleague reappears, their lives are shaken up. The story is set in Louisville, KY and Charlotte, NC so it has a nice Southern vibe.