Anna: Happy Saturday, bookish friends! Here’s my library/library sale haul from this morning. My currently reading pile is about to get a whole lot bigger!
Disappearing Earth and Mostly Dead Things are long-awaited, very-anticipated holds. I have high expectations!
I’m stocking up for My Harry Potter re-read. I grew up reading my family’s copy of Order of the Pheonix which is completely falling apart and now bound together by tape. I snagged this copy for 50 cents!
One of my current reads is The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls, so when I saw another book by her I couldn’t resist. I’m captivated by her writing and excited to try some of her fiction!
Have you read any of these? Check them out!
I have a love/hate relationship with this book, and series.
The first 400 pages of The Wise Man’s Fear is long-winded and unnecessary. On the other hand, the second half is plot driven, exciting, and plays a huge part in Kvothe’s growth as a character. But it takes a certain amount of determination to get there!
What bothers me most about this series are Rothfus’s misogynistic, sexualized, and unrealistic portrayals of women. All the female characters are frustratingly one-dimensional, and even the women who are strong in different ways end up being sex symbols.
However, I loved the character development and world building in book 2. The many different places and cultures in this book blew me out of the water. Kvothe grows and matures significantly as a character. He experiences different cultures, meet new people, and proves himself as a multifaceted and complicated character who is more than just full of himself.
Despite my differences with this book, I’m honestly so excited for book 3, if it is ever published!
VERDICT: 4 stars
Alexis: Yesterday, I went to a secondhand bookshop called 2nd and Charles. My mom and I both had three bins full of books we wanted to sell or donate, so we sold as many as we could!
But while we were there, I wanted to find one book to get that I’ve been meaning to read. And that book was The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George.
Earlier this year, I read The Book of Dreams by Nina George and I loved it! It was a five star read for me. I can’t wait to read The Little Paris Bookshop next week before grad school starts.
Alexis: Here’s a stack of some of my secondhand books!
To be honest, most of my books are secondhand, unless I really, really want to read a book that was just released.
I actually picked up The Little Paris Bookshop today (more on that tomorrow 😉) from a used bookstore. I adored George’s The Book of Dreams, so I can’t wait to read this one.
When I was visiting my boyfriend in Texas, I picked up A Court of Thorns and Roses and Airborn at different used bookstores.
And last but not least, Great Expectations and Bel Canto were passed down to me from my mom. My copy of Great Expectations is actually my mom’s from her time in high school, which is pretty cool!
Anna: Hunger was my memoir of the month, and I’m so glad I chose this one. I loved Gay’s writing style and can’t wait to read more by her! I also listened to the audiobook which is narrated by Roxanne Gay herself, and this made it a really emotional read.
Hunger is an intense account of Gay’s complicated relationship with her body interlaced with critique on the ways that society and the media view obesity. This is a raw account of some of the most personal parts of Gay’s life, and it was often difficult to read. It will make you angry and force you to think about how you might view people who are different than you. Trigger warnings for sexual assault and abuse.
What Roxanne Gay book should I read next?
Alexis: The Scent Keeper is my kind of book: character-driven, lyrical, unique, and full of sensory imagery.
The story centers around Emmeline, who grows up on a remote island with her father, and she has never seen another living soul. Her father has a magic machine that can capture scents, and he stores these scents in bottles. But after a life-changing event, Emmeline has to face the outside world, her past, and her family.
Bauermeister’s writing is beautiful, and often leans towards magical realism. I love how she writes about scents and Emmeline’s relationship with scents: “The smell of cardamom preceded the woman into the room, soft and comforting. A memory opened–one of the scent-papers from a red-wax bottle, with the fragrance of a sultry place that had wound itself around me, kissed my skin. Cardamom, my father had said. They hide like treasure” (66).
This is a coming-of-age story, and I really enjoyed learning about Emmeline as she learned about herself, too. I especially enjoyed reading about her connection to the natural world around her and here struggle to connect with other people and find her place in the world. But as I said, the star of this book is how the author fashions a world that revolves around scents.
My only critique is that I wish the ending had come more full circle; it felt a little abrupt and unfinished.
I highly recommend giving this a read!
VERDICT: 5 stars
Alexis: Here’s my tbr list for July!
- Grim Lovelies by Megan Shepherd
- The Editor by Steven Rowley
- Clock Dance by Anne Taylor
- The Scent Keeper by Erica Bauermeister
I found Grim Lovelies and Clock Dance for 1/2 price from a book exchange in VA Beach.
A bookstore where everything is $3 or under? Yes, please! I picked up four books, the max I should probably put in my suitcase, from Lucky Dog Books in Dallas, Texas. My boyfriend, who reads nonfiction/business books, found 5 books!
- On Gold Mountain by Lisa See
- Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
- Water Wings by Kristen den Hartog
- Rose’s Garden by Carrie Brown