It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?

its-monday-what-are-you-readingHi friends!  I’m struggling a bit right now with my blogging and reading.  I’ve been reading in little bits and pieces, without long sustained stretches.  (I’ve also been working on practicing yoga and trying some strength training at night when my son goes to bed – yay! – but that’s been eating into my reading time too.)   Maybe it’s the winter blahs (although it’s been crazy warm in Tennessee the past couple of weeks.  Still gray, though.) I’m sure it’s a phase, and I’ll soon be firing on all cylinders.  But in the meantime, I’ve decided to join in on the It’s Monday, What Are You Reading meme, hosted by The Book Date.  I’ve been thinking about doing so for a while.  I love a good “currently reading” book chat!

At the moment I’m reading three books:  Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue, French Milk by Lucy Knisley, and Ten Ways to Be Adored When Landing A Lord by Sarah MacLean. (Remember when I was going to read only one book at a time?  Ha ha!)

Behold the Dreamers is good, but I’m finding myself not dyingfc9ef780abf3d053a5beb8a9289d2ec9 to pick it back up once I’ve put it down.  Mbue’s writing is lovely, and I love the NYC setting, yet for some reason it’s taking me a while to read. Maybe because it’s sad.  But I’m still very glad I’m reading it, as it puts very real, human faces on huge, complex issues like illegal immigration and class privilege.

 

In the meantime, I picked up French Milk at my local county library where I live.  I’m a sucker for travel memoirs set in France anyway, always have been.  This is a slim graphic novel about Knisley’s month long trip to Paris with her mother.  It’s entertaining so far, and I’m going to finish it, but I don’t see it being something I’m going to really love.  Oh, but it is making me want to eat pastries!

71qrmsjndflSo my first “Random Read” pick of the year (one of my goals – to be more random in my reading) is Ten Ways to Be Adored When Landing a Lord.  I’d read the first one of these historical romances last year (Nine Rules To Break When Romancing a Rake) and liked it. It was the first real romance novel I’d read.  This one features the dashing twin brother of the hero in the first novel, so it’s set in relatively the same time and place (1820’s England.)  The heroine,  the independent, intelligent Lady Isabel, is a daughter of a man with a title but no moral compass.  After he dies (having gambled away all of their money) she is forced to sell some of their antiquities in order to continue supporting her younger brother and the community of young women in trouble she’s taken in (she calls the estate Minerva House.)  7781699The handsome Nicholas just happens to be an expert on antiquities! Unbeknownst to Isabel, he’s also been hired to search for a runaway young woman who may be hiding at Minerva House.  Already he’s rescued Isabel from a team runaway horses and discovered that he’s attracted to her. Conflict ahead!  I’m only about a quarter of the way through this one but already I’m having lots of fun reading it.

What are you reading now?  Have you read any of these books, or do you plan to?  Are you affected by the “winter blahs?”  Do you have any suggestions for good yoga DVDs?  Let me know in the comments.

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32 thoughts on “It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?

  1. Someone mentioned a finishathon on one of the blogs and as you’ll see in a sec, I would make a good candidate for one! 😛

    So all the books that are currently in progress (and have been for a while!): for historical romance, Mary Balogh’s Only A Promise; for my SFF fix, Le Guin’s Tehanu; for contemporary fiction The Portable Veblen; for foodie things Doris Greenspan’s Around My French Table; for nature-related non-fiction Braiding Sweetgrass (You had a read to deepen your spirituality goal for 2017 IIRC. This one might meet it!); for non-nature-related non-fiction Adam Gopnik’s Winter; and I always have an ongoing Betty Neels. *thinks hard to make sure she hasn’t missed out on any* nope! I think! 😛

    Thanks for mentioning Lucy Kinsley! I’d enjoyed Relish but hadn’t know about French Milk! I might go to Paris this summer for a couple of days, and I can’t wait to read French Milk for both its own sake, and as a “prep” of sorts!

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    1. Wow, Juhi! Your list sounds awesome but made me tired just reading it, ha ha. I really want to read Portable Veblen as well. I’ve heard good things about it. I am going to read Knisley’s Relish as well. And I still need to try a Betty Neels sometime!

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      1. I forgot to mention Barbara Pym’s Jane & Prudence! 😛

        And ooh, do! I’m actually finding the “texture” of Neels and Pym to be very similar. Which might sound strange but feels to me that Pym just has a LOT MORE going on in her story than a typical Neels! Else it’s the same sort of “feel.”

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  2. I’m always affected by the winter blahs, although I sit in front of a “sun” light and take vitamin D in pill form now and that helps a little. (What helps the most is travel plans, especially to warm and/or bright places, and I have those this year!)
    I’ve also been reading a real page-turner recommended by another blogger (I’m going to try to remember who before I write about it): The Fireman by Joe Hill.

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    1. Thank goodness for Vitamin D – in delicious gummy form for me! 🙂 My levels are great now – two years ago they were in the tank. I’m traveling to the beach in 8 weeks, I hope it’s sunny then!

      I’ve heard such good things about The Fireman, I think I need to try it, even though I don’t normally read “scary” authors.

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  3. I wasn’t wild about Behold the Dreamers, although I wanted to be. It was well-written and I cared what happened to the characters, but like you I wasn’t that excited to pick it back up after any given time I’d put it down.

    SO glad you’re enjoying the Sarah MacLean! She’s always good value in a romance novel — lots of capers and jokes. I should go back and do a reread!

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    1. Glad to hear your thoughts on Behold the Dreamers. I’m glad to read it, I think it’s got a lot of valuable things to say. But I’m not loving it like I’d hoped I would. Yes, I can say that I am a Sarah MacLean fan now! Woohoo!

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  4. Good for you on the yoga! It’s so hard to commit to something especially when it cuts into reading time, but I recently added yoga myself and it has definitely helped me with the “winter blahs.” Have you tried looking for yoga videos on YouTube? I love it because you never run out of videos and can try something new every day. My personal favorite channel is Yoga With Adriene. 🙂 Best of luck beating the blahs!

    And by the way…I felt the same way about the Mbue book!

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    1. Thanks for the yoga tip, Taryn! I’ve not tried her yet, but I will look into it! I’ve got a Rodney Yee dvd that I’ve been doing and I really like the Restorative practice part of it.

      Also glad to hear that we have similar thoughts on the Mbue book. Makes me feel better!

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      1. Adriene is my favourite too. She’s a little goofy, which I love, and she also incorporates a variety of levels so that I never feel like I’m not included (I’ve struggled to keep a regular practice too – she’s the reason I get as close as I get) and her 30-day programs (currently “Revolution”, she lives in the US) keep me motivated. I admire the stuff I’ve watched with RY and his partner CS, but my insecurities bloom when I watch them and it gets in the way of my own practice cuz they’re so awesome, so I tend to just do them once and then set them aside. (That says more about me than the vids, I know.)

        As for reading, yours: I felt the same about French Milk. And, mine: Louise Edrich (a 2017 project for me) and rereading Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series (the second) are on top of the stack today. Re, blahs: the rain here (when it should be snow) is getting me down a little and cutting my daily walks short. But it could be worse, as we haven’t had bad storms.

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      2. Thanks for the recommendation, Buried in Print! I will definitely try Adriene! Also, I know what you mean about RY and his partner. In the practice that I do, I can’t NEARLY do the level of stretching that CS can do. I used to think I was flexible but apparently NOT! Oh well, at least I’m trying!

        I keep meaning to try Novik’s Uprooted since I’ve heard so many good things about that one. And I’ve never read Erdrich either! I hope you get some snow soon! (If you want it.) 🙂

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    1. I heard of MacLean through columns at Book Riot, so I decided to give her a try. I enjoyed it. I thought the “sexy parts” weren’t too over the top or embarrassing, and though the story was a little predictable, it was still charming enough to be fun reading. I’ve been at a loss about other authors to try, though, so I’m still kind of finding my way in the romance genre too!

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      1. Good to know! Book Riot delivers. I’ve read a few by Joanna Kearsley (The Winter Sea was my fav), who I think falls somewhere in the Romance/Historical Fiction spectrum. I’ll poke around some more, too, but keep sharing what you find. Thanks!

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  5. I started taking yoga last year (for various reasons), and I love it. But I do find myself sometimes conflicted between doing a little yoga (so good for me!) or doing a little reading or blogging (so fun!). I’m usually pretty good at just taking 10 or 15 minutes here and there (plus the two classes per week I take), but other times not so much. I don’t follow anyone on DVD or You-tube, but would also be interested if anyone has any suggestions!

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    1. Naomi, I’d love to take a class sometime, but my schedule doesn’t allow for that right now. The DVD I’ve been using lately is Rodney Yee’s Yoga For Beginners. The evening restorative practice to be specific, since I do it at night. It’s very relaxing!

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  6. I’ve been reading in bits and pieces a lot lately too mostly I think because I have so many books out from the library and I want to read them all before they have to be returned. The winter blahs I had a couple weeks ago seem to have gone away for now, but winter isn’t over yet so they could come back!

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    1. Stefanie, I have so many choices right now, books I’ve bought and books from the library, that I think it’s overwhelming me a little bit and contributing to the scattered reading I’ve been doing, so I understand! I’m glad to hear your winter blahs have lifted, even if it’s temporary!

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  7. I look forward to your review of Behold the Dreamers.I hope it gets better.I have it on my TBR though currently swamped by ARCs so I’m yet to get to it.Happy reading and all the best with the workouts 🙂

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