Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Twenty one books....

I love to read.  I consume books.  I gobble them up so fast, one after the other, so that at times, when people ask me what a book was about, I can scarcely remember.  So Tad suggested I keep a book journal and I started one on January 2015.    My book journal includes the book title and author, the date I started the book and the date I finished the book. It also includes quotes from the book that struck me enough that I wanted to remember them.  It also includes the books that I decided to abandon after starting them. It hurts a bit to do so, but this year I gave myself permission to abandon books that I just didn't love.  "It's not you. It's me" I told them.

I read 51 books this year from start to finish.  I abandoned 2. 

In May, my friend Kate posted a link to this Huffington Post article: 21 books from the last 5 years that all women should read. 

I decided to read them all.

So from May to December of 2015 I read each and every book on the list.  I would like to share with you my five seven favorites from that list in no particular order. 

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay

The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin

Yes Please by Amy Poehler 

Wild by Cheryl Strayed

Room by Emma Donoghue

I loved these books in particular because they were all full of real emotion and beautiful truths. 

All seven of these books made me forget I was reading actual words and took me along on a ride somewhere. 

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: "That girl never understood that the first rule of life in Lagos. You do not marry the man you love. You marry the man who can best maintain you!     .....Amen...But sometimes one man can be both o."

Helen Oyeyemi: "When something catches your attention just keep your attention on it. Stick with it until the end, and somewhere along the line there'll be weirdness.  Ive never tried to explain it to anyone before but what I mean to say is that a whole a lot of technically impossible things are always trying to happen to us."

Roxanne Gay: "Death is a tragedy whether it is the death of one girl-woman in London or seventy seven men, women and children in Norway. We know this, but perhaps it needs to be said over and over again so we do not forget.  I have never considered compassion a finite resource.  I would not want to live in a world where such was the case.  Tragedy. Call. Great. Small. Compassion. Response. Compassion. Response."

Amanda Coplin: "It was only too bad that to gossip and support mean ideas was easier and more enjoyable, really, than to keep quiet and know in silence that the true story can never be told, articulated in a way that will tell the whole truth. Even if it is better to be quiet, quietness will never reign. People talked, even the best of them."

Amy Poehler: "Going from crying to laughing [that] hard and fast happens maybe five times in your life and that extreme right turn is the reason why we are alive."

I thought Room and Wild were both fantastic but didn't write down any quotes from them.

What a lovely thing it is to read.  To get lost in a story that makes you laugh or cry or better yet, to think.  I hope you check out some of these twenty-one books if you have not already. Let me know what you thought.