Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

reading list winter 2017

Photo by Kristine MacDonald

I'm stepping away from the heavy stuff this week to bring you a list of books! Fun, inspiring, beautiful, and possibly magical books. Since this post is a month overdue, and since I spent most of the Christmas holidays reading, I had a huge list of books and though I narrowed them down to my absolute favourites the list is still super long. Buckle up! And maybe take a couple of weeks off work ;) Enjoy!

Children's Books

One year, my mom brought home a stack of children's books for us to read over Christmas, and ever since then I've started doing the same. I often check Brain Pickings' lists of books for recommendations, and my favourites are below.

The Day I Became A Bird by Ingrid Chabbert

Super cute story about a boy trying to become something he's not to impress a girl.

Daytime Visions: An Alphabet by Isol

Not your average alphabet book. Matt says it's dark - I say it's full of depth. (more…)

reading 2016It was a bit of a slow season for reading: I started plenty of books but these are the only ones I finished and liked enough to tell you about. That should change, though, now that the temperature has dropped and I'll be taking the bus instead of riding my bike. I have at least an hour and a half of extra reading time each day. Can't wait!

Fiction

 State of Wonder by Ann Patchett

I wanted to read this book because Elizabeth Gilbert mentions it in a beautiful story in her book Big Magic, about how the inspiration for a novel seemed to leave Gilbert and land inside Patchett's mind when they shared an intense connection, and how delighted Gilbert was when she realized that the story she had abandoned had been taken up by someone else.

Obviously, I had to know what it was about. One of the few books that was unanimously liked by our book club, this was definitely a page turner. It's the story of a woman working for a pharmaceutical company who is sent to the Amazon by her boss and lover to find out what happened to her colleague, and to check up on the doctor who was supposed to be developing a fertility drug. When she gets there she learns to take control of her own life, and her own past. The writing is crisp and vivid and each character is meticulously developed.

A stranger sitting next to me on the bus said that Bel Canto (Ann Patchett's most famous book) is better so now I look forward to reading that one as well! (more…)

What I have been reading, learning and thinking about in the last four months. Fiction, non-fiction, art books, and a movie.I love doing these book lists because it gives me a clear idea of where I have spent my mental energy in the last four months. This time, I can see that I've spent a LOT of time reading self-improvement books around creativity, collaboration, and productivity. I wonder if I have anything to show for it...

I've also noticed that the lists are getting longer and longer. I'm not sure if that's because I'm reading more or if it's that I'm more careful about choosing good books (and finishing them!) because I know I'll be writing about them later. Either way, here is a good long list of what I have been enjoying over the last four months.

Fiction

All the Light we Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

With a style touching on magical realism, a captivating story, and sweet, good-natured characters, this book hit me right in the feels. The character's speech was highly poetic, which pulled me out of the story occasionally but was so beautiful that I didn't mind. The novel follows two characters throughout the Second World War: a blind girl in Paris who has to evacuate with her father, and a radio-obsessed boy in Germany who goes to a military school to escape a life working in the mines. Woven between them is the story of a centuries-old diamond with a romantic back story. I often have a hard time with war stories, but—with a few exceptions—this one tended more toward the fanciful than the frightening, so it didn't stress me out too much. (more…)