September and October Recap 2016

2016-09-06-event-design-at-homeIt has been a LONG two months. I didn’t even realize I forgot my September recap until half way through October. So you get a half-assed double month recapūüėÄ

I had my first major event in September at my new job and it went really well. We had over 230 people attend and it was an absolutely stunning location. Those posters in the photo were actually really cool backlights. They are printed on transparency type paper and then light put in behind them and they glow really nicely. I should’ve gotten a photo of them.

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Book 459: Girl Underwater – Claire Kells

kells-claire-girl-underwaterI’m not one to generally read debut novels unless I hear from a friend that it’s great. However, with all of the great books coming out of Dutton recently, when they reached out to me about this one and I was intrigued by the blurb, I of course said yes.*

This being said, I of course probably¬†should’ve re-read the blurb on the back before I started, but I didn’t and it was a bit of a shocker to all of a sudden be thrown into a plane crash! But if I would’ve re-read the blurb I would’ve remembered that it was set in Boston, and a large part of my excitement reading the book would’ve been lost! Thankfully, it was well written and interesting AND I got to experience¬†the Boston portions as if I had NO idea (because I didn’t) that they were there! Seriously, she spent a half page on Anna’s Taqueria! [Anna’s website] Swoon!

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August Recap 2016

2016 08-07 Working OutThe big news of the month is that I’ve achieved my 31 day goal of meeting my exercise, move and stand goals on my Apple watch! It’s not at all book related, but I’m excited because I’m slowly getting back into the habit of walking every day.

I’ve somehow managed to balance this with reading (six books this month), work offices moving to a new location,¬†and two trips out to Tanglewood to see the Boston Pops and the Boston Symphony Orchestra perform. I don’t know if I’m going to keep it up because honestly at some point in the¬†first few days of September I’m taking a rest day, or at least an easy day. I’m pretty sure I can hit all my goals without having to go on a two(+) mile walk but I’m not 100% sure. But what you’re all really here for is the books, so on to the books! Continue reading

Book 452: A Discovery of Witches (All Souls Trilogy #1) – Deborah Harkness

Harkness, Deborah - A Discovery of Witches (All Souls Trilogy #1)I probably would have read this book closer to its release, but unfortunately it’s part of a trilogy (this followed by (Shadow of Night and¬† The Book of Life)¬†and I didn’t want to read the books as they came out so I waited to read it. I really wanted to read it a lot sooner because a lot of my blogger friends who really enjoyed it.¬†That being said, I’m a little grumpy as I’ve just found out that Harkness will continue writing in this universe with the release of¬†The Serpent’s Mirror next year. So bah.

If I had to break this down into a one sentence review it would be: Harry Potter meets Twilight for¬†adults. That’s definitely a bit reductionist, but as I was reading that’s what I kept thinking. It wasn’t as much of a compulsive read as either of those series, but¬†A Discovery of Witches definitely stands on its own.

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Book 430: The Magician’s Land (The Magicians #3) – Lev Grossman

Grossman, Lev - The Magician's Land (The Magicians #3)The bad news is that the trilogy¬†is finally over. I read this book in less than 48 hours and even I’m impressed with that because I had to go to work AND I had trivia with my friends. (They have no idea how close I was to bailing.) The good news is that I’m exhausted because of how great it was and I can FINALLY watch the SyFy TV series without fear of spoilers!

This series was definitely one of those books/series where you feel as if you’ve lived multiple lives and then when it ends you just feel empty inside. I’ll probably take a day or two before I try to dive into anything else.¬†The Magician’s Land was an excellent follow up to¬†The Magician King and¬†The Magicians. If you don’t want spoilers for the first two books I probably would just skip this post and come back when you’ve read them.

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Book 429: The Arm of the Starfish (O’Keefe Family #1) – Madeleine L’Engle

L'Engle, Madeleine - The Arm of the Star Fish (O'Keefe Family #1)I decided to go down the full L’Engle Murray/O’Keefe rabbit hole. It may take a while to finish with other books burning holes in my kindle/on my shelf, but I will finish them!

I wasn’t as sold on this book as quickly as I¬†was with¬†A Wrinkle in Time, but it grew on me. The final quarter of the book was really strong! (And she didn’t rush the ending, or perhaps she did and I’m just used to it now.)

It’s a bit confusing, but I think I have it sorted out as¬†The Arm of the Starfish is the second book written in the Kairos super-series, the first book of the second generation O’Keefe Family series, and the fourth book chronologically in plot line. Looking at the publication dates, it looks like L’Engle bounced back and forth between the two series (and another one) while she¬†was writing in the ’60s and ’70s.

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Book 428: Girl In A Band – Kim Gordon

Gordon, Kim - Girl In A BandFor our second book in our year of biography/autobiography/memoir books someone chose¬†Kim Gordon’s¬†Girl In A Band. It’s a look back on her time in the band Sonic Youth (never heard of them) and about her life as an artist. Seriously though, not my thing. I looked up a few of their most well-known songs on YouTube and was like “nope.” I just need a bit more structure in my music. It’s probably the same reason I don’t like jazz. I’m also still not quite sure what the difference is between¬†New Wave, No Wave, Punk, and Post punk, but I guess it doesn’t really matter.

If I’m honest, I wasn’t looking forward to this book, or at least two more that we’re planning to read. It’s mostly because I know nothing about the subject matter, but it’s also because I don’t find the subject matter interesting. That being said I did find enough in this book to keep me mostly engaged.

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