Book 3: The Breakdown by B.A. Paris

The Breakdown by B.A. Paris was so much fun and so sneaky. Barebones summary, one stormy night while driving home from a party Cass takes a back road shortcut home and encounters a lady whose car is parked on the shoulder. Cass stops to maybe help, things get weird, and Cass ends up driving away. Next morning it turns out that lady in the car got brutally murdered. The guilt eats at Cass, she also lies about going down the road to everyone so nobody knows she encountered the lady. The extra zinger is Cass actually knew the lady but it was raining too hard that night for her to recognize her. On top of all that Cass may have early onset dementia; that plus the guilt she feels, PLUS these weird silent calls she keeps receiving completely brake her down as a person (oh hey book title). She becomes paranoid and really starts to lose it. Now I’m the kind of person who tends to accidentally guess the twist of a book in some random off hand thought I have, but this one I only guessed half of it and the other half was a complete mind fuck. I legit had to put the book down and half a moment of “holy shit what just happened”. For a little while I was torn between whether the twist was just way too over the top or if it was actually awesome. I settled on it being awesome because actually having a book’s twist shock me like that was pretty damn enjoyable and sometimes there are things in life that don’t need to be overthought.

Book 2: Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney

Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney was my January book club book. I’m going to be honest, I really didn’t like it. Let me give you some background story on myself before I continue though, I am an incredibly anxious person. I always have been. I also get major secondhand embarrassment in a lot of situations. All of that made this book hell for me to get through even though it was a fairly easy read. The book is narrated by Frances, a 21 year old who is so painfully 21. She has an affair with the husband of a lady who is writing a piece on Frances and her best friend, who preform poetry together. Her best friend is also her ex. Seriously the whole book was one painfully drawn out anxiety attack for me. I legit finished reading it seconds before book club started. Despite my anxiety, I didn’t feel like it was a badly written book and I thought Sally Rooney was very effective in her depiction of what a 21 year old who doesn’t really know who she is or what she believes in is like. This was Sally Rooney’s debut novel and I would be interested in reading more by her in the future.

Book 1: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, guys this book, I’m honestly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Up until the 65 page mark I really didn’t have an opinion on it either way, and then it just pulled me in. This book is about a grouchy, pretentious man who owns a small bookstore, who’s life had to completely fall apart before he could realize that not all people and books are always what they seem. He also finds a toddler left in the store but I almost wasn’t going to even mention that part. There was enough book nerd in The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry for it to feel familiar and rose colored (plus the added fact I’m fairly certain at some point in every book lover’s life they have fantasized about owning a book store) but then the character development sneaks up on you and suddenly you are invested in the pages to come. There are some dark moments, a nice handful, but oddly it doesn’t over take the tone of the book. Final note; my favorite character was hands down Lambiase, the chief of police. I would totally read a sequel all about how his life plays out.

2017, why you gotta be so awful?

Looking back on the year I am disappointing that I didn’t continue writing about each book I read on here, it’s incredibly helpful when trying to remember what I’ve actually liked since my brain tends to push out one book to make way for each new one. I became a little too caught up in my head, per usual, and was feeling like my only defining trait was the amount I read. While I do take immense pride in what i accomplish in that area, I was also feeling as if there wasn’t all that much else to me beside being “you know Chelsea, that girl who reads a lot”. I attempted to find some balance but am bringing back the blog in 2018. Once again the goal of 2017 was 52 and I succeeded with 53 and am more than proud of all I accomplished.

2017 books read:

1. Burn baby burn by meg medina

2. Read between the lines by jo knowles

3. Every last word by Tamara Ireland stone

4. The last time we say goodbye by Cynthia Hand

5. Little peach by Peggy Kern

6. Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari

7. The serpent king by Jeff zentner

8. We are okay by Nina LaCour

9. Happening by Annie Ernaux

10. If you find me by Murdoch 

11. With malice by Eileen cook

12. Asking for it by Louise O’Neill 

13. Quiet by Susan Cain 

14. The hate u give by Angie thomas

15. What I know for sure by Oprah Winfrey 

16. My sister Rosa by Justine larbalestier

17. All the light we cannot see by Anthony Doerr

18. The smell of other people’s houses by Bonnie-sue Hitchcock

19. Hold still by Nina LaCour 

20. The first time she drowned by Kerry kletter

21. Such a pretty girl by Laura wiess

22. Penance by kanae minato 

23. Commonwealth by Ann patchet

24. The memory of light by Francisco x. Stork  

25. Paperweight by meg haston

26. Not my fathers son by Alan cumming

27. Between two skies by Joanne O’Sullivan 

28. When breath becomes air by Paul kalanithi

29. Don’t you cry by Mary kubica

30. After the woods by Kim savage

31. How to be a woman by Caitlin Moran 

32. The perfect stranger by Megan Miranda 

33. Saving charlotte by pia de Jong 

34. American housewife by Helen Ellis will not have my hate by Antoine leiris

36. Where they found her by Kimberly mccreight 

37. Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly mccreight 

38. Small great things by Jodi picoult

39. the end of everything by megan abbott

40. everything i never told you celeste ng

41. The museum of extraordinary things by Alice Hoffman 

42. The accident season by Moira fowely-Doyle 

43. The story sister by Alice Hoffman 

44. A head full of ghosts by Paul tremblay

45. The rules of magic my Alice hoffman

46. There’s someone inside your house by Stephanie Perkins 

47. Faithful by Alice Hoffman 

48. A mother’s reckoning by sue Klebold

49. The girls in the garden by Lisa jewell 

50. You better not cry by Augusten Burroughs 

51. One of us is lying by Karen McManus 

52. A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara 

53. The Takedown by Corrie Wang

Goals of 2018:

1. Read at least 52 books

2. Write at least one paragraph about each book on here

3. Actually learn how to cook

4. Dance more with my man

2018, I’m ready for you.