You may have noticed that I’ve been a little absent from the blog in the last week. My family and I were able to spend the entire holiday week at the camp, and while I could have brought my laptop and all of my cords and did a post there, I decided not to. I feel so blessed that we have a cottage surrounded by so much beautiful nature, and I wanted to be able to soak in as much as I could while I was there without technological distractions. I feel like too often we are surrounded by so many screens and so focused on social media that we forget about the real world sometimes. Therefore, a week unplugged was definitely needed! Since it was July 4th, we also had a ton of family up that I wanted to spend time with.
I did manage to take some photos while I was there though, so I thought I would share a few I took of the sunset last week. Hopefully these make up for the posts I missed! Anyway, the main thing I wanted to focus on today was the books I read during the month of June. As you can see, we’ve been spending a lot of time out at the lake this summer, and that gives me a lot of quality time to sit out on the deck and enjoy a good book. I wanted to share the books I’ve been reading with all of you, and hopefully it will give you some good ideas about your own reading lists!
I’m not going to lie, the majority of the books this month are actually really sad and deal with some heavy, serious topics. Normally I’m not drawn to sad books because I’m an emotional mess and always end up crying, but sometimes I do enjoy a good drama. They’re also very powerful, which makes all of the depressing, uncomfortable parts worth it!
First up is Room by Emma Donoghue. Here’s the summary: “To five-year-old Jack, Room is the world. It’s where he and his Ma eat and sleep and play and learn. At night, Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where Jack is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.
Room is home to Jack, but to Ma it’s the prison where she has been held for seven years. Through her fierce love for her son, she has created a life for him in this eleven-by-eleven-foot space. But Jack’s curiosity is building alongside Ma’s own desperation– and she knows that Room cannot contain either much longer.
Room is a tale at once shocking, riveting, exhilarating– a story of unconquerable love in harrowing circumstances, and of the diamond-hard bond between a mother and her child.”
I’ve always been morbidly curious of cases like these where someone is kidnapped for a long period of time, mostly because I have no idea how I would deal with a situation like that. It is insane that things like this happen in the world. I think that’s why it’s so interesting to read about them, because you almost can’t believe what you’re reading. This is obviously a fictional story, but it is very similar to cases like Jaycee Dugard and really makes you wonder about humanity.
I think the most interesting thing about this book is that the story is told by a five-year-old. To be honest, the way he speaks seems much more mature than I think I was at five years old, but it gives a fresh perspective. If the book was told from the mother’s point of view, I think it would be a completely different story. Since Jack grew up inside the small room and knows nothing about the real world, it’s really easy to see how he would consider his life normal and I liked being able to know what he was thinking about everything going on.
The next book I read during the month of June was You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero. If you’ve been following my blog for a while you know how much I enjoyed the original You Are a Badass, so you know I had to get her latest book! Here’s the summary: “You Are a Badass at Making Money is a refreshingly frank and entertaining guide for anyone who’s ready to start raking in the dough. Drawing on her own experience of transforming herself– over just a few years– from a woman living in a converted garage with tumbleweeds blowing through her empty bank account to a woman who travels the world in style, Sincero knows all of the BS you can get wrapped up in when it comes to money, as well as what it takes to dig your way out. Sincero breaks down life-changing concepts into bite-size, ready-to-implement advice and exercises that help you kick your excuses to the curb, leap large into the unknown, and use the almighty power of thought to create whatever riches you desire. Written with the same inimitable sass and blunt practicality that made You Are a Badass an indomitable bestseller, You are a Badass at Making Money gives you the tools, and the permission, to make the kind of money you’ve never made before and to live the life that’s always seemed to be beyond your reach.”
I was aware that positive thinking can help bring you success, but I never really thought about how it could affect how much money you make. It seems crazy, but in this book Sincero goes into how our negative thoughts about money can often hold us back from going out and making money.
I completely agree with this! I can’t tell you many times I’ve thought rich people are snobby or complained about not being able to do something because I’m “broke.” No wonder I’ve always felt like I never make enough money! Changing the way you’ve thought about something your entire life is no easy feat, but I think all of Sincero’s advice and tips are great. I’m planning on going back through soon and doing all of the exercises outlined throughout the book, because I think they would be really helpful. I would definitely recommend this to anyone, especially if you feel like you need help making more money or just being a more positive person in general!
And finally, I finished out the month with The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Here’s the summary: “It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.
By her brother’s graveside, Liesel Meminger finds her life changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Grave Digger’s Handbook, left there by accident, and it is her first act of book thievery. So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordion-playing foster father, learns to read. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor’s wife’s library, wherever there are books to be found.
But these are dangerous times. When Liesel’s foster family hides a Jewish man in their basement, Liesel’s world is both opened up and closed down.
In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.”
I’ve always been interested in books and documentaries about the Holocaust and World War II, and that’s what initially drew me to the book. Like Room, this book also has an unusual perspective because it’s told from Death’s point of view. I thought this was a very interesting way to tell the story because Death not only narrates Liesel’s journey but also goes into what was happening in other places during the war.
Because I am such a lover of words and books myself, I found myself relating to Liesel and becoming invested in what was happening to her character. It was amazing to me how she was able to use books as a way to deal with everything that was happening around her. Just like many people today use books to escape from their daily lives, Liesel was able to escape from the stresses of Nazi Germany by stealing books and reading. At times this book is heartbreaking, but it is also very powerful and gives a different take on what was happening to German people during that time period.
I hope you enjoyed learning about the books I read last month! I would recommend any of these books, and summer is the best time to get some reading in. Do you have any books that you have read so far this summer? I would love to hear about them, I’m always looking for more options!