Growing up my mom would take me to Walden Bookstore in Western Springs and let me buy tons of books. What type of books you ask? Oh just your average Wiccan spell books. I had a very big collection. But only good spells…never bad. As The Three Fold Rule is the most popular rule of Wiccan, what you give out comes back at you magnified. Essentially it’s similar to karma or the idea that what goes around, comes around. All the same difference. Anywho, I digress. My point here is books. These days I’m not so much buying spell books, but real books that you can read, enjoy and learn from. PS. I still want to be a witch. Back to books. I love a good page turner. And I love getting lost in bookstores as much as I do a good story. Over the years I have started and completed many books as well as started and shelved several along the way as well. What’s the point of investing all that time if you don’t enjoy it? I am currently reading The First Bad Man, by Miranda July. This is BY FAR the strangest story I have ever read. It’s utterly bizarre. So bizarre that I’m not sure if I am meant to not like this book, but I can’t help but continue to turn the pages. I actually feel weird when I read it. Take my word, if you want something odd, a bit uncomfortable yet interesting and addicting…this may be the book for you. With that being said, I have read several stellar books along the way that I would love to share with you. Here’s a list of my top favorite reads in my thirty three years.
The Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova
I read this book in three days. I literally could not put down this spine tingling story as it’s the biggest page turner I have ever read. I like to think of this as The DaVinci Code meets Brahm Stoker’s Dracula. You see, the main character goes on a thrilling adventure in search of the real Dracula, Vlad the Impaler, Drakula…you’ll find he goes by many aliases. If you’re interested in the history of this infamous “blood sucker” and Romania, The Historian is here for you to read. It’s creepy, fast paced, historical and beautifully written. And, it’s creepy. You’ll feel like you’re traveling Eastern Europe on the hunt for one of the sexiest yet scariest villains of all time. After I roll through this current bizarro book I’m reading, I’m for sure reading this one again. I’ve been dying to do so for ten years.
Shutter Island, by Denis Lehane
If you have seen the film, starring the handsome and talented Leonardo DeCaprio, you know the twists and turns of this story are pretty shocking and devastating. Now, if you liked the movie, you will absolutely be obsessed with Lehane’s book. There is so much mystery and darkness that evolves that you truly will have no clue where it will go or how it will end. The writing is so precise and detailed, you can see the moments in your mind making this heart pounding mystery quite the read. This could be the perfect book to welcome in the end of summer.
The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
Ok, so the ending of this book was ruined for me. Someone spilled the beans and basically told me how the book ends. The tome is 850 pages long – indeed a record breaker for myself. I was around page 650 when I heard the situation in which The Goldfinch ends. That was so awesome. Wtf? I almost threw the book out five times after that moment. But, alas, the book is indeed so well written and at times quite exciting to read that I knew I had no choice but to finish it. TSPeeps, I am so happy I did. While reading The Goldfinch, you become enthralled with the storyline and life of the main character, Theo. From the first moments of meeting him, you are instantly his friend and you want to know everything that happens. You will not want, but need to know what happens to that quaint little bird you see peering at you on the front cover. Would I say this is may most favorite book I have ever read? No. But, I can easily say that this giant story was worth the long read even if the ending was spoiled…it’s that good.
In A Sunburned Country, by Bill Bryson
Calling all lovers of travel and those that love to read about travels, fear not, I have the most informative and humorous writer you will ever lay your little eyes upon. Meet Mr. Bill Bryson. He is hands down one of the funniest little men in the literary world . He has an exceptional talent in not only telling you first hand experiences, many that are often awkwardly amazing, but also extremely educational. I read In A Sunburned Country while traveling Australia and holy sh*t! I have never laughed or learned so much about a country in one book. I read another work of his, Neither Here Not There, about his adventures in Europe. Again, exceptional. Bryon’s way of storytelling will have you feel as if you sitting with him and he is reliving every detail in person. Regardless if you have been, are going or will never go, In A Sunburned Country is 100% worth the read. Believe me, you want to know more about our friends residing on the other side of the planet.
Where’d You Go, Bernadette?, by Maria Semple
What a charming little story Where’d You Go, Bernadette is. I’m a sucker for covers and this one instantly caught my eye. After doing some minimal review research, I decided to give this one a go. Each character is quirkier than the next, each offering the reader the want for more. Basically an agoraphobic mother mysteriously goes missing and it is up to her bright young daughter to play investigator and find her. It’s a truly lovely read and quite enjoyable to follow the relationship between Bernadette and her daughter, Bee. This is perfect for a quick beach getaway or while cozied up on the couch during a weekend in. It’s simple, entertaining and fun!
Om For The Mom, by Vanessa Palmer
I have written about my “lady bible” (aka Om For The Mom) a couple times. This is hands down my go to book when I need a little self help, self love and self meditation. There are so many profound messages, quotes, and lessons in this beautiful book by Vanessa Palmer. I read this book on the beaches of Tulum on my honeymoon and as I described in this post about Om, it helped me immensely during a crazy, transitional, wonderful time in my life. Also, by no means must you be a mom to read this book, however, I’m sure it would be quite useful for many moms out there. In my opinion, it’s a must read. Plus, as you can see by the cover, the artwork within is just as stunning.
Lover of self help books? No problem…here’s a list of our guest blogger, Nisha’s, favorite go to self help books.
Marilyn Monroe, by Barbara Leaming
I have loved our girl Marilyn since the first day I laid eyes on her…I’m assuming much like the rest of us. As we all know, although she was Hollywood’s main girl, her life was not easy or as glamorous as we all would have hoped for her. She truly was a beautiful tragedy and unfortunately, wasn’t dealt the best cards. This biography by Barbara Leaming opens your eyes to some of the most heartbreaking truths about one America’s first blonde bombshells. Actually, as I think back to some of what I read about MM, my eyes begin to tear up. The world was rough on Marilyn as was the industry she both found herself in and lost herself in. After reading this account of her life, I felt I viewed her a bit differently. She more resembled a little girl to me. She had what it took to get to Hollywood and pursue it, but she didn’t have what it takes to ultimately make it out alive. The moments reflecting on her relationship with Joe DiMaggio touched me most. You will go through many emotions during Marilyn Monroe…have some tissue handy.
Ok, off to read more of The First Bad Man, freaking weirdest book there ever was!
What’s your favorite book, TSPeeps! Do tell, we want more suggestions! Here are more favorite booksfrom the sisters!
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