Jana Says

Living life from cover to cover

Monthly book chat: November edition

Today’s post is all about books. Because today is the day you show us your books!!! And it’s also the day Steph and I share with you the books we’ve read over the last month.

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Last month was a busy month, reading-wise for me. I not only blew past my Goodreads reading goal of 37 books but I added a bunch more. In fact, I read 8 books between the last books post and this one. I don’t know exactly how it happened except for telling you guys upfront that I read a bunch of not very long, YA books and I can typically polish off those in a day, maybe two. And I also had a ton of waiting time at appointments and cheer and tumbling practices and since I didn’t have errands to run, I read. 

I don’t expect this coming month to be as productive, reading-wise.

Of the books I read, I LOVED one (Me Before You), I really liked a couple, and the rest were just average. Unlike last month, there wasn’t one particular book that I hated, which is nice, but I don’t know that I’d highly recommend most of them. If you have a hole in your reading schedule, or you need a book to read on a moderately long plane ride, then they’d be good; they’re filler books. 

november books

Let’s get more specific:

  1. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. Jana Says: I loved this book. It’s powerful and sad and uplifting all at the same time. It turned out to be a timely read, with the Brittany Maynard story being front and center in the news, but I’m confident I’d feel the same way even if it hadn’t been relevant. Recommendation level: High. Read it ASAP.
  2. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. Jana Says: I adored the story and plot of this book. So different from anything I’ve read lately. I did struggle at times as I couldn’t stop thinking of Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory narrating the book, and that bothered me. And Rosie sort of reminded me of Penny (a dark version of Penny. But Penny) and thinking of Sheldon and Penny together got disturbing. But it was good enough that I put the sequel on hold at the library. I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!!! Recommendation level: High. Read it soon. 
  3. Looking for Alaska by John Green. Jana Says: This is one of the books I read in a day. John Green (who is so freaking awesome I can’t stand it) is a compelling storyteller and not only does he make you feel all the feels, I love that he makes teenagers complex and weird and smart and stupid; everything teenagers actually are. This book wasn’t nearly as sad as The Fault In Our Stars but if you’re not careful, it can make you a tad weepy. If this is ever a movie, I’d totally see it. Recommendation level: High. Great for a Sunday afternoon.
  4. Magnificent Vibration by Rick Springfield. Jana Says: Remember how I freaked out over Rick Springfield’s memoir? Well, imagine how excited I was to learn he wrote fiction. Then I read the book. And my balloon deflated. It’s not that it was a bad book, per se, but the story jumped around too much and some of the sections bugged me because they were annoying to read, although everything did eventually come together. Also, the narrator’s tangents about his…manly fantasies got to be bothersome. I truly wanted this book to be better. Recommendation level: Moderate. If you want something different and don’t mind lots of discussion about masturbation, have it.
  5. Reunion by Hannah Pittard. Jana Says: I learned about this author from Buzzfeed Books and she seemed interesting so I thought I’d give her latest book a try. The premise of the books isn’t anything special but the way she writes her characters definitely is. The narrator has alcohol, money, and relationship issues (she talks quite a bit about her credit card debt and her infidelity) and while you hate her at times, you feel for her, too. I wholly enjoyed reading her story. It’s a quick read, too. Recommendation level: High. Winner for main character who seems like a real person you could know.
  6. Landline by Rainbow Rowell. Jana Says: After loving Eleanor and Park and Fangirl, this one sort of disappointed me. I mean, I loved that she finally wrote about adults, and like John Green, she’s a wonderful storyteller, but I had a hard time buying the relationship between Georgie and Neal (the married main characters) which made it difficult to truly appreciate their struggle and their story. Recommendation level: Moderate. Don’t expect Eleanor and Park awesomeness in this one.
  7. If I Stay by Gayle Forman. Jana Says: I almost never say this but I think if I’d seen the movie, that would have been good enough. This book stood out for me only for it’s sappy YA cheese and the author really needs to learn from Rainbow Rowell and John Green how to write teenagers so they don’t sound like oversimplified assholes. However. There were parts of the story that were quite sweet and well written, and she wrote the family dynamics realistically and the out of body narration made for an interesting read. Recommendation level: Moderate. Or just watch the movie. I’m pretty sure it covers everything.

 
The eighth book I read this month was Laura Vanderkam’s 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think but I’m going to wait until next month to review it. I gave it 3 stars on Goodreads however, there are a few exercises I want to try before I review it for you guys. They might change my mind.

So there you have it. All my October books, laid out for you in all their glory. Now it’s your turn. Show us your books (and nonbloggers, tell me your favorite or least favorite book in the comments):  


 

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24 Comments

  1. Kerry

    I have a lot of these books on my to-read list, Landline, Me Before You, and the Rosie Project so I am glad they weren’t bad. Reunion sounds good so I’ll be adding that one.
    Kerry recently posted…What I Have Been ReadingMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I’m glad I read Reunion first because her other book, The Fates Will Find Their Way (which I’m reading now) is so freaking weird that I don’t know if I’d pick up another book by her. But this gives a balanced perspective on her writing.

      Reply
  2. Nadine

    Landline, The Rosie Project and You Before Me are all on my to read list! I love reading about what other people think of books, so I am glad you guys are doing this monthly! I am sure I will be adding lots to my list every month!
    Nadine recently posted…Book NerdMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I love seeing what others are reading. Everyone has such different tastes and you never know when something might strike you that you didn’t even know was around!

      Reply
  3. Marcie

    Man I love all of John Green’s books. I wish he would write more and more and more 🙂

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      He’s a wonderful storyteller. His Mental Floss videos are fantastic, too!

      Reply
  4. Kristen

    yayy so glad you liked Me Before You 🙂 If you are on netgalley, the rosie effect (sequel) is currently on there and that’s how i read it early 🙂 landline is on my list but its good to know not to have super high expectations. ii liked looking for alaska but i read it shortly after the fault in our stars and it fell so flat compared to that, i should have waited a bit (like i am doing with rainbow rowell, jojo moyes etc. don’t want to burn out on an author or compare their books). i read if i stay and it was ok, i really didn’t like the second one but i haven’t seen the movie yet. anyway i’m rambling!
    Kristen recently posted…Books LatelyMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I put some time between John Green books which is probably why I enjoyed Looking for Alaska. Next up for me with his books is Paper Towns.

      Once The Rosie Effect is available, it will be on my holds list at the library! I can’t wait to read it. I’ll have to check out Netgalley, too.

      Reply
  5. kathy@vodka and soda

    i have a crap load of books to go through because my library just woke up and sent me all 5 at once…with a 2wk deadline. hello, i have been waiting since july for these books and nothing…until last week when they shat the books all over me.
    kathy@vodka and soda recently posted…skin RxMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      My library does that, too. It’s so damn annoying!

      Reply
  6. Sarah @ Beauty School Dropout

    You read a TON. Whoa, chica! Very impressive. I think 168 Hours is one of those books that grows on you. I read it 2-3 years ago and it still resonates with me (even though I find the author’s voice a little…what’s the word? Entitled? Holier than thou? Know-it-all-y? But I still really liked it. The “anchor events” for the weekends is a really helpful concept for me. And I like tracking my time occasionally to reset.
    Sarah @ Beauty School Dropout recently posted…Reading while Driving #bookchatMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I’ve been using “privileged” a lot to describe her voice and perspective but entitled is also a good one. I liked the concepts and the points she makes so I’m trying to reconcile that with her tone. I’m planning on doing the 100 dreams list and the time study.

      Reply
  7. lisacng @ expandng.com

    Thanks for the book recommendations! I’ll see if any are available at my library right now :). I’m sad that Landline was a bummer but I’m gonna read it anyways because I love Rainbow Rowell right now. Oh, and I have to finish Fault in Our Stars. My library took it away from me before I could finish it. That’s the thing about eBooks, no renewing.
    lisacng @ expandng.com recently posted…Tweetviews – book reviews in 140 charactersMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      It bugs me so much when I can’t renew an eBook!!! I don’t know why they do that!

      Reply
  8. SMD @ Life According to Steph

    I’m taking Landline off my list. This is the second mention today that makes me think I won’t like it.

    I loved 1-3.

    Reunion is my next read!
    SMD @ Life According to Steph recently posted…Show Us Your Books! What I read in OctoberMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I wouldn’t take it off entirely. Just…move it to the bottom. The very bottom.

      Let me know what you think of Reunion when you’re done.

      Reply
  9. Kelli

    I really like Looking for Alaska when I read it a few months ago.

    I was ready the book summary for The Rosie Project last night and thinking it looked like something I would be interested in!
    Kelli recently posted…All About The BooksMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      It’s a fun read. I like that it’s not typical story and it’s written really creatively.

      Reply
  10. Wendy@BlushandBarbells

    Rick Springfield writes books?!
    After reading Me Before You, I binge-read Jojo Moyes. She’s so talented and I just love her writing.
    Wendy@BlushandBarbells recently posted…Show Us Your Books!My Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      He does! His memoir is probably one of the best I’ve read!

      Reply
  11. Amanda

    Rick Springfield + masturbation… I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t intrigued… hahah
    Amanda recently posted…Give Me All The ThingsMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      It was really funny at first and then it just became tiresome. I kept thinking “enough. We get it”.

      Reply
  12. Analisa

    Me Before You is such a great book! I also read Landline and wasn’t impressed, if I didn’t want to know what happened I probably wouldn’t have finished it! Read the sequel to If I stay, I actually adored both books! Thanks for the suggestions I just put a couple on my library list!
    Analisa recently posted…Empty Nest SyndromeMy Profile

    Reply
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