Book Chat: November 2020 Reads

The end of the month means it’s time for book chat!

Can you believe it’s the end of November? It feels like 2020 has zoomed by in the blink of an eye and now we’re staring Christmas in the face. There are candy canes everywhere, Christmas trees are flooding my Instagram feed, and Christmas carols are playing in every store. How did that happen?

So, what did I read in November?

I’m constantly asked about my favourite books, authors and genres. Reality is that I love all books. I will read any book that comes my way. My perfect day involves brunch followed by pots of coffee and a ginormous stack of books. Maybe a thunderstorm or two – just for good measure. Throughout November, I made it a priority to make a coffee and read before starting my work day. It’s a small act of self care that has quickly become part of my daily routine. It sets me up for a good day and has helped me to power through some books. Win-win.

Confessions of a Single Mum: What It’s Like When You’re Expecting The Unexpected x Amy Nickell

I picked this book up on a whim as hello, I am a single mum. I thought it would be a chance to get another perspective of a single parent in an easy-to-consume, entertaining way. I ended up picking up (and putting down) this book multiple times because I just couldn’t get invested in the story which, as a single parent, I found a tad ironic. I nodded along and drew many parallels but the overall tone didn’t “gel” with me. I liked the idea behind the book but I won’t be rushing to recommend it to other people.

Rating: ★★★

The Invisible Load x Libby Weaver

2020 has been one hella stressful year. I ordered this book from the library in an attempt to understand what puts stress on our body, how we deal with it, and how to lessen the load on our systems. I thought this book was brilliant at breaking down the different stressors and how our systems interact with one another. There is a bit of *science-y stuff* involved in the book but it is broken down in a way that is easily translated and actually enjoyable to read. I found myself relaying facts to my co-workers and taking down notes as I read along. I would definitely recommend her books to people with similar interests.

Rating: ★★★★★

The Pretty Delicious Cafe x Danielle Hawkins

This was an impulse grab as I stopped by the library. I was walking past the “recommended” section at the library and got sucked in by the cover with the bright colours and font style. I thought it would be a good summer read. I had visions of taking the book to the beach and the park to entertain myself for a few hours. Well, I was right. Kind of. I finished the book in a day or two. Needless to say, it had me hooked from the very beginning! The book is set in New Zealand and covers a variety of topics, including mental health, abuse, family dynamics, and romance. It has a little something for everyone which makes it the perfect summer read.

Rating: ★★★★★

The Scandal x Nicola Marsh

This was another book I found in the recommended section of the library. I picked it up because of the title but the narrative had me hooked. Each chapter of the book is split between four characters so you get a slightly different perspective and voice throughout the whole story. I love it when authors write this way and do it well. Nicola is one of those authors. I might have (aka did) skipped ahead in the book because I just had to know what happened. Did it ruin it? Absolutely not. In fact, I might have enjoyed it more. This is another book I finished in a matter of days and would absolutely recommend to someone who likes a bit of a crime/thriller novel with a twist.

Rating: ★★★★★

In Five Years x Rebecca Serle

I’m certain you’ve heard about this book. It was splashed across my Instagram page for weeks before I managed to get my hands on it. I heard it involved a twist and was guaranteed to make me cry. Well, in true “me” fashion, I ended up skipping forward a few chapters and managed to land on the very part of the “twist”. Whoops. Did it ruin the book? Yes. Rebecca has an engaging writing style that had me finish the book in a matter of days but I found it to be predictable, even before I decided to skip ahead. I enjoyed the book, but it wasn’t one that managed to live up to the hype. Regardless, it’s another good summer read so definitely pick it up if you’re heading away to the beach!

Rating: ★★★★

Home To Me x Catherine Bybee

Another book, another impulse selection from the recommended section of the library. Are we beginning to sense a theme yet? I was walking on by and this book managed to catch my eye. I loved this book. Loved. I devoured it. It has the aspects of a romance and action novel wrapped into one. It had me hooked from the moment I picked it up. I definitely, definitely recommend this book if you want a good read that also covers some heavier topics (domestic violence). I didn’t know it at the time but this is the second book in a trilogy. Guess who went back to the library and picked up the first book from the trilogy? I did. Watch this space.

Rating: ★★★★★

Older But Better, But Older x Caroline de Maigret and Sophie Mas

My impulsive book selection was bound to let me down at some point. I saw this book in the “new book” section at the library and decided to give it a go. The sections in the book are short and sweet; they even allow you to jump around, if that’s what you prefer. It felt as though the book straddled the line of memoir/personal development as the authors reflected on aspects of their lives. I found a few good quotes and tidbits strewn throughout the book but I wouldn’t rush to recommend this book.

Rating: ★★

Everything Is Figureoutable x Marie Forleo

You must be living under a rock if you haven’t heard of Marie Forleo by now. I mean, is there anything this woman can’t do? I ordered this book from the library weeks ago and had been waiting (impatiently) for it to be ready ever since. With good reason. The reviews on Goodreads speak for themselves. This book lights an absolute fire under your ass. It’s one of the reasons why I restarted the blog. This is not a book to read if you’re looking to zoom through a reading goal. This is a book to read if you are looking to evaluate your life and work on yourself. It is full of quotes and amazing one-liners. There are “field notes” and “challenges” with most chapters that require time for some honest-to-goodness thinking and journalling. It’s a book to buy and keep in your house. I absolutely recommend this book if you need a little kick up the ass or pep in your step. You will not regret it!

Rating: ★★★★★

…And there you have it!

Eight books in one month. Not a bad effort, right?

Book Chat will be a monthly feature but you can find me over on Goodreads if you want to follow along in “real time”. I am constantly on the hunt for new books and adding books to my ‘to read’ pile.

My goal for December is to find an online book club and get stuck into some book chat with some fellow bookworms. Please let me know of any book clubs on Facebook or any books that I absolutely need to read over summer (because one can never read too many books at once).

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