Changing things up here. I've gotten out of the habit of sharing what I'm reading in the current moment. Instead, every two weeks, I'm going to provide a roundup of what books I've been reading. I'll share basic details and a short snippet of what I think about it.
This was a delightful graphic novel that was parts heartwarming and zany. It's a great story of friendship and acceptance.
Classic Calligraphy for Beginners: Essential Step-by-Step Techniques for Copperplate and Spencerian Scripts
I mostly perused this for the pretty pictures. While I find most calligraphy books are similar, I liked that this one chose to focus on two specific styles of calligraphy.
The iPhone Photography Book
This is my current read. The author’s somewhat snarky attitude is getting to me, but the tips are sound. The book includes both technique and technical information and that makes the advice well rounded and actionable. It makes me want to get our there and take more pictures.
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Now Reading: Dim Sum of all Fears
Dim Sum of All Fears
I'm normally not a mystery reader. On occasion, I make an exception for cozy mysteries. This is the second book in the Noodle Shop Mystery series and it's following right in the path of the first. There are a lot of characters with overlapping issues. And by characters, I mean those over the top folks that every place seems to have... but this place has more than its fair share. That, however, is what makes the cozy mystery genre work. I am enjoying how the heroine is growing throughout the series.
Also, I just recently finished reading the following:
Enchantee by Gita Trelease
A Spark Within the Forge by Sabaa Tahir
Now Reading: Death by Dumpling
Death by Dumpling
I'm not normally a mystery reader, but I saw this on the shelf at the library years ago and the cover stuck with me. I’ve decided I’m going to read her whole Noodle Shop Mystery series. It was easy to spot who the murder victim would be, the suspects are lining up, and we've entered the whodunit pages.
This falls under the "cozy mystery" subgenre and I'm finding it quite enjoyable so far.
Now Reading: The Heir Affair
The Heir Affair
Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
I’m glad I decided to read some fluff. My brain needs it.
This is the second book in the author's riff on Kate Middleton and Prince William. I read the first book in two days. This one’s not moving quite as fast, but I’m still loving the absurd drama of it all. There is nothing remotely realistic about this book, but that's the joy of it.
Now Reading: The Family Firm
The Family Firm: A Data-Driven Guide to Better Decision Making in the Early School Years
The general non-fiction shelf on our bookcase is mighty crowded. I want to read it down. The only title that called out to me when I went to pick my next book was this one.
I, like many millennial parents, find Oster to be a great sherpa in parenting. She provides data, gives you methods for assessment in your own life, and then empower you to act. I read her first two books and loved them. I’m not thrilled with the whole “turn your family into a business” framing of this book, but the actual advice is sound.
Now Reading: Champagne
Champagne: How the World's Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times
Don & Petie Kladstrup
Champagne is one of my favorite wines. Anything with effervescence gets to be in my glass. I also like reading books about the history of things. Ergo, when my dad dropped this book off during his last visit, I knew it would be a read for me. I'm only about 50 pages in, but I'm enjoying the narrative non-fiction style. I love seeing how the history of champagne weaves in and out of the history of France.
Now Reading: Simplicity Parenting
Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids
Kim John Payne and Lisa M. Ross
I started reading this book for two reasons. First, it’s been hanging around on my bookcase for awhile and it’s about time. Two, I have a book due to come in from the library that’s got a growing wait list. I needed something I could stop reading and then pick back up again.
So far, it’s reaffirming our decision to not get our kiddo too many toys. We live in a small home and I don't like to be overwhelmed by stuff - physical or mental. This book is providing me ways to keep all that clutter at bay.
A Court of Silver Flames
Sarah J. Maas
I’ve decided that I need to clear some space on my bookcases. While the non-fiction shelf is the most crowded, I was not in the mood to dive into something intellectual.
I went on a Maas binge the year our kiddo was born. It was one of the things that got me through the first few sleepless months. It’s been nearly two and a half years since I read the last book in this series. While the writing is just as enjoyable as I remember, my memory of the characters is shot. Might need to dive into an online summary to reorient myself to everything.
I’m about 100 pages in and pivotal plot points are coming back to me in fits and spurts. I don’t know why, but I’m surprised that the author shifted to focus on two other characters. The choice makes sense, but it has me wondering where everything is headed. That said, Maas has never led me astray. I’ve enjoyed all her books.
Now Reading: The Flatshare
Thanks to a lot of time devoted to reading this past weekend, I am already three-quarters through this one already.
In my mind, the premise is kind of a stretch, but I love how the author is telling the story. It’s a modern spin on the epistolary novel and I find the whole thing delightful and charming.
What Chefs Feed Their Kids: Recipes and Techniques for Cultivating a Love of Good Food
This book has been sitting in my bin for months. I found it on one of the display shelves at the library and I thought it would be a good read. I'm just over halfway done and, while it's well organized, some of the information is outdated. (It was published over a decade ago.) I also disagree with some of the author's premises. That said, the recipes look really tasty and some of the tips to get kids to vary their palates are great.
Recently, I also read Oddball by Sarah Andersen in one sitting. It's a short compilation of some of her webcomics and it is delightful.