March 14, 2017

February Books 2017 February.

The Cozy Life by Pia Edberg A
This is a book about the Danish concept of hygge (who-ga). I have a friend from Sweden and she said the word sounded familiar but wasn't something she ever did or knowingly practiced. The word itself doesn't have a straight English translation. If it did, it'd be close to "cozy".

The reason I asked my friend about it (because I realize Denmark and Sweden are indeed different countries, hashtagAmerican) is because the book mentions Glogg and we had that for the holidays with her family this year.

It tastes like Christmas.

Anyway, the book is a short read and has a wide variety of examples of what hygge could be; it's different for everyone. I read it at the beginning of February and will probably look for another on the topic during the holidays next year. It's a great fall/winter book.

In the Woods by Tana French A
This book took me forever to get through but it was a good one. I kept coming back to it, even renewing it at the physical library, because I never not wanted to pick it up. It was always just rough when I did my reading in the 20 minutes before bed.
I had originally started The Likeness by Tana French last fall, and didn't finish because it was boring (to me). Now I think I'll jump to #3 in the series, The Faithful Place.

The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney A
The audiobook did pull me in from the moment I pressed play, so those reviews of it that I read on Show Us Your Book posts a few months ago weren't wrong.  I got a little meh about it toward the end (it did drag a teeny bit) but then I really liked the very end. It wrapped itself up in a non-predictable bow, still leaving a bit of the ending to the reader to judge. I think that's difficult to find these days.

The One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood D-
This book came highly recommended. I didn't like it. It was boring. It was annoyingly slow. But there was also no point to it, so I'm not sure what speeding up the "plot" would've done for it. It was one of those that started the book with the end of the story.
I could almost (almost) see the charm in it. I liked Ona. The story was just dull though. I pushed through to the end (on audio) because I wanted to see what happened to Ona. I just felt like I never got into the story. I was always on the outside, hoping something would pull me in.
This is just a lesson in "just because booksellers say it's good, doesn't mean it is". I would've returned this to Audible but it was a Daily Deal; I'll pay $4 to finish a book.
However, I'll also muddle through a book just so I can say with absolute certainty that I don't like it. I have no qualms telling you how I really feel. And I know that all books are (usually) okay and some just aren't for everyone; but if I don't tell you my own opinion, Goodreads will be full of 5-star reviews and then, if you don't like it, you'll wonder what's wrong with you.

The Girl Who Lied by Pam Fortin B+
I would actually recommend this. I got it for 99 cents (I think) back in October when I needed something to read and then I got bogged down with my library books/other things and I just finished it Presidents' Day weekend. It's a twisty tale that's not *quite* as predictable as some of the others floating around. As in, the beginning of the book relates to the end of the book but it is not a linear path. I liked that aspect. The characters were fine, the writing was decent, and the ending was a nice wrap-up.
It's a family mystery that takes place in a small town in Ireland (which is the most summarization you'll ever get from me).

The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine N Aron Phd I can't rate something like's textbookish.
I have this theory that I'm an HSP. Bright lights? Loud noise? Generally being overwhelmed? I struggle with these things. This book was written in a clinical way, with lots of case studies (which I never really appreciate all that much).

So with this book, since it did read like a textbook, I found myself employing the speed-reading tactic. 

Until I came across this post last week, I never thought about it much. The idea is that if you are starting to speed-read, it means you just want to finish the book to check it off the list. I can see how this is a thing with non-fiction. While I enjoy the topic of reading about highly-sensitive people and their characteristics and think I got a lot out of it, it was dragging.

I also found myself doing that with the next book on the list, which I did NOT expect to happen.

Still Life by Louise Penny DNF yet
The first in the Armand Gamache mystery series. I didn't finish this. I'm about 53% in and once I found myself speed-reading, I decided to move onto something else. Should I finish it? Did anyone else struggle with it? Thoughts? I feel like I'm the odd one out here.

Linking up with Jana and Steph for Show Us Your Books!


  1. I read In the Woods last year, and I keep intending to pick up The Likeness. I'll get to it and The Girl Before eventually.

  2. i really should get on audio books since there are times i'm stuck in traffic and it's a looong drive. i'll be researching your A-rated books so thanks for those recos.

  3. I'm biased with the Louise Penny books because I 100% adore them, but Still Life was not my favourite. The problem with that series is that the books get infinitely better around book 4, but they are really best read in order or else the books at the end don't make as much sense. So it's a bit of a time commitment and not everyone likes reading series in order :) My tip would be to stick with it but also, not every book is for everyone!! :) You could always skip to the next book in the series without missing too too much. I always find her books (like many) really improve towards the end of the novel too ;)
    I'm in the middle of The Girl Before and loving it. I am also reading a book about hygge and finding that fascinating too. I haven't read In the Woods yet, I liked The Likeness but it took me forever to read and I just haven't felt compelled to pursue her other books yet.

  4. even though i've read how hygge is pronounced, i keep saying it like hugge in my head. haha. the tana french books are on my list. the girl before is on my list, bummer about the one in a million boy! it's in my library pile. bah. i'd heard good things.
    ugh. i totally do the speed reading thing when i am disliking a book. i KNOW i should give up on it, but i hate not knowing. i want to finish it so i can say this sucked, you know? haha.

  5. Still Life was the first book I read this year and I had heard so many good things about it, but was so underwhelmed when I was reading it because it was so. slow. I did end up finishing it and if I remember correctly it picked up towards the end, and like Heather said, I've heard other books in the series pick up a lot more. I have In the Woods on my hold list and am excited, but don't really know what to expect.

  6. The Girl Before is in my NetGalley queue. I'm looking forward to reading it.

    I love the idea and concepts behind hygge. I read about it and it's stuff I already do without realizing it. Anything to help combat S.A.D is fine by me.

  7. I'm waiting on The Girl Before from the library.

  8. I really enjoyed The Girl Before too. I love how he kept shifting my opinion of the cast of characters. :D I've only read Still Life, which I enjoyed, except for Nicol. She was annoying. She is honestly one reason why I've been a bit slow to continue with the series but I heard it gets better and better, so I do want to continue on. I also know some books that earn rave reviews just don't wow me. And I'm sure I rave and rave about a book that leave others underwhelmed too!

  9. I've seen a lot of people mention Louise Penny recently and it looks like a lot of mixed reviews. Bummer you didn't love it. I want to read that book about Hygge!

  10. I really liked The Girl Before too. I need to try some Tana French soon!

  11. I definitely think I might have to switch to audio books, especially when I'm driving long distances.

  12. The Cozy Life sounds really interesting - I'm curious about Hygge now that it's all over. It's a great concept.

    I really want to read something by Tana French at some point too.


  13. Yes you should finish A Still Life. They get so much better! I DNFed it twice, finally made it through, and now I am obsessed!

  14. Interesting books! I think I will add The Girl Before to my list. Im really enjoying the thriller/mystery genre lately. Im really bad at figuring them out, which makes me easily pleased.

  15. I can't wait to start Louise Penny's series. I've heard great things. I want to check out One in A Million Boy. Sorry that you did not like it though! I got the Highly Sensitive Book, and I definitely need to sit down with it! XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  16. I would finish Still Life. It was definitely a different read for me but after getting into it everything came together in the end.

  17. I'm intrigued by hygge and I'm pretty sure I want to fully embrace it next winter. Adding The Cozy Life to the TBR. And Christmas in a glass? Yes, I want to try that too! I'm not good at speed reading. I usually decide around/by page 50 if I'm going to finish it or not.

  18. HSP does sound good, but that nonfiction vibe would put me out. I listened to Stiff which is non-fiction-y and I wished I could speed read through it..


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