Samstag, 11. August 2018

my summer reading list #abridged 📚

I have one shelf in my bookcase solely dedicated to books I haven’t read yet. Buying books, putting them on your shelf, then forgetting about them and never reading them is a pet peeve of mine. But although I’m making an effort to consistently read the books I already have before buying any new ones and although I’m trying to stay on top of my TBRs, it still sometimes happens that I lose sight of the pile and go on to newer purchases. That’s why I make actual, physical TBR-lists in my notebook now. So when I’ve finished a book and am looking for something new to read, I go to my list (instead of the bookstore) and pick my next read from there. What a long-winded way to just say: Here are some titles I currently have on my reading list and that I plan on reading this summer. ☀️

I go through phases where I mainly read non-fiction and have a hard time incorporating novels into my reading routine. So I have three fiction and ~ only ~ two non-fiction titles on the list I want to talk about today. Let’s get the non-fiction out of the way first. Here are two books I received from publishing companies in the past few months.

jennie lee : true yoga (2017)

Yoga has been a big part of my life for many years now and I’ve been doing daily yoga ever since I discovered Yoga with Adriene on Youtube three years ago. But although I like to do some background reading on practically anything that interests me, I’ve never ever read a single book about yoga. But this is going to change now because Llewellyn Publishing sent me a copy of Jennie Lee’s book True Yoga in which she talks about the “Eight Limbs of Yoga” and offers an approach to Yoga that considers it to be much more than exercise, but a lifestyle. The eight limbs or steps basically act as guidelines on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life.

True Yoga is an inspirational guide that shows you how to overcome difficulties and create sustainable joy through the Eight Limbs of Yoga outlined in the Yoga Sutras. […] Discover effective methods for maintaining positive thoughts, managing stress, improving communication, and building new habits for success.
Although doing Yoga will make you feel different (better) from the very first minute of doing it, I can honestly say that after three years of regular (almost daily) practice, I actually feel ~ changed ~ and like a better version of myself? Please bear with me, I know it sounds a bit “woo-woo”, but it’s true. Yoga helps me every day to find myself inside of myself… 🤷🏻‍♀️ Anyway, I’m very much looking forward to finally do some reading on Yoga and to gaining a whole new perspective on my daily yoga practice through this book! 🧘🏻‍♀️

noa belling : the mindful body (2018)

Another review copy I’ve received is Mindful Body by Noa Belling from Rockpool Publishing. The book focuses on the connection between mind and body when it comes to our overall wellbeing and more specifically talks about how we can practice body mindfulness when faced with challenges such as stress, anxiety or depression.


The practices of this book go beyond traditional mindfulness to target specific challenges such as stress, anxiety, depression, confidence, zest for life, decision-making and more. Supported with psychological and neuroscientific studies, this book provides you with many opportunities to practice body mindfulness to experience your physical being as an empowering and intelligent resource.

I’m a firm believer in the integration of mind and body when it comes to physical and mental health issues and I’m always eager to learn more about how i can take even better care of myself.

julie anne peters : keeping you a secret (2003)

I have to admit that i didn’t know anything about this book when I purchased it. I had just finished Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli when I did a little goodreads search and got Keeping you a Secret as a suggestion to read if i liked the above mentioned novel. I love me some good young adult novel with a high school setting so I was all aboard after reading the blurb of this one. The story follows the developing relationship between two teenage girls and the coming out of the protagonist Holland Jaeger.


The novel got a lot of praise for the realistic characters and authentic telling of the love story portrayed in the book. And honestly, although I really like reading YA novels – what I oftentimes miss in almost all of them are round and realistic characters that come alive on the page and in my head and that are living on there even after I’ve finished the book. There are only a few novels that manage to do that for me … I actually sometimes think of protagonists from novels and wonder – years after I’ve read the book – what and how they might be doing today. That’s what I’m looking for in a novel.

taylor jenkins reid : the seven husbands of evelyn hugo (2017)

I honestly was a bit taken aback by the cover of this one. If I hadn’t heard so many good things about the novel, I probably wouldn’t have picked it up had I come across it in a bookstore. But reading the blurb on the back assured me that this is a story I want to dive into and get lost in – preferably on a late summer evening in August with a cold-ish breeze coming through the open window after a nice summer storm—oops, my desperation about the hot weather just came through there, sorry.

I’ll let the blurb speak for itself and then tell you what I find so appealing about the story:

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?
Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Regardless of why Evelyn has selected her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.
Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the ‘80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.

I love this kind of narrative situation where we as readers listen to a story told by one character (Evelyn Hugo in this case) and at the same time also witness another character, Monique, being told the very same story we’re hearing. In this case in particular it’s like we’re looking over Monique’s shoulder while she’s learning about Evelyn’s life – by that we’re also seeing Evelyn’s story through Monique’s eyes which again tells us a lot about Monique herself. Very much looking forward to this one as well. 👀

imbolo mbue : behold the dreamers (2016)

What I usually do when I’ve finished a book that I LOVED is google “novels like/similar to XYZ”, because most of the time I just want to stay in the place where the previous novel took me, if that makes sense. For example after I had finished The Girls by Emma Cline a few years ago I continuously searched for similar novels and then ended up reading Marlena by Julie Buntin which I found incredible as well. But what I actually wanted to talk about is Behold the Dreamers, right? I discovered the novel through my afore-mentioned search-method after I had finished Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. After reading the blurb I felt catapulted back to my university years (not only because the novel is set in 2007), because this book is something we would have definitely read and discussed in an American Lit Seminar (had it already been published). So whenever I can travel back in time and read something as if I had to discuss it in class later and write an essay on it, I’m in.

I’ll again let the blurb tell you more:

Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, Neni, and their six-year-old son. In the fall of 2007, Jende can hardly believe his luck when he lands a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. Clark demands punctuality, discretion, and loyalty—and Jende is eager to please. Clark’s wife, Cindy, even offers Neni temporary work at the Edwardses’ summer home in the Hamptons. With these opportunities, Jende and Neni can at last gain a foothold in America and imagine a brighter future.
However, the world of great power and privilege conceals troubling secrets, and soon Jende and Neni notice cracks in their employers’ façades.
When the financial world is rocked by the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Jongas are desperate to keep Jende’s job—even as their marriage threatens to fall apart. As all four lives are dramatically upended, Jende and Neni are forced to make an impossible choice.

Although this is on my “to-be-read” list, I already dove in and am about to finish the sixth chapter. Again, the characters are very “real” and come to life on the page and in my head so easily, which I love. Whenever I stop reading and put the book aside for a day I feel the need to come back to it, because I want to know how Jende is doing and how is day at work went. 🤷🏻‍♀️ So excuse me please, I have some reading to do. Bye.

What is on your tbr-list at the moment? Tell me because I obviously need more books.

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