Showing posts with label liane moriarty. Show all posts
Showing posts with label liane moriarty. Show all posts

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Well-Read Redhead's Best Books of 2016!

It is time to announce...

The Well-Read Redhead's Best Books of 2016!

As I always disclaim with this list: you may be surprised by some of my choices...and some of my non-choices.  There are books on here that, in my initial review, I enjoyed but maybe wasn't completely gushing over.  And there are books not on the list that I mentioned as potential favorites when I wrote my reviews.  But at the end of the year, when I make this list, I go by what's really stuck with me--after months have passed, what are the books that are still leaving an impression?  Still giving me something to think about?


I am fully aware that I have not been the best blogger lately, but I just love making my end-of-the-year best-books list, so I had to throw in my two cents before 2017 rolls around!

As in past years, this list is in no particular order:


1. Before the Fall by Noah Hawley


I lied, this part of the list is definitely in a particular order, because this was absolutely the best book I read all year.

2. What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty


Many would write this off as "chick lit", but I found it very thought-provoking.

3. Bull Mountain by Brian Panowich


Villians and intrigue and spectacular writing.

4. Alice & Oliver by Charles Bock


ALL THE SADNESS.  But I loved it anyway.

5. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes


More sadness!  Like seriously, so much sadness.  But SO SO GOOD.  Can't wait to see the movie and cry my eyes out.

6. Run the World by Becky Wade


I read a lot of running books this year, but this is the one that stuck with me the most.  I love Wade's fresh perspective and diverse discussion of the world of running.

7. Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave


In a literary world full of WWII stories (not to be trite, but that's true), this one is a stand out.  The dialogue alone is reason to pick it up.

8. Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult


What would my best-of list be without the latest Picoult release?  Pointless, that's what.  But seriously, this has to be the most immediately socially relevant book she has ever written.

9. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett


This book reminded me why I really, really need to read more Ann Patchett.

10. Do Your Om Thing by Rebecca Pacheco


As an amateur yogi, my perspective of the practice was completely changed by this book (for the better!).  I learned so much from it, and I know I will refer to it for years to come.

That's a wrap!  What made YOUR best-read list for 2016?

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

February Minis: 3 for 3!

Hello, readers!  I know, I completely fell off the wagon with Book Blogger Appreciation Week halfway through.  MY BAD.  You know how my blogging is these days.  However, I have been busy reading, and I've got 3 new mini-reviews for you...and all 3 are books that I thoroughly enjoyed.

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
Penguin, 2009
borrowed from the library

This is the latest pick from my MOMS Club book club.  Right after I started reading it, my BFF Cari texted me to alert me that this is one of her top 5 books of ALL TIME!  Quite the endorsement!  And I have to say, I now completely understand why.  I loooooved this novel.  Book club is going to have a lot to discuss!

Synopsis: 29-year-old Alice wakes up on the floor of a gym after falling and hitting her head.  Which is weird, because she hates gyms.  But then she finds out that she's not 29 anymore--she's 39.  She's also not pregnant with her first child anymore (as she thought), but now has 3 kids.  And she's also not married to the love of her life anymore--she's getting a divorce.  Yes, Alice hit her head and lost 10 years of her memories.  Now she's trying to figure out what went wrong...and can she regain the person she thought she was 10 years ago?  (Does she want to?)

This is the first time I've read Moriarty's work, and it won't be the last.  The dialogue is lighthearted, but the core issues of this book are not.  The ending is perfection, and guaranteed to leave you with so much to mull over.  This novel is not even a little bit the predictable sappy love story that I feared it might be.  Can't recommend this enough!!

Bull Mountain by Brian Panowich
G.P. Putnam, 2015
borrowed from the library

This book was recommended by ALL THE BLOGGERS.  I saw it on a bunch of best-of lists for 2015, and finally decided to pick it up at the library.  Synopsis: Clayton Burroughs is the sheriff on Bull Mountain in the woods of north Georgia.  He also happens to be the youngest brother of the outlaw Burroughs clan, currently run by his oldest brother Halford.  But Clayton is trying to be different--he's a man of the law, and determined to keep his family's criminal ways out of his life.  And he's doing a pretty good job of it.  Until ATF agent Simon Holly shows up at his door.

I have to admit that I was skeptical of this one.  Half crime thriller/half historical fiction, I didn't know if this would be a great fit for me.  But let me tell you, I was glued from page one.  I even skipped a yoga practice to wake up early one morning and finish it!!  :)  The way Panowich makes this story unfold is absolutely brilliant.  Even if I guessed at some of the twists before they happened, I didn't care, because Panowich has such a way with words that he made them feel surprising anyway.  Complex characters, gripping conclusion--yup, this has it all.  Read it!

Hansons Half Marathon Method by Luke Humphrey with Keith & Kevin Hanson
Velo Press, 2014
borrowed from the library

Have to throw in my latest running read!  Since I am doing so many 13.1s this year, I've been enjoying reading about different training methods for the distance.  I heard amazing things about Hansons, so I had to pick this one up.  Full disclosure: when I first got the book, I immediately flipped to the training programs.  I took one look at these intense 6-day-a-week plans and said NOPE.  Not for me.  I put the book down and decided I'd save this one for a time in my life when I had more availability for such an involved program.

Then I got the notice that the book was due back to the library...and decided maybe I should at least read it first.  So I renewed it.  And I started reading.  And now I am a BELIEVER!  While I still think this is not the right time for me to follow a Hansons plan, I am 100% on board with their methodology, and I feel like I learned SO much more about the hows and whys of the training process.  Hansons plans are based in well-researched exercise science, and reading through them gave me a wealth of helpful new running information, even as I follow a different training calendar.  Absolutely a valuable read for anyone serious about the 13.1 distance, even if you're not going to use one of their plans.  I'm hoping to try one out when I have more time to dedicate to it.

What are your current reads?  Any good book club picks?  What's the last thing you read and loved because of a recommendation from a friend?
 
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