Happy new year! I won't lie- it really satisfies me to see that I'm getting this post up at the right time in the first month of the year. My blog goal for the year is to be more consistent with posting (and to do less editing as I write- just get the words out there and edit later!!) I love looking back at the books I've read over the past month and I love reading everyone else's posts so I can fill my TBR list. With that... let's jump in it.
The Andy Cohen Diaries: A Deep Look at a Shallow Year
I won't lie- Bravo and Andy Cohen are my guilty pleasures. Like many, I have a strange fascination with pop culture and this book gave me an insight in to a day in the life of a celebrity in New York . Andy Cohen's first book, Most Talkative, is much more of a memoir and details his childhood and rise to fame in this very strange industry of reality TV. The Andy Cohen Diaries was simple- a chronicle of what happened every day. In other words, it was literally a diary. I thought it was interesting and I fell in love with his dog, Watcha- The Ralph Lauren Snoopy! That said, you REALLY have to care about Andy/Bravo/RHW/Celebrities in order to enjoy it. He almost called it "Diary of a Name Dropper" and that would not have been too far off. It reminded me of a modern day Swans of Fifth Avenue. My notes from when I was reading this book are simple: So many names. So Many. So much Googling. 4/5, if only for my love of Andy.
You Will Know Me | Megan Abbott
I read this one before it gave Stephen King the creeps.
(could you IMAGE casually scrolling through your tweets and seeing Mr. King himself praising your book!?)
I'm so pleased with You Will Know Me. It was on my TBD List for July 2016, since I read her previous novel, The Fever, and was completely disappointed. YWKM was a thriller in a way that kept me guessing. It's not an action packed thriller, but what I found fascinating were the characters and the relationships. I had theories about what went on (you find out what the major plot point is pretty early in the novel) that evolved as the story progressed and was generally pleased with the ending. It was a story about dedication, family, and how well we know those closest to us. Full review here. 5/5.
Pretty Girls | Karin Slaughter
WOW. Pretty Girls was my first Karin Slaughter book and it was an intense experience. I love psychological thrillers with tons of twist and turns, and this book had no shortage of that. It was fast paced with likable and broken characters. There's a definite trigger warning that comes along with this- specifically if you're sensitive to murder and/or sexual abuse. I feel there's not a lot that gets to me, but even I had to pause when Claire found out what was on the USB drive. I genuinely almost puked. But, like a true crime junkie, I pushed on. Despite the dark premise it was a fun read because you are "in" on some of the elements of the story and you're willing the characters to figure it out, too. A young girl disappears, and we start the story about 20 years later. It's told from the perspective of her two sisters, with punctuating chapters told from letters from their father. I loved those sections. I was satisfied with the ending- everything was tied up. It read like a disturbed Liane Moriarty novel, so if you're not sensitive and you like that type of fiction, this might be a book for you. I listened to it on Audible, which I think made the experience all the better. 5/5
The Nest | Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
This book seemed to be polarizing for a lot of people- you were either captivated by the dysfunction and breezed to the ending, or you thought it was overrated. I was in the first camp. The story is told from the POV of the four Plumb siblings who, upon the youngest's 40th birthday, are to receive a sizable amount of money from their trust fund- dubbed The Nest. Problem is, lovely brother Leo gets himself into a lot of trouble shortly before they're about to be paid, and Mama Plumb decides to use the nest to make the scandal go away. Leo's good to pay it back, right? I couldn't wait to see how it ended. 4.5/5.
The Underground Railroad | Colson Whitehead
One of my reading goals this year is to balance books like the Andy Cohen Diaries with books with more substance, especially if they're written by or are about a POC. The Underground Railroad was the first book I read in 2017 and I plan on doing a full review, so I don't want to say too much, but I suspect this was on a lot of your lists already. A definite must read. 5/5.
The Girl Before | JP Delaney
This is a book that I got as an ARC, and I can't wait for everyone else to get their hands on it. I'm going to write a full review on it, but I really think this might be my favorite book that I've read in the past 6 months (at least). I talked about The Girl Before in my New and Noteworthy January 2017 post. I wasn't expecting much after reading the description, but was pleasantly surprised. This book is going to be made into a movie later on in 2017, and I can't wait to see it! Don't worry too much about the premise... just know that I liked this one way more than The Girl on the Train and it's at least as good as Gone Girl. Give it a try! It comes on January 24th. 5/5.
Can't wait to see what everyone else has been reading!