Hello my most beauteous bloggers! I hope you all had a lovely September! It’s one of my favorite months; the weather cools off but there are still plenty of warm days, and the trees start to change color. I spent many chilly mornings snuggled under the softest blanket on earth with a cup of coffee and a book, and it was glorious.
Tom and I continued settling into our new apartment. We had the basics covered when we moved in, and now we’re starting to get some art up on the walls and buying a few seasonal decorations. It’s starting to feel a bit cozier now that we have an adorable Home Sweet Home print in a rustic wooden frame, chrysanthemums, and an owl candle holder. (Because how can you not buy a candle holder shaped like an owl?)
I guess you could say September was pretty sweet. Now on to the reading recap!
The Round House — Louise Erdrich
The Age of Innocence — Edith Wharton
Songs of Willow Frost — Jamie Ford
Beloved — Toni Morrison
– This month: 1,455
– Year to date: 14,814
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent. Set in 1828, Burial Rites reimagines the last months in the life of Agnes Magnusdottir, the last person to be executed in Iceland. Because Iceland did not have its own prisons at this time, Agnes is sent to live with the family of a district officer to await her execution after she is convicted of murdering two men. In gorgeous, lyrical pose, Kent tells the story of a complex, compelling character. I can’t contain my love for this book.
The Returned by Jason Mott. At some point, we all wish our lost loved ones could return to us — but what would happen if they actually did? Jason Mott explores this idea in his debut novel, in which the dead return to life, not as zombies, but as living, breathing people. Mott brings to life a community struggling with the return of people it had long ago mourned and the tensions they bring with them. Great premise, but I was left with too many questions.
The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. In this striking memoir, Jeannette Walls recounts her unusual childhood growing up with a wildly loving but destructively drunk father, a free-spirited mother who hated the burden of parenthood, and her three siblings. I really admired Walls’ unflinching narration and honest, nuanced portrayals of her family with all of their glory, chaos, and hardship.
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. Newland Archer is a bookish dilettante of Old New York’s moneyed set. Life flies by in a blur of parties, and he is newly engaged to May Newland, a sweet, beautiful, and conventional girl. However, everything goes awry when May’s cousin Ellen arrives in town. Newland falls for Ellen, who flouts the conventions Archer feels stifled by. Although an interesting piece of social criticism, I had a hard time loving this book.
Packing for Mars by Mary Roach. My favorite Mary Roach so far, this book explores the history and science of space exploration. It’s a fascinating topic, and Roach does an excellent job of making complex topics accessible in a really fun, engaging way. This is the kind of book that makes you constantly turn to your companion and say things like, “Hey, did you know how astronauts poop in space?”
Ten Books I Wish I Was Taught in School (Top Ten Tuesday)
Ten Books I Would Love to See Adapted for the Screen (Top Ten Tuesday)
Top Ten Books on my Fall TBR List (Top Ten Tuesday)
Ten Things Every Book Blog Needs. I had a lot of fun putting this post together, thinking of what I look for when I visit a new blog and what keeps me from following a blog. You guys seemed to like it too; it quickly became my most-commented-on post and my second-most-viewed post ever! Thanks to everyone who joined the discussion
Bloggiesta. This was my first time participating in Bloggiesta, and although Friday was the only day I was able to participate, I’m happy with how much I got done! I was able to do some much-needed maintenance, and although I didn’t officially complete any challenges, I learned a lot from reading people’s posts!
Pick Up a Banned Book This Week. Banned Book Week is my favorite bookish week of the year; I love watching everyone get so impassioned about the freedom to read. I did my own little post about BBW and challenged myself to read Beloved by Toni Morrison — which I did, review to come!
Books added to my collection
Okay, I kind of failed at reigning in my book buying this month. I swung by my local indie bookstore to pick up a copy of Brewster by Mark Slouka before going to the author’s reading, and I impulse purchased a beautiful copy of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft. And THEN, a few weeks later, I decided to go for a walk on a lovely day, and OOPS, I live half a mile from a used book store. I walked out with This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper, The View from Castle Rock and Open Secrets by Alice Munro, and Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls.
I also received a beautiful galley of We are Water by Wally Lamb, and I won a copy of The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt from Bloggers Recommend!
I’m going to finish Mind Without a Home by Kristina Morgan, The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith/J.K. Rowling, and A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. Because I had the antsy reading pants this month and couldn’t settle on one book at a time. I will also be reading We Are Water and a book called Mountainfit for review! I think that’s actually all I have planned?
What about you, readers? What did you read in September? Any plans for October?