What Have I Been Reading Lately?

Hello, everyone!

I hope you’re enjoying your summer. I’ve been working in the morning and then shifting to play as soon as my two noisy teenagers wake up (because if you can’t beat ’em, you might as well join ’em). This means I’ve had a little more time to read than I usually do, and I’m so happy about that!

Here are my favorites so far:

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne – This was a delightful and fresh spin on the age-old enemies-to-lovers trope. The writing was sharp and the tension was fantastic.

Leave Me by Gayle Foreman – I’ve read If I Stay and Where She Went, but this is Gayle’s adult fiction debut and it’s wonderful. I would pick this up before bed with the intention of reading for only a short time and would still be reading an hour later.

Hungry Heart: Adventures in Life, Love, and Writing by Jennifer Weiner – I have been a fan of Jennifer’s since Good in Bed. I loved reading about her life and how she got started as a writer. This is an author I’d really like to meet someday.

The Admissions by Meg Mitchell Moore – I loved this tale of family drama. There was enough humor and heart that it never felt depressing to me.

The Light We Lost by Jill Santopolo – This was a wonderful blend of women’s fiction and romance (I would categorize it as a love story). I loved the writing and enjoyed the character-driven narrative. Make sure you have a supply of tissues nearby.

Coming Clean: A memoir by Kimberly Rae Miller – I absolutely loved this memoir about hoarding. It reminded me a bit of The Glass Castle and Breaking Night because of the hardships the author had to overcome due to circumstances outside of her control. Gritty and ultimately triumphant.

The Arrangement by Sarah Dunn – I love stories about marriage and suburban life, and this book delivers both. It’s funny but realistic. The characters are old enough to know better but dive in headfirst anyway.

Falling by Jane Green – No one writes women’s fiction like Jane Green. I’ve been a fan of hers for years and this is one of my favorites. I especially loved all the details surrounding interior design, and the relationship the heroine has with a certain special little boy. This one was right up my alley.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo – A few months ago, I became very interested in eliminating the clutter that seems to permeate every corner of my house. I have two teenagers and their stuff is EVERYWHERE. It’s still a losing battle, but what I found was that I could eliminate my own clutter and it would feel almost as good as eliminating theirs. I was able to reduce my closet by 2/3 and have made multiple trips to Goodwill. It really did feel good to keep only the items that “sparked joy.” My next hurdle is our basement storage room. Hopefully I’ll have the strength to let go of the things we’re holding on to that we don’t really need.

Maybe in Another Life and One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid – I find myself gravitating more and more toward stories that are a blend of women’s fiction and romance. This is reflective in my own writing so it makes sense I would be drawn to them. I like that both of these books were character and relationship driven. They’re thankfully low on angst and the subject matter is relatable and realistic. I love Taylor’s fresh voice and will definitely seek out more of her work (now and in the future).

What I’d love to read more of this summer: contemporary romance with adult characters and a fresh premise that doesn’t solely rely on tropes, smart women’s fiction that also includes romance in the storyline, and compelling memoirs that contain subject matter I’m not familiar with. If you have any recommendations, please let me know!

I hope you’re enjoying your summer,

Tracey