Reading Lately – August 2018

After a fantastic month of reading in July, August has been a little bit patchy. I’ve had a few false starts with books I haven’t really gelled with and have found myself dotting around between the three books I have actually managed to complete. Dips in attention span aside, I think one of the reasons is my fondness for regular, varied changes in my reading material. To be honest, some of the books I’ve been attempting lately have been rather weighty, heavy-going tomes. Having said that, I did enjoy all the books I actually managed to finish this month. For September, though, I’ll be lining myself up with some easy going, quick reads –  I already have a few in my to-read pile that might just fit the bill!

Back to August though, and my first book for the month was actually a very easy read – despite everything I’ve just said in the last paragraph 😉 . And if you haven’t already heard of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine where have you been for the past year? It’s a lovely story about life, loneliness and the people and situations who enter your life to change it. It’s also a moving narrative about trauma, coming to terms with loss and the devastating effects of an empty, loveless past. It’s funny, sweet, and as an added bonus, set in one of my favourite Scottish cities – Glasgow (I really hope this feature is retained in the upcoming film I’ve been reading all about!) If you like books like Eleanor I can highly recommend A Man Called Ove – which is one of my absolute favourites. There is something endlessly appealing about the unlikely hero stories these lovely reads depict.

Picture of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine book against flowers

My second (slash third – I was dotting about a bit) read for August was 12 Rules for Life by Jordan Peterson, a philosophical look at the author’s 12 mantras and how they can benefit us all in life. I only had to read the contents page of this book to know I was on board with it – with chapter headings like ‘compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not who someone else is today’, I was nodding along at every single line. About halfway through the book I started to struggle though – the lengthy passages on philosophy and biblical interpretation were going completely a little bit over my head. I read a lot of things that go over my head, though, and just hope that something manages to lodge itself somewhere – overall, I’m glad I read this book and it’s definitely given me some ideas for personal growth. My favourite sections were actually Peterson’s (simpler) anecdotes from his own life and his clinical Psychology practice. And with gems like ‘set your house in perfect order before you criticise the world’, some sort of executive summary of the rules, if not the book in its entirety, is definitely worth a look.

Picture of '12 Rules for Life' book with flowers and blanket

My final (or first, second and third, depending on how you look at it 😉 ) book for the month was Dragonfly In Amber. And you know Diana Gabaldon’s second outing of the Outlander series is something I’m going to genuinely love. This book sees Jamie and Claire in France trying to thwart Bonnie Prince Charlie’s perilous plans before a fateful return to Scotland. My only teeny complaint about the Outlander books is that they are just so absolutely huge. Thankfully, this one was split into sections which makes it easy to dip in and out en route through almost 1000 pages. If you’re looking for a series to truly immerse yourself in over the Autumn I can thoroughly recommend it, though. Someone I spoke to likened it to a TV soap opera in the way it just keeps going and going. Speaking of which, I hear a new season is returning to TV screens in November. I’m a series behind reading-wise, so I better get book three on order soon!

Picture of 'Dragonfly in Amber' (Outlander) book with flowers and coffee

Not before a few easy, quick reads first though, remember?

See you again in September for a round up of another month in books! 🙂

G x

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