What I did a ton more of this year, was reading!
I used to be a huge book fiend before unlimited Internet access, and I am getting back into the habit of reading. Especially in holidays, books are friends.
Most of these books are ebooks, because if I let my inner Librarian Freak Flag fly, I’d be buried in books and using the Hobbit Limited Edition with Illustrations as a dinner plate.
I use the iBook app for most of my books, but I also have the Kindle app. Amazon is kind of amazing too. More on that another time.
Take a look at the books I read this year. Some self help, but mostly fiction.
THE LUNAR CHRONICLES – Marissa Meyer. Fantasy, retelling of favorite fairytales…In a futuristic world with cyborgs and space travel.
Retelling of Cinderella (Cinder), Little Red Riding Hood (Scarlet), and Rapunzel (Cress) in aforementioned universe. I know, it sounds like it couldn’t possibly work, but it DOES.
There’s more books coming to this series, which is GREAT, but not until November 2015. Not so great. Counting down for the Lunar chronicles next book as well as the second installment of the Mockingjay movie.
AN UNTETHERED SOUL – Michael A. Singer. A very touchy-feely book about being in touch with and unblocking your heart. Some parts I loved and truly resonated with me, some parts made me squirm in my beach chair.
DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE CHRONICLES- Laini Taylor. The most beautiful books I’ve read this year, in terms of story and writing. The first book I read a long time ago and this year I bought the second and third.
They were amazing. The love story of Karou and Akiva in the midst of a war with angels and chimaera is just a wonderful world to get lost in.
CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL, THE POWER OF POSITIVE – Jack Canfield, etc. I love the Chicken Soup for The Soul Series. These stories are easy digestible, and leave you warm and happy on the inside. Huh. Really like Chicken Soup, I guess.
COMEDY WRITING SECRETS – Mark Shatz & Mel Helitzer. I’m intrigued by how making people laugh works. This book talks about how writing comedy for different outlets. Not everything was useable for my weird self and my weird website, but it was a good read and interesting nonetheless.
CITY OF BONES – Cassandra Clare. First of the Mortal Instrument series. Meh. Haven’t brought myself to start reading the rest.
THE MAZE RUNNER – James Dashner. The only reason I started to read this book is that Dylan o’Brien is the protagonist in the movie. I didn’t like it as much as I hoped I would, but if you’re into boys stuck in a maze this is your thing (hey, I don’t know your preferences).
THE DIP – Seth Godin. Yeah, this Seth Godin book is really short and talks about the process of deciding if you should persevere and keep pursuing something, or quit.
I didn’t like it, so I quit. Easy as that.
#GIRLBOSS – Sophia Amoroso. I don’t really know much about the fashion industry, but I loved Sophia’s story about how she became the super successful CEO of NastyGal. You can read the review here.
GRACE’S GUIDE – Grace Helbig. Lord knows I love me the Holy Trinity of Youtube. Not originally a big Grace fan, but she grew on me. Now I really like her hilarious and awkward videos AND her book is really really good. Funny and helpful, in that order.
HEROES OF OLYMPUS – Rick Riordan. The follow up series to Percy Jackson, about the camp of Roman and Greek demigods. 5 books. Read ’em in 1,5 weeks. Easy to read, exciting and good plot. I haven’t read the Percy Jackson books yet except for the first one, maybe I should do that in 2015.
BRAIN ON FIRE – Susannah Calahan. Non-fiction read about a New York journalist who had a rare auto-immune disease that had her in a mental hospital all month, psychotic and sick. The book is excellent, and terrifying.
WILLPOWER, REDISCOVERING OUR GREATEST STRENGTH – Baumeister & Tiemy. Very interesting read about willpower and self control. I’m not sure you can label it self help, it’s really more educational with a hint of inspiration.
THE DIVERGENT SERIES – Veronica Roth. I loved these, and I will not give away anything about the story because I might cry. Again.
AMERICAN GODS – Neil Gaiman. I love Neil Gaiman’s style (and his Tumblr). This book is good because of it’s writing and the very clever, complex story.
THE POMODORO TECHNIQUE – Francesco Cirillo. Seriously, it might seem overkill to read an entire book about this strategy, but it can revolutionise your personal productivity and effectivity. I loved this book, wrote a review, and still use the Pomodoro technique.
THINKING FAST AND SLOW – Daniel Kahneman. Kahneman is a cognitive psychologist I’ve read a bunch about for my studies and my job, and this book talks about the two different ways of how to think. It is similar to the Willpower book: Not really self help, but educational.
SELF HEALING WITH REIKI – Penelope Quest. This was a very enlightening self help reads, but I haven’t gotten around to reviewing it yet. It talks about Reiki and the different ways you can use it to help and heal yourself.
MY DRUNK KITCHEN – Hannah Hart. Oh Hannah, I don’t know if I want to be you or be on you. Actually I do, I wanna be on you. Call me.
The My Drunk Kitchen YouTube star wrote this New York Times Bestseller with a whole bunch of weird recipes. I thought the book was the least useful cookbook I ever purchased, but it is pretty funny.
THE FAULT IN OUR STARS – John Green. Cute, but didn’t cry.
I guess I have no heart. Okay? Okay.
GONE GIRL/DARK PLACES/SHARP OBJECTS – Gillian Flynn. Next to the next book in the Lunar Chronicles, I am on the look-out for Gillian Flynn’s next book.
I think her books have everything: Great writing, the most amazing plots AND plot twists and I can’t put them down once I start in them.
My favorite is her debut novel Sharp Objects.
If you liked Gone Girl, you will LOVE Sharp Objects too.
THE JANE YELLOWROCK SERIES – Faith Hunter. Yeah, about these…These are my guilty pleasure reads.
It’s about Cherokee skin walker vampire hunter Jane Yellowrock who takes on a job in New Orleans to kill rogue vamps. And then has to fight werewolves. And then has to fight both. And then witches.
…Yes, I know what it sounds like.
It’s like every bad Young Adult theme crawled into one series and started humping to make weird overdone plot-babies.
BUT, it’s freaking entertaining, Jane is a badass and the turns of the story are actually pretty good.
So. No ragrets. I love this series and I am only mildly embarrassed about it.
All of these in Thailand:
- I read Faithless by Karin Slaughter and I thought it was great. I might read more Karin Slaughter in the future.
- I read Be Brilliant Everyday by Andy Cope and Andy Whittaker and despite some good parts I was seriously underwhelmed. I left it in the little library at the hostel.
- I also read the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, but it was in Dutch (see first picture) and that didn’t really work for me. Still need to read the correct version — Bought the Workbook version in iTunes. Twice.
BOOKS ON THE READING LIST
Veg! by Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall. Already made four recipes out of this bad boy, but haven’t read it cover to cover yet.
Schrijven Kreng! by Lisette Jonkman. I only read the intro at this point, but I’m already on board. Lisette is funny, doesn’t take herself too seriously, and is a great, great writer.
I have a ton more books on my to-read list from the Reader Survey from a while back, so I’m going to read a whole bunch in 2015 too.
(As you can see this post does not contain affiliate links. Not because I don’t want to make like a tenth of a cent whenever you purchase a book through my links, but because I am lazy and I want to do other things today than add links to this fuckload of books.
So, if you read one of these books and it turns out changing your life, buy me a coffee with the Donate button. Or not. I love you anyway.)
Have fun, make good choices and don’t lose any limbs in firework accidents tonight, okay? Bye.