I started reading 'quit lit,' 'sober lit,' a couple years ago, and what struck me about this one was the specific connections White makes between maladaptive coping mechanisms with the underlying conditions we may be experiencing. Sometimes when authors talk about healing work, I only get a vague idea of what they mean, but White gives very specific exercises and anecdotes that help the reader understand. [Blanca]
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After I finished Tess of the d'Ubervilles from my high school's summer reading list, I closed the book and said to myself, "I am going to read all the Classics." I have read a lot of them, but I evolved and expanded my repertoire to include: biographies, memoir, recent fiction, poetry, manga, philosphy, history, and several other nonficiton genres. My favorite authors are: Haruki Murakami, Thomas Hardy, Virginia Woolf, John Steinbeck, Graham Greene, Jeannette Winterson, and Anna North. I belong to four book clubs, and I love how I get to encounter books I would never have known about otherwise.
When I pick up a Steinbeck novel, I know I am in for a good read. This one, his last novel published in 1961, replaced 'East of Eden' as my favorite. I was in suspense, because Ethan's integrity gets tested in various ways. Steinbeck really shines in developing each scene and character. I still see in my mind's eye several episodes of this novel. [Blanca]
Spanning three days after the second murder, Alex Finlay expertly guides us along the events that impacted this small New Jersey town. It was almost like watching what could have been the best episode of Criminal Minds. (I am a big fan, having seen the entire series recently).
Have you ever been paralyzed in front of the sink full of dirty dishes? Forget to finish one task because you got distracted by a new one? Then this book may help. This is a productivity guide that totally understands the unproductivity that can be influenced by mental health & other psychological conditions. I sure needed her compassionate words, and she writes with the neurodivergent in mind. [Blanca]
Before she was a pillar of existential feminism, Simone de Beauvoir was a young girl growing up in France. At her side was her unforgettable friend, Zaza. In this autobiographical novel, only recently published, de Beauvoir captures the most important moments of her friendship through the fictionalized characters of Sylvie and Andree living in early 20th Century France. [Blanca]
My favorite Murakami novel of all the ones I've read. In his straightforward lyrical style, he explores characteristic themes: identity, yearning, and liminal moments; but this one also has a character who encounters a doppelganger - and the impact is memorable. I still think about it, most often when I'm driving. [Blanca]
If you're looking for a great, quick read, then this book fits the bill. Hawkins takes her time to introduce her characters through realistic dialogue & vignettes of their past - all to lead up to the fast-pasted climax! [Blanca]
With the nascent Seattle grunge scene as a backdrop, Haupt delivers a poignant story of two kids with an enviable friendship - but life has a way of twisting stories. I found it to be a very realistic account of two intertwined lives. I read the book in two days because I needed to know what happened to Zane & Skye. [Blanca]
This book follows the life of Ruthie - growing up in the forest of a small town in Montana - watching the town change as it gets developed and invaded by vacationers. It's very normal until the end. This book's ending is not normal, nor typical - so brace yourself. Also, the style is fantastic! [Blanca]
Winterson brings a feminist perspective to the many facets in which artificial intelligence influences our lives, now and in the possible future. She has an optimistic view about what AI could be if we were not programming it to be biased or imbued with our less attractive qualities. If you have read Frankisstein, this book could be seen as a nonfiction companion to that novel, since it elaborates on many of the scientific, historical, and philosophical themes of her novel. [Blanca]