In October, I clocked ten books. (My full reading lists, going back to 2006 can be found here.) Here are a few notables from that stack.
A fun read: American Royals, by Katharine McGee
I have this friend who reads all the latest and greatest in the rom-com and contemporary fiction. (She’s set to read over 200 books this year!) Her recs are spot-on and when she mentioned she was reading this, I wasted no time hopping on the library’s website and reserving it.
It was a quick read, light and entertaining. But I found it also left me thinking about politics in a whole new way.
The premise was intriguing: What if, instead of wanting to be elected, George Washington had accepted the offer of being royalty? Here we are, in modern day, with the American royal family.
Because who among us doesn’t love a princess story?
I could write this off as total chick-lit, but that undermines the amount of chewing I’ve done since reading it.
How would our political system be different? That’s an interesting question to ask, on the verge of a presidential election year and as our presidential election cycles get more painful.
Downside: It ends on a bit of a cliffhanger, it’s not particularly suspenseful (you KNOW how it will end, because it’s rom-com, folks). HOWEVER, it’s clean and decent and FUN.
An addictive binge-read: All in Good Time, by Carolyn Astfalk
Can you say “block out 18 hours, because you won’t want to put this down”? I started it on a Friday and just. kept. going. (The dog, it should be noted, kept going with me.)
Astfalk has that effect on me, though. Interestingly, she’s a Catholic author, and her books are very Theology of the Body focused, BUT YOU MIGHT NEVER KNOW IT.
That’s the part I love.
You can just pick up this book, read it, love it, and know that (a) no smut, (b) morals are in line with you, (c) darn good plot.
Predictable? Well, it’s a romance. So, yeah. It’s probably going to go a certain direction.
How it gets there, though, is all the fun.
A delightful listen: Arabella, by Georgette Heyer
There’s a pattern to what I loved from my October reading. If you said “romance” and “delightful characters” and “laugh-out-loud situations,” then you nailed it.
Georgette Heyer has become a favorite author of mine this year, and Arabella does not disappoint. It probably doesn’t hurt that the narrator had a delightful accent and the ability to put feeling into sentences that benefited from it. (The drama is so much more dramatic that way, don’t you think?)
I KNEW how this would end, but ⏤ and you couldn’t have told me this years ago ⏤ that didn’t make it any less wonderful of a read/listen.
A book that taught me a lot: The Obesity Code: Unlocking the Secrets of Weight Loss, by Jason Fung, M.D.
I picked this up because, after zipping through Delay, Don’t Deny: Living an Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle, by Gin Stephens, I needed more.
Stephens lays the groundwork, and she explains things very simply and well. But I enjoy source material and I wanted to understand the science behind it.
Fung is a good writer, which always helps when you’re writing a book that flies in the face of the modern mindset and integrates a lot of science. The footnotes in this book are a book of their own, and the studies he cites are all human studies (none of the “done on animals and applied to humans” stuff).
Fung has some cred: He’s been a practicing doctor, caring for diabetic patiences, for two decades, at least, and he’s watched the weight problem blossom. The traditional advice does. not. work.
Why is that?
Well, he spends 250 pages, three appendices, and a whole host of footnotes explaining it. And he walks right through it, from point A to point B.
What’s harder, I’ve found, is trying to share what you’ve learned in this book with those around you.
“But if you just eat less and move more, the weight will come off.”
Well, yes. Until, you know, it comes back on.
Worth reading if you have struggled with your weight, you’re curious and/or concerned about the whole issue of obesity, or you just want a deepish dive.