One of my biggest goals for 2019 was to READ more. I’m a super fast reader (when I was little my parents would try not to buy me a ton of books because I’d go through them SO fast!) – and I absolutely love it. Literally, one of my favorite things to do when I have a moment to myself is to read. I remember having the stomach flu when I was about 8 and asking my mom if I could read a book in between bouts of being sick. Yeah. I was that kid .
A few years ago I read around 134 books in a year (JB was deployed and I wasn’t shooting very much, OBVIOUSLY), and I spent SO much time reading. I’ve got a huge list that I’m working off of but I’ll *always* take recommendations!! You can follow along on Instagram under my 2019 reads highlights where I post every book I read or with the hashtag #caitlinpagereads. I’m going to post a round up of the books I’ve read every quarter so you can follow along and/or find new recs!!
1. Into The Water: Paula Hawkins
2. Orphan Train: Christina Baker Kline
3. Everything I Never Told You: Celeste Ng (didn’t love this one even though I *loved* Little Fires Everywhere!)
4. Hello Sunshine: Laura Dave (didn’t love this one either but it was a VERY quick read)
5. War Brides: Helen Bryan
6. In A Dark, Dark Wood: Ruth Ware
7. My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry: Fredrik Backman
8. Reconstructing Amelia: Kimberly McCreight
9. The Great Gatsby: F. Scott Fitzgerald
10. Winter Storms: Elin Hilderbrand
11. Skeletons at the Feast: Chris Bohjalian
12. Serena: Ron Rash
13. The Couple Next Door: Shari Lapena
14. Defending Jacob: William Landay
15. Girls of Glass: Brianna Labuskes
16. Killers of the Flower Moon: David Grann (NF)
17. The Banker’s Wife: Cristina Alger
18. The Perfect Mother: Aimee Molloy
19. One Day We’ll All Be Dead And None Of This Will Matter: Scaachi Koul
20. The Magnolia Inn: Carolyn Brown
21. The Luckiest Girl Alive: Jessica Knoll
22. Under the Tuscan Sun: Frances Mayes (NF)
My *absolute favorites* from this quarter were War Brides, My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry, Killers of the Flower Moon, Skeletons at the Feast, Defending Jacob, One Day We’ll All Be Dead And None Of This Will Matter and Under the Tuscan Sun.
War Brides: Based on stories of women who were left behind in British villages during WWII to take care of the children, homes & provide wartime efforts. It follows a group of women from all over the social spectrum who are thrown together in a village & then reunited 50+ years later. It was a little long but absolutely worth it!! I completely fell in love with all the characters & thought that the history woven into it was perfect.
My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry: Told from the point of view of a little girl who navigates her building and it’s inhabitants after the loss of her grandmother. The imagery, twists & imagination that the author poured into this story are so amazing. I’ve never read a book like this before that has made me want to keep reading it forever (unless its Harry Potter). The
author also wrote A Man Named Ove (which is on my list!!).
Killers of the Flower Moon: I’ve been on a waitlist for MONTHS for this book and it was completely worth the wait. It’s a non-fiction book about the Osage Indians and how they shaped the birth of the FBI. I’d never heard of the Osage murders and I honestly had no idea how the FBI was created. This book is phenomenally researched and written, and he also wrote a book called The Lost City of Z which is a great movie on Amazon (this book is also on my list!).
Skeletons at the Feast: Another WWII book told primarily from the point of view of a German girl who’s family is evacuated with a British POW during the end of WWII. It’s also narrated by a Jewish prison in a concentration camp and a Jewish man who escapes the trains & impersonates soldiers. I could NOT stop reading this one – I’d never read a book about this time period that wasn’t told from the POV of a German protagonist.
Defending Jacob: TWISTY. The end of this book blew me away and I just sat there when it was done. Like, WOAH. Told from the point of view of a DA father whose teenage son is convicted of murder. I honestly couldn’t believe the end of this book and I’m *still* thinking about it!!
One Day We’ll All Be Dead And None Of This Will Matter: This was SO good. It touches on the dynamics of growing up as a first generation Indian child in Canada & the stories of traveling to India as a child. She talks about the thinly veiled racism growing up in Canada & the intergenerational expectations put on her by her parents as well as the struggles of finding herself with one foot in each country.
Under the Tuscan Sun: One of my very favorite books of all time (if you couldn’t tell by the photo ). A memoir about buying an old Italian villa in Tuscany and the perils of renovation and the delights of the culture. It will leave you hungry and craving a lazy, long afternoon under the linden trees with fresh bread and homemade olive oil.
I’m currently working on books 23-26 (I told you, more than one at a time!), & can’t wait for the next quarter’s report!! Do you have any recommendations for me? Leave them in the comments!!