9 books I’ll be reading this summer

Since I’ve started working in the children’s department of a library, summer reading is just about all that I can think about.

summer readingOf course, most of those thoughts are centered around children’s books and programming, so I thought it’d be a nice idea to give myself a break from the endless piles of picture books and focus on some picture-less books that are actually written for adults. Don’t get me wrong, I love children’s lit, but there are only so many repetitive rhymes and cartoonish illustrations that one can look at.

Being surrounded by all kinds of books has made my to-read list grow longer and longer every day, yet I’ve been struggling to give myself actual time during the day to chip away at that list.

If you follow me on Goodreads, you may notice that I’ve only been adding books to my Currently Reading section but not completing them for the past few weeks… whoops.

So, I thought it’d be a fun idea to get together a list of books I’ll be reading during the upcoming summer months, and that hopefully it can motivate me to cross them off my list. Follow me on Instagram, as I’ll be posting more updates on my progress there!

my summer reading list

summer reading list

(all of the descriptions come from Goodreads, aka my fave place to find new books and keep track of what I’m reading)

A Man Called Ove by Frederik Backman

This is the May pick for my Air Force spouses book club, so I better get this one off my to-read list!!

a man called ove“Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon, the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents’ association to their very foundations.”

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

I’m cheating a bit by adding this to my list because I’m halfway through it already, but MY GOODNESS, this is a fantastic book.the hate u give

“Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.”

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

exit west“In a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet—sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair and are soon cloistered in a premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As the violence escalates, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through.”

Greenglass House by Kate Milford

This is a middle grade novel that I’m SO excited to read. My friend Morgan saw it on my Goodreads shelf and got it for me for my birthday!

greenglass houseIt’s wintertime at Greenglass House. The creaky smuggler’s inn is always quiet during this season, and twelve-year-old Milo, the innkeepers’ adopted son, plans to spend his holidays relaxing. But on the first icy night of vacation, out of nowhere, the guest bell rings. Then rings again. And again. Soon Milo’s home is bursting with odd, secretive guests, each one bearing a strange story that is somehow connected to the rambling old house. As objects go missing and tempers flare, Milo and Meddy, the cook’s daughter, must decipher clues and untangle the web of deepening mysteries to discover the truth about Greenglass House-and themselves.”

March: Book One by John Lewis

march book oneTechnically, this is a graphic novel, but hey, it still counts to me!

“March is a vivid first-hand account of John Lewis’ lifelong struggle for civil and human rights, meditating in the modern age on the distance traveled since the days of Jim Crow and segregation. Rooted in Lewis’ personal story, it also reflects on the highs and lows of the broader civil rights movement.”

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

This is one of those classic books that I can’t believe I haven’t read yet. Everyone is talking about it again since the Hulu series came out in April! handmaid's tale

“Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States and is now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men in its population.”

No One Can Pronounce My Name by Rakesh Satyal

no one can pronounce my name“A humorous and tender multi-generational novel about immigrants and outsiders – No One Can Pronounce My Name is a distinctive, funny, and insightful look into the lives of people who must reconcile the strictures of their culture and traditions with their own dreams and desires.”

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert

big magic“Balancing between soulful spirituality and cheerful pragmatism, Gilbert encourages us to uncover the “strange jewels” that are hidden within each of us. Whether we are looking to write a book, make art, find new ways to address challenges in our work,  embark on a dream long deferred, or simply infuse our everyday lives with more mindfulness and passion, Big Magic cracks open a world of wonder and joy.”

chimamanda ngozi adichieDear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

“A few years ago, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie received a letter from a dear friend from childhood, asking her how to raise her baby girl as a feminist. Dear Ijeawele is Adichie’s letter of response.”


Are any of these books on your list? Have you read any of my picks? Let me know what you think of my list in the comments below! I am also always open to more book suggestions 😉

Thanks for reading!

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Why you need to rent camera gear before you buy

I’m an amateur photographer right now, but more of my friends lately have been asking me to take photos for them – which I’m LOVING!

For a while I’ve felt that my camera bag is missing something, but I couldn’t figure it out. There are about a million + one options of cameras and lenses out there, and for someone who barely knows how to shoot in manual mode, the choices can be a little overwhelming. Continue reading “Why you need to rent camera gear before you buy”

Dayton Coffee Crawl: A visit to Ghostlight Coffee

Ah, Ghostlight. You were the first coffee shop I visited in Dayton, the first one I found in my Google search, my first Dayton coffee love. Thus, I think it makes sense that it’s the first stop on my Dayton Coffee Crawl!

Let’s start with the basics…

Continue reading “Dayton Coffee Crawl: A visit to Ghostlight Coffee”

Dayton Coffee Crawl

I don’t think it really needs to be said, but I love coffee.

The first thing I do when I go to a new place is to search for a coffee shop to try out – & the second is to try to find a bookstore, so I think my priorities are set in the right places.

When I found out we were moving to Dayton, I was so concerned that for some reason, they wouldn’t know how to do good coffee in this random spot in Ohio. (I was spoiled by my east coast upbringing, I think) But after doing a quick Google search, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised!

Once we arrived in Dayton, we made pretty quick work of checking a few coffee shops I found off of my list. Somehow, though, I still haven’t managed to get to them all! Now that we’ve been here for over a year, I thought it would only be appropriate to do a series of posts that I’m going to call the Dayton Coffee Crawl – visits to every single local coffee shop in the area, with an overview and my thoughts on each one. Traditionally, “coffee crawls” are single-day tours of a number of coffee shops in an area, resulting in some SUPER CAFFEINATED people. But I don’t have the time for that and goodness knows my heart can’t handle too many shots of espresso in one day!! It’ll be a slow crawl.

Continue reading “Dayton Coffee Crawl”

Tea time

“Tea is always a good idea.” – some very very intelligent person

I know I talk big coffee game sometimes, but I’m a tea drinker at heart and always have been. I love all kinds of tea, especially herbal teas, and have been building my tea collection for a while – it just keeps growing and growing, no matter how much tea I drink! And don’t get me started on my mug collection…

tea-4

Different teas carry with them different memories for me. Mandarin Orange Spice by Celestial Seasonings instantly brings me back to my childhood and drinking tea at the dining room table with my mom, who’s a big tea drinker. She has a dedicated tea drawer that is always stocked. The smell of certain rooibos and chai teas make me think of her, as those are her favorites. A nice English breakfast tea transports me to crisp summer mornings in London with my family when we traveled there for a few days back in 2012. Yogi’s Throat Comfort tea reminds me of college days when I was sick and would’ve rather been sleeping but had to go to class – specific, I know!

I thought it was only right to go through my tea collection that I have here and pick out a few of my favorites to share with y’all. Some of these are classics that I always have lying around, and some are new & fun discoveries. {disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links}

tea-5

Continue reading “Tea time”

August favorites

Another month has come and gone! August was a busy month of anniversaries, family visits, lots of hours spent at work, and seemingly endless rain. It’s been a month full of pushing back items on my to-do list for far too long – including blog posts like this. I’m just barely making it in time to talk about what I’ve been loving in August! Surprise surprise, a lot of it is food or entertainment…

Continue reading “August favorites”

July favorites

July is going by so quickly! Is it just me or has time been moving much faster than it used to? Maybe that’s a “symptom” of getting older – not that 23 is old!!

July has started as a month full of traveling, relaxing, adventuring, cats, and days that feel way to short to be able to fit everything in! Still, I managed to pick out a few of my favorite things, which is one of those bloggery things I’ve been meaning to try out. So though the month is not yet over, here are a few of my faves so far!

 

New camera lens

For my birthday, Ben got me a Nikkor 50mm lens that I’ve been eyeing ever since I got my camera. As a fixed lens, it’s been challenging me to take more creative pictures, and I’m so happy to have something new to play around with!

CATS!!!! 

As you may have seen in my earlier post, we adopted our second cat, Samson, at the beginning of May. We are loving our little household additions – they provide lots of entertainment, a little stress, and lots of cuddles. Ugh, I’m becoming one of those people who talks about their pets at any chance they can… I don’t hate it.

Continue reading “July favorites”