Whenever someone asks me what genre of books I typically read, I turn into a real life version of that shrugging girl emoji. You know the one.
It’s the same reaction I give when someone asks me what kind of music I listen to.
I’m all over the place.
Life’s too short to listen to just one style of music and the same goes for books.
I have wayyyy too many interests to stay in one lane. Horror? Yes please. Psychology? Sign me up. Non-fiction about badass female leaders who take no shit? YAAAAS, QUEEN.
At one point this past Fall, I was struggling with shoulder pain. I was getting frustrated that nothing seemed to be helping. Eventually, my chiropractor saw the 4 books in my purse and gently suggested I invest in a Kindle (HA! Never).
Alright, I present to you 5 of my favorite reads from 2017. Some new, some old (some VERY old), but all of which made an impact in my life over the past year.
Shout out to my fellow book-lover/friend, Steve, who recommended this one to me over the Summer. I only read it this past month but I quickly fell in love with the characters and became obsessed with 8-year old Edgar, a curious but fascinating outcast.
Lodato’s magical ability to bring characters to life had me grieving a loss at one moment then feeling nostalgic for the Pine Barrens of New Jersey in the next.
This book had been on my list for years but I only picked it up last January and I couldn’t have had better (accidental) timing. I honestly didn’t even know what it was about going into it, but quickly became absolutely infatuated by the story line.
After reading (absorbing!) this novel, I was a changed person. It’s one of those books that you read and continuously have to put down for a second just to think about what was written. For me, the quote that stuck the most was about life and death. I had just recently lost one of my favorite people on the planet and was struggling with it. But, after reading this, my perspective shifted:
“When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in bad condition in that particular moment, but that the same person is just fine in plenty of other moments. Now, when I myself hear that somebody is dead, I simply shrug and say what the Tralfamadorians say about dead people, which is “So it goes.””
Chloe Caldwell just may be my spirit animal. I devoured her book in a day on the dock this past Summer and instantly sent her a fan-girl message on Instagram, which she quickly responded to… Obviously that makes us best friends now.
Her honesty in being a bit of a f*ck-up was incredibly refreshing and something I could (unfortunately) relate to. From shitty jobs to messed up relationships, hearing her story makes you feel like 1) You’re not alone and 2) Being 27 doesn’t necessarily guarantee adulthood. Phew.
Kara (aka California), you’re an angel for introducing Ryan Holiday into my life. I’m sure you didn’t know I would become COMPLETELY obsessed with him when you sent me the link to his website. Holy.
The Obstacle Is The Way changed how I thought about my path in life. This was my first experience with learning about stoicism, which opened up a whole new world for me. Reading Holiday’s 2016 book lead me into not only reading his other work, but diving into Marcus Aurelius’ writing as well.
Everyone needs to read this book.
I only wish I could put into words the brilliance of this masterpiece. Apologies to everyone I was around who I’m sure I annoyed while becoming entrancingly sucked into the world of talking crabs, skinless zombies, and people-eating giants. I’m not one to re-read books but give me a few years to forget some of the details and I’ll revisit this one for SURE.
Do yourself a favor and go buy this beautiful (inside AND out!) book.
You can thank me later.
I’m feeling bad for the books I left out that I read this year but didn’t make it in the top 5 (books have feelings too!) so here’s a quick ‘n dirty list of some other goodies I enjoyed in 2017:
It by Stephen King
Emma In The Night by Wendy Walker
The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate by Peter Wohlleben
Wanderlust: A Modern Yogi’s Guide to Discovering Your Best Self by Jeff Krasno
Material Girl, Mystical World by Ruby Warrington
Skin & Earth Series by LIGHTS
The Mountain Story by Lori Lansens
Growth Hacker Marketing by Ryan Holiday
In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware
The Beach by Alex Garland
The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well by Meik Wiking
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius