2019 Reads, part one

Hello and welcome!

I pretty much haven’t touched my website since I moved to Atlanta a year and a half ago, because I was mainly using it as a portfolio site during my job hunt. But! I’m back! It has this nifty blog functionality, which I was attempting to use to document my travels, but if you check backwards, you’ll see the last update is from my time living and working in Florida, which was 2016 😂

I wanted to compile the list of what I’ve read so far in 2019 and put it in one convenient place, mostly because I have too many thoughts for Instagram stories. I love sharing book recommendations, and this will be a helpful way for me to remember what exactly it was I loved about each of these books, and therefore why they’d be good recommendations!

Here is what I have read so far in 2019 (January, February, and March), with a few notes.

  • Also! Asterisks means I listened to the audiobook, which was sometimes better/worse/neutral.

  • Also also! As an FYI, I borrow all of my books from the library, unless otherwise noted. If I actually purchase a book it’s an extra big deal because that means I anticipate reading it again.

  • And as a final note, these are listed in the order I read them, not in any sort of ranking.

Here we go!

Nonfiction Reads:

  • Almost Everything - Love me some Anne Lamott

  • The Art of Gathering - This book was SO good! It is about creating meaningful gatherings (as the title says, lolz). It was a good mix of science, personal experience, and usable tips. There were so many details that I had never considered, and it is definitely a book I want to own and re-read.

  • Let’s Pretend This Never Happened - A funny memoir, not necessarily exceptionally good or bad in my opinion

  • The 12 Week Year - Interesting productivity technique with a few takeaways for me, but I didn’t go all in and adopt the system. Quick and easy read if you’re looking for some ideas, but not necessarily all “new to me” information.

  • Deep Work - I like Cal Newport’s thorough style. Definitely a lot of research and some solid takeaways.

  • Bad Feminist - My first Roxane Gay! A collection of essays. Plenty of pop culture ties, which I appreciate. Some essays spoke to me more than others, but that is to be expected. Looking forward to reading more of her work.

  • You are a Badass* - ONE OF MY FAVE BOOKS. I own it and probably read it once a year? This time around I listened to the audiobook, which I really enjoy because it is narrated by the author. It gets a little ~woo woo~ as far as self-help goes, but what I appreciate about it is how the Jen Sincero knows and embraces that. She talks about how she avoided the “self help” genre forever, and then it changed her life, so now she’s out here trying to help others change theirs! Also she’s hilarious.

  • The Culture Code - This book is all about the culture of groups and how you can set up and support groups for success. I liked this a lot and I think if you’re a manager or someone who works in a lot of groups, you would find it helpful.

  • Girl Stop Apologizing - Rachel Hollis of “Girl, Wash Your Face” fame’s second book. It’s set up as an action plan-slash-memoir, and while a lot of the concepts weren’t revolutionary to me, it was very affirming and supportive. I think I prefered “Girl, Wash Your Face” a little more, but I enjoyed them both!

  • Eight Dates - COUPLES, GET THIS BOOK! Another one that I plan on purchasing, and probably gifting at every wedding from here on out. This is actually pretty much what the title says… background information and then conversation starters for eight dates, each encompassing a different topic: trust and commitment, addressing conflict, sex and intimacy, work and money, family, fun and adventure, growth and spirituality, and dreams. It’s written in a very informative, approachable way, and helps set you up for successful conversations with your partner.


  • Dumplin’* - Now a Netflix movie! Lots of Dolly Parton references! Young romance! Personal growth! What’s not to love? I think I like the book more than the movie because you get a little more depth and also there are characters in this book that aren’t included in the movie, yet are integral parts of the sequel book. But both the film and the book are just delightful!

  • To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before - Also a Netflix movie!! If you don’t know the premise of this one yet, just Google it. So cute and I am so looking forward to reading the sequel, which I actually just picked up at the library yesterday!! Woohoo!

  • Puddin’* - The sorta-sequel to Dumplin’. It’s the same characters and the same universe, but a totally different storyline, which I love! And dare I say I like this storyline better than the original? Still about empowerment and romance and female friendship, but a different kind of conflict and character growth.

  • The Wedding Date - I read the companion/sequel to this one back in the fall (called The Proposal) and was excited to finally read the first one. Romance and some light drama and stubborn-but-loveable characters and it’s all set in California so something about it just has a beachy vibe!

  • Next Year in Havana* - Oooooh I LOVED this one. I listened to ~70% on audiobook and then my hold at the library came in and I read the rest. It was a Reese Witherspoon book club pick, so that’s how you know it’s good! Written from the dual perspective of a grandmother and granddaughter, from current day and the late 1950s, both taking place in Havana. History and family and love.

  • From Twinkle, With Love - I read this in a day when I was home visiting my parents for the weekend! Cute YA novel, the second one I have read from this author. The protagonist is a little selfish and dramatic, but hey, she’s a teenager, so that is to be expected. Happy teens find happy romance, yay!

  • The Husband’s Secret* - This is my second Liane Mortiary novel, after reading Big Little Lies. I’ll be honest that it took me a while to finish because somewhere in the middle I got bored and put it down for a while. BUT, in the end it was absolutely worth finishing, and I had no idea how she was going to wrap it all up, but she did it and managed to surprise me with a twist along the way. Excited to dive into Nine Perfect Strangers by her next.

There ya go! I hope you enjoyed my lil’ review!