Blogging like it's 2006

Review of my first five-ish books from 2023

Five-ish because only three were actually finished – and even one of those was iffy. Three were not finished, but one was barely started so I’m not counting it in my five. ๐Ÿ™‚

(FYI, I gave this post a re-read and it is awkward and mushily written – my apologies. But like I say in my sidebar, I don’t really edit, I don’t have the extra brain power yet. Also note, this post contains affiliate links.)

Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

What can I say about this one? SO MANY WORDS, LOL. I read this at the bidding of my daughter who loves it. It is her current favorite book and she wanted to talk to someone about it. I was probably not the best choice. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I liked the first hundred pages, and the last chapter. The rest was just too much for my over-sensitive brain – this was on audiobook so it just turned into so much babbling in my ear. If you have read it you might understand even if you liked it. I didn’t *dislike* it, I just couldn’t deal with it.

Boundary Boss by Terri Cole

A typical book on boundaries, but I did come away with a few new to me ideas, like the fact that I was crossing my OWN boundary if I did things like having a drink at a party after I told myself I wouldn’t. It didn’t veer TOO much into the typical feel-good “just do whatever the heck you want, you are the one that matters the most” territory, which is good.

Oh William by Elizabeth Strout

I’m not sure I like her writing style which is funny because I write here just like her, with dashes and constantly interrupting herself to say something. Case in point –

“The girls both cooked, and the four of us sat in the kitchen — Estelle had left behind the round kitchen table — and William had two glasses of red wine, which he almost never had — I mean William almost never drank is what I mean.”

It’s not all like this but often enough. My biggest beef is that this character is a famous writer. Hmmmm. Despite this not being at all believable to me, I couldn’t seem to stop picking it up. I didn’t appreciate most of the handling of (SPOILER ALERT) finding a “surprising” relative in an ancestry search, but that could just be my personal beef having been a mystery person myself and finding several surprises in addition. Other than this, there is not much real plot however, it is more a character driven book.

So, two stars for writing style, two stars for a thin and annoying handling of my hot button topic, and five stars for the fact that I kept coming back to it and read it in two days.

Three books I did not finish – and I apologize for the thinness of these reviews but I ditched them a week and a half ago and the first two were so unmemorable I forgot the specifics of why I didn’t like them ๐Ÿ˜€

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid

I gave this one a fair chance, but by about 6 hours in I didn’t want to waste any more time. If I don’t care about any of the characters after six hours, there’s a problem.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

I think I only gave this one or two hours (audiobook) before bailing. Eleanor’s brand of awkwardness/quirkiness did not make any sense to me, and I know a lot of quirky people, LOL. Heck I am one of them. Her character did not feel at all believable to me, and since the book seemed to be all Eleanor all the time, I bailed.

You Who? Why You Matter and How to Deal With It by Rachel Jankovic

I thought this was going to be a good one. I wanted a book that was Christian based and didn’t go easy on me – most books on developing “self” take one of two tracks: either “anything goes, do what makes you happy” (most secular books) or “do ONLY what makes you holy and completely die to self no matter how much it harms you” (most of the Catholic books I have read). This seemed to be different at first. However I got halfway through the book and I realized that I disagreed theologically with way too much of the book, as well being put off by the jumps in logic she was taking. If it’s not logical, it’s not truth, so…I shelved it.


  1. Melissa Wiley

    It’s so good to see you blogging again! I really enjoyed these book notes. The point about crossing one’s OWN boundaries is really striking. I’ll be contemplating that…

    • Amy

      So good to see you here! The “own boundaries” idea was an epiphany to me too. Apparently other people aren’t the only ones crossing my boundaries, ๐Ÿ˜‰ .

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