Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What I read in June (2012)

I did not do this intentionally, but June was clearly a month of nonfiction! I only read two novels this month. I gave two of these books five-star reviews on Goodreads.com. Can you guess which ones?

For full reviews of these books, click on the title to go to Marie's Book Garden.

The Family Fang, by Kevin Wilson

It was a clever novel (Wilson was mentored by Ann Patchett), but just not my cup of tea.

I found this book to be very sad...it was described as similar to "Little Miss Sunshine" (which I loved) or "The Royal Tenenbaums," which is why I read it. Now I realize it's several days I will never get back

Wonder, by R.J. Palacio

Best fiction of the month!

My middle-grade-writer husband read this amazing debut middle-grade novel last week, and he cried and cried and cried.

August (Auggie) had a series of birth defects that resulted in a face that is mashed up and unlike any other. The book starts with Auggie saying "I know I'm not an ordinary ten-year-old kid...I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse."

Auggie has been homeschooled for the first ten years of his life because of all the surgeries he had to endure. (Like Auggie, I also had to have jaw surgery and an implant in my chin.) Finally, as he is entering fifth grade, his parents decide to send him to school. And so begins the story. We hear the story from Auggie's perspective, as well as from his older sister Via and a few of his friends. I loved this story of a boy who finds his place in the world, helped along by people who show him kindness.


Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, by Laura Hillenbrand

Best nonfiction of the month!
My sister Nadine and Mike both read Unbroken for their respective book groups and loved it. I was looking forward to diving in, and it did not disappoint.

Go read this book!! It will make you look at your life in new ways and stop you from taking things for granted.
Cinderella Ate My Daughter, by Peggy Orenstein
Similar to The Mama Boy's Myth, this is an important book about what we are exposing our girls to and the risks they face by being pressured to be princesses instead of heroes. Yes, they all grow out of the princess phase, but what fallout remains as they move into adolescence?

My Monastery Is a Minivan, by Denise Roy
I really enjoyed this book and it gave me a lot to think about...good reminders of finding the sacred in everyday life, not taking things for granted, and remembering that prayer and meditation comes in many forms.

The 100 Thing Challenge, by Dave Bruno

In the "Don't bother" category.


  1. Marie, I love this feature on your blog. You always have such great recommendations. I am definitely going to check out Wonder!