My Favorite Books of 2019 (Part 1)

Happy Fourth of July to all my U.S.A. readers!

We’re well past this year’s halfway mark, and with that, I’m happy to announce that I’m actually ahead of my Goodreads Reading Challenge of reading fifty books in 2019. This time last year I was flailing around, trying to catch up with my annual reading goal by hosting a personal Post-Mid Year Freak out Read-a-thon. It seems that the same strategy I usually employ to catch up on my reading goal—picking shorter books and reading contemporary fluff—helped put me ahead of schedule. Ultimately though, it was the huge chunks of time I’ve had being in the waiting since I graduated combined with a streak of great book recommendations that allowed me to stay on top of the challenge.

It’s time to pay it forward by highlighting the best of the great book recommendations that I read. Here are my favorite books of 2019 (so far): 

Continue reading “My Favorite Books of 2019 (Part 1)”

Book Review: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel // an unsettling reflection on civilization

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Title: Station Eleven

Author: Emily St. John Mandel

Published: September 9, 2014

Pages: 336

Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopia

Amazon / Barnes & Nobles / Goodreads

Goodreads Description:An audacious, darkly glittering novel set in the eerie days of civilization’s collapse, Station Eleven tells the spellbinding story of a Hollywood star, his would-be savior, and a nomadic group of actors roaming the scattered outposts of the Great Lakes region, risking everything for art and humanity.

One snowy night a famous Hollywood actor slumps over and dies onstage during a production of King Lear. Hours later, the world as we know it begins to dissolve. Moving back and forth in time—from the actor’s early days as a film star to fifteen years in the future, when a theater troupe known as the Traveling Symphony roams the wasteland of what remains—this suspenseful, elegiac, spellbinding novel charts the strange twists of fate that connect five people: the actor, the man who tried to save him, the actor’s first wife, his oldest friend, and a young actress with the Traveling Symphony, caught in the crosshairs of a dangerous self-proclaimed prophet.

Sometimes terrifying, sometimes tender, Station Eleven tells a story about the relationships that sustain us, the ephemeral nature of fame, and the beauty of the world as we know it.

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After putting this book on the back-burner for over two years, it has officially made it to my all-time favorites list.

First off, it was not what I was expecting at all. I committed the age-old crime of judging Station Eleven by its cover and, based off the (truly minimal) stars on the front, I assumed the story would take place in space. That, plus the fact that Station Eleven sounded like a space station (which I technically wasn’t wrong to believe), the book gave me the impression of being a space opera. While that wasn’t the case, I was pleasantly surprised that the book was so much better than my initial estimation of it.

I know some of you are thinking, “But, the book is clearly not about space in the synopsis,” and, I agree. Buuuut, 𝘐 𝘢𝘭𝘴𝘰 𝘥𝘪𝘥𝘯’𝘵 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘺 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘴𝘺𝘯𝘰𝘱𝘴𝘪𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘫𝘶𝘴𝘵 𝘬𝘯𝘦𝘸 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘐 𝘸𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘥 𝘵𝘰 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘣𝘰𝘰𝘬 𝘣𝘦𝘤𝘢𝘶𝘴𝘦 𝘰𝘧 𝘢𝘭𝘭 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘩𝘺𝘱𝘦 𝘢𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘯𝘥 𝘪𝘵 𝘴𝘰 𝘴𝘩𝘩𝘩𝘩𝘩. We’ve already established that I’m a sheep.
Continue reading “Book Review: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel // an unsettling reflection on civilization”