We are well into month two of shelter in place/quarantine/stay home stay, healthy/whatever you want to call it. Everyone is coping in their own ways; many people are tackling projects they have always wanted to do, people are baking bread, and at the same time Netflix has never been more popular. I definitely watch a bit of TV (mostly The Office), but I’ve also tried to spend a lot of time reading. I wouldn’t say I’m reading more than ever (I do have a baby), but I am trying to be diligent about always having a few books going, reading every day, and looking for my next great book!
Five Faves 4-24-20 focuses on books and literature-adjacent products.
I had been using Overdrive for about five years and it was…fine. It got the job done. But Libby is SO much nicer. The interface is friendlier and more intuitive, which has made my online library experience a lot better over the last month. I especially find it to be a better platform for audiobooks. Confusingly, I think Libby is owned by Overdrive.
Beartown, by Fredrik Backman
I struggle to write about why I think novels are good. Probably because I can’t quite figure out what I consistently like (e.g., character development, suspense, time-jumping, etc.). Anyway, this was just a good story about a small town with a hockey team. It wasn’t a mystery, but I kept trying to figure out how it would end. I was pleasantly surprised to find out I was wrong. It didn’t feel long, but I am very glad I listened to it as opposed to reading it (audiobooks are my preferred method for fiction).
According to their website, “Bookshop is an online bookstore with a mission to financially support independent bookstores and give back to the book community.” From what I’ve read, Bookshop basically combines independent bookstores to offer a selection that rivals Amazon’s. Importantly, they have some sort of affiliate program (which is one reason Amazon is linked to on EVERY blog imaginable). They launched right before the coronavirus pandemic, but the time seems ripe to provide independent bookstores a little boost. I recommend reading this article to learn more.
The Indifferent Stars Above, by Daniel James Brown
The subtitle of the book is “The Harrowing Saga of a Donner Party Bride” so, no, this was not a happy read. The beginning of the book reminded me of everyone’s favorite childhood game, The Oregon Trail. It quickly, however, devolved into madness and subsequently (not surprisingly) cannibalism. As boring and lonely as quarantine is, I would rather be stuck in my house than trekking across America in a wagon. Nothing about living in the 1800s sounds fun.
This last one is a little bit of a cheat, because I’m referring to the movie! I heard great things about Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of the famous novel and had wanted to see it since its release. My brother (Kyle) even said it was his favorite movie of 2019! I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I have never actually read Little Women, but I did enjoy the movie.
Please share any book recommendations with me!
Recent quarantine five faves here and here.
And of course, the little nugget that keeps me from reading even more.