Summer Reads | The Life of K: Summer Reads

Monday, September 19, 2016

Summer Reads

My goodreads account tells me I'm not quite on track to make it to 50 books read this year. If I have another month like August I will be though! I was able to get through a bunch of books while at the cottage. I've definitely slowed back down with school starting up and birthday season, but I just started a teen vampire series so we'll see!

What have you been reading?


25. The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan


Grace Winter, 22, is both a newlywed and a widow. She is also on trial for her life.

In the summer of 1914, the elegant ocean liner carrying her and her husband Henry across the Atlantic suffers a mysterious explosion. Setting aside his own safety, Henry secures Grace a place in a lifeboat, which the survivors quickly realize is over capacity. For any to live, some must die.

As the castaways battle the elements, and each other, Grace recollects the unorthodox way she and Henry met, and the new life of privilege she thought she'd found. Will she pay any price to keep it?

What I Thought

I found this book captivating. The realities of being on a lifeboat are harsh and I'm not sure I have what it takes to survive. I find myself, months later, still thinking about this story.

26. The Enchanted


"This is an enchanted place. Others don't see it, but I do."

The enchanted place is an ancient stone prison, viewed through the eyes of a death row inmate who finds escape in his books and in re-imagining life around him, weaving a fantastical story of the people he observes and the world he inhabits. Fearful and reclusive, he senses what others cannot. Though bars confine him every minute of every day, he marries magical visions of golden horses running beneath the prison, heat flowing like molten metal from their backs, with the devastating violence of prison life.

Two outsiders venture here: a fallen priest, and the Lady, an investigator who searches for buried information from prisoners' pasts that can save those soon-to-be-executed. Digging into the background of a killer named York, she uncovers wrenching truths that challenge familiar notions of victim and criminal, innocence and guilt, honor and corruption-ultimately revealing shocking secrets of her own.

What I Thought

This was a book I didn't really get in to. I didn't like the whimsical aspects and couldn't really get into the characters. Months later and I can hardly remember the story. I wouldn't recommend this one.

27. The Book of Business Awesome


UnAwesome is UnAcceptable."The Book of Business Awesome" is designed as two short books put together--one read from the front and the other read from the back when flipped over. Covering key business concepts related to marketing, branding, human resources, public relations, social media, and customer service, "The Book of Business Awesome" includes case studies of successful businesses that gained exposure through being awesome and effective. This book provides actionable tools enabling readers to apply the concepts immediately to their own businesses. The flip side of the book, "The Book of Business UnAwesome," shares the train-wreck stories of unsuccessful businesses and showcases what not to do.Key concepts include the power of peripheral referrals and how to create content for your "third circle"Explains how to re-recruiting your employees and re-court your customers

Ensure that your business remains awesome, instead of unawesome, and apply these awesomely effective strategies to your business today.

What I Thought

I really liked the info in this business book and how it was presented in quick and easy to read chapters. It was almost like a collection of blog posts, but was cohesive and flowed well. Lots of great information on what to do and what not to do in business. I've passed it on to a member of a business group I'm part of so hopefully it's off teaching someone else something new about business.
*I was sent this book to review.

28. The 100 by Kass Morgan


No one has set foot on Earth in centuries -- until now.

Ever since a devastating nuclear war, humanity has lived on spaceships far above Earth's radioactive surface. Now, one hundred juvenile delinquents -- considered expendable by society -- are being sent on a dangerous mission: to recolonize the planet. It could be their second chance at life...or it could be a suicide mission.

Clarke was arrested for treason, though she's haunted by the memory of what she really did. Wells, the chancellor's son, came to Earth for the girl he loves -- but will she ever forgive him? Reckless Bellamy fought his way onto the transport pod to protect his sister, the other half of the only pair of siblings in the universe. And Glass managed to escape back onto the ship, only to find that life there is just as dangerous as she feared it would be on Earth.

Confronted with a savage land and haunted by secrets from their pasts, the hundred must fight to survive. They were never meant to be heroes, but they may be mankind's last hope.

What I Thought

I really liked the show The 100 (it's on Netflix!) and was pretty sure I'd like the books too. The first book is a lot like the show with a couple glaring differences. The show goes in a few different directions and I found myself able to picture all the characters but enjoyed the story lines the book had more than the show.

29. The 100 Day 21 by Kass Morgan


It's been 21 days since the hundred landed on Earth. They're the only humans to set foot on the planet in centuries...or so they thought. Facing an unknown enemy, Wells attempts to keep the group together. Clarke strikes out for Mount Weather, in search of other Colonists, while Bellamy is determined to rescue his sister, no matter the cost. And back on the ship, Glass faces an unthinkable choice between the love of her life and life itself.
In this pulse-pounding sequel to Kass Morgan's The 100, secrets are revealed, beliefs are challenged, and relationships are tested. And the hundred will struggle to survive the only way they can -- together.

What I Thought

The second book in The 100 series was a bit slower than the first, but still a good read.

30. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling


It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

What I Thought

This was a really quick read but it took me a while to get used to the fact that it's a play. I would have preferred if Rowling had taken the concept and fleshed out a book instead of slapping her name on the play and publishing it.

31. The Choices We Make by Karma Brown


Hannah and Kate became friends in the fifth grade, when Hannah hit a boy for looking up Kate's skirt with a mirror. While they've been close as sisters ever since, Hannah can't help but feel envious of the little family Kate and her husband, David, have created—complete with two perfect little girls. 

She and Ben have been trying for years to have a baby, so when they receive the news that she will likely never get pregnant, Hannah's heartbreak is overwhelming. But just as they begin to tentatively explore the other options, it's Kate's turn to do the rescuing. Not only does she offer to be Hannah's surrogate, but Kate is willing to use her own eggs to do so. 

Full of renewed hope, excitement and gratitude, these two families embark on an incredible journey toward parenthood…until a devastating tragedy puts everything these women have worked toward at risk of falling apart. Poignant and refreshingly honest, The Choices We Make is a powerful tale of two mothers, one incredible friendship and the risks we take to make our dreams come true.

What I Thought

A book about surrogacy.. I have read surrogacy stories before and was a bit bored until the tragedy struck. It's a heart-wrenching tale and well written, though if you don't care for stories about pregnancy or surrogacy I could see you not enjoying this book.

32. From This Moment On by Shania Twain


The world may know Shania Twain as many things: a music legend, a mother, and recently, a fixture in the news for her painful, public divorce and subsequent marriage to a cherished friend. But in this extraordinary autobiography, Shania reveals that she is so much more. She is Eilleen Twain, one of five children born into poverty in rural Canada, where her family often didn’t have enough food to send her to school with lunch. She’s the teenage girl who helped her mother and young siblings escape to a battered woman’s shelter to put an end to the domestic violence in her family home. And she’s the courageous twenty-two-year-old who sacrificed to keep her younger siblings together after her parents were tragically killed in a car accident.

Shania Twain’s life has evolved from a series of pivotal moments, and in unflinching, heartbreaking prose, Shania spares no details as she takes us through the events that have made her who she is. She recounts her difficult childhood, her parents’ sudden death and its painful aftermath, her dramatic rise to stardom, her devastating betrayal by a trusted friend, and her joyful marriage to the love of her life. From these moments, she offers profound, moving insights into families, personal tragedies, making sense of one’s life, and the process of healing. Shania Twain is a singular, remarkable woman who has faced enormous odds and downfalls, and her extraordinary story will provide wisdom, inspiration, and hope for almost anyone.

What I Thought

It's clear that Shania Twain is an interesting woman. She's had some crazy things happen to her and it was nice reading about her life from her instead of what you'd read in the press. I think she could have used an editor that toned things down a bit.. so many exclamation points!! Interesting all the same.

33.  The 100 Homecoming by Kass Morgan (The 100 #3)


Weeks after landing on Earth, the Hundred have managed to create a sense of order amidst their wild, chaotic surroundings. But their delicate balance comes crashing down with the arrival of new dropships from space.

These new arrivals are the lucky ones—back on the Colony, the oxygen is almost gone—but after making it safely to Earth, Glass’s luck seems to be running out. Clarke leads a rescue party to the crash site, ready to treat the wounded, but she can’t stop thinking about her parents, who may still be alive. Meanwhile, Wells struggles to maintain his authority despite the presence of the Vice Chancellor and his armed guards, and Bellamy must decide whether to face or flee the crimes he thought he’d left behind.

It’s time for the Hundred to come together and fight for the freedom they’ve found on Earth, or risk losing everything—and everyone—they love.

What I Thought

The third book in The 100 series was much more fulfilling (and less sci-fi) than the show and I really enjoyed the trilogy.

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