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April and May 2019 Reads

Educated by Tara Westover ★★★★★

Tara Westover grew up in a very religious Mormon family and didn’t go to school growing up. Educated tells her story of growing up in this family and her journey to self-discovery as she went out on her own and went to college.

I was nervous about this because the last couple of books I’ve read that everyone else loved haven’t lived up to the hype for me. But this one lived up to all of my expectations. This reads like fiction, and I could not put it down. While Tara’s story isn’t relatable in a literal way to most people, I think we’ve all had doubts about who we are and what direction we should move in.

Beartown by Fredrik Backman ★★★★★

Beartown is a hockey town and its future hinges on the success of the junior team. That much pressure puts a lot of strain on the high school boys on the team. Carrying that stress on their shoulders doesn’t make all of them their best selves

This moved a little slow for me, but I loved this book. The writing is beautiful. The storyline is heartbreaking, but I couldn’t stop reading. I would highly, highly recommend this story to anyone and everyone.

Save The Date by Morgan Matson ★★★★☆

When Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married, everything that can go wrong does go wrong. It’s the first time in a long time that all four of the Grant siblings have been together, but it doesn’t quite go as Charlie had hoped.

While I called the ending about halfway through, it’s such a cute story! It’s a young adult novel about family love, with an underlying romantic storyline. It’s a little cheesy, but it made my heart feel so full. I continued thinking about it for several days after I finished. If you’re looking for a light, heartwarming read this is it! It’s a perfect book for the pool or beach this summer.

The Universe Has Your Back: Transform Fear to Faith by Gabrielle Bernstein ★★★☆☆

When I first started reading this, I was afraid it might be a little too woo woo for me. It had its moments of being a little more spiritual than I would consider myself, but it was also exactly what I needed to hear. You get back out of the universe what you put into it, and positive thinking changes everything.

Each chapter includes a guided meditation. Meditation is something that I definitely think I could benefit from more of, and it’s good to have these meditations and Bernstein’s mantras in my back pocket.

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr ★★★★☆

Marie-Laure is a young, blind girl in Paris with her father. Werner Pfennig grew up as an orphan in a mining town in Germany. Doerr seamless weaves their stories together before, during, and after WWII.

This was another one that moved slow but was beautifully written. I loved every second of this, and the story was so seamless as it went between Marie-Laure and Werner’s stories. It really allowed me to get to know the characters and root for them.

The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Garvis Graves ★★★★☆

I received an ARC of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

When Annika runs into her ex-boyfriend after 10 years, she wants to show him that she’s not the same girl she was when they dated in college. The Girl He Used To Know goes back and forth between past and present and switches between Annika and Jonathan’s viewpoint.

The different viewpoints really allowed me to get to know both Annika and Jonathan, and it gave me a better perspective on their relationship. I loved getting to know both characters, and couldn’t put the book down.

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