As August winds down, we're trying to spend as much time as possible outside. Jax is toddling around now, Veronica has entered high school, Vinnie has entered junior high, and Vivian is going back to school two days a week for some much-needed therapy and school time. So - life isn't ideal for reading, but I've managed to polish off four interesting reads in the past couple of weeks. Here are my quick reviews!
The Holdout by Graham Moore
I'm not usually too much into the courtroom drama / mystery / murder stuff, but this was a fantastic page-turner in that genre that I found myself thinking about obsessively while I had to take reading breaks and do real-people things. Synopsis: A jury makes a very controversial decision in a murder trial and then comes back together for a documentary 10 years later and chaos (and murder!) ensues. DEFINITELY thought-provoking in regards to race relations. Recommend!
Godshot by Chelsea Bieker
Wow, what a super weird book! A little bit Handmaid's Tale, a little bit Westboro Baptist, a little bit everything else covered in gold glitter. Oh, and all of the men are totally evil - not a one with layers of anything but bad - imagine that! Anyway. If this sounds up your alley, I'd recommend, as it was well-written for sure. Overall though, I could've found a better book for my time.
Compelling Conversations for Fundraisers: Talk Your Way to Success with Donors and Funders by Janet Levine and Laurie Selik
I'm going to catapult myself into fundraising superstardom by reading all of the fundraising books and reviewing them to other fundraising professionals and somehow this will ultimately lead to my traveling the country talking about fundraising trends and the like. So this is where I started - it was a super quick read and was almost like workbook style, which came off to me as an author's way to meet their page minimum requirement but what did YOU think about the book? (insert 10 blank lines here for you to write out your thoughts)
Mostly basic information, but I did appreciate a great chapter about pivoting the conversation from small talk to down-to-business talk, although some of the pivots seemed a little rickety to me. ("That's really great about your new house! Too bad some of our clients don't have anywhere to live at all....") (Just kidding, that's not a direct quote) (But it's not too far off). So! A good book for a beginner.
The Paris Hours by Alex George
Everything Alex George touches turns to gold. That's all there is to it. All of his books make me think, "THIS is why I love reading." His books are so descriptive and musical and just...beautiful. This one is set in Paris about a hundred years ago or so and we hang out with Ernest Hemingway, Proust, Josephine Baker and follow the stories of a few other fictional folks who have intersecting situations. It's all very tragic and romantic and exciting. I liked his other books just a hair better, mostly because I didn't feel like I got *enough* of these great characters.
I would certainly recommend The Paris Hours OR Setting Free the Kites, OR A Good American and just be prepared to be completely immersed. SO GOOD.
Up Next: I'm finishing up a brain candy book on my phone that's actually really lovely, and I'm about to start another fundraising book. Our book club choice for September is Hamnet and I'm beyond excited because the author is amazing and the premise sounds fascinating. I'll pick it up from the library today! What are YOU reading?
Mom of four, wife of one. By day I fund-raise with coffee, by night I read with wine and chocolate.