Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Mandy's Book List: Volume 2

I seem to go through periods where I am a voracious reader. And then there are times when I just can't sit still - I can't seem to get into anything I'm reading. Do you ever have that happen? Recently, I can't seem to get enough of my Kindle. I take it wherever I go and when I am waiting for class to start, waiting for a a meeting to begin, I just keep reading...and in this culture there is a lot of time to wait so there is a lot of time to read. I pretty much took February off from reading, so here are the books that I enjoyed in March and some of my favorite quotes from each:


This is not a book I read. This is The Story of the Three Little PIgs written in Tongan.

1. Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky - I received some excellent advice from one of my best friends recently. He said, "Mandy, we accept the love we think we deserve" which is a direct quote from this book. He then told me where I could find it (not love, but the book) and I decided to take a look. I'm so glad I did - Charlie is a great main character. A lot of the time I felt like the book read a little bit like The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time (if you aren't familiar with this title, I highly suggest checking it out). His view of reality and the way in which to treat people is something that I think many people can learn from. I did anyway.

Favorite Quote: "...but I really think that everyone should have watercolors, magnetic poetry, and a harmonica."

2. Every Day by David Levithan - I have to be honest... When I started reading this book, I was a little thrown by the premise of the story: waking up in a different body every day? Each chapter marks a day in somebody else's body? But it sure was addicting. I constantly was wondering where he/she would end up next. I kept going back and forth thinking about how cool it would be to wake up in somebody else's body every day, but then the whole concept of tomorrow doesn't really exist like it does for people who stay in their bodies from day to day.

Favorite Quote: "I only have a day to give - so why can't it be a good one? Why can't it be a shared one? Why can't I take the music of the moment and see how long it can last? The rules are erasable. I can take this. I can give this."

3. Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl - This is the next Hunger-Games-Twilight-Teen Series and I hear that they are making it into a movie as well. I love me a good story about witches and even though that's not what they're called in this book, this is a book about witches. You can't help but root for the 15-year-olds in this story who are so madly in love with each other. The story involves magic, tunnels, and the idea of embracing the light or dark that is found within each one of us.

Favorite Quote: "What is the opposite of two? A lonely me, a lonely you."

4. The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick - I've heard rumors that this book is being made into a movie as well. I'm still not sure what to make of it. The main character has just spent 4 years in a mental institution, yet he believes (at the beginning of the book) that he's only been gone for around 11 mos. The book is the story of him trying to make sense of what happened, what caused him to be sent to the institution and re-building his life after he was let out. There are some weirdo characters, but somehow the crazier the story gets, the more believable it becomes. I guess life is sort of like that.

Favorite Quote: "Maybe my movie isn't over," I say.

5. A Week in Winter by Maeve Binchy - One of my (many) goals in life is to go to Ireland and that is exactly where this story takes place. The storyline surrounds a cottage that has opened up quite like a Bed and Breakfast would. Each chapter is dedicated to somebody who visits the cottage and the story that led them to that point. It's a really well-done read - makes you think about the story that you are writing and what has transpired to get you to the point you're at. It's really a neat idea to think about people crossing your path at a specific point in time and what they can teach you. How each relationship that you have had is meant to teach you something and is meant to happen exactly when it does.

Favorite Quote: "'Maybe you have a suit of armour up before they get a chance to know you,' he suggested."

6. Two Kisses for Maddy by Matt Logelin - This book started off as a blog which I began reading back in 2008. It's the true story of a really amazing guy who was faced with the death of his wife and the birth of his daughter all within a 27-hour period. It chronicles that story and what took place after, the life he has created for his daughter and how he is navigating the grieving process. His writing style is so raw and real and I found myself (even though I'm single and childless) in tears many times. I can't recommend this book enough. 

Favorite Quote: "Together during the worst of times is better than being alone at the best of times."

7. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling - I love "The Office" and Kelly Kapoor. Written by Mindy Kaling, this book is a collection of short stories/essays and had me rolling around on the floor laughing multiple times. Kaling knows how to write and I wanted to be her best friend by the end of the book. Hey Mindy. If you're reading this blog (yeah right) I'd love to get coffee with you the next time I'm in Los Angeles! Extra dry soy lates are my fav. Whether she's talking about her frenemy relationship with Rainn Wilson (Dwight Shrute), the difference between men and boys or living in New York as a struggling actress, she keeps you engaged and smiling the whole way.

Favorite Quote: "Men know what they want. Men make concrete plans. Men own alarm clocks. Men sleep on a mattress that isn't on the floor. Men tip generously. Men buy new shampoo instead of adding water to a nearly empty bottle of shampoo. Men go in for a kiss without giving you some long preamble about how they're thinking of kissing you. Men wear clothes that have never been worn by anyone else before."

I am always looking for book recommendations so if you have any please send them my way!

Email me at beneathabalconyofstars(at)gmail(dot)com or comment on this post.

To check out other books I have read, take a look here.

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