Monday, May 01, 2023

April: What I Read

Even though these have cute covers and you might know people reading them, you should stay far away:

Things We Never Got Over by Lucy Score: Nope.

 Things We Hide From the Light by Lucy Score: Terrible. AND YET I READ THEM BOTH **2023

Free Audible Title(s) I listened to because my credit wasn’t in yet and I am cheap

Cat and Vivian by Amanda Eyre Ward: Liked s novella quite a bit! Would recommend only if you, too, are too cheap to buy more Audible credits. **Audio (counts as 1/2 a book)

Not bad:

Reminders of Him by Colleen Hoover: I mean, listen. This one was OK-- I like her better when she writes teens than grown adult people, but these were Very Young grown ups, so... meh?

Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover: What a bad title. But also, I genuinely liked this one. **2023 

 The Blame Game by Sandie Jones: A quick little thriller—liked it **2023

The Rom-Com Agenda by Jayne Denker: Well, this was darling. **2023

The Reunion by Kayla Olson: Liked it a lot-- romantic comedy, very formulaic, but still entertaining. **2023

What Have We Done by Alex Finlay: This would be a great movie. NETFLIX ARE YOU LISTENING? **2023

You Should Read These:

Above Ground by Clint Smith: Poems about fatherhood. Liked this one a lot— really good mix of serious and lighter poems, fun experiments with form, etc. **2023

The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz: Literary backstabbing LITERALLY. Liked it a lot **2023 **Audio

Spare by Prince Harry: Oh, friends. I enjoyed this book SO MUCH. I listened to it, and I smiled the whole time. Make no mistake— it is TERRIBLE terrible terrible, but wow. I was texting with a friend who was also reading it things like “back from Afghanistan and accidentally racist again,” which surely enhanced the experience. I LOVED this book, but not for reasons the author intended. **2023 **Audio

The Critic's Daughter by Priscilla Gilman: I love a good memoir, and this one was a pleasure to read. **2023

Community Board by Tara Conklin: HILARIOUS. You should read this. **2023


What Happened to Ruthy Ramirez by Claire Jimenez: Oh, wow! This is simply wonderful, and you need to read it. **2023

Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld: I loved this one so much. **2023 **Audio

Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano: This is as good as everyone says it is! **2023 **Audio

This Month:

16.5 books

14 books published in 2023

12 print and 4.5 audio

This Year:

77.5 books

35 books published in 2023

45 print and 32.5 audio


  1. I added Hello Beautiful to my list after Lisa recommended it, but the wait time is...LONG!

    Some April book favourites for me.
    - The Nothing Man. Couldn't put it down!
    - Crying in H Mart. (Realize I'm late to the game.)
    - How To Keep House While Drowning.
    - What Alice Forgot. Ditto above - late to this book, but LOVED it.
    - The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry.
    - All The Light We Cannot See. This is going to be a miniseries on Netflix this November and I will be THERE FOR IT!

    1. I loved several of these— a great list.

  2. Hello Beautiful was sooooo good! It's hard to imagine anything topping that book this year. As someone from a large family, I think the family dynamic aspect w/ the different alliances and inter-sibling drama was so aptly described and relatable.

    I don't think I will ever read a Colleen Hoover book. I think I am not the target audience for her.

    1. I agree— it will be so hard to top.

  3. I think Heart Bones is the best Hoover I've ever read. I still laugh when I think about the "Is golf a smell?" line because I audibly SNORTED when I read it and when it crosses my mind (generally when my husband is getting his golf clubs out), I still snicker. I thought the ending was sort of not great, but no one is perfect, right?

    I honestly just refuse to listen or read Spare on principle. If you don't want to be part of the royal family, FINE. But stop making money off it! Argh. Go to therapy and stop involving the WORLD in your trauma. I am so sympathetic to both H&M, but I refuse to participate in their lives.

    Based on this and Lisa's rec, I put Hello Beautiful on hold at the library, but I'm like 150 on the list, so I'll check back with you in the summer!

    1. I agree re: the royals! I got it from the library and feel slightly better

  4. The only one of these on my list (so far) is Writing Retreat, and I am very heartened to read that you liked it. I started it and it was... slow and I wasn't a fan of the writing, so I put it down. But it sounds so good, and I really WANT to like it. This makes me feel like I can pick it up again.

    I read Verity by Colleen Hoover and it was fine and easy to read and it also told me everything I need to know about that author, so I don't think I will be reading any more books by her.

    1. LOL— exactly right re: Hoover. I am fascinated by her as a cultural moment.

  5. I am ashamed to say that I only read four books in April. I admire how many books you read. How do you do it? Please teach me!

    1.Make Space for Happiness by Tracy McCubbin (audio, quick)
    2. The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees (light adn quick)
    3.Lost Connections by Johann Hari (loooong, fundamental)
    4. How to Keep House While Drowning by KC Davis (found valuable+quick)
    5. This is a story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett (cherry picked essays).

    1. Five. I obviously can't count lol

    2. LOVED the Patchett but have not read the rest— thanks for the recs

  6. My daughter was so mad after reading Verity that we have both sworn off Colleen Hoover for life, but I'm glad that she's not uniformly terrible. I LOVED Alex Finlay's first book, and gave it to my son and it started him reading again, so excited to crack open this one. I have declared I will not read Spare, although I think Harry got a raw deal in so many ways and am sympathetic, and if it ever fell into my hands I probably wouldn't be able to put it down and would be equally as snarky about it.

    1. LOL— I am telling you, Spare was a treat.

  7. I clicked through to the description you linked and "What Have We Done also was recently acquired for the screen." - they are listening to you! I don't know if I'll read it though because I don't do anything scary, so thrillers are usually out for me. I am adding a bunch of the others to my library holds list though! I loved Spare - I listened to it and I would listen to Harry read just about anything - his accent!!