When I was in middle school, I took a speed reading course at the local community college. Why? I have no idea other than maybe my parents wanted me out of the house for a few hours on a Saturday afternoon. While it’s been a lot of years since I took that course, I do still apply several of the tricks I learned, including skim reading and being able to pick out the most important parts of the book.
This was great for college textbooks and US Weekly. Yet, it has totally hindered my ability to read casually and has turned me into the slowest reader ever. Why? Because I want ALL the details.
Anyway, back to being the slowest reader ever. It takes me forever to get through most any book these days. My solution? Audible. Don’t worry, this isn’t a sponsored post for Audible. I truly use it and really love it because I’ve been able to read…er, listen to more books than I have in a really long time.
With that, here’s what I’ve listened to lately.
I started January off with Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. My friend Megan is a big fan of the author and suggested I start with this book. By the way, Megan actually reads books – as opposed to downloading books on her iPhone – like myself. Check out her latest list of titles she’s recently finished.
I liked Eleanor & Park, a lot. Teen angst, school buses, and The Smiths pretty much sums up my own adolsecence so I found the characters very relatable and ached for Eleanor and her struggles to fit in at school. I didn’t love how it ended but the story came full circle. It was a good read and I definitely plan to download another book from Rowell.
Next on my list was Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Oh, boy.
I tried several times to actually read this book but it was so damn wordy. And while I could put my skimming tricks to the test with this one, I was worried I’d miss out on some sort of huge clue about who dunne it (see what I did there?). I almost gave up listening to this book, too. The book’s narrators were downright dreadful.
Anyway, I am really surprised that so many people liked Gone Girl. The audio version is broken into three parts. The first part was extremely slow and the author doesn’t leave much to like about Nick Dunne. I liked the mid-point of the story when the point of view changes but again, the characters were completely unlikable. I felt the story turned far fetched in the last part of the book and it ended with me hating both characters and their miserable life. I will likely go see the movie, though.
The last book on my list for January was Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple. This was by far my favorite because there were laugh out loud funny parts coupled with mind-blowing WHY-THE-HELL-WOULD-SHE-DO-THAT questions. I liked Bernadette and her crazy antics and often felt bad for her inability to cope with life around her. She really loved her daughter, Bee, and I loved that part of the story. I hated that whole one-night-stand pregnancy storyline and found it completely unnecessary.
Have you read any of these? Did you love them? Hate them?