Technically, summer ends today, September 21st, and technically, I read these books over the summer, so technically, this post is ripe and in season.

My last summer reading list had two strong hits and one almost-miss. This list? This list is a triple hitter. So much so that I'm not even going to waste time fleshing out this intro.

Let's get to it.

Recently Read

It Ends With Us, by Colleen Hoover
This book is for every woman who's been so romantically entangled with a man that she can't see clearly. It documents the good, the bad and the ugly, and how all three of those things can sometimes get transposed to the point where you're not sure which is which. Some might classify it as "chick-lit," but I didn't know that going in (despite the floral cover art). In fact, I knew very little about the plot when I checked this out from the library, and I think that's how any new reader should approach this book: knowing as little as possible. So that's all I'm going to say.

Final Girls, by Riley Sager
I recently revealed my shameless love for all things horror, especially in film. When the buzz surrounding Final Girls started to swell, I added it to my library cart (I love the library) and patiently waited my turn in queue. The story starts off a bit slow, but it kept me turning the page into the wee hours of the night. Also, I did not see the twist coming at the end, and I almost always see the twist coming.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman
The titular character here reminds me of another character from a short story I read in college (I can't remember the name of the story, but I'm sure it's in one of the anthologies tucked away on one of my shelves, so maybe I'll track it down later and update this post) (UPDATE: it's called "where i work" by Ann Cummins). She's such a well-written character. She's socially disconnected from the outside world until she and the IT guy from her office randomly help an elderly man who has passed out on the street. Things unfold from there, and it's a great journey to self discovery and happiness.


If a book fails to hold my attention after 50-100 pages, I'll just add it to my did not finish list. These were recently added:

The Rules Do Not Apply, by Ariel Levy
I'm not a non-fiction reader, but I heard such great things about this memoir so I decided to give it a try. Ms. Levy is a great writer, and I enjoyed reading her words, but sometimes it felt like she was trying too hard to be witty/insightful/deep, etc. As eventful and dramatic as her story was, though, I just could not finish it.

Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline
This was on my goodreads list for a while, but there was just too much back story to explain. By page 60-70, the narrator was still giving background information. We should be moving forward that many pages into the book, not still explaining what happened before the book opens (the only exception is literary fiction). Also, I didn't realize it was a science fiction novel, and it's generally one of my least favorite genres.

Brain on Fire, by Susannah Callahan
Another memoir... I really tried to venture from my standard fiction faves. I really did. If anything, these attempts tell me I've truly found my niche when it comes to leisure reading.

At the time of this writing, I will have been married for two years. In this short period, there have been a few regrets: regret for not communicating more thoroughly in certain situations, regret for not intentionally taking more time out of the day to spend nurturing our union, regret for things that have been said from a place of anger, et cetera. These are the kind of things that generally disrupt the quality of any romantic relationship, but they can also be used as a tool for growth. Thankfully, despite these things, I can still confidently say I 100% married my best friend; I married someone with whom I look forward to spending the rest of my life. 

There are many people who live by the "no regrets" motto, but honestly, I believe everyone has things from their past they would do differently. There is nothing wrong with regretfulness in my opinion. It keeps us empathetic and makes us more thoughtful with our actions, so I do not live by that motto. If anything, I live by the "less regrets" school of thought.

That being said, when it comes to my marriage, there is one thing of which I am sure I will never regret: not having a wedding.

[It's my 5th time sharing a post like this, so I figured it was time for a proper graphic.]

My last Netflix Recommendation post was Christmas-themed. This one will fittingly be horror-themed, since we're now in the midst of 'Scream Fest' (that time of year when a bunch of horror movies are released in succession). So far we've seen the release of Annabelle: CreationIT, and Mother!, and Jeeper's Creepers 3, Jigsaw, and another installment of The Purge series will soon be coming down the pipe.

Scary movies aren't for everyone. I get it. Nobody in my inner circle willingly goes to see horror films with me - it always takes some coercion, and while I have absolutely no problem going to the movies solo, sometimes I prefer to experience the thrill with a friend.

I also have no problem experiencing the thrill in the comfort of my own home, which is where Netflix comes to the rescue. I've seen almost all the top movies in the horror section of the site, even some of those b-list titles that look kinda sketchy or are a low-budget dupe of a popular big-budget option. I'll watch those.

This is why I can confidently share the picks below, because I often click on the obscure title expecting very little, but sometimes... sometimes... they pleasantly surprise. Another thing about these? They're the least "scary" of the ones I've watched recently, so even if you're not a fan of the genre, you might still enjoy them. Maybe.

At your own risk.

These kinds of posts aren't that popular anymore, but when read I these lists on Charlotte's blog (using google translate since it's written in Swedish), I got inspired. This is one of those posts I'll re-read years later and remember how I felt and where I was in life, and they also show how much about my personality has or hasn't changed over time.

And so, here are ten lists for today, September 15, 2017.

10 Favorites

Color: white
Food: tacos (is this even a proper blog post if i don't mention tacos at least once???)

Just sharing a list of things I've been super grateful for lately:

The was a cafe
open only 'til three
just north of the city
named Crooked Tree...

If there is one qualm I have with any major industry it's the one that focuses on all things "beauty."
© the active spirit. +