Saturday, August 4, 2012

Books in 2012: Return and Report

Back in January, one of my New Year's resolutions was to read more books. I didn't do so good in 2011, so I'm proud to say that I'm doing much better this year. Most books were read on my kindle, which I never had done before. In 2011, I was still making a conscious effort to read actual books, but now I'm completely converted to the e-reader. So convenient---especially for traveling and commuting. My kindle and I have a great relationship.

Anyway, here are the books I have read the first half of 2012, including some of my "clippings" aka highlights that I made on my kindle: quotes that hopefully you'll enjoy and more ideally, will entice you to read some of these books.
The Infinite Atonement by Tad Callister: this is a carry-over from 2011. It took me a while to read. SO good though.

“Since God knows all things, the future is as real as the present.”

“If sacrifice is the highest manifestation of love, then the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the grandest demonstration of love this world has ever known.”

“The difference between man and God is significant, but it is one of degree, not kind. It is the difference between an acorn and an oak tree, a rosebud and a rose, a son and a father.”

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
“but there would be punishment and pain, and there would be happiness too, because that is writing.”

Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style by Tim Gunn
“If the size 8 fits, but makes me look bigger, while the size 10 flows gracefully over my figure, actually making me appear smaller, which size should actually considered the “larger” size? Finally, if that number is truly so loathsome to you, cut the tag out with manicure scissors as soon as you get home."

The New York Regional Mormon Singles Halloween Dance: A Memoir by Elna Baker: I don't recommend this to everyone, some parts were amusing though.
“While Catholics usually paint the Savior suffering, Mormon artists tend to depict Him as a rugged Idaho mountain man--the kind of Jesus you wouldn’t mind dating. In this particular picture he was healing a blonde child, because blondes were big in Jerusalem in 33 A.D.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling
“What I’ve noticed is that almost no one who was a big star in high school is also a big star later in life. For us overlooked kids, it’s so wonderfully fair.”

“The chorus of ‘Jack and Diane’ is: 'Oh yeah, life goes on, long after the thrill of living is gone.' Are you kidding me? The thrill of living was high school? Come on, Mr. Cougar Mellencamp. Get a life”

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand: I can't recommend this book enough: absolutely AMAZING.
“Only the laundry knew how scared I was.”

"Though all three men faced the same hardship, their differing perceptions of it appeared to be shaping their fates. Louie and Phil’s hope displaced their fear and inspired them to work toward their survival, and each success renewed their physical and emotional vigor. Mac’s resignation seemed to paralyze him, and the less he participated in their efforts to survive, the more he slipped.”

"The next day by divine intervention or the fickle humor of the tropics, the sky broke open and poured down. Twice more the water ran out, twice more, they prayed, and twice more the rain came. "

“The paradox of vengefulness is that it makes men dependent upon those who have harmed them, believing that their release from pain will come only when they make their tormentors suffer”

"When he thought of his history, what resonated with him now was not all that he had suffered but the divine love that he believed had intervened to save him. He was not the worthless, broken, forsaken man that the Bird [the prison guard] had striven to make of him. In a single, silent moment, his rage, his fear, his humiliation and helplessness, had fallen away. That morning, he believed, he was a new creation."

"At that moment, something shifted sweetly inside him. It was forgiveness, beautiful and effortless and complete. For Louie Zamperini, the war was over."

And the other books I have read so far this year:

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer: the movie was better.

Handle with Care by Jodi Picoult: (not pictured) never reading a book by her again. Not my thang.

Lies that Chelsea Handler Told Me: pretty darn funny, but if you don’t like Chelsea Lately, then you prob shouldn’t read it

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese: I don’t know why I didn’t mark any favorite passages in this book, because it was really good. Great writing and one of those stories that just sticks with you

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. I won’t even tell you how long it took me to remember the name of this book. A delightful read.

Heaven is Here by Stephanie Nielson (nie nie): Loved this book. Really inspiring. A few editing errors though, which irritated me.

Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale: really good.

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson: a young adult book about a slave girl living in NYC during the Revolutionary War. I need to read the sequel

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt: I need to read the sequel

Gunn’s Golden Rules: Life’s Little Lessons to Making it Work by Tim Gunn: I LOVE TIM GUNN.

Once again, I am looking for suggestions for the last half of the year. As you can see, I am open to all types of genres (except sci-fi), so suggest away.

Happy reading!


  1. I am sad to say the only one of those books I've read is The Book Thief. You have inspired me though!

  2. I'm sure you've already read this, but my favorite book ever is A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. So good. Thanks for a list of great reads... I've been wanting some good recommendations!

  3. I will have to read some of those! I always need recommendations on books. I read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother and I really liked it. It was a quick read. Don't you play the violin? You will enjoy the book even more I think because you play.