My Reading List

Sometimes, a short break in writing is needed, and taking one right after I wrap up my second series was good timing. I rid myself of any guilt I feel for not working by calling it an ‘active rest’.

I got the idea during a group exercise class at my gym. Our instructor introduced the concept of ‘active resting’ in between two particular difficult Tabata sets. Instead of just standing there trying to catch our breath for twenty seconds before the next set, we were supposed to hold a deep squat. At first, I couldn’t get over how crazy this woman was. But I did the squat, walked away from the class after it ended – feeling proud, and woke up the next morning very sore.

Fast forward a few weeks, and I decided that during a writing break I can still be creatively active. For the most part, this involves a whole lot of reading. My love of reading follows very closely on the heels of my love of writing.

So in case you are interested, here is a list of some of the books I’ve picked up in the last few months:

end of days book cover

End of Days (Angelfall Series) by Susan Ee

This is the third and final installment of this series, so no excuses. If you haven’t started it yet – go get it now! I highly recommend Angelfall to anyone who loves the fantasy genre.





unbroken book cover

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

A word of advice: don’t just watch the movie and call it done. The book has so much more to offer (as they often do). This is far from my usual genre but I would recommend this to anyone and everyone for a great read. Be prepared to learn the very real and very gruesome details about war, what really goes on at POW camps, and the aftermath every soldier carries with him for the rest of his life. But this book is so much more than that. It really gives you some insight into just how unbreakable the human spirit can be.













storied life


The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

This one is a very ‘literary’ book, and not quite my cup of tea. A lot of the literary references were lost on me, which I’m a little sad to admit as an author. But more than anything I found the book to be a little boring, though I did make my way through the whole thing.





girl on the train book cover


The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

This is a psychological thriller – not my usual genre, but eh, why not? If you liked any of Gillian Flynn’s books (‘Gone Girl’, ‘Sharp Objects’, or ‘Dark Places’) this one may appeal to you. I felt like I could really connect with some of the characters. Their thought processes and actions reminded me of some people I know.




red rising cover

Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Golden Son by Peirce Brown

Hoooooooold the phone! How have I not heard about this series until now! Just to warn you, the beginning is a little rough. It is slow-paced and the writing is raw and crass. Hang in there. It’s worth it! Lots of action, heartache, politics, and character development like I’ve never seen before. Read. This. Series. Now. (Unless you like to wait until the entire series is out – because the third book has yet to be published.)






all the light we cannot see book cover


All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

This story follows two character arcs as they endure World War II. If you are looking for a book with really beautiful prose, you are in for a treat!






delerium book cover


Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Another teen-centered post apocalyptic book, but well worth the read! The premise of the book is a deadly disease called Love that afflicts all of society until they are old enough to get the cure. There are lots of twists and turns to keep you reading – I can’t wait to get to the rest of the series!




eleanor and park book cover


Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

A young adult book about two sixteen year olds who fall in love. This one was a quick read for me; I absolutely loved it. It’s hard for me to pin what exactly was so good about this one – you read it and let me know!





winter queen book cover

Winter Queen (Fairy Queen Series) by Amber Argyle and Summer Queen (Fairy Queen Series) by Amber Argle

This was a treasure find for me! I can’t even remember how I came across this series, but the writing was just beautiful and both storylines sucked me right in.









You can find my ratings and reviews for most of these books on Goodreads – be sure to friend or follow me there if you haven’t already!


Comment below and let me know some of your favorite reads. Once I get back into writing, I’m only able to read about two books a month so they definitely need to be worth my time! I appreciate any suggestions you guys can give me!

Something for Everyone


Although it isn’t my intent to regularly post reviews here, I’ve come across several ‘must shares’ in the past few months.  My list of top three reads so far in 2012 includes something for everyone:

YA Fantasy

Angelfall by Susan Ee

As a self-published author, her book has had amazing success.  With a 4.39 star average on almost 4,000 ratings on Goodreads, this is a must read for anyone who loves YA fantasy, and even for most of those who don’t!  Not usually a fan of YA books, there is a certain element of horror that really spikes up the interest level for me.  Word of caution, this is not for anyone squeamish to blood and gore.  This book has a great concept, great dialogue and character development and is very well written – a page turner for sure. I cannot wait for the sequel!

Click here to see my review on Goodreads.

Favorite Quote from Book: “We now play a permanent game of I-am-crazier-and-scarier-than-you. And in that game, my mother is our secret weapon.”


Fantasy with Elemental Magic

The Five Elements by Scott Marlowe 

I originally added this book because of the similarities to my own with elemental magic. I was curious to see another author’s spin on it. And boy, did my head spin. I could barely put the book down. I was immediately sucked into this new world, research on elemental magic completely forgotten.  The writing is sophisticated (not the ‘I did that’ and ‘he did this’ style that seems to be all the rage these days), the twists were amazing, and the pacing, character development, and dialogue were perfect! Scott is another self-published author with great potential.

Click here to see my review on Goodreads.

Excerpt from book (this sets the scene for the final climax): The folk of Norwynne fled from a land gone mad. Leaving behind what possessions remained to them, they abandoned the remnants of hearths and homes to flee into the night with only the clothes on their backs and their children held or dragged behind. They ran screaming and crying and praying beneath a sky turned crimson with blood-red clouds that spewed liquid drops of fire. The earth cracked, and convulsed, jarring some from their feet even as streaks of lightning, a score at a time, turned night into day. Tornadoes swirling with flame touched down everywhere, one coming too close to a fleeing group so that men, women, and children were sucked into the vortex and not see again.



Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

LOTS of buzz about this traditionally-published series, and the reviews are mixed.  The writing style is simple, shorter sentences but the content is definitely for mature audiences only.  Reading from the viewpoint of the MC, a recent college grad who experiences her first romance and sexual experiences, we witness all the nitty-gritty nuances of sex. And the author did not sugarcoat anything here, making for a very believable experience.  I loved the MC’s internal thoughts, and the e-mail exchanges between her and the protagonist were a riot. I’ve only read the first of a series of three, and will eventually get to the other two, but for now, my libido needs a rest.  (Pretend I’ve inserted a smiley face here – how the heck do you do that on WordPress???)

Click here to see my review on Goodreads.

Favorite Quote from book:

“Why don’t you like to be touched?” Ana whispered, staring up into soft grey eyes.
“Because I’m fifty shades of fucked-up, Anastasia.”