Inspired by @bookishclaire. Grad school is eating up a lot of my reading time. 😒
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    Bleed for Me | Michael Robotham
    Man. It served as a powerful reminder that there are some truly, repulsively despicable people in this world. Lots of them. I've led a safe—charmed—life, yet still I've had moments when I felt endangered/taken advantage of. I can't even...Honestly reading it there were a couple of times when I wanted to stay hidden forever. Also there was a suicidal girl who took TCAs to try to end herself and it didn't work—because they intentionally formulate them that way. Struck a discomfiting cord with me.
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    This book did teach me quite a bit of British lingo I hadn't previously known, my favorite of which is "petal" used as a term of kindness. I love that.
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    Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | Jack Thorne
    I didn't hate this as much as many, probably because I didn't go into it expecting it to be anywhere near as magical as the original series. Okay with it.
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    The Schoolmaster's Daughter | John Smolens
    Enjoyed this, largely because Abigail was so independent and strong and forceful in the face of such blatant and as-yet-unnamed misogyny. I also especially related to her struggles with parents who were staunch supporters of those in power despite the injustices they enacted, as it hit way too close to home to not draw endless parallels between the unjust British and Trump's administration.
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    The Book of Speculation | Erika Swyler
    This one fascinated me. I originally checked it out because a protagonist was a librarian, but I was quickly caught up in the story. There was a theme throughout the novel that there are stories that "belong" to people—not because they penned it or contributed to its creation, but instead because the story contributed to who *they* are as a person, were building blocks in the foundation of their life. Not a concept I'd ever reasoned out in so many words, but one I whole-heartedly believe in.
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    All the Bright Places | Jennifer Niven
    I'd wanted to read this for a while before I went into BAM with the boy & saw it for crazy cheap & he bought it for me. I started out highlighting passages that were meaningful to me but had to stop because I was highlighting the whole book and my highlighter ran out of ink. I'm dead serious. This book hit me so unbelievably hard. I swear I realize that everyone in the world relates to this book but I guess that means I'm exactly like everybody else because so. much. of. this. story. feels
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    similar to my life. There are things about Violet I relate to, and there are things about Finch I relate to. The drive to attempt to see the world in a positive light but being unable to, the struggle with convincing yourself that continuing to exist is the right move, the hunger for more more more, always more. I'm not going into too much detail because 1. Some of it's WAY more personal than I get on my extremely open List account, and also 2. Spoilers, naturally. Let me just say, it rocked me.
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    Middlesex | Jeffrey Eugenides
    One of those books about myriad issues that didn't directly affect me, and I ate it up. It was a fascinating study in genealogy and the unanticipated things that occur in the lives of children due to choices made by their far-removed ancestors. It is also intensely relevant to current events, as it involves a case of gender identity crisis before that was a socially recognized phenomenon.
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    The Given Day | Dennis Lehane
    Picked this up because I love Lehane, but WOW it is timely. Deals with racism, bigotry, immigrant hatred—just to name a *few*—as the city of Boston falls from its former glory.
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    The Husband | Dean Koontz
    Beautiful but alarming exhibition of the power of evil in our world, and the unmatched effects that occur when love (there's more kinds of love than solely romantic, Hollywood) is given or withheld. "Love scrubs the worst stains clean. Anyway, there can be no retreat in the face of evil, only resistance. And commitment."
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    Dolores Claiborne | Stephen King
    Such a cool narrative approach: there are no chapters or page breaks of any kind; the whole novel is one woman's accounting of a few specific events in her life. No other speakers whatsoever, unless she was quoting words spoken by another person. Well done, Mr. King.
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    The Man in My Basement | Walter Mosley
    This was a quick read. It was also disturbing and has me more freaked out than I have been over a book in quite a while, one several different levels. It certainly didn't do my view of the male half of the human species any favors.
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    Beauty and the Beast: Book of the Film | Adapted by Elizabeth Rudnick
    A nice break from the heavier readings I've been doing of late. A brief read that did a much better job of what the live-action film was intended to do: flesh out the characters and the story. The ideal situation would have been this novelization being published as a companion to the original animated film.
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    The Word Exchange | Alena Graedon
    WHOA. A perfect book for a librarian-in-training. This made me reappreciate the wonder that is reading; having a account has made me forget that it's okay to be more of a reader than a writer, that it can be a positive thing to study and absorb the words of others rather than continuously trying to broadcast your own words to others, that listening can be every bit as valuable as speaking. And that language is one of the most precious resources mankind has ever known.
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    Picture Perfect | Jodi Picoult
    My reading this book literally came about because it's spot (forgotten on the floor) was closest to where I was when I finished The Word Exchange. This is not a genre I typically buy into, because it paints life in a way where everything ties itself into a neat little dreamy romantic bow at the end, which is so far from reality it's hard for me to stomach—lots of gratuitous content created solely to fill the reader with heartache and wonder that real life isn't this magical. It was alright.