This month I traveled to New York - which gave me plenty of time to read while waiting in airports and on the plane! Traveling is always when I have the most time dedicated to just reading (or watching!) media.
Normal Family: On Truth, Love, and How I Met My 35 Siblings
I first heard of Chrysta Bilton’s story on NPR when they interviewed her. She found out that she had 35 (!) siblings as an adult because her father was a sperm donor. In this interesting and emotional memoir, Bilton shares what it was like to grow up with a lesbian mother who strongly desired kids and how their unconventional family lived. I love reading memoirs - especially ones where people’s lives differ SO much from my own. This one was an unforgettable (and some times unbelievable!) story.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
This was the book that I quickly devoured while traveling. I had read another one of the author’s books, A Darker Shade of Magic…though I can’t remember what it was about! But since the author was familiar to me, I picked this one up. I ended up really liking the fantasy/magical elements in the book but found the relationship between Addie and Luc to be pretty unrealistic in the end. It suddenly went from “I hate you!” to “revenge sex partners!” But the relationship between Addie and Henry was really sweet, so theirs was a story that I cared about and wanted to finish.
Bumpin’: The Modern Guide to Pregnancy
What’s funny is that I saw another preggo lady reading this book while I was in Cancun. Then a Youtuber recommended it - so I gave it a try! Very easy to read and digest. It basically gave me a better idea of what I could expect at the hospital, which was confirmed by the hospital itself when we toured it. For me, the biggest takeaway was to better inform myself about the fourth trimester, AKA postpartum. Too much emphasis is placed on labor and delivery whereas postpartum is almost never talked about. But it’s even harder than the delivery! I then watched some very real Youtube videos about postpartum which better prepared me for what to expect.
Maybe it’s just me, but I didn’t understand this book. It had good potential since the premise is about this Chinese girl trying to break into Hollywood at a time when everyone was (blatantly) racist and sexist. But the more I read, the weirder the fantasy and magical parts got. It really could’ve explored those deeper social issues, but towards the end I forgot I was even reading about a Chinese girl. Turns out I didn’t really like or care about any of the characters. The story just didn’t land with me.
I actually consumed this book as an audiobook, which was read by Jessica Simpson herself! Nothing beats the author reading their own audiobook. It was interesting hearing about Simpson’s rise to fame, struggles with body weight and alcohol, and the highs and lows of her high-profile relationship with Nick Lachey. I didn’t know much about her, but I liked her honest storytelling. It was a reminder that celebrities are human too! All the money and fame in the world can’t solve the same, basic problems we all share in humanity.
Have you read any of these books? What did you think? See more on my Goodreads!
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