What I’ve been reading lately: the new and the notable

What I’ve been reading lately: the new and the notable

Welcome to Quick Lit, where we share short and sweet reviews of what we’ve been reading lately.

I’m in serious Summer Reading prep mode, which means I’m reading lots of books hitting shelves between April and July. But I’m making time to read the old (and by “old” I mean “not brand-new”) stuff, especially the books you all recommended to me in Episode 62 of What Should I Read Next aka What Should ANNE read next?

Here’s what the last month has looked like:

Series: Quick Lit February 2017
A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy

A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy

This book has been sitting on my shelves for many months, thanks to Book of the Month. After we discussed Columbine on What Should I Read Next, many of you recommended Sue Klebold's powerful memoir, and assured me my HSP self could take it. It was very well done, and Klebold shed so much light on not only the actual violence, but also on larger issues such as news coverage and brain health. After reading it I completely see why she felt compelled to share her story. More info →
The Whole Town’s Talking

The Whole Town’s Talking

After a listener recommended Fannie Flagg on episode 62 of What Should I Read Next, I rushed out and got her latest. This was my first Fannie Flagg novel, and when I started talking about it, you all were quick to tell me that this one wasn't representative of her work and I should read something else! I currently have Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café in progress and Can't Wait to Get to Heaven checked out from the library. More info →
Picnic at Hanging Rock

Picnic at Hanging Rock

Another recommendation from Episode 62 of What Should I Read Next; I couldn't believe I hadn't heard of this Australian classic before and put it on my list immediately! As I was reading this short novel, it strongly reminded me of something I'd read before, but I couldn't figure out WHAT. I finally realized it wasn't a book at all—it was the TV show Lost! (If that's not a recommendation, I don't know what is.) More info →
$2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America

$2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America

I'm reading this because one of the authors, Luke Shaefer, is coming to town later this month to discuss the issues he addresses here and I wanted to be ready. (Heads up, Louisville: more info here.) This was a quick read, and while it's not exactly the kind of book you read for the scintillating prose (you know what I mean, right?) it was an interesting look into a topic I knew very little about. Recommended. More info →
Hamilton: The Revolution

Hamilton: The Revolution

I picked this audiobook up when it was on the MMD deals page a couple of months ago and listened to it in ONE DAY while I was packing and unpacking boxes over the weekend. It was perfect for that—such good fun. I was clueless about most of the Hamilton backstory and hearing about the musical's long history was fascinating. More info →

What have YOU been reading lately?

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestEmail this to someonePrint this page


  1. Janet says:

    After the Fall, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, A Man Called Ove, and the new Fannie Flagg for book club. Gotta say didn’t care for that one (The All-Girl Filling Station’s Last Reunion). Interesting idea, not good writing at all. Also liked The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto and The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper, which came coincidentally after Ove. Similar in content and both fun/worthwhile reads.

  2. Pingback: January Reads
  3. Kathleen says:

    Just finished Grandma Gatewoods Walk (absolutely loved it) and What Alice Forgot. Currently reading The Hidden Life of Trees, My Life in France, and 84 Charing Cross Road, as well as listening to The Golem and the Jinni. The One in a Million Boy is waiting in the wings. What a joy it is to be surrounded by such good books!

  4. Cheralaine Cole-Johnson says:

    I was reading Sue Klebold”s book and had to walk away from it about halfway through. I am raising two grandsons after raising five daughters and it frankly was scaring me to death. She raised her boys in a very similar way to what I am doing (no guns ever in the house, no weapons as toys) and I had to put it down. I will go back and finish it but I have to be in the right frame of mind to handle it. My heart absolutely aches for her.

  5. Donna says:

    Thanks for sharing, Anne! I plan on reading A Mother’s Reckoning in the spring. I am currently reading Columbine and I hope to finish it by the end of the week. I am happy I decided to read it.

    I am also reading and enjoying Ordinary Light by Tracy K. Smith. In this memoir, she reflects on race, faith, family, her childhood in Northern California, her relationship with her mother, and her journey to becoming a writer. Beautifully written, thoughtful, and engaging.

    Last night I started The Lonely Hearts Hotel by Heather O’Neill. She writes the most gorgeous sentences and the story hooked me from page one. An incredible historical novel.

  6. Kimi says:

    I was so inspired by many of the choices others gave to you. I LOVED the first of the Darling Dahlias series. I love mysteries and sometimes you just need a ‘cozy’ version that isn’t too brutal that just makes you happy. It was absolutely charming and I am so looking forward to getting to know those characters better.
    I also completed the Carey Elwes memoir about the Princess Bride. Also a very quick, sweet read.
    In the Bleak Midwinter was also another great suggestion. I am enjoying the characters and content. It was another great choice for those of us who enjoy Louise Penny.
    Now to search out some of the other choices that my library didn’t have….

  7. Carol says:

    I’m just finishing up Britt-Marie Was Here and it’s wonderful. I recently finished One in a Million Boy based on hearing about it on your podcast and have recommended it to several friends since.
    Next up is The Wangs vs the World and the Secret Scripture for book club.

  8. Emmy Alice says:

    I recently finished Little Women, Jane Eyre, and The Secret Garden. Little Women has been an all time favorite of mine! I recommend The Secret Garden to anyone who enjoys historical fiction. Jane Eyre had some interesting twists and turns! It took me a long time to finish this book but I still liked it. I am currently reading Wuthering Heights and I can’t seem to put it down! It’s not what I expected it to be, it’s not a typical love story. It’s dark and full of surprises. Next on my list are The Scarlet Letter and The Great Gatsby. I’m a Jane Austen fan and I also plan to read some of her other books that I haven’t got to yet.

  9. Nanci says:

    I just finished a trilogy of books I never would have guessed I would read by Justin Cronin. The Passage, The Twelve, and City of Mirrors. You could relate it to Margaret Atwood’s trilogy starting with Oryx and Crake (The Year of the Flood, and Maddaddam).
    Cronin is a lot of suspense – which I usually do not like, but his character development, language, and imagination really hooked me in.

  10. Lisa Gelber says:

    I recently finished State of Wonder by Ann Patchett and Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. I am almost done with A Wrinkle in Time. I did not plan to read two time travel books back to back, it just worked out that way! I have BIG feelings about a couple of things that happened near the end of State of Wonder! I justvstarted Ready Player One on audio and will be started Americanah very soon. It’s a very good reading life…..

  11. Erin says:

    I’m currently reading To Kill a Mockingbird, because my son is about it start it for school and I haven’t read it since before he was born. Also reading Fierce Convictions, a biography of Hannah More, who was a really remarkable woman who lived during and after the time of the American Revolution; Walden (this is my pre-bedtime reading– I can’t read anything very plot-driven before bed or I can’t sleep); and Pray, Write, Grow. This month I’ve finished The Count of Monte Cristo (on audio) and and Animal Farm for an online book club. Coming up soon is a book called The Book of Unholy Mischief and Agatha Christie’s The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. 🙂

  12. Karen says:

    We watched Picnic at Hanging Rock at school (I’m Australian). After your audiobook hacks I am now listening to Anna Karenina. I wasn’t sure I’d have the stamina for reading the physical book. I have just recently finished The Course of Love, The Fiery Cross and Happier at Home. I am also reading the next Outlander book, The Last Days of Night and Walking with God through Pain and Suffering. I only want to spend time reading books I like and find useful so I appreciate the recommendations!

  13. Megan says:

    I’m surprised this is your first Fannie Flagg! Standing in the Rainbow is my favorite of hers and I’m waiting impatiently on her latest from the library.

  14. Here are my favorites from the last several weeks.
    Heartless by Marissa Meyer – I think it is on par with her Lunar Chronicles series without the happy ending.
    Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan – This series is so much fun!
    Girl Who Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart – The biographical fiction is so well done. Stewart made me want to become a detective. I was ready to read book 2 as soon as I finished it.

  15. Sarah says:

    Thank you so much for your blog! Reading is an important self-care practice for me, but I don’t always have time to sort through all of the new books out there to figure out what’s going to be for me. I rely heavily on your blog to discover my next read, and MMD has been a huge help for me!

  16. Jamie says:

    You did it! You read Klebold’s book!!! I did too and LOVED it. So heartbreaking but so necessary. I’ve recommended it to many other parents since then and am so thankful I’ve read it.

  17. Lindsey Back says:

    Just love the movie Fried Green Tomatoes….. have never read the book, time to remedy this I think. Picnic at Hanging Rock is also a movie (Australian), also excellent with beautiful scenery and suitably haunting.

  18. Heidi says:

    I’m reading The Whole Town’s Talking, and I’m loving it, because I totally fell in love Elmwood Springs and its inhabitants when I listened to Standing In The Rainbow. Not sure I would like it as much if I didn’t know who everyone was already. But I love Fannie Flagg’s characterizations and her willingness to dive deep in a small town.

  19. Nadean says:

    I’ve added all these books to my Amazon wish list! Haha

    For February I read 20 Something/20 Everything (ok, it’s taken me months, because it requires a lot of writing exercises and deep thinking.) On the same day I finished that book, I also finished One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. I’ve been going on a self-help and classic literature romp lately.

  20. I’m currently reading Born Both by Hida Viloria and Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal. Unfortunately, the latter is a bit of a drag. Animal cognition is such a fascinating topic but the way the book is written makes it seem pretty tedious.

    I also just finished Animals of a Bygone Era by Maja Säfström (which I loved) and started We Were the Lucky Ones.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.