A Bookish Update #4

Today’s post was supposed to be all about my dorm room and how I’ve working to make it more colorful and inviting than last year’s room, but… then I remembered that since I broke my phone a few weeks ago I don’t have any recent pictures. I promise to publish that post as soon as my phone is fixed!

In the meantime, I thought I’d tell you about what I’ve been reading lately, because I haven’t done one of these bookish updates in a few months. Unfortunately I haven’t had as much reading time as I would like, let alone time to read for leisure, but I’m trying to make the best of my situation. I may be majorly behind on my 2016 Goodreads reading challenge, but I’m determined not to give up!

saga-volume-sixFinished A Little While Ago

Last Sunday I read Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever by Mem Fox. I don’t plan to ever have kids but it was still really fun to read because I love books (duh) and want to write children’s books someday (!!!!!), so this subject is fascinating to me, not to mention important. I do wish that more of the author’s evidence had been statistical and not anecdotal since much of it came across as, “This is what worked for me and my children, so it will automatically work for your family too,” but other than that it was a very inspirational book.

Before that, I read The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 3: Commercial Suicide by Kieron Gillen and Saga, Vol. 6 by Brian K. Vaughan, and now I’m so impatient for the next book in each series! The next volume of The Wicked + The Divine will be out in October, but the new volume of Saga won’t be published until 2017 (!!!).

Just Finished

Yesterday I went to the library to get some books for the weekend (see below) and found a picture book called A Child’s First Book of Trump by . The illustrations were cute, and the verse strongly reminded me of Dr. Seuss, but ultimately I was disappointed that the book hadn’t been… longer? Yeah, I think that’s what bothered me. It was super brief, which didn’t make sense because with a person like Trump there should be plenty to satirize.

Currently Reading

Since I’m currently reading quite a few things for school and don’t want to bore you with all the details, here are just a few of them:

We’re reading Doctor Faustus by Christopher Marlowe in my Foundations of the English Major class right now, and I’m thoroughly enjoying it! It’s hilarious and, although it was written at the same time as Shakespeare’s plays, I find the language in this play much easier to understand. Also, as an early example of the “deal with the devil” trope, it’s helping me to better understand some of my favorite modern books with similar plots, such as Demon Road by Derek Landy and The Wicked + The Divine. (The first volume of which is actually titled The Faust Act…)

I also have a few more pages of A Defence of Poesy by Philip Sidney to read for that class – I was meant to finish it a few days ago but I was trying to finish my first major assignment for Journalistic Reporting & Writing at the time, so I let that reading fall to the wayside for a while. Finishing it is on my studying to-do list for tomorrow!


For Prose Style, I’m reading Building Great Sentences by Brooks Landon, who is a professor here at the University of Iowa. I love what he has to say about making your writing better at the sentence level, so I’m planning to read the whole book even though that’s not required – and I would love to take one of his classes in the future if at all possible!

Reading Nextamerican-monsters

Eventually I hope to write an entire post about my “Sunday books,” as I’ve begun to refer to them, but for now all I’ll say is this: I’ve set up a study schedule that allows me to take Sundays off, and one of the ways I spend my free time on those days is by reading an entire book.

This afternoon my book of choice is The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. Several of my writing professors have either recommended her works or assigned excerpts from them, so I want to see what all the fuss is about because all I’ve read so far are a few of her essays.

I also picked up a collection of essays, The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley, at the library yesterday. It looks amazing: I flipped through it already and saw that a lot of the chapter titles dealt with race, LGBTQ+ issues, et cetera, and even quoted some of Roxane Gay’s writing from Bad Feminist!

I’ve read some books that professed to be about/by/for feminist geeks that turned out to be written from a painfully heteronormative, whitewashed perspective, so you have no idea how happy I was to find this essay collection!

Reading Soon

I ordered Derek Landy’s new book American Monsters about a week ago – from a bookseller in the UK, because it’s not available here, so it has to travel a long way and I just hope that it will arrive in time for my birthday because that would be an awesome present! I’m a bit sad that this is the final book in the series, but excited to see what happens to all the characters… and then, of course, there will be new Skulduggery Pleasant books to read soon because Landy is adding more books to the series!

Recently Added To TBR List

Some of the books I recently found and/or were recommended to me are:

  • girl-hearts-girlI loved Una LaMarche’s first book, Like No Other, so I was ecstatic to find out that she has an upcoming novel: You In Five Acts, about a group of five friends at a New York City performing arts high school!
  • Mawa Mahima @ The Controversy recommended The World Between Two Covers: Reading The Globe by Ann Morgan to me! Diverse books? Sign me the HECK up.
  • The Pants Project by Cat Clarke looks like an adorable middle grade book with a trans protagonist!
  • Girl Hearts Girl by Lucy Sutcliffe is a memoir about a young woman who realizes she’s gay and begins an online LDR with another girl! Ahhhh, this one looks super cute and right up my alley.
  • I want to read We Were Feminists Once: From Riot Grrrl to CoverGirl®, the Buying and Selling of a Political Movement by Andi Zeisler because critiques of mainstream/pop culture feminism are my THING! (See above fangirling re: The Geek Feminist Revolution.)


Feel free to steal this idea for your own blog, or answer the questions in the comments! Actually, PLEASE answer the questions in the comments, because I would love to know more about your reading habits! (And what is the best book you’ve read lately? Do you have any recs for me?!)

About nevillegirl

Elizabeth. University of Iowa class of 2019. Triple majoring in English & Creative Writing, Journalism, and Gender, Women's, & Sexuality Studies. Twenty-one-year-old daydreamer, introvert, voracious reader, aspiring writer, and lesbian. Passionate about feminism, mental health, comic books, and cats.
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