Feeding Myself

Around the time last month that I was riding the stress and grey weather struggle bus, one of my favorite bloggers, Glennon, published this awesome post about how much books fill her up. After bedtime as a kid, I used up batteries in every flashlight I could get my hands on to sneakily finish my latest read. I’ve always been a reader, and getting back to reading for fun since the beginning of March has really helped turn my mood around.

In troubled times, I tend to choose books from my two favorite genres: YA Fantasy Fiction and Memoir. For me, both types of book serve as (to quote Glennon) “lovely reminders that you’re not alone.” In the spirit of not being alone, I wanted to share three of my latest reads:

My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor: a fascinating memoir from Taylor, a neuroanatomist who had a stroke at the age of 37. The story details her life before, during, and after the stroke/recovery. With quite a bit of brain anatomy at the beginning, I was a bit bored (though my mom loved this part of it), but I was totally hooked after Taylor’s description of her stroke and recovery. She also goes into some more metaphysical/energy type stuff that I found thought-provoking. I listened to this on audiobook and it’s read by Taylor, which is a neat bonus.

Blood, Bones and Butter: the Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef by Gabrielle Hamilton: I started this memoir from Gabrielle Hamilton, a non-culinary school trained chef with a MFA in writing, in book form ages ago, and I couldn’t get into it. When I saw that Hamilton reads the audiobook, I decided to give it a try in audio form, and loved it. Good things about well-written memoirs (flagrant truth-telling of personal experience and a strong, clear author’s voice) combine with a compelling view of Hamilton’s world of being a chef, daughter, mother, and wife. I loved learning about being a professional chef and was struck by the similarities between being a woman in science and a woman in the restaurant biz.

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman: Okay, so I just started listening to this today, but I am already absorbed in the story. Recommended by Molly at First the Egg, it’s a YA fantasy fiction book with a young female protagonist, a talented musician who seems to be becoming involved in a human/dragon conflict. I don’t know much about what’s happening since I’ve barely begun, but I’d love for some of you to read it so we could talk about it!

6 thoughts on “Feeding Myself

  1. Oooooh, me too! I have had Blood, Bones, and Butter on my to-read shelf for awhile. Seraphina sounds fantastic as well, maybe I will try to read it so we can chat about it when I get into town. 🙂

  2. Yes to reading for fun! I’ve been making reading for pleasure a priority this year and it’s amazing how much more like myself I feel when I do. I may give Seraphina a go. I’ve been absorbed in a lot of non-fiction recently, and while interesting, it doesn’t feed my soul the same way fiction does.

    • I agree with you that nonfiction is not as soul-feeding as fiction, though the exception for me is memoirs, especially when they’re great stories.

      I’d love to talk about Seraphina with you 🙂

  3. Seraphina is on my Amazon list! I’ve been jonesing for a good fantasy fiction book:) The guilty pleasure book I’m on a waitlist for is the new Charlaine Harris Sookie Stackhouse “trueblood” novel…Jill Bolte Taylor does a great TED talk on her stroke experience as well.

  4. So I’m scrolling through your archives and I can’t help but comment on this one! I do so much YA lit work! SO MUCH. The next time you need YA recs, come to me! And here are my favorite two, unsolicited…

    The Lumatere Chronicles by Melina Marchetta
    His Fair Assassin Trilogy by Robin LaFevers

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