I realize that we still have to talk about Americanah and I’m going to be V honest with you: I just finished it. I had a ridiculously busy February and March and wasn’t able to finish it. It was also loooooong so I deeply apologize for not talking about it sooner. The post is coming toward the end of the week.
Heart Berries is memoir that follows Terese’s life from a young girl on the Seabird Island Indian Reservation in the Pacific Northwest to her adult self, attempting to use her creativity and art to heal herself. (Something about that is instantly relatable to me.) There is so much that happens in this book and yet it must happen quickly and tightly because it’s only 150 pages—woohoo!
Have you heard of this book? It’s been getting rave reviews and hit the New York Times bestseller list just last month. It’s somewhat of a new release, too!
SORRY about the delay on the announcement of the next (February’s) book. I’ve been in the jungle in Colombia with the most terrible hotel internet. Putting up Monday’s post took-—I’m not even kidding-—a few hours to upload the photos to the blog. It was insane.
BUT now I’m at the airport in Medellín with 2018 internet speed and the time is now to share the next book.
The book I chose for this month is called Americana by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. This book takes place in Nigeria, London and The United States. I felt like this would be a welcomed contrast to Shaker Heights, Ohio.
This book explores a few themes but mostly it seems to be a love story, between girl and boy, separated by an ocean and a post 9/11 America. It seems like a fascinating book that would also yield an interesting discussion.
The author, Adichie, has won numerous awards from the three books she’s published. The book also has a crazy amount of positive reviews everywhere so the risk of it being boring/bad/lame is VERY slim.
I loved January’s book and it seems like everyone did as well! I hope this book is the same. My hopes are high.
Are you gonna be reading along?!
We’ll be back here on March 15th with a discussion AND I’ll be sharing a recipe inspired by the book.
P.S. If you share it on the Instagram, tag your photo/Insta Story #cozybookclub 🙂
Let me preface this by saying that I don’t read a ton. I’m not one of those voracious readers that eats up book after book. I devour movies and TV shows and essays and articles, but not books. So it felt really nice to be enthralled in a story. It’s also somewhat isolating? I’m not sure if that’s the right word but I dig that it’s not a shared experience. You can walk around and replay the scene you just read, think about the characters and it feels like yours.
Let’s start by talking about the characters.
Mia Warren – Mother of Pearl, artist, photographer, mentor to Izzy, comforter to Lexie, nemesis to Elena. I love Mia’s character. She’s a fascinating person. And while she makes decisions that are hard to agree with, I understand them.
Pearl Warren – Daughter of Mia, thoughtful and reserved. Exhausted from the instability of their nomadic lifestyle, she admires Elena Richardson because she is all that she craves: stable and structured.
Elena Richardson – Mother of four, part-time journalist and wife to successful lawyer Mr. Richardson. Most importantly, she’s the landlord to Mia, which is how the two characters intersect.
Shaker Heights – The town itself is also a character. Idyllic, quaint and tight-knit. It is the backdrop of the ensemble piece that is Little Fires Everywhere.
Let’s start the discussion part:
1. Who was your favorite character?
My answer:For me the answer is easy: Mia Warren. My favorite thing about this story is that there are zero villains. Yes, Elena is technically the antagonist but I empathize with Elena a lot. I understand her need and desire for structure and adhering to societies’ rules. I respect her it. But obviously, we all root for the person going against the current, the person who risks it all for what they think is the right thing to do. I feel most like Mia. Or maybe I want to be most like her.
2. Who did you relate to the most?
My answer:Hmm…I know this is sort of a cheap answer but I think I relate to all of them in completely different ways. But not one entirely. I relate to Elena’s need for following the path that was laid out for her. I understand Izzy for seeing the BS that is her mother. And I understand Lexie for not telling her mother. I also get why Pearl is almost allergic to her life at the moment but eventually understands.
Let me just say that one of my goals for 2018 is to explore content beyond just food. Maybe dip into interiors (kitchen remodel post coming soon, I promise), maybe some clothes, maybe some of my favorite beauty things…you know, just switch it up because recipe after recipe can become so monotonous for me.
But it really hadn’t crossed my mind for us to read a book together until my DMs about The Glass Castle were off the chain and everyone wanted to do a book club. I was surprised about the positive feedback and now I’m super stoked that we’re all doing this together!!
So let’s dive in to what we’re gonna do:
The Purpose of #CozyBookClub – Every year I want to read more books. But every year I get super busy and can’t seem to find the time. Also, a lot of times I get distracted; I need help staying focused. I’m hoping that this will help me and you!
ALSO, whenever I read a book or see a movie by myself, I talk Josh’s ear off about it and basically tell him the entire story and premise and he just stares back at me and nods. I know he’s not paying attention, he’s just being nice. NOW HE DOESNT HAVE TO because we have each other!
I think this comes from my time at film school where we’d watch a movie and talk about it for 2 hours after. It always felt so nice to talk about the work.
The Books – I want to choose good reads that everyone will like and everyone will have access to. One of the rules that I’m following when selecting the books we’re reading is that the book needs to be in audible form because this isn’t dang school! So, if you can’t find the time to read the book, then listen to it on your way to work or when you go on walks. Whatever. There will be no test.
The Timeline – We’ll read one book a month. That’s it. It’s totally doable. And I don’t think we’ll be picking super long books nor books that are trilogies.