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  • Ryanne Harper

Goodreads Challenge: March Edition

Every year, I sign up for the Goodreads reading challenge and, not to brag, y'all, but every year I crush it. I crush it primarily with the help of audiobooks. This year, I am challenging myself to spend less time watching television and more time reading and writing. I do a good amount of all three, but do I really need to watch season nine of RuPaul's Drag Race for a third time? Probably. But the point is, I'm making an effort to read more. To help myself, I'm removing the audiobook crutch.

The goal: 60

Current Count: 20

Nothing to See Here, Kevin Wilson

I loved this book. Wilson somehow takes a situation that is inherently sad and made it funny. Typically, there's nothing hilarious about abandoned kids...except in this case. So, the premise is a little strange. These two kiddos burst into flames when they get emotional. The kids aren't a danger to themselves, but everyone and everything around them is up for grabs.

So, when a woman calls an old friend for help managing the flame twins, she agrees. Things go...okay. If you want a full review, with spoilers, check out my other blog.

Heart of Junk, Luke Geddes

I chose this one based on the cover. Um, it was alright. A failing antique mall, wacky vendors, new dealers, an obsession with Barbie, everything riding on a TV show, and a kidnapping. A lot of plot lines happening, and I was there for all of them. Then the end fell a little short. It was anticlimactic considering all the subplots and eccentric characters.

The Secrets We Kept, Lara Prescott

An espionage novel centered around Russian literature, specifically Dr. Zhivago? Yes, please. I love a good spy novel. Unfortunately, this was just an okay spy novel. I wanted more spy stuff and less love story.

The Girls in the Garden, Lisa Jewell

Le sigh. I love Lisa Jewell and had high expectations for this one. Her books are real page turners, but this one was a bit of a let down. The mystery involved wasn't as thrilling and the pace was slower than a normal Jewell novel. Look, it was still good, just not what I've come to expect from Jewell.

The Family Fang, Kevin Wilson

The Fangs are an eccentric family. The parents are performance artists, and their children are mostly embarrassed. The kids are often unwilling participants in their parent's vision. And, now, as adults, they are reluctant to even visit their folks. Through a series of weird events involving a potato gun and public nudity, both Annie and Buster find themselves back at home. And then their parents go missing. Is it part of the plan? Are they really in danger? Read the book to find out.

Life of Pi, Yann Martel

This is one of my favorite books. I love it. I chose it for our book club, so I had the pleasure of rereading it. And then we had to cancel book club because of social distancing and all that jazz. Anyway, Life of Pi is a beautiful story about a boy, a life boat, and a tiger.

Doctor Sleep, Stephen King

I've been waiting on this one for months, and it was worth it. As you know, I'm a Stephen King fanatic...maybe even his number one fan. No worries, Uncle Stevie, I don't have the patience to be a caregiver, and I don't have the stomach for hobbling.

Doctor Sleep is a sequel to The Shining. It was great to see how little Danny turns out and, spoiler alert, it's not great. Can he turn it around? Probably. Oh, and watch out for Winnebagos! You never know who's behind the wheel...or what.

Dorothy Parker: Selected Stories, Dorothy Parker

Our lady of perpetual sarcasm, Miss Dorothy Parker. I adore her, and the library just got an new audio book read by none other than Elaine Stritch. I checked it out immediately. Funny, sad, honest, and witty, the stories are classic Dorothy Parker and Elaine is the perfect narrator.

March was a great month of reading for me. With life essentially shutting down thanks to COVID-19, I've had more time to myself. I'm reading more. I'm working as much as I can. I'm binge-watching Tiger King. I'm using Marco Polo to talk to my friends almost constantly. So, readers, let's make the best of this whole situation and catch up on things that make us happy.

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