What I’ve Been Reading Lately – Mini Book Talks

December has been so busy so let’s just quickly talk about some of the books I’ve been reading!



Big Magic

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert

About In A Sentence (ish): Elizabeth Gilbert talks about creative living and overcoming fear and other obstacles in your creative life!

Thoughts: I liked this one and will share some of my favorite quotes from it in another post but I think it’s a good one for all creative types — especially writers. I will say I thought it was going to be a little bit more ~practical~ type of book (more tips/exercises/etc) but it was definitely more inspirational. Sometimes I found myself skimming (especially because some of her thoughts on creativity were a little hokey for me and also some were repetitive) but the parts that stuck with me were things I so needed to hear. It’s intended for all creative types but I do think it would super benefit writers and, also as a blogger, I got a lot out of it, too.  I can’t wait to share some of the things I learned from it later and that definitely helped reframe things for me. It’s a short, quick read that I think will be good for anyone feeling like they need a little inspiring kick in the pants or who needs to work through some roadblocks in their creativity as she touches on quite a few things that could hinder.





With Every Breath Lia Riley

With Every Breath by Lia Riley

About In A Sentence-ish: Auden finds herself in Patagonia so she can cover the story of some of the most intense climbers trying to make their way up the brutal La Aguja all so she can land her dream job. She meets Rhys, a professional mountaineer from Scotland who famously lost his brother in a climbing accident, when a storm threatens to leave her stranded in the middle of nowhere in the midst of it.

Thoughts: I’m very much a newb in the NA romance genre so take my thoughts/rating with a grain of salt. I’ve found NA romances I dig but this one isn’t one of them. It was a little too cheesy for me and mehh..just so much meh. I think just not my type.  I was excited about the plot, setting and what was promised that the two characters would be facing but I felt like a lot of it was underdeveloped besides Rhys’s story. I didn’t feel like Auden grew much or got much out of this trip besides what an actual orgasm was like. Which, important and yay for her, but I wanted to feel like I was on this journey with her but when I got to the end I never felt like I was there for all this stuff she says she learned and how she changed from this trip. I will say…Lia Riley can sure write a hot broody Scottish guy. I enjoyed him very much and could just picture his sexy voice and self. But I honestly never felt the romance. It was insta-everything and I’m not even bothered totally by instalove but I need to FEEL that all consuming passion and I never did. I got the insta-lust but I just didn’t buy the love that quick. I just didn’t. I mean, I was glad Auden pointed out how unbelievable it was they fell that fast but it still didn’t make me particularly invested in them.

Also lols for days for creative euphemisms and phrases in this book — beef bayonet (“I would have gotten stabbed by his beef bayonet had his shorts been any smaller”), scro-tak (an attack to the scrotum) and Pound Town as in “Oh my god. That was an invitation to Pound Town.” (that was my husbands fave one I told him). I am very much in the minority here so if you are a NA romance lover you might like this one. But this picky NA romance lover did not like this one which is sad because it sounded so good and I was craving a romance and I just want to find more NA I like. I would have probably enjoyed a narrative that just described the amazing setting of this novel just as much if not more




Harry Potter

Harry Potter & The Chamber of Secrets by JK Rowling

About In A Sentence-ish: Do I need to summarize? Nah I don’t.

Thoughts: I will wait for the applause to die down. YES I FINALLY READ BOOK 2. I have to ask myself WHY did I wait so long in between my reading of this and book 1. I REALLY enjoyed this one and I’m so eager to continue on to book 3. I read it in a matter of a few hours and I felt like I fell more in love with all these characters even more. REALLY enjoyed trying to figure out who was making trouble with the Chamber of Secrets and all the Riddle stuff. It was so compelling. WILL NOT WAIT SO LONG TO READ BOOK 3…I PROMISE.  I continue to have suspicions that Snape is the worst. I can’t figure him out but I feel very unsettled. OH OH and other noteworthy things..I decided to get sorted after reading this one…I was sorted as Gryffindor (72%) but also 72% Hufflepuff. Apparently I can be a Gryffinpuff!??






Have you read any of these? What did you think?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. YAY so happy that you finally read book 2 of the Harry Potter series. HEHE and yeshu, you can be a Gryffindor 😀 Big Magic looks pretty amazing to me, and ooooooh that cover is BEYOND BEAUTIFUL. <3 I might have to get that for myself! Hehe

  2. I can’t believe that you just started reading Harry Potter, but I know that you’ll enjoy the series.

  3. Yay, I’m so happy that you finally read the next HP book! 🙂 I’m a Huffleclaw (as I’m more Hufflepuff, than Ravenclaw… but percentages were SUPER close)!

  4. “stabbed by his beef bayonet”… bahahaha, that’s AWFUL. Have you read Sweet Filthy Boy by Christina Lauren? I really thought that was a good NA romance-ish book.

    • bahahah right?!? I kid you not I was laughing silently and shaking the bed because Will was sleeping next to me and finally I had to run out of the room and exploded into laughter on our couch and promptly stayed up for an hour with Twitter LOLing over it. And I haven’t but it is on my TBR so I will def be checking it out!! Thank you for the rec!

  5. YES HARRY POTTER! I loved Chamber of Secrets so much! It’s great to see you finally got to it! 🙂

    • Yeaaaay 🙂 it’s funny bc I took a year in between books and as I started reading I didn’t realize how much I’d missed them only in reading one book but now I feel like I’ve got momentum to keep reading and not wait so long in between!!

  6. Gryffinpuff!! How cool! Also YAY to you finally reading the HP series!! It gets SO much more substantial as the series goes along. I hope you continue to love it 🙂

    • I feel like Gryffinpuff suited me pretty well though I was a LITTLE surprised I didn’t have more Slytherin in me. Can’t wait to continue on!!

  7. YAY! This is your first Harry Potter read through? I’m so excited for you.
    Harry Potter is one of my favorite series. I wish you a spoiler free read!
    Pottermore used to have a sorting quiz, which was supposed to be the most accurate. I got sorted into Slytherin, which I knew I was from the first book. My secondary house would definitely be Ravenclaw. You’re a Gryffindor with a secondary house of Hufflepuff! If you get the chance, you should listen to the Harry Potter audiobooks, they’re incredible! Jim Dale does a superb job! (oh my gosh, I’m rambling. Sorry!)

    • YES first read through!! 🙂 I’ve remained pretty spoiler-free thus far though I do know a main death and SOB. The quiz I took SAID it was the same q’s from Pottermore but WHO KNOWS. And yes I’ve heard the audiobooks are so great and I have a feeling I will eventually listen to them!!

  8. I’m so glad to hear that you felt BIG MAGIC would be beneficial for creative types, particularly writers. I’ve been curious about it since I first saw someone tweet about it, and I definitely think I’m going to have to get my hands on a copy! Also, yay for Harry Potter! I hope you keep reading the series 🙂

  9. I have only read three of the harry potter books. I loved the chamber of secrets. I love the book and the movie. I actually was thinking about moving on to book 4. It has been a few years since I began the series.

  10. Yay for Harry Potter! You’re not the only one behind, I just read the series for the very first time this year! I saw the movies when they first came out, and I honestly wasn’t all that impressed by them. After the first few I didn’t like them all that much – I thought the last few were boring and I was underwhelmed by the ending. I almost didn’t read the books at all because I already knew what was going to happen, but I’m sooo glad I did! The books are so magical, and 100000x better than the movies. There’s so much to them that wasn’t in the movies. Now I actually enjoy the movies though, because they give me a piece of the world I enjoyed so much 😀

  11. I have been debating about reading Big Magic. I couldn’t decide if the hype was worth it. Maybe I will give it a whirl.

  12. If it makes you feel any better, I’ve only made it halfway through the Chamber of Secrets. I tried reading the series a few years ago and really wasn’t digging it (though I was in love with the movies. Blasphemous? Probably.), but I think I need to give the series another shot. I think now I’m at a point in life where I can appreciate the books.

  13. Yessss to the second Harry Potter!! IMO the books only get better, book three is my favourite out of the whole series. I re-read them this year, powered through them in a month haha. So good!

  14. I like to call myself Ravenpuff, though I did finally decide to officially claim Hufflepuff, as that was how I was sorted on Pottermore and I am very much about fairness and loyalty. So glad you enjoyed The Chamber of Secrets and I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the rest of the series! Things with Snape do actually make sense eventually, but I love what J.K. Rowling said about him recently, which I won’t share everything she said because it is a little spoilery, but she called him “all grey” and that is very true.