What I've read lately

I used to write about books all day, every day.

As a result, I developed a hefty reading list. A list that I didn't touch for a long time. I like reading, but not like I love other things. I couldn't immerse myself in books for work and find joy in reading when I got home.

Bolivia's impossibly slow internet, polluted air, and chilly nights make me not want to leave my apartment in the evenings, but unable to internet at the same time. I've therefore been reading - a lot. Here's what I've plowed through lately and (a little bit of) what's on my list.

 

Psychological Thrillers

My favorite escapist genre. I can read a psychological thriller any day, no matter my mood. The only problem? The good ones keep me up at night because they're scary. Oh well. I found most of these when I was writing about the best psychological thrillers of 2015.

Pretty Girls: one of my new favorite psychological thrillers - dark, exhilarating, disturbing, and just so good. Ahhh it's good. Read it if you like creepy things. Don't read it if you're squeamish.

Black Eyed Susans: A very typical psychological thriller, plot-driven and full of puzzles. I loved this one, but can barely remember it. Classic escapist read.

The Girl on the Train: this book got such rave reviews. I thought it was only okay. The character development was stellar, but the rest of it was kinda ehhh. Worth a read, but not my favorite.

What She Knew: I got this when it was on sale for $1.99. Super worth that $1.99, IMHO. It's less of an action-heavy thriller and more of a character-driven literary thriller. I loved the descriptions of grief and panic, in particular. It's so relatable. How often can you call a psychological thriller "relatable?" 

Sara's Game: this was written by a customer of ours (back when I worked with authors) - a customer I quite like. I bought Sara's Game years ago and just got around to reading it. It's a quick read, but very engaging. I finished it at midnight and had to wake up Jeff for snuggles because I couldn't sleep. It's scary!

 

...Everything Else

I read other genres sometimes, I promise.

World Without End: holy moly I love Ken Follett. Amanda gave me Pillars of the Earth a couple of years ago, which I devoured. World Without End is the continuation of Pillars of the Earth. I loved it even more than the first book. It flows more quickly (important in a thousand-page novel), I enjoyed the characters a little more, and am slightly more interested in the eras of history covered. A must-read for historical fiction fans. I'll read his Century trilogy eventually.

The Husband's Secret: I know I'm approximately the last person in the universe to get into Liane Moriarty's books. Her descriptions sound great, but I've read plenty of lackluster books in the same vein. "Women's Literary Fiction" often doesn't hold my attention. That's not the case with The Husband's Secret - I just started it, and all I want to do is read it. Time to spend too much money on her entire anthology!

The Blondes: oooh, how I wanted to love this book. It started out pretty strong, if different than expected. I hoped a world-falling-apart / social commentary / mysterious-disease-hits-manhattan book would be a little less.... introspective, I guess? It's written in a very exposition-y manner, with a mother telling the story of this disease and the fallout on society to her unborn child. The ending is eye-rolling and super boring. Don't bother. 

 

What's on my TBR list

Who: The A Method for Hiring: Fred recommended this one to me. Lately, we've talked a lot about fostering an atmosphere of psychological safety at Tortuga. We've discussed trust, feeling free to make mistakes, and how it all comes down to hiring the right people - people who deserve your trust and care, even if they're going through a hard time or aren't as productive as usual or whatever. Fred and Jeremy have put together an incredible team using the methods from Who and I want to figure out how they did it (and how I can help next time we hire). I'll read this when I'm in the mood for nonfiction.

Station Eleven: A Chloe recommendation. The book descriptions starts out, "an audacious, darkly glittering novel set in the eerie days of civilization’s collapse." Yeah, that sounds like a Taylor book.

In a Dark, Dark Wood: my next spooky read. I'm excited about this one. I need a break from scary books, though - they're starting to eat my brain and give me weird paranoias.

Pretty Much Screwed: this is apparently a funny book about divorce - my next non-scary escapist book. You can see why I might be interested in that. Make me feel normal, literature!

Primates of Park Avenue: this is a controversial and problematic one, because apparently the author didn't actually do everything she says / exaggerates a lot, etc. But whatever, it's still a topic I'm perversely interested in because I really hate affluence worship. I'm planning to read it as a fictional tale rather than a memoir and be glad that I never have to set foot on the grounds of the Chapel Hill Country Club, ever again. 

The Unfortunate Importance of Beauty: another Chloe recommendation. I do love me some social commentary (and female friendship). 

And of course, the rest of Liane Moriarty's books. I'm obsessed.

GIVE ME MOAR RECOMMENDATIONS PLZ


Taylor Coil is traveling the world with Remote Year, living in 12 countries in 12 months, while working as a marketing manager. Follow along to read more philosophies on work, stories from the road, and general (mis)adventures. Sign up for the weekly email or read more from the blog.