September Reads & Listens

It’s been a very busy start to fall. We’ve been splitting and stacking our wood for our wood furnace. The weather has been beautiful and warm, making the work fun and enjoyable. But all that outdoor time made me more tired at night so my reading has slowed a bit. In September, I finished reading my BOMC club August selection which took me a month to read, as well as listening to three titles from my audiobook library.

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


I read this because this was one of my Book of the Month Club selections for August . It’s a good beach read about relationships, family and self-discovery. There are plenty of interesting characters and settings to escape to. I’m not a huge fan of adult romance books, but I found the unlikely chemistry between Alex and Poppy to be well portrayed and the style of of the story is told, kept me interested and engaged most of the time. It you are a fan of adult-romance or looking for a light and easy beach read, you’ll probably like People We Meet on Vacation. 3 stars.

The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


This was a beautifully written story which is based on the horrific events as recorded by ancient historian, Josephus. It is the story of how 2000 years ago, 900 Jews held off the Romans at Masada. It is the story of four women and how their lives each lead them to this mountain in the Judean desert.
Hoffman brings to this story to life through Yael, Revka, Azizah and Shirah, the dovekeepers, they are the secret-keepers. Four very complex, independent and resourceful women who fight for their survival.


Beginner’s Mind by Yo-Yo Ma

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


This is a wonderful Audible original. Beautiful music and very interesting to listen to, this short memoir of Yo-Yo Ma’s Beginner’s Mind is a nice quick listen.


The Pact by Jodi Picoult

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


This is an intense book that includes topics of relationships, expectations, teenage depression, self-harm, sudden death. I didn’t love this book like many other reviewers seem to have. It’s the first book of Picoult’s I’ve ever read and she is good at creating an engrossing and suspenseful story which kept me engaged until the end. But I found that some of it was unbelievable and not everything added up. 2.5 stars



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Xine’s Audiobook Club- What I’m listening to this month

Hi! I’m Xine and welcome to my Audiobook Club. Since we are all practicing social distancing, I’ve decided to start an online Audiobook Club. I hope you join me as we are all entering this new world of social distancing, but just because we need to distance ourselves doesn’t mean we can’t still all have to be isolated. We can all keep up an online conversation one way or another. So with that, once again welcome to Xine’s Audiobook Club. I’m Xine and this is what I’ve been listing to this month.

It’s been a weird month so far and my book selections this month seem to mimicking that. An eclectic selection I started the month listening to Carsick – John Waters Hitchhikes across America. I’m currently on chapter 16, 4 hours 56 minutes remaining of this 8 hour, 8 minute journey. So I’m over halfway there. I started listening to Carsick because the description sounded interesting and different from my usual picks and I was up for something different. I know who John Waters is but haven’t seen any of his movies but I’ve heard of them.

I was also waiting for the new Reese Witherspoon’s Book of the Month Club selection to be released. I had enjoyed listening to the February book, The Scent Keeper by Erica Bauermeister and narrated by Gabra Zackman. I started following the book club since I sometimes get overwhelmed by all the books and don’t know what to listen to so having someone else choose is nice. I end up listening to titles I, myself, never would have selected and a usually pleasantly surprised but not aways.

I always end up listening to more than one book at a time, I like to mix up the rotation with a biography or memoir, a novel of fiction, perhaps some comedy essays or short stories. I had started listening to George Carlin Reads to You, but found myself no longer amused by some of the comedian’s once funny observations about life. In today’s world it’s just not so funny right now. Maybe I’m just getting old. So I stopped listening and exchanged the title for a credit. Did you know you can do that on Audible? You can exchange your titles back at any time, even after you have listened to them completely. You get the option of exchanging it for another title right away or receiving a credit back. I listen to so many more books since discovering this little seemingly hidden feature which is the only logical reason as to why they do this. I say hidden only because I accidentally discovered it on iPhone and when I looked on my desktop it doesn’t seem to be an option.

This month’s Reese’s Book Club selection is The Jetsetters by Amanda Eyre Ward and narrated by Theresa Plummer. It looks to be about family relationships, something I can certainly relate to. I’m currently only on chapter 4 and just been introduced to all the characters and their lives.and still have 7 hours and 9 minutes remaining in this 8 hr and 3 minute book. So I have much to look forward to.

Finally, I have selected Second Nature: A Gardener’s Education by Michael Pollan since I am a gardener and have read another titles by Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma and enjoyed it. I hadn’t known about this book when I looked up titles under his name in the the Audible library and it intrigued me. Plus it’s a nice change of pace from whatever wild tale Waters’ is spinning and from just trying to figure out who is who of The Jetsetters.

These days, I find I can only take so much of listening to the news, although that’s important to stay up-to-date on what’s going on, particularly with the Covid-19 pandemic gripping our world right now. As I work on other things, whether it be on the computer, cleaning the house, folding the laundry, even while outside in my garden with my headphones on – I can escape to another world even if it’s only for a few hours.

Stay safe, and healthy everyone!

End Note: You may have noticed by now that I have included some links to the books and or audiobooks when and where I could to make things easy for anyone who may be interested in checkin any of these titles out. In the interest of transparency I am part of the Amazon affiliate program. So if you were to click on the link and actually purchase something – I would get a small commission for the referral. Just wanted you to know.