Kicking off my goal of reading two books a month for a total of 24 books this year, I read Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling and After The Quake by Haruki Murakami.
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) is an easy and fun read. Mindy Kaling makes you feel like you are hanging out with a girlfriend for lunch. She's funny, relateable and real. I liked the mix of topics in her book: childhood experiences, college life, when she first moved to LA, working at The Office and her random opinions on various topics/lists.
I've read many humorous memoirs (as they happen to be my favorite genre as of late) and this is one I would rate highly. "Irish Exits", "Revenge Fantasies While Jogging" and "All About The Office" are some chapters I enjoyed in particular. Definitely pick this book up if you like humor, The Office or random girly musings.
After The Quake was a step out of my comfort zone. In recent years I have been pretty selective (obviously since I only read two books last year!) about the kinds of books I read. I've mostly stuck to memoirs (other than the Twilight books back in 09' when they were all the rage). After the Quake was the first fiction book I'd read in a while and it might have been a little too far out of my comfort zone. The book is actually rather short (only 147 pages) and is a compilation of six short stories. Other than the fact they all occur during the same time period, (shortly after the Kobe, Japan earthquake in 1995) the stories aren't related.
The stories are very mystical and layered with meanings and really delve into how people in Japan were feeling such despair and loss during that time period. A few of the stories were enjoyable, I liked "Thailand" and "Honey Pie". However, I probably would not recommend this book to a friend unless it was the sort of book they enjoyed reading.
You will probably soon realize that I can be a picky reader. I don't enjoy a lot of overly descriptive writing or when the dialogue feels redundant. This book was guilty on both counts so not a favorite of mine. While it felt good to try a new genre, I found myself struggling to finish this short book since it never really pulled me in and made me want to read more.
Check back soon for next month's reads! :)