The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

Another month has come and gone and it’s time to link up with Steph and Jana for the best day of the month, well except for my birthday later on, Show Us Your Books day! I seriously can’t believe how fast this year is going, and I also can’t believe how fast I’m reading and how many good books I’ve read lately as well! I think that has a lot to do with the fact that I’ve been listening to some books that my mom has on her Audible account, so even on the days that I’m not riding the bus, I’m still technically “reading”. Even though I’ve made some great progress on my overall reading goal, I still haven’t made much progress when it comes to Erin’s Book Challenge this time around, but hopefully I’ll push through and knock out some more of the books later on this month and finish up by the end of April. Anyways, let’s get on with the book reviews!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

He’s Gone by Deb Caletti ★★ 3 stars

I was looking forward to listening to this book on audible, but I have to admit that it fell flat for me. I really think that the only reason that I finished it was because I wanted to know what happened and needed something to listen to when I drove in to work.

When Dani wakes up one morning after a big party for her husband, she discovers that despite the fact that all of her husband’s things are still at home, he’s in fact missing. As Dani herself tries to unravel the mystery of her husband’s disappearance, the police become involved and suddenly the fingers start to be pointed at Dani herself for the reason that her husband is gone.

Overall, the premise of the story sounded really interesting, but unfortunately I felt like the story was too slow and that it jumped too much back and forth between the past and nowadays and it all kind of ran together. Although that might have something to do with the fact that I was listening and maybe not paying attention the whole time. Overall, it was fine to pass the time, but not my favorite book of the month.

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

See Me by Nicholas Sparks ★★ 4 stars

If you’re a fan of Nicholas Sparks books, then definitely make sure to pick up See Me. It was definitely the same Nicholas Sparks formula, but with a little bit of a mystery to it as well. I liked trying to figure out “who done it” with the little bit of romance as well. I also always love the Carolina settings that Nicholas Sparks uses for most of his books!

I know that quite a few people thought that this book was written more like a script than a book, and I have to admit that I can totally see it. Most of Nicholas Sparks’s books are becoming movies, and it almost seemed like he took some of the extra work out of it for becoming a script later on.

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn ★★ 4 stars

This was a reread for me, and let me tell you, I loved it just as much as I did when I read it the first time! Chris and I were doing a lot of driving in January so we decided that we needed to listen to a book together. I knew that he liked the movie Gone Girl, so I figured that he’d be interested in another Gillian Flynn book.

While he kept on going back and forth about who he thought did it, he really enjoyed it and it kept him guessing until the very end. I think that Carolann said it when she wrote her review of Sharp Objects, but you can definitely tell the progression of Gillian Flynn as an author as her books go on. I’m anxiously awaiting another book by her!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella ★★ 5 stars

I received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. 

Let me just start out by saying that I love Sophie Kinsella and have read all of her books and will probably continue to read all of her books in the future. I honestly thought that this book was going to follow the typical Sophie Kinsella formula and thought that I knew all of the different players, but it definitely didn’t turn out how I expected it to!

I loved the fact that Katie was a strong and smart woman that went after what she wanted and what she thought was right. Sometimes Sophie’s characters aren’t the brightest of girls, so reading about Katie was quite refreshing. I also liked that the love story wasn’t as central of a subject of the book which sometimes happens in Sophie Kinsella books.

I also loved that Sophie showed how social media can have a negative effect on our lives. Social media gives us the option to put a glamorous filter on ourselves and our lives, which most of the time isn’t true.

Overall, I rate this book up there with Can You Keep A Secret and I’ve Got Your Number which are my two favorite Sophie Kinsella books. Definitely pick this one up if you’re looking for a light and easy read!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman ★★ 5 stars

This was the book that was selected for Beyond Words: A Bloggers Book Club for the month of January, and even though I didn’t vote for it in the poll, I absolutely loved this book and I actually wrote a full review of it here. It is quite simply one of my favorite books that I’ve read so far!

I read The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper last year, and while the beginning of this book felt a lot like that, it was clearly very different. While Ove might seem like the meanest guy on the street, once you get a look under his rough and mean exterior, you see the kind and caring man that his beloved wife Sonja fell in love with. I highly recommend this book if you haven’t read it already and I can’t wait to read more books by Fredrik Backman!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman ★★ 4 stars

This was another book that was selected for my book club at work, and what I really love about book club is the fact that it makes you read books that you never would have thought to even pick up. Neverwhere was already on my list and I think that it was because of this linkup, but I don’t know when I would have had the chance to pick it up if it wasn’t for book club. This was my first Neil Gaiman book and I’m 100% sure that I’ll read another book by him.

When Richard Mayhew finds a young girl that is bleeding on the streets of London, he does what any human being would do, he decides to help her. What he doesn’t realize is that by helping young Door, he gets pulled from his normal life in London Above to the crazy and mystical world of London Below.

If you’re a fantasy lover, you definitely need to check this book out. I also loved how Gaiman took you on a tour of London in this book and it made me excited for my Europe trip this summer where I’m sure I’ll be using the tube and minding the gap and waiting for Door to appear.

Overall, this month was a very good reading month for me in number of books and the quality of books as well, but I feel like March might not be the same thing. Hopefully I’ll get some more reading done this coming month with the few trips that I do have planned!

Have you read any good books lately? Are there any books that you want to check out?

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Show Us Your Books- Book Reviews including He's Gone, Sharp Objects, See Me, A Man Called Ove, Neverwhere, and My Not So Perfect Life.

My Erin’s Book Challenge 6.0 Choices:

My Erin’s Book Challenge 6.0 Results:

5 points:  Freebie – Read a book that is at least 200 pages.
The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney (320 pages, 4 stars).
20 points:  (Submitted by Linda) Read a book by your favorite author.
My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella (400 pages, 5 stars).
30 points:  (Submitted by Peggy) Read a “Rory Gilmore” book.  The character of Rory from the Gilmore Girls was shown reading over 300 different books throughout the series.  Choose one of them from this helpful link:  https://www.buzzfeed.com/krystieyandoli/all-339-books-referenced-in-gilmore-girls
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway (256 pages, 3 stars).
30 points:  (Submitted by Stef)  Read a book from a genre that you’ve never read (or rarely read.)
Are You There Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea by Chelsea Handler (264 pages, 4 stars).

PREVIOUS POINTS: 65
TOTAL POINTS: 85

  • Emily Dunham

    I have heard so many good things about A Man Called Ove – definitely need to read that one!

  • I read Sharp Objects forever ago and I honestly can’t remember it so sounds like I need to reread that one! And I love Sophie Kinsella too so I will definitely be downloading that book this weekend! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

    • I hope that you enjoy the Sophie Kinsella book! It’s not her normal “formula” for books, but I think that’s one of the reasons why I liked it so much. And Sharp Objects really was so good, but I couldn’t remember all the details either. I think that’s one of the reasons why I enjoyed rereading it with Chris.

  • Rachel

    My Not So Perfect Life sounds really good! And seems totally relatable (especially the social media thing!). I always loved Nicholas Sparks books when I was younger but haven’t read one in awhile. Looks like I have two more books I need to add to my list. Thanks for sharing, Ashley!

    xo, Rachel
    A Blonde’s Moment

    • You’re so welcome, and I hope that you get to pick them up soon. I hadn’t read a Nicholas Sparks book in forever either, and it was a nice change of pace and a little bit of a change from his normal books as well. And My Not So Perfect Life was so cute, and 100% relatable. I could totally relate to wanting everything to be perfect in my life.

  • i don’t read Sparks’ books anymore, but I am pretty sure he 100% writes them to become movies. I remember reading that about the Miley Cyrus movie.. I forget what it’s called, but yeah he totally wrote the book for the movie and she’d already got the part because she chose the name. I don’t remember particulars lol I just remember he said he writes them so they will be movies.
    so glad you liked that sophie kinsella book! it’s on my kindle. one day….
    neverwhere is on my list. i actually think it’s the first book on my goodreads TBR, as in I added it in like 2009 haha.

    • The Last Song was the Nicholas Sparks book that he wrote specifically for Miley Cyrus, and I totally remember reading about it too. I think that she told him that she wanted to be in one of his movies so he specifically wrote that book for her. And as much as his books tend to be the same, I still really like to read them. They’re that book junk food that I can’t seem to get enough of.
      That’s too funny that Neverwhere might have been one of the first books that you added on your Goodreads account! I think that you need to pick it up soon because I think that you’d really like it. It’s a really good fantasy book.

  • Sophie Kinsella books are not my favourite but I’m going to give that one a try because I’ve heard nothing but good things!!! I did not care for Gone Girl so I’ve been reluctant to read any of Gillian Flynn’s other books even though I do seek out that kind of suspense from time to time. A Man called Ove is on my list!

    • All of Gillian Flynn’s books are definitely thriller and suspense types of books, so if that’s your thing, then I don’t think that she’d be for you. And I really enjoyed this Sophie Kinsella book a lot, and I also loved that it wasn’t her typical formula either. I thought that the social media aspect side of the book was very interesting. And you need to move A Man Called Ove up on your list, it’s such a good book!

  • I actually was disappointed with My Not So Perfect Life! I agree with you about all the social media stuff, I did enjoy that part of it.

    • It’s not her typical formula for books which I think was different, but maybe not for everybody. The social media aspect was one of my favorite parts of the book because I feel like it’s so relatable.

  • I am dying to read A Man Called Ove! I have it on reserve at the library. That Sophie Kinsella book sounds good too! I haven’t read anything by her in a long time but i used to love her! I’m going to have to check that out!

    • Definitely check out A Man Called Ove and My Not So Perfect Life. They were definitely some of my favorites from this month, but for very different reasons. My Not So Perfect Life was very cute, but also different from her normal books, but I think that you’ll end up liking it!

  • A man called ove is on my list as well as the new Sophie Kinsella. I loved Sharp Objects, need to read it again for sure!

    • I had forgotten so many details from Sharp Object so I was glad to read it again with Chris. And A Man Called Ove and My Not So Perfect Life were two of my favorite books from this past month, and I hope that you get to check them out soon!

  • He’s Gone sounds good, but it’s the worst when books that are supposed to be suspenseful are slow and not that exciting. The book I’m reading right now (Dead Letters) does the thing where it jumps between past and present tense and I’m not sure it’s working for me either. Sharp Objects is a book I’d like to reread, it was my favorite Flynn, and definitely a favorite overall thriller. I think I’m going to read that Kinsella book soon– I need something on the lighter side, so I’m glad you gave it such a good review.

    • Sometimes the jumping back and forth works really well, and sometimes it doesn’t. A book that I finished listening to earlier this month did a good job with it, but He’s Gone definitely didn’t. I think that Gone Girl is still my favorite Gillian Flynn book but it’s a toss up between the others after that. I feel like I always read her books so fast and don’t remember all of the details so it’s always fun to reread them. And My Not So Perfect Life is definitely a good and light book to pick up. It was exactly what I needed as well.

  • Nadine

    I loved See Me!!! It was a little different than his other books. I will have to check out the new Kinsella book and Ove is on my TBR, so glad to hear you liked it!!!

    • A Man Called Ove and My Not So Perfect Life were two of my favorite books from this past month, so I hope that you pick them up soon and like them both! I liked the fact that See Me was a little bit more of a thriller, it was a nice change from the typical Nicholas Sparks formula.

  • I basically want to read all of these (slash I love Gillian Flynn and I am impatiently waiting for another book from her too)! I haven’t read a Nicholas Sparks book in forever but I always loved them and they make me cry my eyes out. I need to read some more of his stuff.

    • This Nicholas Sparks book didn’t make me cry my eyes out like his normal books because it was a little bit more of a thriller. It read more like Safe Haven to me, which I really liked it. And why oh why can’t Gillian Flynn come out with some new books already! I need another thriller that I can’t put down from her!

  • I love the diversity in your books this month!

    The one with the missing husband reminds me of Remember Mia.

    • I feel like I normally don’t get too diverse in my books, so I was happy and excited with my books this month too. Remember Mia is on my list, so I hope that I get to read it soon. I love a good thriller!

  • I’ve really enjoyed all of Gillian Flynn’s books.

  • My Not-So Perfect Life sounds intriguing, especially since the female character isn’t the typical ditz or naive heroine that Kinsella tends to feature. Neverwhere is on my TBR and I’ve heard great things about it. American Gods left me a little underwhelmed, which sank Neverwhere a bit on my priority list. But I keep seeing praise for it. I may need to bump it back up the list!

    • Apparently Neverwhere was actually a book that he wrote after because they kept on making him take stuff out of the tv show that he was writing for. You can definitely tell that he wanted to add more detail and color to the world that he was creating. The different character type was definitely a part that appealed to me about My Not So Perfect Life, so I hope that you pick it up and enjoy it as much as I did!

  • Yay for so many good books this month! I really like My Not So Perfect Life, too. 🙂 I have had A Man Called Ove on my list forever (and some of his other books too). I need to read it soon!

    • I ended up requesting his newest book Beartown (I think) from Netgalley after I finished up A Man Called Ove because I loved it so much. And My Not So Perfect Life really was so adorable, and I’m so glad that we both loved it!

  • Jen

    I am looking forward to the day when I can actually read a book and link up with these! I have such a long list of books that I can’t wait to dive into.

    • That was always my least favorite thing about being in school, not being able to “fun” books as I call them. I always joke that my husband didn’t know how much I liked to read because I didn’t read that much when we first started dating in high school.

  • I’ve heard amazing things about A Man Called Ove, and I’ll be adding the Sophie Kinsella book to my TBR! I tried to read Sharp Objects, but it gave me the heebie-geebies!

    • Gillian Flynn books are definitely very creepy, so I understand why it creeped you out. Sophie Kinsella is such a good author, and I hope that you like her newest book as much as I did!

  • shootingstarsmag

    Looks like you read some great books! I haven’t read Kinsella before, but I DO really want to read her newest. I think I’ll love it. I love Sharp Objects too – I read it soon after it was released for an online book club and I was lucky to get Dark Places for review when that came out. Dark Places is probably my favorite of all Flynn’s books so far.

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.blogspot.com

    • I had read Sharp Objects forever ago, but I didn’t realize how much I had forgotten until I started listening to it again with my husband. I hope that you get the opportunity to read Sophie Kinsella. She’s a really good author and I feel like she always writes really relatable characters as well.

  • I thought Sharp Objects was an okay read but liked Gone Girl better. I really enjoyed See Me. I agree his books tend to be script like but they are usually tear-jerkers that I still enjoy a lot! A Man Called Ove has been on my to read list for awhile. I haven’t read a Kinsella book in years but maybe I’ll give this one a try.

    • I totally agree with you about Nicholas Sparks, even though his books are pretty similar I just can’t stop reading them. They’re just so addicting. And I agree with you that Gone Girl is better, but I still thought that Sharp Objects was a good read. It was my husband’s first time “reading” a Gillian Flynn book, but I definitely don’t think that it’ll be his last.

  • Nicole F

    Wow, 6 books in one month! That’s rock star status in my book 🙂 I’ve only read Man Called Ove which I loved. I’m interested in Kinsella’s book and eventually getting to a Gaiman book. I hear great things about him as an author. Checking out all the SMYB today 🙂

    • I can’t believe that I read that many books either, but I think that a lot of it has to do with the fact that I’ve been listening to books as well. Neverwhere was my first Neil Gaiman book, and I really enjoyed it and will definitely be reading another one. And My Not So Perfect Life was very cute, and definitely one that I hope that you pick up!

  • I’m not making as much headway towards Erin’s challenge either, or at least not as much headway as I’d like. I’ve read other good things about My Not So Perfect Life. I’ve added it to my TBR. So glad that you liked A Man Called Ove! It is one of my all-time favorites!

    • After reading A Man Called Ove, I can totally understand now why it’s so many people’s favorite book. It was just such a good story! I’m hoping that I get through the rest of Erin’s Challenge, but I have a feeling that I’ll be making a big push in the last month!

  • You had a solid month of reading. I’m always pleased with a solid month of reading. I use challenges to guide and encourage me but don’t let them dictate what I must read. I like that you are the same.

    • Normally reading challenges to dictate what I read, but I think that being involved in book clubs has made me branch out a little bit more on a month to month basis. And this month was really good as far as quantity and quality of books too, which is always good!

  • I just finished Remember Me by Sophia Kinsella. It was cute but I wasn’t crazy about the ending. I so need to check out My Not So Perfect Life. I love her books.

    • I do too! I hope that you love My Not So Perfect Life! It’s not Sophie Kinsella’s typical novel or main character, but I still really enjoyed it!

  • You were a busy reader!! Sharp Objects and My Not So Perfect Life are going on my list- love your reviews!

    • Thank you, and I hope that you get to pick them up soon! Sharp Objects and My Not So Perfect Life are both so good, but completely different. You might need to read My Not So Perfect Life as a pick me up after Sharp Objects.

  • Oh my gosh! You read some great ones recently. I kind of love a Nick Sparks every now and then. 🙂 I liked how with Safe Haven it was a bit more mystery/thriller. It added a new element to the story. It’s been a while since I have read one though. I definitely want to read the others on your list, I think they are all on my tbr… ? Good luck finishing the challenge. I’ve been in a rut for the last week or two. : / XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

    • Sometimes it’s hard to get out of a rut, but I hope that you do! I’ve found that sometimes I need to pick up another book and that will help. And I totally agree with you about Nicholas Sparks, even though they’re kind of the same, I still really love them. See Me reminded me a lot of Safe Haven with the mystery and thriller twist, so I be that you would like it as well.

  • I’ve been wanting to read See Me, and need to finally move it to the top of my list <3

    Green Fashionista

  • Gone Girl was such a well-written thriller – I’ve been thinking I should read another Gillian Flynn book too. Thanks for recommending Sharp Objects

    • I hope that you pick up another Gillian Flynn book, both Sharp Objects and Dark Places are both good options, well they’re her only two other books, if you’re in the mood for a good thriller!

  • Chesson Parker

    I love a good Sophie Kinsella book but I haven’t read this particular one yet. I’ll need to pick it up soon – beach days will be here before I know it & I need some good books to read!

    • My Not So Perfect Life would be the perfect beach read for this summer! It’s a cute and light read, in the typical Sophie Kinsella fashion.

  • I’ve actually heard of all these! YES!! Finally! Haha.

  • Christina Sotherden

    I’ve seen my not so perfect life a bunch of places – I need to pick that up!

  • I think you’re doing great with the challenge 🙂 I definitely need to check out Neil Gaiman’s books. I actually have Coraline sitting next to me at work, but I want to read some of his thicker, adult books, too!

    • Neverwhere was my first Neil Gaiman book, but it was so good and will definitely be a reason why I add more of his books to my list! And I have a feeling that I’ll be reading very fast and furious the last month of the challenge, but hopefully I’ll be able to finish it!

  • I’m so glad you loved “A Man Called Ove!” I think I need to give Neil Gaiman a second chance. Everyone I know loves him but I read “The Ocean At the End of the Lane” and really didn’t like it. Maybe I’ll give “Neverwhere” a try!

    • If you like a little bit of fantasy, then definitely give Neverwhere a chance! It was a lot of fun to see the world that he built, as well as I felt like I was in London because of all of his descriptors. A Man Called Ove was such a good pick for book club this past month, and I’m so glad that we picked it for book club this month!

  • I’m a huge Neil Gaiman fan but I haven’t read Neverwhere. It’s on my list now!! And I love all of her books, but Gillian Flynn definitely has gotten better and better over the years. I really can’t wait for her next book!

    • I can’t wait for her to release another book either. It’s just so surprising that she hasn’t released another book recently because I feel like it’s been a while since Gone Girl was released. And Neverwhere was my first Neil Gaiman book, but it definitely won’t be the last. He’s a great author!

  • I started the new Sophie Kinsella today! She is one of my favorite chick lit authors. Except for the Shopaholic series. I never got into that one but I love all the non-Shopaholic books. Can You Keep A Secret is one of my favorites. And Twenties Girl. And Remember Me.
    I haven’t read Ove but I started another book by him (My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry) and could not get into it. Maybe I need to give him another chance…

    • I think that you should give A Man Called Ove a chance. I hadn’t read any other books by Fredrick Backman, but A Man Called Ove is definitely not one to be missed. I read a few of the Shopaholic books, but my favorite Sophie Kinsella books are definitely the ones that aren’t based around that series. Can You Keep A Secret is my favorite and then maybe followed by My Not So Perfect Life. I hope that you get to pick it up soon!

  • The only Gillian Flynn novel I’ve read is Dark Places, and it was so dark but well written that I really need to read Sharp Objects now. I saw Gone Girl, but haven’t read the novel, yet (and aren’t books always better!?). 🙂

    Sophie Kinsella is one of my favorite fun authors, so I’m excited that there’s a book of hers out there that I haven’t discovered yet. I’m adding this one to my list of beach reads this summer!

    • I have to agree that books are always better, so I think that Gone Girl definitely deserves a chance. Although, I thought that they did a really good job with the movie and really didn’t leave too much out from the book.

      My Not So Perfect Life is a really cute read, and definitely perfect for the beach this summer. I hope that you pick it up soon, and a Gillian Flynn book when you’re hoping for something a bit darker!

  • I hope Gillian Flynn writes some more books, too. I’ve enjoyed all of them so far. A Man Called Ove is on my list to read, I’m glad you liked it! Neil Gaiman is my favorite author – I hope you like his other books! I am obsessed.

    • I haven’t read any other books by Neil Gaiman, but after Neverwhere I definitely want to pick up another one by him. It was a really good book and he did a great job of transporting me to London. I feel like it’s been a while since Gillian Flynn has come out with a new book, and I hope that she releases one soon. I need something to truly creep me out!

  • I hope Gillian Flynn writes a new one soon!!

  • I can’t wait to be done with school so I can READ FOR FUN again! *crying* I miss those days…

    • That was always my least favorite part about being in school, not being able to read for fun! School will be over before you know it!

  • I need to get some more books for my upcoming trip, so not sure why I didn’t read this post earlier, but now its the perfect timing! A beach trip defo calls for some romance and I am eyeing that Nicholas Sparks book… 😉