CURRENTLY LOVING…| AUGUST

Hello there!

Can you believe it’s already September? August was an extra busy and draining month for me. However, it was also very productive and satisfying to achieve many goals that I had set. As usual, I’ll be sharing personal updates via my regular monthly newsletter, which you can subscribe to here.

Also, I need a quick favor. I’m working to improve this website and my content and I’d really appreciate your honest feedback. Please take this quick survey (it will take you five minutes or less). If you’d prefer to take the survey after you read the post, there’ll be another link at the end of this post. 

In the meantime, though, here are some of the things I enjoyed in August:

What I read…

BOOKS

I read 31 books in August: 15 picture books, 11 middle grade novels, 3 YA novels and 2 adult fiction novels. My favorite reads in August were:

Time for Bed Miyuki

I raved about this whimsical picture book in this post highlighting 23 books to watch out for this fall.

Cilla Lee – Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire

I LOVED reading Cilla’s stories and her brand of wit is just the best. This book explores everything from identity, especially for a biracial child, friendships and dealing with the birth of a new sibling. Cilla is smart, imaginative and simply a delight to be with!

The Dollar Kids

Thanks to Candlewick Press for an e-ARC of this novel. I enjoyed this unique book about a family who buys a run down house in a former mill town for a DOLLAR! Despite being a over a whopping 400 pages long, this story is immersive and perfectly paced. There’s always action, which is something that can be lacking for me in very long books.

I really liked all the characters and especially the way this book handles a child’s grief and guilt about the death of his friend. Would definitely recommend this one!

Dreamers


Thanks to Neal Porter Books for an electronic Advance Reader’s Copy of this picture book. Striking illustrations fill this beautiful book, but the story in its pages is even more heartwarming! Full review here.

The Harlem Charade

This is such a heartwarming, intriguing mystery! When the discovery of a painting thought to be lost coincides with the attempted murder of a man in Harlem, three kids are drawn together in sleuthing adventures.I especially loved how racially diverse the cast is, the emphasis on the power of art and the strong sense of community fostered in this novel.

I actually listened to this one on Scribd — I wrote about Scribd in this May Favorites post –(Get a free two month trial here) and the narration is equally fantastic and this story kept me glued until the very end! Very memorable characters and setting! Loved this one!

Merci Suarez Changes Gears

I loved so many things about this book: Merci’s loud, big hearted family, whose voices I could literally hear while I read, her laugh-out-loud humor and the completely riveting experience that this book is. This is definitely in my top five this year! Just buy it, and read it. You’ll laugh, and maybe even cry as you read this one! ALL THE STARS.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before

I watched the movie before I read this and while I recognize that that might not have been the best order, it makes for an interesting perspective. The book and the movie feel like two different things, in a good way. It was nice to get in the minds of LJ and Peter and I definitely feel like I understand the cast of characters better after this.

Sweet, compulsively readable book, this one!

Articles on the Web

What is your Myers-Briggs personality? I know personality tests (especially online) should always be taken with a grain of salt but my results in this quiz I took two years ago (and again last month) are so spot on! So I laughed out loud at this ManRepeller post about what Tinder bios of each personality type would be. Again, spot on!

This TFD post about 5 things that can be learned from working jobs where your degree doesn’t matter had me nodding the whole way through.

LOVE this article about practical ways to show affection.

Hey, it’s OK to have your career totally figured out.

Why Yrsa Daley – Ward doesn’t mind being called an “Instagram Poet”. I agree with her 100%

Do you have Lara Jean and Peter Kavinsky fever like I did after watching the movie? If yes, this is for you.

This ManRepeller piece about restlessness in life and how it impacts relationships is thought-provoking.

I chuckled too many times reading this post about why everyone can’t be morning people. I also agree.

Completely enjoyed reading this Noah Centineo interview.

15 women who married too soon in their relationships share their success stories— including a woman who moved in after the first date.

If you could add one book to the high school curriculum, what would it be? A group of writers share their answers.

Crystal Hana Kim, author of If You Leave Me was interviewed by Naima Coster, author of Halsey Street about the representation of Asians and women in writing. I loved it.

Two marriage hacks that can make all the difference.

I’ve never read anything by Ray Bradbury, but this post about his greatest writing advice, including getting to the big truth and not thinking, is top notch!

What I listened to…

As part of my obsession with the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before Phenomenon, here’s a playlist with my favorite INDIE songs in the movie’s soundtrack. I’m obsessed with Lauv’s song, ‘I Like Me Better’ and Anna of The North’s ‘Lovers’.

In August, I also finally listened to Adekunle Gold’s most recent album, About 30. I LOVE the remix with Jacob Banks and of course I Surrender has been making the rounds on social media with all the choreographers.

Alain de Botton on On Being was very insightful, as usual. While I do not always agree with all his philosophies, I like the fact that he recognizes the hard work of love and relationships.

I enjoyed listening to author of Front Desk, Kelly Yang on the Books Between podcast.

After procrastinating forever, I got into Sara Tasker and Jen Carrington’s new podcast, Letters From a Hopeful Creative with this practical episode on pricing and knowing your worth. Highly recommend for anyone who runs a business, no matter how small.

I enjoyed listening to Chatti Phal-Brown on What Should I Read Next? Her interview made me curious about Cambodia and Cambodian literature.

What I Watched

Have I already mentioned how much I loved To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before  (TATBILB)? Because, yes, yes, yes.

This Is Us is FINALLY coming back! I’m so excited!

Did you see the trailer for Genevieve Nnaji’s new film?

I watched a good number of Netflix movies in August besides TATBILB. I LOVED The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and really enjoyed Like Father as well. Netflix is killing the movie game. I’m looking forward to watching Centineo’s next Netflix film this month.

August was obviously a FULL month! I’m really excited about September and finding my rhythm again after a long and productive summer break. I hope you are too.

Quick reminder: Did you already take that survey? Here’s a link to take a five minute (or less) survey to make Afoma Umesi better.

Have a lovely weekend!