Welcome to Anya’s Reads July 2020 where I share what I’m reading—this month the physical books outnumbered the ebooks. Which is rare!

First off, I’ll send you over to my Good Reads page. I explained what that’s all about, if you’re not familiar, in my first My Reads back in April. At the beginning of the year, I set a goal for myself of reading 12 books before 2020 was over. As of last week, I surpassed my reading goal!

I had chosen a pretty small target of one book per month. Mostly—and this was before Covid—because life is busy! I was well into my program through The Writer’s Studio and had dedicated time four out of five weekdays to write. Oh how I miss that time! Reading always ebbs and flows for me, and it has apparently done quite well this year! I definitely try to sit and read while the kids play around me, especially when the weather has been less than ideal.

Let’s get to those books on my most recently read list!

On the heels of the post about my writing journey, I wanted to expand a little on this piece of me that I have been building, the literary one. Any experienced writer will agree that reading is as much a part of writing as putting words onto the page. Gaining knowledge in your field and learning the nuances of other writers is an invaluable piece of becoming a better writer. In school, I’ve loved reading other people’s fiction. It has allowed me to expand the genres that I usually read, help my fellow writers and get some invaluable ideas for my own series.

Just last night I learned that one of the students in my group might be using one of my ideas, and I got a great idea from another student that I’m going to use for Romi’s story. I’m so excited!

The first stop on Anya’s Reads is the book that is currently causing me to stay up late and has me hoping that the kids will play nicely today so I can read. (If play nicely = watch tv, then I guess they're getting some extra screen time so I can read today!)

Nicholas Sparks

I know, I know. This is an author. Not a book. I have always loved Nicholas Sparks in any form, whether movie or book. Nights in Rodanthe came into my possession over the last few months, free, from a neighbour. I wanted something easy to read, so I picked it up and devoured it within a few days. His writing to me is just so enjoyable and easy to read. I love love, for starters, and that is always a major theme in his books. I enjoyed Nights in Rodanthe very much, and even more so, I loved that I got a sneak peak of the other book by Nicholas Sparks that I read, Two by Two.

Out of all of his books that I’ve read, I hadn’t heard of Two by Two. But let me tell you, if you like Nicholas Sparks, do yourself a favour and read this book! It was heartbreaking, I found myself in tears in more than one place. I knew where it was going for most of the story, and yet it was such a great, relatable story. I don’t even know how it was so relatable, given that it was about a man leading up to his divorce and separation that he didn’t see coming. But it was. And it left me happysad, and if you like being happysad and enjoy poignant stories, read Two by Two. (This not-commercial is over.)

The Holdout by Graham Moore (Cover)

Confession: I did not read this in July. I actually finished it in April, after my last Anya Reads post. Don't shoot the messenger! Haha.

This was a refreshing legal thriller recommended to me through a Facebook group that I’m in for fans of Kaitlin Bristowe’s Off the Vine podcast. I loved it! It had me guessing what was going to happen, left me shocked at some places and I definitely wasn’t able to entirely figure it out! Whenever I come across a great book, like this, I zoom through it quickly.

This one was done in three days.

I have a feeling that the kids are going to love it when I find a good book as they get older. I’m more lenient with screen time and just care less about what they’re doing when I have my nose in a good book.

I’ve written about this book (first in this blog post, then in this one), raved about it and recommended it to everyone I know. The author just has a fluid, honest way of encouraging readers to be themselves. Honour ourselves without apology, on the way to creating a happy, truthful life. There’s no time to not be yourself, or be sorry for the times that you weren’t. Ah, just pick this one up already, okay? There’s so much to discuss if you want to talk about it when you’re done!

Are you tired of me telling you to read this book yet? Then read the book (if you haven't)!

Untamed by Glennon Doyle (Cover)

I think that’s all for Anya’s Reads today! Along with the next in my series with Archer, the Horse and His Boy, I have started reading The Elephant in the Gym by a local author that I met at Mom Camp last November, Gillian Goerzen. I mentioned it in My April Anya's Reads; I am still working through that list.

Read on,


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