Creative,  Reading

Books I Read in February 2024

My reading slowed in February, which is about how it goes when I come off a bigger month of reading. I thought I would finish another book or two but got a bit bored with a couple of audiobooks I was reading and was slow to read some paper books. There’s always March to finish those!


Slog: A Trail Tale by Claire Jarvis I technically read this in January but I forgot to cover it in my write-up. This isn’t a book in the way you think of a book and you will only be able to find it if you order it from Claire directly. Claire is an FT thru-hiker and artist and they put one of their hardest, toughest days on the trail into a short graphic book. While this exact experience is not my particular experience on the FT or even the AT, I could highly relate. I actually interviewed Claire for the Orange Blaze Podcast last fall—you can listen here. And if you want a copy of the book, you can order it here.

We of Little Faith: Why I Stopped Pretending to Believe by Kate Cohen I can’t recall how I came across Kate Cohen and her book but it was sometime last fall and something just clicked, and so I tracked down her book on my e-library and took a few months to digest and read. I’ve been more-or-less agnostic for the last 20 years, if not actually longer, but only in the last 2-5 years have I been coming around to tossing around the atheist word in my head. It’s honestly a more accurate descriptor and I don’t know why I held off for so long. Without going into details for a book report post, and maybe I’ll write something more detailed later, this book offered a really great perspective on finally accepting and saying, “Hey, I’m an atheist!” The author is Jewish so this comes not even from a Christian perspective, something I really appreciated. I loved hearing about not only how she was raised culturally Jewish but some of the similarities of sidestepping family members and trying to toe the line around religious holidays and traditions growing up, and well, it all sounded familiar and something you can easily copy and paste over into many religions and cultures. Cohen also discusses issues from morality to how so many more people are non-believers but never come around to saying it or even doing any self analysis, and we’d be much better off politically if we just openly discussed and admitted being agnostic or atheist, instead of letting religion hijack how our (and other) country operates. She even bridges how many atheists, such as herself, will still maintain cultural traditions while being openly non-believing. Again, not sure I’ll ever write more here but there it is. Pick this book up if you are on the fence and need a push!

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides I’ve been a fan of the 1999 Sofia Coppola film for two decades now, it’s a cult classic at this point, and I’ve always wanted to read the 1993 book it was based on. I needed a shortish and easy to listen to audiobook and this fit the bill. And it did not disappoint nor did it mess up my view of the movie, in fact the movie is stunningly similar to the book and thus reading the book was almost like replaying the movie in my mind. There were a few changes to plot towards the end and I don’t think the movie quite captures frankly how shitty the boys/narrators were to the girls, even if they didn’t intend to be. There’s a lot at play here, sexism, religious trauma, teenage angst, overbearing parents…it taking place in the 1970s. If you liked the movie definitely read the book.

The Plants of the Appalachian Trail: A Hiker’s Guide to 398 Species by Dr. Kristen Wickert This one isn’t out until June but I picked it up off of Netgalley as an ARC to read. You may be more familiar with the author as @Kaydubsthehikingscientist on Instagram and knowing how she communicates science there, this book does not disappoint. It isn’t one you will want to carry along a hike but one you would definitely reference when you got back from a hike. Lots of plants and some fungi along the way, too. It made me want to thru-hike!

That’s it for books. I should probably do one of my Life Updates at some point but I’m currently watching Suits on Netflix and wow, that’s such a good show! With 8 seasons and 1-hr episodes, and many episodes per season, it is taking me a while to get through. Good stuff!

What are y’all reading right now?

One Comment

  • Yeah, Another Blogger

    Hi. I’m reading and enjoying this novel: The Unlikely Pilgrimage Of Harold Fry, by Rachel Joyce. It’s a book about nmany things, self-discovery and atonement among them.

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