It’s Monday, July 27th. What Are You Reading?


I’m back from a fantastic few days at the beach and (believe it or not!) I only overpacked by one book. Being without the internet gave me plenty of time to focus on relaxing and reading, so I was able to finish Last Night in Montreal by Emily St. John Mandel, The Nakeds by Lisa Glatt, and In the Country by Mia Alvar. I also got a good start on The Ambassador’s Wife by Jennifer Steil, so I’m in the middle of that right now.

The Ambassador’s Wife is pretty chunky, so I’ve been straying toward a few other things while reading. I picked up and finished Kate Harding’s Asking For It pretty quickly over the weekend (tons of highlighting in this one) and couldn’t resist diving right in when my library hold for Louisa Hall’s Speak arrived. I’m on a bit of a reading high right now, but we’re talking about summer slumps over at The Socratic Salon if you want to come chat about how your summer is going.

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?


  • How was Last Night in Montreal?! I’ve been itching to read some more Mandel! And – I keep hearing great things about Speak…from Leah and on a podcast (can’t remember which one), so that one’s on my radar too. Glad you enjoyed your vacation!

    • Last Night in Montreal is one of our picks for The Socratic Salon next month, so if you can squeeze it in by then you can join us!

  • suzinrva

    I am bouncing between How to Be a Woman and The Library at Mount Char…both excellent so far! You had my dream vacation – relaxing and reading.

  • I have Speak on my radar, so am interested to hear how it is for you. I picked up In The Country from the library, so hopefully I can squeeze that one in in the coming weeks.

  • Glad to hear you had some great reading days at the beach! It’s slow going around here right now with real life getting in the way (imagine!), but I started The Biology of Desire last night after finishing The Woman Upstairs.

    • The Woman Upstairs was such a fiery read in the beginning and end, I just wish it hadn’t dragged a bit in the middle!

      • I just finished writing my review of The Woman Upstairs, and that is exactly my assessment of it! It was too bad, because I loved the angry Nora, and I loved the idea.

  • Leah got my attention with her review of SPEAK, and I can’t believe I haven’t heard more about it! You got some great reading done, and I can only hope I have as good a reading week when I’m at the beach in a few short days. Five, to be exact, but who’s counting?

  • I’m finally reading The Martian, and it’s great. Beach reading is always a treat!

  • Vasilly

    That’s such a strong quote from Asking For It. It’s going on my tbr list. Right now, I’m still reading Our Kids by Robert D. Putnam.

  • How did you like Last Night in Montreal? I haven’t read anything by Mandel yet, and this one is calling me a little more than Station Eleven, despite all the great reviews.

    • It was definitely a strong debut, though I liked Station Eleven more. We’re going to be reading it for The Socratic Salon next month, so you’ll have someone to chat about it with if you want to give it a shot!

  • I hadn’t heard of Asking For It until now but I had some very interesting conversations about rape this weekend and I kind of want to read widely about it right now. That sounds a little effed up but I’m hopeful you know what I mean ;)
    I’m reading Funny Girl right now and really enjoying it. I have an extra long weekend coming up and I’m already mentally packing my books. I feel like overpacking by only one book is a huge accomplishment.

    • I totally get what you mean ;) Asking For It and Missoula were both great (but difficult) reads to throw into the conversation.

  • Veronica

    Speaking of Mandel, I am starting Station Eleven today! I am late to the game on this one but I finally bought it when it went on sale in paperback! Can’t wait to dive in :)

  • Julie @ Smiling Shelves

    Glad your time away was filled with lots of reading. That’s the best kind of vacation! :)

  • You have no idea how happy it makes me that you only overpacked by a single book. :) Can’t wait to hear what you thought about them!

    Speak’s cover makes me want to drop everything and run to the bookstore right now. Its plot summary doesn’t hurt either. But maybe I could read one of the, oh, ten or so library books I already have out. ;)

    • Speak is SUPER interesting so far. I’m kind of plugging away at The Ambassador’s Wife, so I haven’t gotten to far into it, but I’m excited to find out more.

  • I’m reading ‘The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet’ by Becky Chambers and loving it. It’s taking me a while to read but I feel like I’m savouring it. :)

  • Okay how’s the Montreal novel? We are headed there in August. Just finished an audio of My Salinger Year which was entertaining. Sounds like you had a good beach trip.

    • I thought it was good, but didn’t love it…definitely interesting for seeing how Emily St. John Mandel evolved to Station Eleven.

  • Lindsey Stefan

    I hate that we need a book like Asking For It, but I’m so glad that Harding is writing about it.

  • I’m so glad you enjoyed your time away, Shannon! I’m reading Days of Awe by Lauren Fox; this whole moving situation is really cutting into my reading time – ha! Hope your week is going well!

  • I will be very interested to hear your views on Speak. It definitely sucked me in right away, and the reviews are right — it’s like nothing I’ve ever read before. But I have some caveats as well.

  • Excellent packing ;) Sounds like a fab time. All three of your books are pretty interesting, and so different from each other. I just got thru Clash of Kings so I know how you feel about a chunkster thrown in the mix.