October was not my month. But I did read a lot, so… you win some, you lose some.
Books I read in October:
- Only Human (The Themis Files #3), by Sylvain Neuvel
In the second book of this series, the 10-year-old Puerto Rican girl was voiced by what sounded like a Spanish-speaking, heavy-smoking 60 year old. In this book, the girl (spanning ages 10 to 19) was voiced by someone with an intermittent Boston accent. Apparently I was too distracted by this to know what else was going on in the book.
- The Word is Murder, by Anthony Horowitz
This was so good, until the ending. I loved the blur between reality and fiction.
- Young Jane Young, by Gabrielle Zevin
Reviewers seemed to like this. I didn’t.
- The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
I loved every bit of this.
- The Death of Mrs. Westaway, by Ruth Ware
I can’t think of anything that made this worth reading.
- The Kiss Quotient, by Helen Hoang
The Rosie Project meets something by Christina Lauren. This was completely unrealistic and ridiculous, but also adorable.
- Men Explain Things to Me, by Rebecca Solnit
A strong and thought-provoking start and finish, but the middle was full of weird digressions (many involving unknown paintings and Virginia Woolf) that I didn’t quite follow. I think we would do a better job of inspiring the masses if we didn’t write political discourse using such academic language that it isolates 98% of the population.
- The Big Disruption, by Jessica Powell
That was a bunch of hours of my life that I will never get back.
- The Perfect Couple, by Elin Hilderbrand
This was actually not bad for a cheesy murder-mystery vacation read.
The DNF list:
- Yes Please!, by Amy Poehler
Technically I sort of finished this because I read the introduction and the conclusion… but I skipped a lot of the middle. You’d think eventually I would learn that I don’t like books by/about celebrities. Especially ones that are in TV shows and movies that I have never actually seen.
- House for Mr. Biswas, by V. S. Naipaul
This was just too literary for me right now.
- You, by Caroline Kepnes
This was such an interesting concept, but (despite what everyone else seems to think) it wasn’t executed very well. I think it would have been better if even one single character was even slightly likeable.
YTD books read: 98
Books to go: 2! Now that it’s fairly obvious that (barring being hit by a bus) I will finish, maybe I should re-read some really long books, like Game of Thrones…
I’ve been on the Whole Life Challenge again this month, but sometimes you just can’t get through the week without a molten lava chocolate cake, some whipped cream, and berries.
Molten Lava Chocolate Cake (gluten-free, almost sugar-free)
- 6 oz dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces (70% or darker)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup canned coconut milk, full fat
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Use coconut oil to generously grease 4 ramekins (optional to then dust with cocoa powder).
- Melt the chocolate and the coconut oil in a small saucepan over super low heat. Stir in coconut milk.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together egg, vanilla, salt, and almond flour. Fold in the chocolate mixture until smooth (because there’s no gluten, you don’t need to worry about over-mixing!)
- Divide the batter among the ramekins, and put the ramekins in a deep-dish baking pan. Fill the baking pan with hot water so it reaches halfway up the ramekins.
- Bake for about 17 minutes, or until the edges look baked but the centre is still soft. Carefully(!) remove the ramekins from the water and let them sit on a cooling rack for 5 minutes.
- Run a knife around the edges to loosen the cakes, and then invert onto serving plates. Serve immediately with whipped cream and berries (or your choice of toppings).