‘Game of Thrones’ Season 1

25 Aug
Image via Access Hollywood

Image via Access Hollywood

So yes, I caved. I read the first two books of the ‘Song of Ice and Fire’ series but then I couldn’t do it anymore. They were too long for me and enough out of my genre that I couldn’t keep my interest held the whole time. I caved and watched Season 1. I watched the whole thing with my husband in about a week. Yes, it’s safe to say I’m impressed.

Things I Thought Were Awesome

How close this was to the books. I was really shocked that it was so similar. I kept waiting for something obvious to have changed, but there wasn’t anything. I’m glad Martin insisted on waiting until his books could be done as a TV series, they did them justice.

Dothraki language. I watched the extra features on the DVD that went deeper into this. The language creation and how the actors learned to speak it fascinates me. I was a Spanish language major in school so I find linguistics fascinating. I have so much respect for the man who put it together. Kudos.

Changes That Didn’t Really Bother Me

Less focus on the maesters and septas. While some of these characters serve important roles, to be sure, I felt that there was too much detail placed on them in the books. Maybe it’s coming in future installments, but I got them all mixed up in the book and found that focusing less on them (especially those who didn’t make it, cough) was better for me.

Cover image via Goodreads.com

Cover image via Goodreads.com

Things That Were Taken Out and I’m Still Wondering Why

Tyrion in the battles. Maybe I’m wrong, but I thought Tyrion was more involved in the battles with Tywin toward the end. I wanted to see him fight on his pony but had to settle for him being knocked unconscious. I remember him being very involved in battles in the second book/season so maybe they’re running together in my mind.

 

Things That Changed Too Much

 

All the extra sex. It was a bit too much for me. It seems obvious this was to make it more ‘appealing’ on TV, but the books were risqué enough without adding more. There was too much focus on the whore houses in my opinion.

I’ve already started Season 2. I’m really enjoying this now. Is there any dissenting opinion? Do you all like the TV adaptation of A Game of Thrones?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 24-August-2016

24 Aug

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


BeastsCurrently reading: I got through very few pages of In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson. I put my ereader on the kitchen table to encourage me to read if I’m eating alone but until school starts back up again, it seems doubtful that will be happening.
I’m trying to get through In One Person by John Irving this week. My book club meets to discuss it on Monday and I’m leading the discussion. I’m planning to leave a lot of time for reading before then and I should be able to power through.
I’m absolutely in love with World Without End by Ken Follett. I was afraid this book would be less enjoyable than the first in the series, but I think it’s even better. I love the characters and the way Follett builds the plot. I can’t wait to listen to more and more of this one.

Recently finished: Sad news! No books finished this week. I knew this would start to happen with a long audiobook so I’m not surprised. I hope to have one for your next week, though!

Just one book reviewed, The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. I thought the advice in this book was amazing and a lot of it made sense to me. Great reading and I gave it Four out of Five Stars.

BoySnowReading Next: Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi is still sitting on my bedside table. I’m really excited to start it and I hope I can dive in soon. I just have to finish Irving first. The plan is to finish it before Monday so I hope to say I’m reading this one next week.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

What makes a piece fantasy?

23 Aug

I’m writing a submission for a fantasy flash fiction contest. Before I knew the publisher specialized in fantasy, I had an idea for a historical piece in the American West dealing with a boy riding a horse and encountering a rattlesnake. My solution? Make him on a mission from a Duke and have him encounter a mythical creature instead of a snake.

But it feels wrong.

It doesn’t feel like fantasy. It feels like a piece set on the Great Plains with a dumb made-up creature. I don’t write fantasy and perhaps it’s wrong to think I can take my historical piece and ‘make it fantasy.’ Perhaps I need to come up with a fantastical idea. But with a 500-word limit, it’s hard to think that anything too out-of-the-ordinary can be explained.

Maybe I need an established or commonly accepted fantasy setting. I’m watching Game of Thrones now so dragons instantly come to mind. I’m not quite the dragon expert, though.

Any advice, dear Reader? What are some generally accepted fantasy elements that might spark a new idea for me? I have a month to write this piece but I start school in two weeks and would like to have it done by then.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Book Gem in Chatham, MA (Cape Cod) For the Traveling Bibliophile

22 Aug

img_3291My husband and I traveled to Cape Cod, Massachusetts for a family vacation a few weeks ago. We all split up after lunch to explore the town of Chatham on our own and you can bet I headed straight for the bookstore! I’d walked past Yellow Umbrella Books on our way to lunch and I couldn’t wait to head back and check it out.

Chatham is a small town and almost all the shops catered to tourists like us who were there for the summer to enjoy the beach and the warm weather. This bookstore fit that perfectly. The outside had a shelf of used books for sale and it invited us in to take a look around. There were a lot of new books and those that were used tended to be popular titles. Some were rare and out of print and the store had a good collection of bookish accessories. I bought a bookmark with a painted turtle on it myself. It was quite cute! The journals made a good display. A lot of the books prominently displayed were (of course) more of the ‘beach read’ variety. The store knows its audience well!

What really captured my attention was the decorations they still had up for their Harry Potter and the Cursed Child release. They were spectacular and this is just the type of place I would want to find if I was on vacation for the release. It looks like a great party!

I’ll be sure to report out on my next adventure! Planning is still in process to be prepared for anything!

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Book Review: The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman (4/5)

18 Aug

When I was in college, my roommate read this book. She told me about it and how it made sense in her relationship and helped her think about how to best communicate with her long-distance boyfriend. I liked the idea of it and I’ve actually purchased it for friends as a wedding gift but I haven’t read it myself. While waiting for an audiobook hold to come it, I figured I’d have just about enough time to get through it and I’m really glad I read it.

Cover image via Goodreads

Cover image via Goodreads

The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts by Gary Chapman

Summary from Goodreads:

Marriage should be based on love, right? But does it seem as though you and your spouse are speaking two different languages? #1 New York Times bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman guides couples in identifying, understanding, and speaking their spouse’s primary love language-quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, or physical touch.

By learning the five love languages, you and your spouse will discover your unique love languages and learn practical steps in truly loving each other. Chapters are categorized by love language for easy reference, and each one ends with simple steps to express a specific language to your spouse and guide your marriage in the right direction. A newly designed love languages assessment will help you understand and strengthen your relationship. You can build a lasting, loving marriage together.

This book makes a lot of sense. When I thought about what my husband does that shows me he loves me, it seemed really obvious that acts of service are important to me. I also value quality time and I know gifts matter the least to me. It was very eye-opening to go through this book and see different couples and how they interacted with each other and how their marriages were impacted by the love language they valued most. I’m still trying to figure out my husband’s primary love language but I’ve narrowed it down to two.

 

Thankfully, I couldn’t relate to any of the stories in the book. I’m three years into my marriage and I either still have the ‘in love’ feeling, or my husband is speaking my love language because I’m beyond happy. It was incredible to hear stories of marriages that were turned around with this practice and Dr. Chapman’s book. It makes sense to me and it makes me really happy to hear that this book really helps people. I thought it was fun to hear that the book has been translated into many languages and is read in many cultures where it still makes sense. We’re not all that different around the world after all.

Dr. Gary Chapman Image via the 5 Love Languages website

Dr. Gary Chapman
Image via the 5 Love Languages website

I thought Chapman used a good mix of examples and teaching. It helped explain and highlight his points well. I liked that he used personal examples, too. It’s good that he’s open about the marital trouble he had early in his relationship with his wife, it helps solidify his point.

I felt that a lot of the examples and stories stuck to very traditional gender roles. A lot of the stories talked about women living at home and raising children while the men worked and how a man didn’t think he should have to clean because a woman would do that. This upset me a lot because it’s not what I grew up with and it’s not like my marriage now. My mom worked from the time I was nine and my dad always washed the dishes and took out the trash. I cook in my home but my husband cleans the bathroom. I felt it was a little off-putting to use only examples with strong traditional gender roles because it made me wonder how the advice would apply to my life.

Chapman narrates the book himself and I think he did well. There was an interview with him at the beginning so I was ready for his soft Southern accent. He had good inflection through the book and he was easy to understand without speaking too quietly.

I think this would be a good book for anyone in marital difficult to read and even for those without problems or not yet married. It’s helped me see how I could better demonstrate my love to my husband and that the things I want him to do for me might not mean the same things to him. I think I might start making this a standard wedding gift from us again.

Writer’s Takeaway: I don’t write much non-fiction but I liked Chapman’s storytelling style. He was very conversational and told his anecdotes simply, not dressing up or dramatizing the details. The tone made me feel like I might be at one of his seminars or reading his presentation notes. I think it was a very effective style for this subject matter and genre.

I really enjoyed this quick book and I got a lot out of reading it. Four out of Five stars.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Post:
The 5 Love Languages | Covenant Couples

WWW Wednesday, 17-August-2016

17 Aug

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


WithoutEndCurrently reading: Unfortunately, I have no new update on In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson. I was out-of-town for the weekend (again) and couldn’t find the time. I hope to make some more progress soon.
I’m really enjoying In One Person by John Irving. It has all of the classic Irving tropes so far and for some reason, they never get old for me. I have two weeks to finish this for my book club and it’s a bit long so I hope I make it!
I started the audiobook for World Without End by Ken Follett and so far I absolutely love it. Follett is an amazing writer and this one is just as enjoyable as the first. It’s 26 files on my phone and I’m on file three. It’s going to be a long run.

5LL-7.09.F.inddRecently finished:I really enjoyed The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman a lot more than I thought I would. His advice makes sound sense to me and I’ve been trying it out a bit with my husband. I’m still trying to figure out his language by speaking them all and seeing what he responds to.

Three reviews for you all this week! It’s crazy, I know. Last Thursday was 10% Happier by Dan Harris. I enjoyed the book for its memoir qualities but I’m not going to start meditating anytime soon. Three out of Five stars.
The second is Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne. No surprise here, I loved it. A full Five out of Five stars and a possible reread at any point in the future.
The third is Peace Breaks Out by John Knowles. This was a solid read that reminded me of A Separate Peace but was enjoyable in its own way. Four out of Five stars.

BoySnowReading Next: I’ve got Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi on my bedside table. I don’t know how soon I’ll be able to pick it up, but I’m looking forward to this one. So many people have said wonderful things.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Book Review: Peace Breaks Out by John Knowles (4/5)

16 Aug

This was one of the books I would never have known about if it wasn’t for Goodreads. I loved A Separate Peace and I didn’t realize there was a sequel until I added it on Goodreads and saw Knowles’ other books. I’ve been wanting to read it for ages and I’m so glad I finally have.

Cover image via Goodreads

Cover image via Goodreads

Peace Breaks Out by John Knowles

Summary from Goodreads:

In the uneasy peace after World War II, the senior year at Devan School for Boys in New Hampshire changes from a time of friendship into a stunning drama of tragic betrayal.

Knowles has a way of writing a book about schoolboys that is so much more than a book about schoolboys. Instead of dealing with being prepared for war and what war really means, we have boys dealing with an absence of war. They were mentally prepared to become soldiers and deal with fighting and death when they graduated and suddenly, their lives are peaceful again. I’d never considered the impact of an armistice on the boys who were gearing up to fight. I liked that Knowles picked a lesser-discussed group to focus on in this novel.

His characters were amazing. Wexford was a great mix of cunning, smart, and ambitious. I liked watching him play with the minds of the students around him because he was so fun to hate. I liked Tug and Nick a lot as well. Their relationship was fun for Knowles to play with, I’m sure. I liked how Nick idolized Tug but at the same time, I had more respect for Nick because he was an independent thinker whereas Tug followed his friends. Pete was the straight man, but he was no less enjoyable for that. The companion novel (because this isn’t much of a sequel) did a great job of living up to my expectation of great characters.

I liked Wexford best. I didn’t find his motivation completely believable, but he was explained enough to be compelling. He was very smart and as Pete says at the end, he’ll probably end up in a high and influential position which is completely terrifying. He was so fun to hate and at the same time, I almost wanted to root for him. Well, until the end was revealed. Then I hated him again.

One of the more compelling parts of the novel was that the boys seemed so different from me. I couldn’t imagine growing up, priming myself to be a soldier to have it all wiped clean. The title is very fitting. Peace has come over Devon as maliciously as war. I could most relate to Pete because he was the observer. He was powerless to stop the anger seething around him and I think it scared him.

I liked the ski trips. At first, I was afraid someone was going to die in a skiing accident and I thought that would be very unfitting to the theme of the book, but when I realized what Knowles was going to do with the trip, I was impressed. He used the trips as a critical plot point. I thought the circumstances of their skiing were really fun, too. I liked that they stayed in barns and carried all the food themselves, walking up the mountain and sleeping in a shack. It makes skiing seem much more dangerous and rugged than it does today.

I thought Hochschwender got a bad reputation in the book and that bothered me. At one point, I thought he was playing everyone else by writing the editorial for the school newspaper and I wish that had gone somewhere more. I think he was up to something and I would have liked to see him go head-to-head with Wexford a bit more. I think he could have stood a good chance but got cut out too soon.

It’s hard for me to pick out a specific theme for this book. The problem these boys have seems to be an outlet for their aggression. They are lacking someone to direct their anger toward so they are picking on each other. There was no war to fight in so they created one. More than anything, I think this book is speaking about those we didn’t consider in the aftermath of the war. The veterans came home as heroes, but the boys that never left had no reason to be applauded. Pete can’t figure out why they wanted to fight. He knew how dangerous and miserable being a soldier could be, but these boys would hear none of it.

Writer’s Takeaway: The two things that I loved most about this book were the complex and well-developed characters and the subject. Having a unique subject, like those boys who missed the war, makes for a very interesting book. I’ve never read anything else about these boys. Having unique and defined characters like Knowles wrote makes the story so much richer. There was a lot to enjoy in this book by such an iconic writer.

I really enjoyed the book and I’d recommend it to those who were fans of A Separate Peace. Four out of Five Stars.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Post:
Peace Breaks Out by John Knowles | Pages Unbound Reviews

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling (5/5)

15 Aug

I was so beyond excited to read this book. I’ve been looking forward to it since it was announced and I went to a midnight release party to celebrate it. Would I surprise anyone if I said I finished it by 2:30 PM the day it came out? I didn’t think so.

Cover image via Goodreads

Cover image via Goodreads

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I and II by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne

Other books by this author:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling, Illustrated by Jim Kay
Harry Potter y el orden del fenix by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter y el misterio del principe by J.K. Rowling
Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling
Very Good Lives by J.K. Rowling
The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)

Summary from Goodreads:

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

I was apprehensive, to be honest. This is my favorite franchise of all time, what if it wasn’t what I was hoping for? It was so fun to see the characters I love all grown up and grappling with parenting. It was great to meet the young children we only get a very brief glimpse into during the epilog of the 7th book. This was everything I could have hoped for. I’m going to try to keep this spoiler free and I’ll let you all know if you need to skip a paragraph.

I loved Scorpius and Albus. It would have been easy to make them similar to their fathers but Rowling (who I’m going to credit with the plot for this review) built them into entirely different people. I liked how they developed and interacted during the accelerated first years of the book and I enjoyed their relationship during the main focus of the plot as well. Again, I don’t want to get to any spoilers here, but Scorpius was very smart and resourceful when he needed to be and he had that Slytherin cunning to get him through.

If it’s not obvious, Scorpius was my favorite character. It was too easy to read Albus as a whiny teenager while Scorpius had real problems to deal with and a positive outlook on things that were beyond his control. I liked Ron the least. I thought he was turned too much into a bumbling dumb old man. It was disappointing.

I think Albus was easy to relate to. Growing up, I felt the pressure to be like my parents. I should be as successful as them, as happy as them, and do the work they did. I can’t imagine what that pressure would feel like if Harry Potter was my dad! The end of Deathly Hallows gives us a rosy view of Albus but this book really digs into the difficulty he has to go through.

J.K. Rowling Image via The Telegraph

J.K. Rowling
Image via The Telegraph

Ok, being vague here to not give away the plot. I liked Scorpius and Albus’s adventures in the meat of the novel. I liked what they had to go through to fix the problems and put things back to how they were. Was that vague enough? I hope so. If you read the book, I hope you know what I’m talking about.

I think the biggest difference to me between this play and the original novels was the multiple points of view. Not only do we get Albus and Scorpius’s conversations, but we have Harry and Ginny as well as Hermione and Ron. That was weird for me and threw me off a bit. I know it’s better for a play, but it was not ‘Harry Potter-y’ and to me was one of the most marked differences.

 

I think we’ve all wondered what would happen if one thing in our past changed. Maybe something that we consider insignificant but it could have resounding impacts on the future. I liked the way this was explored in the novel. (Again, trying to be vague here.) I thought the alternatives that were presented made sense and showed how important every part of our past can be.

Writer’s Takeaway: I hadn’t read a play in a while. I read Shakespeare in high school but I honestly think that might be the last time I cracked one open. It was fun to read this style again, but I see why Rowling needed some assistance to be an effective writer in this format. There’s a lot to consider with who is on stage when, how much you can do with effects, scene changes, etc. I think the team pulled the whole thing off well.

Yes, it’s because of the nostalgia and I don’t care. A full Five out of Five stars.

I did the math and the majority of this plot takes place in the future so I’m counting this title toward ‘the future’ time period for the When Are You Reading? Challenge.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Posts:
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling | GemsBookNook
Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne | Bookiecookie Blog

Book Review: 10% Happier by Dan Harris (3/5)

11 Aug

The title of this book was intriguing. I think we could all stand to be 10% happier. It was nominated for a Goodreads 2014 in nonfiction which is what originally drew my eye. I was on a 20+ person waiting list on Overdrive for the book but got it off Hoopla as soon as I wanted it. (Note: If you have a library card, explore your digital ending options. Some are superior to others, in my opinion.)

10%10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help that Actually Works- A True Story by Dan Harris

Summary from Goodreads:

After having a nationally televised panic attack on Good Morning America, Dan Harris knew he had to make some changes. After learning about research that suggests meditation can do everything from lower your blood pressure to essentially rewire your brain, Harris took a deep dive into the underreported world of CEOs, scientists, and even marines who are now using it for increased calm, focus, and happiness. 10% Happier takes readers on a ride from the outer reaches of neuroscience to the inner sanctum of network news to the bizarre fringes of America’s spiritual scene, and leaves them with a takeaway that could actually change their lives.

I had never heard of Dan Harris before reading this book. I’m not a big fan of TV news, which is probably the major reason. I had no idea he’d been a figure on NBC for years and I had a little understanding of how that would affect his emotional state and personality. I liked Dan and he was very honest in this book, which read more like a memoir than a self-help book. Dan’s simple answer is meditation. While meditation is usually associated with Buddhist monks and many of those Dan interacts with are Buddhists, I don’t believe that the brand of meditation he subscribes to is in conflict with any person’s belief system. It’s a simple 30-minute exercise of clearing his mind, focusing on his breath and slowing everything down to a pace where his focus remains in the ‘now’ instead of worrying about the past or future. It’s something that might be helpful to me and my constant worrying about things coming up and dwelling on what’s already happened.

Dan portrayed himself in a very real and honest way. He refrained from saying too much about others or passing judgment on as many as he could and still tell his story. I liked that he didn’t go too in-depth about his wife or family and left them out of his story (95% of the time). He kept the focus very strongly on his journey to finding a form of meditation that worked for him.

I thought Dan portrayed the JewBu’s in a very positive way. This was a subculture I knew nothing about and he gave them a great light. I still think it’s odd that so many Jews embraced Buddhism with such fervor and I liked how Dan felt comfortable with this subculture.

It was hard for me to relate to any of the characters too deeply. That’s part of what I love about memoirs. I don’t have to be similar to the person or relate to their story to appreciate what they have to say. I think Dan’s journey is great. I don’t know if I would ever go through the same thing (especially because he says his initial downturn was because of recreational drug use) but it’s interesting to hear about how he recovered and what he found on the other side.

Dan Harris Image via ABC website

Dan Harris
Image via ABC website

I really enjoyed Dan’s story about his first retreat. He entered the week with skepticism similar to mine upon hearing the story. I like how he described recognizing his pain and it felt very real to me. It made me think of how I would feel in a similarly unfamiliar circumstance. One of my priests at church told me about a silent retreat they do as seminarians. They can bring a Bible, but any other books are a distraction from the prayer and study that should happen that weekend. This kept popping into my head as Dan told about his time on the retreat.

It was hard to hear about Dan’s addiction and struggles with drugs. It was reassuring knowing that he came out on the other side alright (assuming so as he narrated the audiobook), but it’s still hard to hear how that affected his life.

Harris narrating the audiobook himself was nice. He gave great inflection to his stories and the sarcastic tone he carried for a large part of it. One of his supervisors tells him at one point that he’ll never be an evening news anchor because his voice is too grating and I have to agree. I thought that after seven hours, he was a bit much.

I like the idea of what Dan is selling, but I didn’t 100% buy it. Maybe meditation would make me happier and help me approach life in a healthier manner. Or it could be a chunk of my day I don’t get back. It could be a long learning curve for me to get to a productive part of my study that would be more frustrating than rewarding while I’m going through it. It could be a lot of things. I’m not sure I’ll try it, but it’s nice to know that option is out there.

Writer’s Takeaway: I don’t think I would have read a self-help book on meditation, but I will pick up almost any memoir. I appreciated that Dan didn’t write one of the self-help books he reported on for so long and instead told us about his life and how he found something that worked for him. It was a good format for his message and I really appreciated that.

I liked the book and the story, but I’m not sure it will impact me going forward. Three out of Five Stars.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Posts:
10% Happier, by Dan Harris | Books in the Park
Dan Harris 10% Happier | Being Here
Book Review: 10% Happier, by Dan Harris | Aloha Dharma

WWW Wednesday, 10-August-2016

10 Aug

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

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OnePersonCurrently reading: I got some solid reading of In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson this week. I had to go to the doctor and you all know how much waiting there is involved in that! I’m over 50% now and I can feel the tension building.
I’m really enjoying The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. The advice Chapman gives is very practical and it’s something I can implement in my marriage. Though my husband is getting a little sick of me saying how my actions hit on one or more of the love languages, haha.
I started reading In One Person by John Irving on Saturday. I’m having to write this early because of my vacation so I can’t say too much about it besides I’m excited to read it because I’m a huge fan of Irving. I’m  hoping to power through it while I’m on the beach.

PeaceBreaksRecently finished: I finished Peace Breaks Out by John Knowles on Friday. I enjoyed this book a lot which I was really hoping I would. I loved A Separate Peace when I read it in high school and I thought this book was equally enjoyable. I’ll have a review going up next week or so. I’ve got another lined up before it before I’ll get it posted.

Because of my vacation time, no reviews up this past week but I do have one ready for tomorrow so look out for that!

BoySnowReading Next: I’m still waiting on the audiobook for World Without End by Ken Follett. I might start another one before it comes in because I’ll finish Love Lanaguages soon and need something to listen to. Not sure what that would be.
My next physical book is going to be Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi. This is a book club pick for my club that will meet in September. A librarian friend of mine recommended this about a year ago and I’ve been looking for a reason to read it ever since. I’m excited!


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

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