Wednesday, March 31, 2021

A Month In The Life: March 2021


It's springtime in northern Nevada, which is actually a little worrisome...we didn't get as much snow as it would have been ideal to get in the mountains during the winter, and while the end of March in the Reno area certainly doesn't mark the final end of the snowy season, it's closer to the end than the beginning. We've already had our first 70-degree day! Meanwhile, my reading pace has taken a hit as the challenges of a remote session mean that I am super busy!

In Books...

  • Forget Me Not: I absolutely loved Alexandra Oliva's debut novel The Last One, so was really eager to get to her follow-up. It's in the general same kind of literary-minded thriller style, but it just did not grab me the way her first did. In part, that's a high bar to meet, but also I guessed a major plot development very early on and I am generally very bad at guessing these sorts of things. Definitely would make a very good beach/plane read!
  • The Romanov Sisters: I love Russian history, and I love royals, so this scratched two itches at once! It's well-researched and engaging, but I found it to be as much about Alexandra as it was about her daughters themselves. There were some historical aspects that went unexplained that I thought would have benefited from getting a little more attention. It's a solid read, but I was hoping to be wowed and I wasn't.
  • Black Tudors: When we think about or see depictions of Tudor England, it tends to be exclusively Caucasian. But though there were certainly lots and lots of white people, that doesn't reflect the real world at the time...Black people lived in cities, in the countryside, and participated in sea voyages. This book looks at the stories of ten different Black Tudors from all sorts of walks of life, and though it leans a little academic, I found it truly interesting!
  • The Grace of Kings: I was really excited for this fantasy epic, which instead of being based on medieval Europe like so many of them are, is based on the Warring States period of Chinese history. The plot takes a while to get going, and while I wouldn't have had an issue with that if the character-building was better, it's actually pretty weak (perhaps because there are just too many of them). It was reasonably engaging, but could have been so much better. 
  • Bad Feminist: I've always enjoyed Roxane Gay's writing, but this was the first time I'd read the essay collection that was a big deal a few years ago. I absolutely loved this book, she is so funny and smart and insightful.


In Life...

  • Session continues: We're just about halfway through session now, and as deadlines approach, the challenges of a digital format are becoming more and more apparent. We're all trying our best, but I for one will be glad when we can go back to being in person even if I have to admit that I do not at all miss the commute down to Carson City.

One Thing:

I don't know how much more bananas I would be if I wasn't still working out regularly despite not having stepped foot in a gym since last March. Since October, I've been using Team Body Project workouts, and I appreciate how many low-impact options they have because I have sensitive joints. They have several of their programs on YouTube, which is a good starting point to see if their style works well for you.

Gratuitous Pug Picture:

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