Books I Read in August

Here are the books I’ve read in August, in chronological order. I was pretty happy to have read such a diverse mix of genres this month, and I’ll try to keep it up going forward!


station elevenEmily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven:
 This has been on my to-read list for such a long time, and once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it back down. I read for an entire day on the couch until I finished the book. I’ve seen a lot of people describe this as a “slow burner” but I didn’t find the book slow at all. I found this to be a thoughtful exploration into the necessity of art, technology, and human connections. However, I didn’t connect with or even like any of the characters, but I think Mandel did such an excellent job creating this post-apocalyptic world that it doesn’t even matter.

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not that kind of girl
Lena Dunham’s Not That Kind of Girl: I will admit that for the longest time I didn’t “get” Lena Dunham’s appeal. This has been my summer of Dunham – I binge watched all the seasons of her show “Girls” and then read her book as soon as I could get my hands on it. I “get” it now. She’s funny, thoughtful, and self-deprecating. She is insightful and self-aware to the brink of an egomaniacal obsession. I related to her book much more than I did to her show, and I feel like I have a new found appreciation and respect for her.

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The Ocean at the End of the Lane: Lunch with the Hempstocks

ocean at the end of the lane

Food is such an important part of The Ocean at the End of the Lane. The unnamed main character’s father only serves him burnt toast and he finds refuge in the Hempstock’s home (at the end of the lane), where Old Mrs. Hempstock feeds him a veritable feast.

Dinner was wonderful. Old Mrs. Hempstock took out a joint of beef, roast potatoes, golden crisp on the outside and soft and white on the inside, buttered greens, roasted carrots all blackened and sweet. For dessert there was a pie stuffed with apples and swollen raisins and crushed nuts, all topped with a thick yellow custard, creamier and richer than anything.

If I could invite the Hempstocks over for lunch, this is what I would serve them – click through for the recipes!

:One-Pan Beef & Ale Pie-1952 Skillet Beef and Ale Pie

carrots three ways Carrots Three Ways Salad

rosemary potato cakes Crispy Rosemary Potato Cakes

Bonus: Neil Gaiman’s Pancake Recipe for the delicious lemon pancakes mentioned in the book.