Sierra's View: BOOKS IN SEPTEMBER.

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Saturday, October 1, 2016

BOOKS IN SEPTEMBER.



I wish I had a good excuse for the only posts I have written are about books. (Hey, I have a fashion post coming later this week. Look for it!) Honestly, though, my only excuse is that I have been emotionally drained. It's been an exhausting school year and I am just trying to make it through. The past five weeks have been insane and I am now finally feeling like I can get a grip on things in life. I have been hiking like crazy in this gorgeous Fall weather. I have been enjoying General Conference this Fall weekend. I cannot wait to start lifting weights again, getting into the routine, and NOT BEING SO DANG TIRED! This year is just kicking my trash and I honestly hate that! I have my brother in law's wedding this week and I have so many things to just write about (the list is endless), but I can't find the right words or right time to sit down and get them out...does that make sense? Any who, my Friday nights are getting insane these days. I have found that thinly thing I want to do after a long week teaching is to lay in bed and read and fall asleep at 9:30. So, I have been. It's glorious. And I'm not even a little bit sad about it. Any who, it's October and I am so happy. Fall decorations are already out, and I cannot wait to get my Halloween decor out!! 
Because of this incessant reading, I have some books that I cannot wait to talk about! 


So You've Been Publicly Shamed // Jon Ronson 


Genre: Nonfiction


Rating: 3/5 stars (see more on GoodReads)

Summary: For the past three years, Jon Ronson has traveled the world meeting recipients of high-profile public shamings. The shamed are people like us, people who, say, made a joke on social media that came out badly or made a mistake at work. Once the transgression is revealed, collective outrage circles with the force of a hurricane and the next thing they know, they're being torn apart by an angry mob, jeered at, demonized, sometimes even fired from their job.

My thoughts: 
The first book that I want to talk about is this one because we read it for Book Club this month. Have I mentioned how much I love Book Club? My friend, Bonnie, has a big blog following so she started an online book club. Last November, I told her that we need to meet in real life to discuss these books, so we did. Every month we have new members coming, but Bonnie and I are the strong two! Haha! With that being said, it is such a great time with beautiful, intelligent, awesome women--where we ACTUALLY discuss the novel. Come join us for our next two books. We will be continuing it next year (and start brainstorming names for our book club!). 
This book caused such a great discussion. During the course of reading this novel, I found myself shaking my head in disbelief. I could not believe that these people, many of them who are just your average human beings, went from being a nobody to someone who was, literally, publicly shamed for a silly, impulsive and slightly stupid act that they did online. It was crazy. 
There were many different cases of people in this novel that my heart ached for, but I seemed to feel the worst for Justine Sacco (because I could see myself doing something like this!). Justine tweeted that she was going to Africa and hoped that she wasn't going to get AIDS because she was white. It was stupid. She was trying to be funny. Within 12 hours, she was trending on twitter and completely destroyed by the Internet. There were other cases of women posting things. 

I was amazed at the discrepancy of behavior towards women who did something stupid than men. When the women would make an error or post something slightly immature, they were reprimanded with rape threats, death of knives to their bodies, etc. The man were shamed, but not in a violent way. I kept thinking while reading this book that I never wanted to post on social media again. It is amazing that one tweet can literally change everything. How often have one of us posted something stupid or irreverent on social media? Do we think we would get completely shamed, attacked, and death threats upon us? Absolutely not. 

I was continuously fascinated with this idea of anonymity on the Internet. At our school, we talk about online and cyber bullying and the mentality that people feel like they are anonymous online. I see this happening so often. It's as though they feel like they can something that they would never say in person. It's quite scary, actually. And all of those introverts who struggle with social outlets, the Internt gives them a sense of relating to others, without using the small amount of energy that they have, if that makes sense. 

I am intrigued by this idea of shame verse remorse. Shame should never happen. Ever. So often, as humans, we shame ourselves based on the idea that our action was stupid therefore we are stupid. But that is not the case. It is okay to feel remorse, it is good to feel remorse, but shaming is never the answer. 

Overall, I found this novel incredibly fascinating. I was intrigued with the stories and psychology behind the Internet, shaming, etc. I have studied shaming with Brene Brown a ton, and this book added onto it. It was fascinating and caused for such great discussion, but I was a little confused of the Author's point of view. I couldn't tell if he was tying to convince the reader that the Internet is scary, that we should not shame others, or if he was simply just informing. I felt like the book was all over the place. I had to keep reminding myself what story he was talking about. I didn't know where he was going with certain aspects--he was a little all over the board. All in all, not the best written novel, but fascinating for sure! 

Favorite Quote from the book: 
(Oh man, where do I even begin?!) 
“A life had been ruined. What was it for: just some social media drama? I think our natural disposition as humans is to plod along until we get old and stop. But with social media, we’ve created a stage for constant artificial high drama. Every day a new person emerges as a magnificent hero or a sickening villain. It’s all very sweeping, and not the way we actually are as people.” 





Hamilton: The Revolution // Lin Manuel-Miranda



Genre: Nonfiction


Rating: 4/5 stars (see more on GoodReads)

Summary: 
Lin-Manuel Miranda's groundbreaking musical Hamilton is as revolutionary as its subject, the poor kid from the Caribbean who fought the British, defended the Constitution, and helped to found the United States. Fusing hip-hop, pop, R&B, and the best traditions of theater, this once-in-a-generation show broadens the sound of Broadway, reveals the storytelling power of rap, and claims our country's origins for a diverse new generation. This novel gives readers an unprecedented view of both revolutions, from the only two writers able to provide it.

My thoughts: 
This book was so incredibly boring at first (hence only 4 stars). I found that I could not get into it, even with the visuals and audio. I listened to a part of this book and I read some of it. Reading it with the pictures helped, but I found it quite difficult to get into. With that being said, I am planning on seeing this play in the near future and it was interesting to see background regarding the play and the genius that Lin Manuel-Miranda had behind it. Whenever they would go through each song and tell how it was created, I would stop the track or the page and play that specific song. It was a cool experience to listen to the message, the background, the importance and the genius behind the broadway musical. With that being said, it might be excited to see this novel. Also, Lin Manuel-Miranda is amazing.


Favorite Quote from the book: 
“The comparison might strike you as farfetched. What (you might be asking) can a Broadway musical possibly add to the legacy of a Founding Father--a giant of our national life, a war hero, a scholar, a statesman? What's one little play, or even one very big play, next to all that? 
But there is more than one way to change the world . To secure their freedom, the polyglot American colonists had to come together, and stick together, in the face of enormous adversity. To live in a new way, they first had to think and feel in a new way. It took guns and ships to win the American Revolution, but it also required pamphlets and speeches--and at least one play.” 


Emotional Agility // Susan David 



Genre: Nonfiction


Rating: 4/5 stars (see more on GoodReads)

Summary: 
Emotional agility is a four-step approach that allows us to navigate life’s twists and turns with self-acceptance, clear-sightedness, and an open mind. In her more than twenty years of research, Susan David has found that no matter how intelligent, resilient, or creative people are, when they ignore how situations or interactions make them feel, they miss opportunities to gain insight, getting hooked by thoughts, emotions, and habits that prevent them from reaching their full potential. Emotionally agile people experience the same stresses and setbacks as anyone else, but they know how to adapt, aligning their actions with their values and making small changes that lead to a life of growth.

My thoughts: 
I was a little weary to start this book because I was sent it. With that being said, about 30 pages into it and I absolutely loved it. This book was not one that you could sit and read in one sitting. It took me about 2 months to read this book because I would read little parts here and there, but I found it incredibly rewarding that way. I loved the idea of embracing change that was brought up in this novel. This book was incredibly helpful with my Depression and learning more coping mechanisms to work with the issues that I face daily. Great novel! 



Favorite Quote from the book: 
“Our contract with life is a contract that is brokered with fragility, and with sadness, and with anxiety. And if we’re going to authentically and meaningfully be in this world, we cannot focus on one dimension of life and expect that focusing on that dimension is going to then give us a well-rounded life.” 


Illuminae // Amie Kaufman



Genre: Science Fiction 


Rating: 4/5 stars (see more on GoodReads)

Summary: 
The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

My thoughts: 
One of the hardest parts about Science Fiction/Fantasy for me is that everything is a series. I have a hard time committing to series, but everyone I talked to said that I needed to read this one. I loved it!! I had a hard time reading this novel simply because of the stupid love story (in my opinion, that was the worst part!). I understand that you need a love story to captivate young readers, but it was annoying! With that being said, I loved it. The story kept changing and I felt like I had to keep reading to find out what was going to happen next. I loved the unique style that the book was written in as well (files, messages, etc.). Awesome book! It was even better to listen to the audio while reading it!



Favorite Quote from the book: 
“Part of being alive is having life change us. The people around us, the events we live through, all of them shape us. And that's what I think you're afraid of. Maybe not of dying. But of this you, the you you've become, ceasing to exist.” 


1 comment:

  1. I feel you on the exhaustion... this month has just about finished me off! But I'm glad you are getting out hiking and keep the book posts coming because I love recommendations :)

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