Tuesday, April 2, 2013

March Books

These are the books that I've read in March, my "other" books.  Feel free to read the list of 12 books that I'm planning to read in 2013.  You can also see all the books I've read this year and find links to their reviews on my Pinterest page.

March was a much slower reading month than January or February, but that's OK.  The books I read this month were a little longer and I needed to "simmer" over them for a while.  In total, I only read 3 books in March.  I've reviewed Dirty God here.

Remember this picture?  Those were the books I planned to read this month.  (Don't know what I'm talking about?  Join me on Instagram to be kept in the loop.)  Yeah, I only read one of those books.  Oh well, they are still on my list for April.

So here are the other 2 books that I've read this month.

Problogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income by Darren Rowse and Chris Garrett

Update: Oops, I forgot to tell where I got these great books.  I found this one in a bookstore as we were killing time before dinner one night (those bookstores with train tables are great!).  My wonderful husband bought it for me.

Synopsis:  Two of the world's most successful bloggers walk you through how to start and run a money-making blog.  From choosing a blog, choosing the platform on which to host it, promoting it and learning how to earn revenue, the authors give you detailed instructions for every step of the way.

My Thoughts:  This is an absolute must-read for everyone who wants to blog for income.  I learned things such as how to build a "sticky" blog community and how to effectively use social media to promote my blog.  The fact that the authors run a successful, very lucrative blog at problogger.net is just icing on the top.  After reading the book, I visited the site and it's like I get an encore of the book every day.  That in itself is incredibly useful to me.

Although I wish the book had gone more in depth about some things like SEO (search engine optimization), it did give me a great deal of information about many things in relation to my blog that I had never thought about before.  It will take me a while to process it all.  I'm sure Problogger will be a resource that I refer back to quite often in the future.

All Things New by Lynn Austin

Update:  Since I'm a huge Lynn Austin fan and this was her new book, my mom bought it for me and gave it to me as a Christmas gift.  I just wish I hadn't waited 2 months to read it.

Synopsis: The Civil War has just ended and the Weatherly family is trying to figure out how to live this new life they find themselves in.  In Antebellum times, they had owned a prosperous cotton plantation in Virginia complete with dinner parties, carriage rides and the most valuable asset of all...slaves.  Now, Phillip, the owner of the plantation, as well as the head of the Weatherly family, is dead and their slaves have been freed by their former enemy, the dreaded Yankees.  Can young Josephine, her mother Eugenia and their former slave, Lizzy, all figure out how to survive?

My Thoughts:  Lynn Austin is one of my favorite authors and once again, she does not disappoint.  Every character in this book is so well-rounded and complex.  Each chapter is told from the point of view of one of the three women: Josephine, Eugenia and Lizzy.  You get one view of a character from outside of them and a completely different view of that character when you gets to live in her shoes for a chapter or two.  What might look like one motive to one person becomes a completely different motive when viewed from the other side.  Lynn Austin does a great job with that.

I also love that this story looks at an aspect of the Civil War not often talked about in books - the Reconstruction. It's great that the North won and that slavery was abolished but when Southerners were sent home to figure out how to survive in a new normal that they knew nothing about, then you start to feel for them and empathize with their plight.  You get new insight into why the Civil War was fought in the first place and why the South felt like it couldn't survive without slavery.

But the best part of the book?  The hope that is present throughout it all.  Hope just emanates from the lives of all three women, hope that the future will be better than the present. If you love historical fiction, than you will love this book.

I've read 3 books in March.  That brings my total up to 16 books for the year.  I'm well on my way to reaching my 40 book goal.  See all the books I've read on my Pinterest page.

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