A few of the books I read but haven’t written about

Since my last blog post, I’ve read a few books and consumed copious amounts of tea.

  • Bad Feminist
  • The Audacity of Hops
  • Seven Fallen Feathers
  • Outwitting the Devil
  • The Goldfinch

All of these books are phenomenal in their own right and pair wonderfully well with any tea. The problem with doing a blog for any of these books – and choosing a tea that’s compatible with the book – is that for some it’s just not feasible.

For instance, The Audacity of Hops, Tom Acitelli, 480 pages (with small type-font). The perfect beverage to consume while reading this book should be a beer, but this isn’t a blog about books and beer. It’s about books and tea! Besides, I became easily bored and distracted while reading the book because I wanted something that was gripping and exciting. Learning about the history of beer, while beneficial to my future educational pursuits, was not something that I wanted to be reading at this moment. I will give Acitelli props though, for a well-researched and thought-provoking book on just what the craft brew industry has been up to for the last thirty-odd years. Also, ninth edition!

My recommendation for beverage – anything you choose, but maybe stick with any one of the hundreds of brews listed in the pages.

The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt, clocking in at over 700 pages is just too long for me to sit there and ruminant on my feelings while sipping a cup of tea. Don’t get me wrong, I did drink many cups of tea while reading this book but I didn’t track my thoughts and/or feelings. The story was too engrossing and I lost myself in the plot many times. In fact, I stayed up late one night to finish the last fifty pages or so; I just couldn’t put it down. A phenomenal writer with the ability to hit extremely close to home with scenario’s about loneliness, unrequited love, and the passion to be something other than what you are.

Beverage recommendation – tea. Lots of it. Any flavour, any way you like it. Any maybe a box of tissue if you find yourself emotional on occasion.

Seven Fallen Feathers by Tanya Talaga. While a slim-ish book to begin with it’s a heavy hitter speaking to systemic racism in Canada and no amount of tea will ever soothe the wounds or repair what’s been done. I didn’t even bother trying to analyze the thoughts and feelings tea would evoke while reading this book. It’s a harsh reality facing Indigenous people in Canada, and I needed to be present during the reading so I can better understand and learn how to be mindful of my actions that may be contributing to racism and stereotyping. I encourage everyone to read this book and allow the information to sit with you awhile. A second reading maybe required given that there is so much to digest.

Beverage recommendation – your choice, preferably non-alcoholic.

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay. Choosing an essay and drinking a cup of tea is a perfect way to spend an hour or so. You’ll learn something new with each essay. You’ll understand that not all feminists are the stereotypical ‘feminazi,’ and that we can all be feminist even if we like the colour pink (not my fav colour) and read Vogue.

Beverage Recommendations – a bold, spicy tea to match the wit of Gay’s writing.

In regards to Outwitting the Devil by Napoleon Hill, I’m going to leave this one alone. It’s a scathing critique on the American educational system from the early-1900’s but still resonates in today’s political playing field. Read it because it’s scary how evocative it is of today’s issues, but read it because it’s the book that started the self-help/mindfulness industry (or at least it would have if published when written. To find out why it wasn’t, you need to read the book. Or Google it if you’re lazy!)

Beverage Recommendations – anything, maybe something alcoholic if you want to numb the feelings for how hard this book hits home. (Did you know, that you can put liqueurs into tea? I had a phenomenal Canadian Maple Latte *Steeped Tea* with a shot of maple liqueur a long time ago. Something similar would be great with this book).

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