august reads

here’s what i read (or finished reading) in august!

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poetry magazine july/august 2017.
i’ve been doing well keeping up with these! i’m finding that they are exactly life-changing or anything, but there were a few good poems here and there in this issue.

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health at every size by linda bacon.
this is treated as like the bible in my field. everyone always talks about it. hell, even i talk about it! but i had never read it. so i decided to remedy that in august. i liked it but it was very different than i was expecting. i was surprised by how much talk there was of whole foods and plant-based diets. it was good but i definitely wouldn’t recommend it to someone in eating disorder treatment or early recovery.

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i am her tribe by danielle doby.
i started this in july and finished in early september, but i will put it here. i loved this book and dog-eared many, many pages. so much of it spoke to me. i’ve been using it to read from in savasana in the yoga classes i’m teaching.

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faithful place by tana french.
this is the 3rd of 6 novels in tana french’s dublin murder squad series. it was definitely my least favorite of the series so far. the main character is just not my fave (and i didn’t like him in the likeness either) so it was hard to get into this one. obviously that didn’t stop me from reading it and anticipating finding out who the murderer was, but i don’t think i’d read this one again.

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the house of belonging by david whyte.
after reading everything is waiting for you, i knew i had to read more david whyte. this collection was phenomenal. i resonated with like 75% of it. it’s gorgeous and longing and there’s some heavy mary oliver influence in it.

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broken harbor by tana french.
oh surprise! 2 tana french novels read/finished in the month of august! this series has been so hard for me to put down and pretty much as soon as i’m done with one, i start the next. i really liked this one, definitely way more than faithful place. it’s gotten me and my friends who’ve read it joking about minks all the time, so that has to be good, right?

until next time.

july reads

hello everyone! i am back with some reading updates. in this post i am including everything i finished and/or read in its entirety in july. and there’s a bonus book at the end!

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devotions by mary oliver.
it should be no surprise to readers of knot + stitch that i love poetry. mary oliver was one of the first poets that i ever read. this collection was gorgeous and made me want to escape off into nature and stay for a few hours with no distractions.

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the secret of the yoga sutra.
i read this for my yoga teacher training that i finished in august (!). at the very beginning of the training last november, we were told we were going to have a write a book report on one of our required reading books. i got this one started in may because it was pretty dense and then lo and behold there was a miscommunication and there was no book report! i’m glad i read this though because there was some really great stuff in it.

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the likeness by tana french.
ooooh you guys. this was soooo good! i am currently on tana french’s 5th of 6 dublin murder squad books and this one was definitely my favorite so far. if i had to rate them so far, this would be my order: 1. the likeness 2. the secret place (so far…i’m still reading it) 3. broken harbor 4. in the woods 5. faithful place. i’m gonna be kinda sad when i’m done reading these books…i’ve been reading them in succession throughout the summer.

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trauma-sensitive yoga in therapy by david emerson.
this was my therapy book this month and i really liked it. there was so much information about trauma and yoga and how to apply yoga in the therapeutic setting, regardless of your own yoga skills. lots of embodiment work here.

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morality play by barry unsworth.
this was the book club book for july. i must admit that i went into it fully expecting to hate it and was very surprised that i really enjoyed it. i’m not a huge historical fiction person, which is what initially threw me off, but it is also a murder mystery which i very definitely love (see the tana french books). it was pretty quick and easy to read and very satisfying.

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year of wonder by clemency burton-hill.
this is a book that i bought and started in july. if you are a religious type, you might be familiar with a devotional: a book that gives you some scripture to read every day and some commentary on it. this book is the classical music version of that. a piece everyday, some information on it, and some anecdote. i have been loving it! sometimes i start my day with it and sometimes i listen just before bed. i’ve dog-eared so many pages and need to get a classical music playlist going. even more exciting is that clemency burton-hill has started a podcast, the open ears project, where famous people talk about their favorite classical music pieces.

look out later in the week for my august reads!

june reads

we’re getting all caught up! hopefully i’ll stay caught up. but you know me. we’ll see. here’s what i read (and/or finished up) in june!

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this day by wendell berry.
i have been reading my way through this book for about 18 months. i find that poetry is best read slowly, just a page or two at a time, so that’s what i did with this one. i loved it so much. if you are a fan of mary oliver, you’ll probably find some poems in this book that you’d like. lots of nature and wonder in this one.

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everything is waiting for you by david whyte.
it was my turn to pick for book club, so i decided we needed some poetry up in that clurb. i chose this book because a friend turned me on to david whyte earlier in the year and i became a woman obsessed. i found out that he would be coming down to austin at the end of june, so i wanted to make sure i read this by then. i loved it. it was so good. and my book club loved it too! i was so happy to share my love of poetry with them and to hear them reading the poems and enjoying them and analyzing them and relating to them. i want to read my david whyte. he’s full of goodness.

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the sexual healing journey by wendy maltz.
oh the name of this book. it’s something. this was my therapy read for june. it was really good, but i definitely don’t recommend it to everyone. it’s a pretty graphically detailed book, so i’d recommend it only for people who are very stable and ready to read about sexual trauma in depth. it’s a great resource for therapists.

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poetry magazine june 2017.
a theme. nothing noteworthy.

well friends, we are all caught up on my reading. i’ve got my july books going and am excited to share them in a few weeks (hopefully). stay tuned.

may reads

here i am with the may reads. i feel like this is the month i for real got serious about making reading a priority! i started doing what i used to do in college and grad school- i would figure out how many pages were in a book, how many days i had to read, do some division, put sticky notes all over the book to pace my reading, then would just read a bit every day. it’s a real helpful way to make sure reading gets done! but i also made sure to read for fun too, in a non-regimented way. here are the may books!

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daisy jones and the six by taylor jenkins reid.
you guessed it, this was for book club. i loved this book! i for real thought it was non-fiction for a bit. and i didn’t like it. then i found it out it was fiction and then i LOVED it! weird how that happens. at the beginning i wasn’t a fan of the interview format, but as i kept reading it liked it more. this was a super quick and easy read and very entertaining. i love music and i am super interested in the behind the scenes stuff, so this was perfect for those behind the scenes looks (even if fictionalized).

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befriending your body by ann saffi biasetti.
this was my therapy book for may. it was soooo good. i loved it and i use it ALL the time at work. i didn’t even put it on my bookshelf- it lives on my desk at my office. i have sticky notes all over it and i use it in my weekly body image group. i highly recommend this to eating disorders therapists who want to do more embodiment work with their clients. funnily enough, a coworker happened to read this book in may too! she liked it as well.

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in the woods by tana french.
it’s no secret that i’m a tana french fangirl. i read the witch elm for book club last winter and loved it so much that i downloaded all of her other books to my kindle. i really hate scary/crime movies and tv, but for some reason i devour suspense/mystery novels. they are addicting to me. i really enjoyed this one and there were some good twists and turns. there was also one sentence in the book that ends up being the entire plot of the witch elm which i thought was super cool. it was literally ONE SENTENCE! genius.

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poetry magazine may 2017.
i’m really doing it y’all. i’m reading all of the 2017 issues of poetry magazine! i felt the same way about this one as i did april 2017. it’s fine. i wouldn’t read it again.

stay tuned for my june reads!

april reads

so i’m a few months behind in blogging about the books i’m reading this year but hey, better late than never, right? here’s what i read in april (i had to go to goodreads and look up what i read in april.)

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the great alone by kristin hannah.
this was a book club pick. did i finish it in time for book club? of course not! i was a little behind since i had joined a second book club (which has since naturally dissolved, freeing me up to read what i actually want to read), but hey, i finished it! i had heard tons about this book all over the internet and irl. i liked it. it was a very moving story and engaging. i had trouble getting into it at first, but as i kept reading it was hard to put down. it’s a true love story.

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hunger, hope, and healing by sarahjoy marsh.
remember that i am trying to read a therapy book every month. i had started this one a few months before april but i finished it in april, so it’s going under the april reads list. this book is sooooo good and i highly recommend it to therapists who work with eating disorders and like incorporating yoga into therapy. it’s full of goodness and it’s one that i turn to often and will continue to turn to often. i had stumbled on it at half-price books and thought i’d just give it a shot and it turned out to be great!

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poetry magazine april 2017.
in 2017 i had a subscription to poetry magazine because there was an ad for it on this american life and you could get a whole year for $20. not being one to pass up 1. a deal, and 2. a deal on poetry, i subscribed. and quickly realized i was in over my head and wouldn’t be finishing them up as they came each month, so i cancelled the subscription at the end of the year. so i have this stack of 12 poetry magazines that just collect dust, so in april i decided that this would be the year that i read all of them. honestly, i don’t love them. they definitely expose me to poetry i’d otherwise never get to read, but other than that, i don’t get much out of it. i really like honing in on one poet at a time and reading a collection of one person’s work.

check back in a couple of days for my may reads!

march read(s)


i’m gonna have to start scheduling time to update this here blog.

i have a finished object to share! two, actually. we’ll get to it.

i have about a million links for weekend reading.

see. content.

let’s talk about what i read in march before it is somehow may.

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becoming by michelle obama.

i joined a second book club. i don’t know what made me think i could handle a second book club when i was barely finishing books for the first, but alas, i did. our first book was a flop for me, so i was excited when the next book was chosen and it was becoming by michelle obama. i had been wanting to read it for a while. i got it and started reading and, as has been my style these days, read it in fits and starts. eventually i buckled down and i read it. i really loved it! i loved reading about michelle’s childhood and her jobs and career and how she just wanted to be a normal person even when her husband was president. i found that it wasn’t particularly political so even those who don’t like politics might enjoy it.

the next book for that second book club was the goldfinch. i’ve had it sitting on my bookshelf for like a year and a half so i thought it’d be a good opportunity to finally read it. i’ve had other reading goals i’ve wanted to accomplish, though, so i didn’t get around to it. i ended up telling the second book club that 2 book clubs were too many for me. i DID finish my other book club’s march book (yes, in late april) and have started may’s book and should (hopefully) be done by the time we meet.

i’m getting back on track with the reading goals!

fall reading

a little theme to keep going, if you will.

since i have cut back on screen time lately, i have found myself with…free time.

the internet and all of our little devices are truly magical little things and have opened up worlds of possibilities for us all. but they have also sucked up all of our free time. bored? scroll through insta. waiting for jury duty? check email and facebook. waiting in a line or just generally waiting for something? buzzfeed, reddit, twitter.

what did we used to do in those moments? i’m not saying that we didn’t have other ways to just fill the time. we did. and i’m not saying that our phones are evil and that we shouldn’t use them or that checking email and twitter and fb and insta etc are bad. i’m saying that for me personally, those are not my values and i don’t want to be spending my spare time with those things often.

i want to read.

and again, i know i can do this on my phone. but for me, the temptation to switch apps and mindlessly scroll is too great.

somehow this has turned into a rant. it’s supposed to be about the good stuff i’ve read/am currently this fall!

so here we go. the point of the post.

opened ground by seamus heaney. if you follow me on instagram, you will know the depths of my love for poetry, especially seamus heaney’s poetry. the man can do no wrong. i spent about 2 years with this lovely collection of his work and it was beautiful and meaningful. it is full of poems i will return to again and again. i love the way poetry seeps into your brain and takes up residence there and then flows out in mundane moments. i was walking up the street one day after it had been raining for days. there were little rivers running down the curbs and immediately the line “where springs washed into/ the shiny grass / and darkened cobbles /in the bed of the lane” immediately sprang to mind.

the witch elm by tana french. this was my first foray into tana french’s beautifully written irish world and it will not be my last. this book was a book club read. i was intimated by the size of the novel (500 pages) and worried that my commitment of finishing book club picks on time would be hindered by the length of the book. i didn’t need to worry because i devoured this one. i couldn’t stop reading. i am not one for scary things. i can’t handle violence or gruesome death scenes/descriptions. but a little suspense? i’m in. this book made me want a candlestick holder. yes, i know that’s random and weird. read it and you’ll understand. except it’s used in a pretty terrible way. but really. tana french’s description of it was so gorgeous that i had to buy one, “barley-sugar-twist stem and graceful fleur-de-lys swoops at the top, the center prong sharpened to hold the candle (stub of melted wax, a night with wine in bed and Nina Simone).” i mean, come on.

the woman in the window by aj finn. i needed another page turner after the witch elm and another suspense was the way to go. the story of how i came into possession of this book entertains me: my brother in law asked for it for christmas last year. upon opening it, he realized that my grandparents had accidentally bought him the large-print version. not one to be ungracious, he thanked them for it, then later asked me if i wanted it. undeterred by large print, i happily accepted. i started this book at my first-ever jury duty. i was blessedly not chosen that day and had spent all of my time at the courthouse reading this book. from then on, it was another one i couldn’t put down. there are twists and turns and parts that make your heart beat fast.

my brilliant friend by elena ferrante. my book club has a bit of a history. for a while, we read only very serious books. it wasn’t on purpose. we don’t have a theme or anything, but i think we were all feeling the heaviness of the world and wanted to stay woke. we mostly got it out of our systems and have read some really great books that were a little more entertainment than education since then. this month, after discussing the witch elm, the chooser of december’s book gave us a choice. one, my brilliant friend, was one i had already read and loved. the other, a title i cannot remember, was a serious and heavy book. our group decided that since my brilliant friend was just about to air on hbo that night, and because i had a positive experience with it before, and because nobody wanted to read something so heavy and serious, that we would go with my brilliant friend. i’m only a few pages into my re-reading of it, but i am loving it again. i cannot wait to watch the hbo show.

hunger, hope, and healing by sarahjoy marsh. as i mentioned in one of my last posts, i am in yoga teacher training. i am specifically learning psychotherapeutic yoga, so much of my research into yoga has been how i can apply it to my job as a therapist. there is so much out there about how yoga is good for such emotional healing and i have been trying absorb it all. i was at half-price books recently and was perusing the yoga section and i came across this book. after reading the subtitle, i was worried that it was going to be yet another book that claimed freedom from food and body obsession but still had the diet mentality at its core. so i flipped through and read bits and pieces and looked over the appendix and decided it was worth a try. then i started reading. i am not far into it yet, but my friends, whoa. this is going to be such an asset to my job, to my yoga training, and hopefully, to my patients. it is a beautiful and useful combination of eating disorder and body image training, therapy, and yoga. i cannot wait to keep reading and start applying it. i am envisioning this book being one of those that becomes completely beat up and worn down with love and near-daily use.

what have been your favorite reads this fall?