Social Media Roundup {What’s New & Recent Posts}

Gen The Bookworm Instagram

Checking-in:

Hello out there! How is September going for you? Besides the semi-regular book review posts, it has been very quiet around here. I will eventually get back into the swing of things and be back with more regular Currently Loving posts, guest posts and that old summer vacation to Maine post I promised a couple of weeks ago…oops!

The “B” Word

I try not to use the “B” word (BUSY!) because it is one of my pet peeves but this time of year would probably fall into that category with work obligations…I like to say it is just a little more hectic and blogging on here doesn’t fall high on my priority list because that is really what it is. While my photography work is year-round, this beautiful time of the year in Vermont means we are running in high gear and our days are full.

I certainly have some free time but I am just doing other things, like putting away laundry while listening to my audiobook!! I do a lot of extra things in the morning before the kids wake up, but if doesn’t get done, it gets pushed off to the next morning and the blog posts tend to fall into that category.

I am NOT a computer before bed kind of person and I think it is important to have some time of the day to just “be”. Reading before bed is sacred to me, and I tend to read even more when life is hectic because it helps shut my brain off and wind down. Do you do this as well?

Busy as a Status Symbol

Busy has somehow become some kind of status symbol which is a bummer to me. Have you noticed this too? I think maybe because we see so much more of each other’s lives because of social media posting in general, which can be a great thing in many ways! 

I love when it helps make me feel less alone, or feel connected to someone else experience the same thing. But usually, if you have time to write about how BUSY you are, well, yeah…

Blogging vs. Social Media Posting

Anyway, I love blogging because I have a lot to say and sometimes(most times…) I reach the maximum amount of text on Instagram, ha! But blogging is a process, and so posting on social media tends to reign supreme when I have a smaller chunks of available time.

So if you are wondering what I have been up to, you can find some links to my recent Instagram posts below. You can also find me at @genthebookworm if you are interested in following along on a regular basis!

Instagram Roundup:

Gen The Bookworm

The Hard Copy/Audiobook Juggle with The Dearly Beloved

Gen The Bookworm

Cilka’s Journey Book Mail & The Tattooist of Auschwitz 

Gen the Bookworm book reviews

September Reading & Seasonal Reading Preferences…

bookstagram made me do it

Bookstagram Recommendations!

do you write in your books?

Hot Topic: Do You Write in Your Books?!

Pure Barre Vermont

Books & Barre

Fair Play by Eve Eodsky

Eve Rodsky presents the challenges of the “invisible work” of motherhood and then goes on to share a solution!


I hope you have a great rest of your Tuesday! <3

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead | Doubleday Books {Book Review}

book review of The Nickel Boys

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

Book Summary:

As the Civil Rights movement begins to reach the black enclave of Frenchtown in segregated Tallahassee, Elwood Curtis takes the words of Dr. Martin Luther King to heart: He is “as good as anyone.” Abandoned by his parents, but kept on the straight and narrow by his grandmother, Elwood is about to enroll in the local black college. But for a black boy in the Jim Crow South of the early 1960s, one innocent mistake is enough to destroy the future. Elwood is sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, whose mission statement says it provides “physical, intellectual and moral training” so the delinquent boys in their charge can become “honorable and honest men.”

In reality, the Nickel Academy is a grotesque chamber of horrors where the sadistic staff beats and sexually abuses the students, corrupt officials and locals steal food and supplies, and any boy who resists is likely to disappear “out back.” Stunned to find himself in such a vicious environment, Elwood tries to hold onto Dr. King’s ringing assertion “Throw us in jail and we will still love you.” His friend Turner thinks Elwood is worse than naive, that the world is crooked, and that the only way to survive is to scheme and avoid trouble.

The tension between Elwood’s ideals and Turner’s skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades. Formed in the crucible of the evils Jim Crow wrought, the boys’ fates will be determined by what they endured at the Nickel Academy.
Based on the real story of a reform school in Florida that operated for one hundred and eleven years and warped the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative that showcases a great American novelist writing at the height of his powers.

Publication Date:

July 16th, 2019

Genre:

Literary/Historical Fiction

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️

My Review:

The Nickel Boys is a powerful story that takes on important American history. Colson Whitehead uses rich metaphors and ornate descriptions in this haunting tale based on true events at The Dozier School for boys in Florida. The Nickel Boys is a historical fiction coming of age story centering around a young black man named Elwood Curtis at the beginning of the civil rights movement. He was at the wrong place at the wrong time when he was then sentenced to time at a “reform school in Florida.

Curtis and many other young black boys were sent to the Nickel Academy, and the mistreatment and abuse they encountered is just heartbreaking. This is absolutely an important story to tell but the book felt lacking for me at many points. While the story was impactful, I feel a lack of connection with the characters and felt wanting more. The ending, while definitely having the “wow” factor, did not feel satisfying to me as a reader because of my lack of connection with the characters.

Many will appreciate the shorter length of this book but for me, I feel that I missed something and wished I could have been given more details. His writing is powerful and filled with beautiful prose but I just didn’t feel as engaged as I had hoped with such an important subject matter. The book didn’t flow easily for me and I would have loved to get more inside the heads of these characters that while they were described with great detail, I never felt I really knew. I so respect how Whitehead brought this important history to life and the inequality that existed in this country much too recently the execution just didn’t totally work for me.

American Predator by Maureen Callahan | Viking | Book of the Month Add-On Selection {Book Review}

;Israel Keyes true crime novel

 American Predator by Maureen Callahan

Book Summary:

“Ted Bundy. John Wayne Gacy. Jeffrey Dahmer. The names of notorious serial killers are usually well-known; they echo in the news and in public consciousness. But most people have never heard of Israel Keyes, one of the most ambitious and terrifying serial killers in modern history. The FBI considered his behavior unprecedented. Described by a prosecutor as “a force of pure evil,” Keyes was a predator who struck all over the United States. He buried “kill kits”–cash, weapons, and body-disposal tools–in remote locations across the country. Over the course of fourteen years, Keyes would fly to a city, rent a car, and drive thousands of miles in order to use his kits. He would break into a stranger’s house, abduct his victims in broad daylight, and kill and dispose of them in mere hours. And then he would return home to Alaska, resuming life as a quiet, reliable construction worker devoted to his only daughter.

When journalist Maureen Callahan first heard about Israel Keyes in 2012, she was captivated by how a killer of this magnitude could go undetected by law enforcement for over a decade. And so began a project that consumed her for the next several years–uncovering the true story behind how the FBI ultimately caught Israel Keyes, and trying to understand what it means for a killer like Keyes to exist. A killer who left a path of monstrous, randomly committed crimes in his wake–many of which remain unsolved to this day.

American Predator is the ambitious culmination of years of interviews with key figures in law enforcement and in Keyes’s life, and research uncovered from classified FBI files. Callahan takes us on a journey into the chilling, nightmarish mind of a relentless killer, and to the limitations of traditional law enforcement.”

Publication Date:

July 2nd, 2019

Genre:

True Crime

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

My Review:

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(you can find the referral link for American Predator HERE)

I am a huge fan of true crime podcasts and documentaries and I especially enjoy going down the rabbit hole and diving into a series about a specific event or person. I had previously read and listened to a lot about Israel Keyes because of one his crimes happened just a few towns over from us. I wasn’t sure if this book would seem repetitive but after a few of my friends kept recommending this I decided to go for it.

I really don’t read a lot of true crime novels because I have found some of them to be a little dry in the past but I have to hand it to Maureen Callahan! Not only did she write an engrossing book that read almost like fiction, but I learned a lot of new things about Keyes that I had not heard about before.

It does feel a little strange to be raving about this type of genre, but if you are interested in this kind of topic, I think you would just find this book fascinating. I won’t go into too many details but if you are interested in the backstory of Keyes as well as the behind the scenes moments in the investigation of his crimes, you will love this.

This was a hard book to put down and Callahan is truly given at weaving these stories together in an informative and engaging manner. Highly recommend!

I picked this as my add-on book in August through my Book of the Month subscription. You can get your first BOTM book for free by using my referral link HERE.