5 After 5, 2016 Books Edition

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It's time for another round of 5 After 5!  In case you missed it, last week's list was 5 of your favorite comedies and if you're new to this series, you can read more about it here.

Today I've got my list of 5 to share, as well as next week's topic for you to stew about over the upcoming days.

And this series is now a link party, so be sure to scroll down and join in all the fun with us this week!

List 5 books you've read so far this year

We're definitely pretty fond of books around here, so you can bet I've already read a stack of titles a mile high.  

Which five do I feel are great enough to share?  As usual, it was difficult to narrow down, but I've managed to pick five of the best: 

1.  Yes, Please

I'm always on the hunt for a new memoir (probably my favorite literary genre) and Amy Poehler has always cracked me up (see this post for some of my favorite moments of hers), so reading this book was a no-brainer for me.

I enjoyed the book, but the best takeaway has easily been learning about Parks & Recreation from it.  We don't have television anymore, so I had no clue this show existed and it has been the perfect silly show for G and I to watch together every night (gotta love the library!)

Read this if you're an Amy Poehler fan or just someone who loves reading the back-story of famous people.

I'd laughed myself silly at Let's Pretend This Never Happened several years ago, so when I heard The Blogess had a new book out, I immediately became #537 on the library waiting list.

This book did not disappoint.

Another memoir (hey, I love those!), this sequel had me in stitches, despite the fact that the focus of this book was Jenny's lifelong battle with mental illness.

Read this if you are close to anyone struggling with things like anxiety or depression, or if you just want to laugh.  One big caution, though: Jenny doesn't keep her language on a PG-level.

3.  The Renaissance Soul


I walked this Earth for decades thinking I was the lone weirdo (well, besides my mom, but there's the whole DNA thing with her) who had 7,348 passions and couldn't figure out how to be normal and just choose one.

Then I met G, who totally got that whole problem, seeing as how he had 7,349 passions and he happened to be incredibly amazing at every single one of them.

So imagine my surprise - nay, giddiness - when I discovered this book and learned that being crazy like this actually has a name?

This book was one of those game-changers for me.  It easily shot up to the top of my big-impact book list!

Read this if you struggle with knowing what you "want to be when you grow up."

4.  Free to Learn

Despite the fact that we're both public school teachers, the first thing that G and I connected on was the extremely alternative educational philosophy that we both share.

Despite our extensive reading on the subject, neither one of us had gotten around to reading this excellent book by leading psychologist Peter Gray. 

Even though so much of what the book contained was not new news to me, I found it extremely encouraging and am hopeful that its popularity might signal a change in the mindset of how education is "done" today.

Read this if you are interested in alternative education methods or just feeling frustrated with what's happening in schools today.  

(Also, Beyond Measure is another good one to check out that offers different solutions.  It would be my #6 for the year.  And yes, I know I totally just cheated again.)

5.  The Century Trilogy

Despite the fact that I read more non-fiction than fiction, I pretty much always have a novel going.

I've been zipping through the Women's Murder Club series (see how I just slipped my #7 in there on this list?), but in-between all that mystery, I've managed to read this amazing epic of the twentieth century.  

Ken Follett is the author of one of my all-time favorite books (The Pillars of the Earth) and I was surprised at just how much I learned about the last century while reading these three books.

Read this if you love historical fiction and have the time to make it through a few thousand pages.

For next week:

List 5 of your favorite literary characters

Books have always been special to me, so that means many bookish characters have been some of my best friends.  Who would you find hanging out at my house for a literary tea party?  Check back next week to find out!  

And now, here's this week's link party!  Two other fabulous bloggers have teamed up with me to create lists of five each week and we hope that you'll join us, too!

That's right, every post will be read, pinned and tweeted!  

Every Saturday, just stop by one of our three blogs to add your own list of five, then pop over and read as many other posts as you're able to each week - treat it like a true party and really mix it up and mingle with our fun little community!

The rules are simple:  just write your own list following the prompt each week (feel free to interpret it loosely - or in a unique way!), follow each of the three hosts on the social media channel of your choice, and then get into the spirit of the party by grabbing your favorite beverage or snack and reading the lists of the other party-goers.

Your Hosts:

Lisa, at Syncopated MamaFacebook // Twitter // Pinterest // Google+ // Bloglovin'
Samantha, at Motivated DaysFacebook // Twitter // Pinterest // Google+ 
Heather Marie at Life, Love, and LasagnaFacebook // Twitter // Pinterest // Instagram // Bloglovin'

What's your list?  I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.

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