Catching Katy

Reads, Eats, & Everything Else


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The Center of Everything

My second Goodreads free book giveaway! We were able to get to the beach this week and are lucky to have family who lives on a beautiful, noncrowded beach within driving distance. One day we were literally the only people on the beach. But I had plenty of time to fly through this book on the beach and on the drive back.

The Center of Everything by Jamie Harrison is definitely a slower pace, which was different since I am used to reading thriller/suspense and historical fiction that have a lot of action. So although it’s good to switch it up something, it still felt slow and boring at times. Polly, the main character, had a recent head trauma in an accident and has a big week. It’s a holiday week in July during which she is also hosting a huge family party. Her head injury makes it difficult to focus but also brings about memories from childhood in much more vivid detail than usual. And those memories bring about a lot of questions leading up to the family party and seeing so many family members. There is also a bit of a mystery as a secondary story since in the same week, a local girl, who babysits for Polly, goes missing on the river.

Overall the story was fine, but definitely not my usual read. It rambled on at times and jumped from one thought to another, which was maybe on purpose to reflect the main character’s current state of mind. I think my giveaway copy was an early release, so check it out when it’s released! Also not sure how the title fits in – she mentions ‘the center of everything’ once in the book but I can’t remember what it was in reference to…maybe her mother? Her family? If I don’t know after reading the whole book, perhaps a different title would have been better.


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What We Forgot To Bury

If you are a reader and aren’t on Goodreads, you should be! Not only is it a great, easy way to track what books you’ve read, but you can win FREE BOOKS! I’ve been on a bit of a winning streak lately: I won 2 free Kindle books from Goodreads and a whole free family meal from a local restaurant! I can no longer say I never win anything!

This was the first book I won. I’m not going to lie, I’m a little skeptical of free books (although it’s a little different when it’s a giveaway). I’ve tried some of the books available through Prime Reading and they can be hit or miss. What We Forgot To Bury by Marin Montgomery was definitely slow to start and it took longer to get into the story and know where it was going than I like, but it’s not a long book, so I kept trudging through. It got a little better towards the end since there were some twists, but I’d still put it down there pretty low ranking my books for this year.

The two main characters, Elle and Charlotte, are both living with dark and muddled pasts. Their lives become entwined, though not completely by chance, and so do their histories. The interesting thing about this story to me was that you don’t trust or really like any of the characters. There are times when you feel for them, but none of them are completely likeable. The father who may or may not be wrongfully imprisoned for manslaughter, the daughter who may or may not be trying to hurt her father’s ex, the ex who may or may not be lying about everything to everyone. I think that’s why the story was hard to get into – as a reader you don’t know the truth about anyone or anything. Usually there’s one perspective that is true or you know you can trust. These characters all just lie constantly or have personality traits that make them seem like they’re lying. And there are a LOT of holes in the story line.

The last quarter of the book definitely had me more on the edge of my seat because there was a little more action. If you like thrillers and have the patience to wade through the weeds at the beginning, you might end up enjoying it. Though I am still confused about the title of the book…no idea where it came from or how it relates to the story. Book #19 done!


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2019 Reading Challenge

Every year I set a goal of how many books I want to read and my 2019 goal was 34 books. I ride the train to work almost every day so I have a lot of time to read. Add in a number of trips taken this year, both driving and flying, and it was a good year for reading!

I ended up reading 46 books! 6 nonfiction and 40 fiction, which was a good mix for me. I prefer fiction but I make a point to throw in some nonfiction throughout the year. I read some great books this year and love the stats that Goodreads gives you for your year of reading (extra nerd? yep). Here are some of my favorite books from this year and the lovely stats. Now to just set my goal to start a new decade!