My Attempt at Minimalism

As an avid book reader, I have collected numerous books throughout my years. My books formally resided in a place of honor: on display in a stylish modern cube shelving system, grouped by subject matter. But having moved twice in 2018 and with the hope of moving again in 2019, they are now all packed up in boxes.

I love my books and I can, without a doubt, say that they “spark joy” when I hold them. I definitely own more than the 30 books minimalist guru Marie Kondo suggests and with her new Netflix series being all the rage these days, I decided to rethink my massive book collection. Ever the penny-pincher, I decided to go online and see what sites would give me the best deals for my books. I was sure making some cash off my books would definitely help in the letting go process.

My searching led me to many sites that buy up used textbooks but there were a few sites that bought novels too. One of the sites that seemed promising was Half-Price Books. The only problem was that you have to bring your books into a physical book store and there wasn’t a Half-Price Books near me. The site seemed pretty cool, however, so I spent a few minutes looking around. And that’s when I got completely derailed.

See, Half-Price Books has a “free gifts” section to their site where they have all sorts of cool book swag for FREE! All you have to do is pay shipping. So what do I do? I order up a free literary book button. Shipping was a whopping .59 cents.

As soon as I completed paying for shipping, my baby woke up and the quest to minimize my belongings and earn a few extra dollars ended. The pin arrived within a week and I happy to say that it “sparks joy” too.


Book Review: Silence by Natasha Preston

It’s not often you come across a book where the main character is mute as is the case in Natasha Preston’s Silence. Oakley Ferrell has been silenced by an unspeakable horror and it isn’t until she finds strength from the unconditional love and support of the boy next door that she is able to name her monster.

The way the author is able to give voice to her voiceless character throughout the novel is truly amazing. Oakley communicates through nods, smiles, frowns, head shakes, and grimaces alone. No words uttered or written yet the exchanges she has with her family, school mates, and Cole are still conversational. Writing a character with such a handicap surely must have been a challenge and yet Preston makes it work.

Another interesting aspect to Silence is the contrast between it being a light-hearted teen romance to the very dark and serious theme of child abuse. Many scenes which should be fun-an ice cream date, a couples’ massage in Italy- are soon marred by foreshadowing of Oakley’s big secret. Because of this dichotomy, the book can sometimes be uncomfortable to read.

Fans of Preston’s Silence will delight in knowing that while  the book concludes with a satisfying ending Silence is the first of a 4 book series which readers can check out at their local library.

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