April Reading Recap: A Reading Life Contains Multitudes

Published by The Connected Reader on

A reading life contains multitudes, and that just about captures my month.

I read 10 books this month, including six audiobooks. Two of the four books I read in print were children’s chapter books. It’s so interesting to me that four years ago, I was not an audiobook reader, and now, audiobooks are sometimes what sustains my reading life. Learning to lean into this season of being an audiobook reader has brought me so much joy – and helps me to move and get things done.

What did you read this month? Have you read any of these books?


My Favorite Book of the Month

An image of the book cover for Disillusioned: Five Families and the Unraveling of America's Suburbs by Benjamin Herold.

Disillusioned: Five Families and the Unraveling of America’s Suburbs by Benjamin Herold

Audio   Print

This was a page-turner for me as an audiobook. I found the structure of the narrative engaging as the author moved from family to family while also providing the historical context for what each family was experiencing. I found that the element of peeking behind the curtain into what actually people are thinking about and saying, particularly the white family, to be eye-opening – and devastating. It was a real, “oh, this is why things are the way they are” moment for me. Not surprising, but shocking. It was also very personal, as I related to a lot of what the families were experiencing, as a fellow second-ring suburban dweller.

A Reading Life Contains Multitudes: The other books I read this month

An image of the cover of the book Pardonable Lies by Jacqueline Winspear.

Pardonable Lies by Jacqueline Winspear

Audio   Print

I’m making my way through this cozy mystery series in 2024. This is book three. I enjoyed how the mystery in this one connected across so many aspects of the main character’s life, and complicated relationships she has counted on. I think the author is doing a great job balancing how these can be one-off reads while still developing ongoing storylines.

The book cover for Coyote Lost and Found by Dan Gemeinhart.

Coyote Lost and Found by Dan Gemeinhart

Audio   Print
The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise was one of my favorite books of 2022. Right up there with The Widely Unknown Myth of Apple and Dorothy for books about grief. This sequel doesn’t have quite the magic that made the original special, but I enjoyed getting back on the bus with Coyote and her father, and a wonderful array of found family.

The book cover for The Country of the Blind: A Memoir at the End of Sight by Andrew Leland.

The Country of the Blind: A Memoir at the End of Sight by Andrew Leland

Audio   Print

This one fell a bit flat for me. It started out strong and I was engaged in learning about the decisions the author needed to make about their lifestyle, and the cultures of blindness – as with most everything, it is nuanced and complicated. I found that this got a bit repetitive for me and I sped up the audiobook in order to finish.

The cover for the book Endgame: Inside the Royal Family and the Monarch's Fight for Survival by Omid Scobie.

Endgame: Inside the Royal Family and the Monarchy’s Fight for Survival by Omid Scobie

Audio   Print
I mean. This is just pure nonsense. It doesn’t matter at all. But I am in my The Crown era and found this complemented the show really well. It wasn’t anything earth-shattering or new, but a mindlessly interesting read for me. I just don’t understand why this monarchy still exists and why the people in it want to live this way. I mean I do, but I just don’t. And at the same time, I can’t look away. I’m also confused by how this author looks to be about 15 years old.

The cover of the book Pay Up: The Future of Women and Work by Reshma Saujani

Pay Up: The future of Women and Work by Reshma Saujani

Audio   Print
The dedication had me weeping as a mother of three daughters. I was immediately surprised by and appreciated the author’s vulnerability in admitting she had been wrong in her previous approach. From there, I thought this was a helpful book in developing the context of why we are where we are, and of providing concrete actions to take at the individual level, as well as ways to advocate and push for change at the systemic level. This was The Connected Reader Read Along Book for April and you can listen in on our conversation about it.

The book cover for A Heart That Works by Rob Delaney.

A Heart That Works by Rob Delaney

Audio   Print

Y’all told me I needed to read this. I had been avoiding it for years because, as a parent, it just seemed like too much. And it was too much. It is also beautiful. I was horrified at the call to imagine my child, dead in my arms. I laughed aloud at the author’s dark humor as trauma after trauma occurs for this family. I appreciated the concise honesty of this one parent’s journey through hell. If you are going to read this – and I do recommend you do while also understanding that sometimes you have to protect your heart and mind – I think the audio is a good choice.

The book cover for Wishypoofs and Hiccups by Asia Citro.

Wishypoofs and Hiccups by Asia Citro

Audio   Print

This is the 9th book in the Zoey and Sassafras children’s chapter books series. Zoey is a young scientist who cares for magical animals. When something in the animal community goes amiss, the animal rings Zoey’s magical doorbell, and Zoey and her cat, Sassafras come running to help. My kids and I enjoy the cast of recurring characters. These work better if you read them in order, but you don’t have to.

The book cover for Mia Mayhem Learns to Fly by Kara West

Mia Mayhem Learns to Fly by Kara West

 Print

We jumped into this second entry in the Mia Mayhem series after reading the first book last month. This one has a fun premise that includes dogs and cats flying around in a wind chamber. Lots of laughs for the kiddos.

The book cover for It's In His Kiss by Julia Quinn

It’s In His Kiss by Julia Quinn

Audio   Print
In anticipation of Season 3 of the Netflix Bridgerton series, I went back to the original book series with this entry, which is the story of Hyacinth, the youngest Bridgerton. I’ve listened to them all on audio and find them to be a great mindless audiobook option for when you just need something in the background. The TV show takes out a lot of the problematic parts of the books, so be forewarned if you have yet to jump into the books. This edition in the series is less problematic than most, with just one interaction that made me cringe. Mostly, I enjoyed the banter and the mystery that the two leads were trying to solve together.


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, meaning I get a small commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Even if you don’t use the links, I highly recommend checking out Bookshop.org and Libro.fm for access to tons of titles while still supporting an indie bookstore. 


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