January’s Reading Wrap-Up | Second Half

Goal: 11 / 100 books read
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️: 5
⭐️⭐️⭐️: 4
⭐️⭐️: 2
DNF: 5

White Negroes: When Cornrows Were in Vogue … and Other Thoughts on Cultural Appropriation by Lauren Michele Jackson

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White Negroes: When Cornrows Were in Vogue ... and Other Thoughts on Cultural Appropriation by Lauren Michele Jackson

This book about the cultural appropriation of black culture by America. It is a series of essays that tackles different topics of cultural appropriation.

My least favorite essay was on music and my favorite was on entrepreneurship. Jackson’s ideas are thoughtful and written well. I could feel the author’s emotions on the subject, even though she doesn’t use many charged words. 

I didn’t always agree with the logic of the author. For example, I think all cultures appropriate from each other, especially here in America. But I do think there is a point to be made for atrocities of the black race.

The book is a good read for someone who is interested in black culture. If that is not your thing, you will probably not enjoy the book. It’s that straightforward. The author is a talented writer. 

The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

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The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

I had high hopes for this book because it comes recommended by so many people. But I felt it fell short. The book is full of tasks and lists, which made it quite boring to read. It was hard to keep my attention. 

The Artist’s Way does have a couple of good points. The first, Morning Pages. Second, taking walks. Third, it inspired me to put a statue of Santo Nino on my desk to remind me that the Creativity God is childlike.  

The book is large and awkward to hold. I didn’t enjoy the workbook type feel. I would have preferred to remove all the exercises and lists and just leave the meat in a normal-sized book. Perhaps the editors can publish one of those and I’ll buy a copy for my bookshelf.

Never Be Alone by Paige Dearth

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Never Be Alone by Paige Dearth

Dearth is a good writer and the book flows really well. She takes us into the mind of an abused child who lives on the streets. This will be a tough read for some; it was for me. It gave me much more empathy for the homeless.

As a Knight of Columbus, I try to help the poor and show dignity to every human being. I feel this book has helped me to understand those I help even more than I did before.

People don’t always invite you into their minds. They put up a front. They act like everything is okay. But Paige Dearth took us into the mind of a scared and abused girl and I can never forget the feelings it brought out it in me. I am not ashamed to admit I had tears in my eyes while reading some of the passages. 

Photographing the Dead (Nameless #2) by Dean Koontz

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Photographing the Dead (Nameless #2) by Dean Koontz

The story centers on Nameless, who is tracking a serial killer. It is a straightforward story. No twists nor turns. Nothing too exciting happening and everything kind of laid out in a predictable manner. I don’t plan on reading any more of the Nameless series. I wasn’t impressed with the first book, but I wanted to give Dean Koontz the benefit of the doubt and read his second installment. I was let down and won’t be fooled again. 

Banish Your Inner Critic: Silence the Voice of Self-Doubt to Unleash Your Creativity and Do Your Best Work by Denise R. Jacobs

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Banish Your Inner Critic: Silence the Voice of Self-Doubt to Unleash Your Creativity and Do Your Best Work by Denise R. Jacobs

This book has a wealth of information on all the different types of ways we can self sabotage ourselves. It is written in an academic way explaining the reasoning behind each style of the inner critic. There are many exercises provided to banish each type of inner critic. 

The book is dry in most places. I didn’t enjoy reading it as much as I thought I would. I am not a big fan of exercises or workbooks.

I did love the quote, “Don’t believe everything you tell yourself”. I got the most out of the introductory chapter.

From Slave to Priest: A Biography of the Reverend Augustine Tolton (1854-1897) First Black American Priest of the United States by Caroline Hemesath, Harold Burke-Sivers

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From Slave to Priest: A Biography of the Reverend Augustine Tolton (1854-1897) First Black American Priest of the United States by Caroline Hemesath, Harold Burke-Sivers

This was the best non-fiction book I read this month. This book is about the first black priest in America, who lived in the 19th century. He was born a slave to the white man and died a slave to Jesus. 

The book is a great pick for anyone interested in black history and should be required reading for all Catholics. I learned a lot about Catholic attitudes in the 19th century. But also about how priests go about conducting their affairs. Raising money for parishes. The priestly politics of the profession. 

The book reads quickly for biography. Well written. Good subject matter. 

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