November’s Book and Bike Break Down

Catch up on what Mandi’s reading and how many miles she’s riding!

Booking and biking my way through 2020.


Books

44. I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez (Young Adult, Contemporary)
So I tried my best to read this during Hispanic Heritage month, but the stars didn’t quite align. I loved the cultural aspects of this story and felt much of it was appropriate to read in times such as these, but it’s definitely written for a younger audience (despite the amount of cursing). That made it harder for me to really connect. I guess I just didn’t expect “young adult” to come off as quite this juvenile. While I don’t feel like it’s a book my kids HAVE TO READ some day, it was a good story, and I did enjoy it. 4 STARS

45. Dear Martin by Nic Stone (Young Adult, Contemporary)
I guess I’m kind of stuck on the YA/Contemporary stuff right now, but I have no regrets. Here is what was great about this book: Justyce, the main character is black, comes from an underprivileged home and goes to a school for mostly overprivileged kids. He’s incredibly smart and could do amazing things in the world, yet he’s struggling with the same things every young black kid struggles with – growing up black in America is just different than growing up white in America. I won’t lie, the book was much more young adult than I anticipated, and while that bothered me at first, in hindsight I really appreciate the perspective. It felt similar to Between the World and Me, but was more like the story version of that. 5 STARS

46. Love Does by Bob Goff (Christian, Nonfiction)
Bob Goff has a really fun way of writing. You can tell he is a character from reading even just one of his stories. I really like a lot of the choices he has made as a parent and a lot of the ways he has chosen to live his life, but his book as a whole wasn’t overly inspirational to me. I would love to see it as a memoir instead of something that is intended to make you go do big things for God. He is doing big things for God, and I think his stories alone can bring about inspiration. 2 STARS

47. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (Fantasy, Young Adult)
4,224 pages later, I did it. I finished the series, and wow, what a doozy of a last book. I was skeptical going into this series. Why does it have such a cult following? But while I haven’t up and joined the cult, I can say that it was worth most of those 4,224 pages to get to the end. Book 7 was amazing, but without the first 6, it could not have been written. It was an phenomenal culmination of the story, the character’s journeys, the overall Harry Potter/Voldemort battle. Had I had the time, I could have binged the second half of this book easily because so much started happening and I needed to know the answers. 5 STARS

I think it’s worth noting that I would give the Harry Potter series as a whole 4 stars. I was underwhelmed in the beginning, but books 4, 5, 6 and 7 (especially 7) removed any skepticism I held while making my way through the series. I get why people love it.


Biking

Current total: 2300

698 of those miles having been outside (366 of them pulling a kid).

I don’t think I’ve made it “public knowledge”, but the new goal? 2500. Shooting for something very manageable at this point so I don’t overwhelm myself during the holidays. Also, I never thought I’d ride this many miles this year, but here we are.

Hope you had a great November! Stay safe everyone.

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