Best Books 2023

Well well well, if it isn’t the only thing I seemingly use my blog for these days (years?). I won’t bore you with 2024 resolutions about actually writing again, I’ll just get to the good stuff.

If the length of my book list doesn’t scream “hi I lived alone for the majority of the year in a city where I have 3 friends”, idk what does. 2023 was A LOT but you know what helped keep me sane? The library, my couch & cat (as a combo reading companion), and the book clubs I luckily discovered. Do you need to know how many book clubs I’m in? No. Was it 4? Mind your own business.


Read More

Best Books of 2022

Some people read less when they are stressed; some people stress read. I am most definitely the latter – the more stressed I am, the more I inhale books. Books or puzzles. I won’t go into why 2022 was a lot for me… I’ll let the length of my book list speak for itself.

I can’t talk books without talking about my love for Book of the Month – such a fun way to get new reads I would have never otherwise picked up, and fun to text about with your fellow BOTM-er friends to see their pick for the month. Some months it is the only reason I know the calendar month is ending – because it’s time to pick a new book. So it also helps you keep track of the date.krysti-wilkinson-best-books-2022

I read WAY more than I expected to this year (lil naïve 2021 Krysti didn’t know what was coming) – but also I read some GOOD books this year. So many that I had to break them out in various categories, because I just couldn’t leave any out…

As always: favorites at the top; full list at the bottom. Add me on GoodReads and/or tell me what I should read next!! Read More

A New Life from Scratch

We threw an air mattress on the floor like you throw a frozen meal in the microwave. You know it won’t be satisfying, but you know it will get the job done. And quick.

We lived on fast food and fast options, the same clothes from the same suitcases for 3 weeks. Snacks to mitigate the need for meals, crumbs of progress. Somehow never seeing what you wanted, somehow never having your cravings fully met.

And then we were here, with a living room full of boxes and a house with no hot water. A jarring blank slate, an empty life to be created. Read More

Preexisting Conditions

Preexisting conditions
started in whispers

The world had a new villain
spreading quickly, mysteriously
but we were told not to worry
for it was only harmful to those
– drop your voice now, to sound tactful –
with preexisting conditions

With the first deaths
on American soil
each news story made sure to note
the real reason they actually died:
preexisting conditions

We were told it was only
they very old
and the very sick
that needed to be concerned
and I thought to myself
but shouldn’t that concern everyone?

We were told again and again
only a small fraction of the population
should be worried
and that worried me
how little we all seemed to care about protecting them


Preexisting conditions!
I was lectured by more than one Christian
That’s who have to be worried here
Those are the people at risk

They are not we
So why should we care?

I struggled to find
a soft place to land
in the face of their callousness
a way to explain
that we were talking abut me

For it wasn’t only
the very old
or the very sick
it was also
the very unlucky

those of us
like me
with preexisting conditions Read More

Best Books of 2021

Ohhh what a year. In what was otherwise a revolving door of crazy, books were a constant for me (along with puzzles and my cat).

This year I finally did what I thought I would never do: I joined Book of the Month. I discovered not only the joy of a new hardcover book arriving by mail each month (you get to pick from 5!), but also the added fun of getting to gift the book to friends after. It seriously upped my fiction game, and it’s only $15! If I sound like a salesperson, I am just sharing the good news I wish I discovered earlier.

I also started another new tradition this year: book swaps with friends. Less choices than BOTM and no app to download, but the price is amazing (FREE) and in this never-ending Covid world of ours, coming home to a gift from your friend on your doorstep is the best. Having a friend with good book taste is truly a treasure. Read More


Once upon a time I started a blog called Pursuing Passion (Spoiler alert: you are reading it). I was 21 and had turned down a legal internship to spend my last summer of college in south eastern Africa. After graduating, instead of pursuing law school, I moved there. Later, I moved back to the states to work for a different non-profit, this time based in east Africa. After that, my life became a ping pong game of looking for a job that paid enough, a job my skillset was actively being used, and – most of all – a job I felt passionate about.

I could find a job that hit two of those requirements – but never one that landed perfectly in the middle of that Venn diagram.

There were seasons I was making next to nothing, but I enjoyed work. There were seasons I was making too much money and was miserable on my daily drive to and from the office (and, at the office). In every season, I would start off being okay with the two desires being met, but as time went on I’d grow uneasy. I need more money! I guess I don’t need to love my job. and I would switch. Money is not worth this! Can’t put a price tag on liking work. and I would switch again.

I spent so long looking for this magical solution that was going to balance it all. My need to pay rent, my desire to actually like what I spent 40 hours a week (plus a commute) doing – and who I was doing it with, my hope of making a difference. Looking for balance, but ending up falling over time and time again. Read More

Year One

 Somehow, it’s been a year.
A year later, and we’re still grieving what that day was. Still grieving what that day held. Mostly, what it didn’t hold. They say time heals all wounds, but I’m not really sure it heals. More like it just gives you space to get used to the loss.  One year later and we’ve cancelled two weddings, two rehearsal dinners, two honeymoon trips to Costa Rica. Does it hurt less? I don’t think so. Is the hurt further away? Sure. That’s all time does.

Read More

Big Friendship, Big Love & Big Grief

I’ve never really been into Valentine’s Day.

Well, I should clarify, romantically. I am all for fake holidays. I have been known to throw National Cookie Day parties and celebrate National Ice Cream day like the holiday deserves. So Valentine’s has always been a good excuse to buy chocolate (50% off the next day!), send friends cutesy, punny, ridiculous cards that are targeted for children, and obviously celebrate my gals like Leslie Knope taught us. Even the times I happened to have a boyfriend for the occasion, February 14th felt the same as July 17th or November 3rd. In my book, you never need an excuse for a cute card or surprise chocolate. That happens year round.


But this year I found myself ordering Valentine’s Day gifts a month ahead of time. I planned an epic galentines (guys and girls!) virtual Netflix party, complete with the same snacks from Target being delivered to all our doors. I scoured Etsy to find the perfect chocolate treat to show up on my friend’s porch. I venmoed some of my favorite ladies a surprise coffee-on-me Saturday morning surprise. Valentine’s, this year, felt as exciting as Christmas.

Read More

Best Books (and podcasts!) of 2020

In a year where we couldn’t count on anything, we still had books. (Although most people had way less brain space to actually read them. Myself included.) True to form – 2020 can’t ruin everything! – here’s my end of the year book list. Not as many as I hoped for, but this year I have learned to take what I can get.

As an extra bonus, I’m including both audio books and podcasts! Early this year I invested in an Audible account, since my new job came with a new (aka long) commute. Although they aren’t as great as actually reading actual books – I’ve learned my audio book niche: they have to be read by the author and said author has to be a comedian. That is my sweet spot and I’m not going anywhere. Everyone has a podcast these days, but I found the great ones helped me get through the year the same as a good book did. Some of the best writers have the best podcasts – so it kind of fits the theme? Whatever. Just go with it.

As always – let me know your favorite reads of the year!! Always, always looking for a good novel to add to my forever growing list. Read More