Happy August!! Another summer month gone by and some more books to chat about. I’ve read a LOT of 2.5-3.5 star books lately and it’s a bit of a bummer. That being said, I need to stop seeking out ARCs unless I really know the author or have heard amazing things. I did have a few great reads this month and I haven’t included everything here either but you can always follow along on Goodreads to see everything I read!! 🙂 Linking up today with Steph and Jana!!
Anyway, here’s what I’ve been reading lately!!
City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
I really liked parts of this book very much. It was humorous at times, interesting to read, and easy to follow along with the characters. Parts of it were glamourous and scintillating and so different from my own life that it felt like very much of an escape. I will admit that I think I much preferred the VERY well done audiobook although I switched between the audio and the e-book throughout.
One strange thing is that this entire book is written as a letter to someone, but you kind of forget that through the book because it is really more like Vivian’s memoir. We don’t get to the subject of the letter until the last 20% maybe. This was a bit different than I was expecting when I began the book but it wasn’t a total deal-breaker – I just found the ending really interesting and kind of wanted more of all of that! Thank you to Edelweiss and Riverhead for the ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
I was extremely wary of this book for months. I slowly saw friend after online friend rave about how wonderful it was, but I don’t typically enjoy M/M in my romance books, so I kept this one off my TBR list. Eventually, I sought out a couple of opinions about the steam level in the book and decided to give it a try. Umm, I was immediately hooked. These characters are some of my favourites ever and I was sad to say goodbye to them at the end of the book.
This book IS a romance between a fictional British prince and a fictional son of the First Lady of the US. But it is SO much more than that. There are other exceptional characters. The two main men are hilarious, witty, sarcastic, and there is a touch of enemies-to-lovers that is really well executed. The political part was interesting since this was set (fictionally, again) after the Obamas’ stay in the White House. In short…this whole book was SO.MUCH.FUN and I completely gobbled it up.
I will admit that I still don’t intend to necessarily seek out M/M romance because it just isn’t my preference (I am SO glad it is out there and I truly believe it can be well done – it just isn’t my personal preference if it’s steamy). However, I am so glad I read this book because I would have missed out on exceptional writing and great characters.
Nothing to Fear by Juno Rushdan
This book was fast paced and I loved the storyline – maybe even more so than the first in this series, which I also flew through. Gideon and Willow were exciting to read about. Overall, I hope this series continues because it makes for intense romantic suspense!! The characters are all great and the plot keeps thickening! (Though this ended on less of a cliffhanger than the first, so it might be done – not sure!!!) DEFINITELY read the first book first in this series – Every Last Breath – I also read it this month and enjoyed it immensely.
Thank you to Netgalley, Edelweiss, and the publisher for the ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery
I hadn’t read this since I was 12ish so this was a pleasant re-read that gave me all.the.feelings especially after seeing the Anne and Gilbert musical last summer. OMG I love this book so much and it might be ONE of my favourites of the series (which I am loving re-discovering these days). The side characters here are all excellent, it takes place in a fictional HALIFAX (where I live), and everyone is growing up – including Anne (at least by the end). Loved this on audio and also went through and highlighted a bunch of my favourite lines in my copy of the book 🙂
Well Met by Jen DeLuca
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Honestly, this book started off a bit slow for me and I wasn’t feeling compelled to pick it up but around 40% it really got better and I was sucked in all the way to the end. It was so cute. The setting and plot surrounding the renaissance faire was super cute and very different and this was a pleasant fluffy summer read for me.
Thank you to Edelweiss and First to Read for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Washington Black by Esi Edugyan
This book was very well done on audio and I did enjoy the plot and the characters. I found it lagged a bit towards the end, but I did really enjoy the ending so that made up for it. The first half was a bit more exciting and captivating with regards to the characters.
Looking forward to checking out some of this author’s other books, which I’ve heard are excellent and more readable than this one. Read for Erin’s book challenge.
Say You Still Love Me by K.A. Tucker
I really liked the characters in this book and Piper’s work and leadership role in her father’s company. The flashbacks to the characters in their teen years were fun to read. The chemistry between the two main characters seemed a bit inst-lovey to me but was still definitely good. Overall, this book held my interest and I enjoyed it. Great summer read since half of it takes place at a summer camp for children 🙂 I had a few ups and downs with the plot in this book but many people likely will not feel that way. I will definitely pursue other books by this author in the future. Thank you to Netgalley & Atria/Simon & Schuster Canada for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See
This book was extremely well written, very interesting, and the characters were so fascinating. I really enjoyed learning about this aspect of history that I knew nothing about. I both read and listened to this and the narration was excellent.
My heart went out to Young-sook and her family and Mi-ja and all of the hardships they experienced throughout the years spanned in this book. Lisa See’s writing is quite lovely and I cannot wait to read her other books in the future. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This book was cute and I felt like I finished in about 5 minutes. No joke, it was pretty short (novella length), but I knew that going into it. I was interested in the two character’s past encounters in their friend group as well as their chosen career (urban planners). The scenes in which they pretended to be together in order to view apartments were fun. I am undecided whether I’ll continue the series or not, but this certainly passed the time okay. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The Secret of the India Orchid by Nancy Campbell Allen
This was a fun book to read – I alternated between the audio and the ebook and enjoyed both. I really liked the characters but I was sad not to have some background of the time when Anthony and Sophia met – I love those early “meet cute”/courtship days in historical romances. The actual plot moved along quickly and all of the side characters were interesting. I enjoyed the setting and, of course, there were some wonderful swoon-worthy moments, including the ending 🙂 Read for Erin’s challenge.
That’s about it! Yesterday I did an in-depth review of a reading app called Scribd. Go check it out here! Tomorrow is my birthday and I am antsy to get some extra reading time in, but let’s be honest, since I’m home with the kids it will mostly be a beach day, I think 🙂 (NO complaints here ;))
Currently reading: Mariana Zapata’s newest book which came out August 7 (so far SO good!!), The Dreamers, and Side Hustle.
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