Recent Book Reviews (Show us Your Books June 2021)

It is absolutely amazing to me that lockdown can feel SO LONG but also just fly right by. The days themselves feel long, but they go by fast. It’s strange. Nova Scotia is starting to re-open just a little bit after 5 weeks of strict lockdown. My kids are back at school in person! It’s incredible. I got a lot of reading done this month on audio because I did about a million dog walks around the neighbourhood. As always, linking up with my lovely Steph & Jana (Happy belated bday to Jana who shares a birthday with my hubby) for Show Us Your Books. Excited to see what everyone else has been reading!!!

Books I really Loved Lately:

Second First ImpressionsSecond First Impressions by Sally Thorne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A few fun aspects to enjoy in this contemporary romance novel:

1) Adorable characters: Ruthie and Teddy were delightful. Melanie, their friend, was awesome. The Parlonis, two residents of the retirement community where the novel is set, were unparelleld as humorous characters.
2) The setting: a luxury retirement community with tortoises on the property! See my “tortoises” aka turtles pictured here
3) Strong character development. I loved watching Ruthie and Teddy grow and change. These types of plotlines almost always work for me when they’re done well
4) Great, snappy, funny writing. There were several LOL moments while reading and there’s just nothing better than that
5) A satisfying ending. ❤

You Will Remember MeYou Will Remember Me by Hannah Mary McKinnon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This thriller was actually almost impossible to put down and its title and cover are SO fitting.

If you are in the market for a book with characters in which you aren’t quite sure who to trust and some past history that is left pretty murky until the near-end of the book, this thriller will be right up your alley. It is well written, the characters are great (there are some I personally *liked* more than others, as was intended, haha), and the plot thickens quickly and rapidly. 

A perfect summer thriller – I don’t want to say too much about this because the twists are best experienced on your own, but the ending was worth the ride, for sure.

Thank you to the author and Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the TalibanI Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

An eye opening and powerful book. I learned a lot about Pakistan and the Taliban. The audiobook was very well done. I admire people who feel as passionately about things in life as Malala does about education.

The Light Through the LeavesThe Light Through the Leaves by Glendy Vanderah
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book, much like Glendy Vanderah’s first book, was so unique. It took me a little while to catch on to the pace and I will admit the beginning hit me really hard in all the mom feels, but the end had me in tears. The writing is beautiful, the story weaves in a magnificent way, and I just don’t think I’ll ever find a type of story like this one to compare it to.

The Soulmate EquationThe Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

4.5 stars

This book was SO good and exactly what I love about Christina Lauren’s novels. The plotline was undeniably different and SO, so fun. River and Jess were fabulously wonderful characters. Juno is a little firecracker and one of the best 7 year olds I’ve ever read.

The premise of this book is so interesting – a company that is able to test compatibility based on genetic correlations. The stats nerd in me loved all of this, implausible as it may be in actual reality. The twist or expected “conflict” was fun, there were a lot of super cute early relationship moments, and a lot of general fun from side characters.

A perfect summer romance read!! Highly recommend.

Books that Passed the Time Just Fine:

Seven Perfect ThingsSeven Perfect Things by Catherine Ryan Hyde
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Catherine Ryan Hyde always manages to tug at the heartstrings, especially in this new book with 7 ADORABLE PUPPIES IN IT 🙂

I loved Abby & the way this story unfolded. It wasn’t a very easy read, but it was hard to put down and heartwarming at the end, as always.

One Two ThreeOne Two Three by Laurie Frankel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really, really enjoyed a lot of parts of this audiobook even if I found it just a smidge hard to follow at the beginning. Once I was clear on who everyone was in relation to everyone else, it was full speed ahead (thank you to the e-book too). This story about a town that was wronged 16 years ago and the profound effects of a chemical on a generation of young adults is told in a unique way, by three VERY different triplets.

It’s hard to really describe exactly what this book is about, but the characters are everything and their stories and perspectives are heartwarming, fun, funny at times, heartbreaking at times, and so astute. A well-written story with just the kind of ending you’d hope to find at the end of this quirky story.

Thank you to Edelweiss and Netgalley for both e-book and audiobook advancied copies of this book that publishes June 8.

Hana Khan Carries OnHana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this novel, especially on audio, and meeting with the author on Zoom and hearing about her inspiration for it was really delightful too. Hana’s character was fun and I really enjoyed her family. I loved her podcast and her chit chats with Stanley P.

All of the events that conspired with her family’s restaurant and new developments in the area and Aydin moved the storyline along quickly and I really, really liked the way this book wrapped up. 🙂

An Unwanted GuestAn Unwanted Guest by Shari Lapena
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a closed-door mystery that I flew through in a day. I didn’t see the ending coming at all – especially the very VERY end. Wow. It’s not too twisty or turny but it was still a well-crafted mystery in a snowy atmosphere.

The Secret BridesmaidThe Secret Bridesmaid by Katy Birchall
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 stars rounded up – this book had a lot of funny moments in it, and the way it was written was really creative: Sophie has such a cool job as a “stand in” bridesmaid who also acts as a wedding planner. I loved the way the story unfolded & it was truly fun to read.

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)Illuminae by Amie Kaufman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was extremely well done on audio but like most books in the sci-fi type genre, I got a little lost along the way LOL. This is 100% me and not the book, though I did have to get out the hardcover as well from the library to clarify a thing or two. Overall, a very well written and unique story and quite an audio experience if you enjoy YA sci-fi/dystopian with a romance storyline.

Talk Bookish to MeTalk Bookish to Me by Kate Bromley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I highly anticipated this book for month, but I hadn’t really read the synopsis. Second chance isn’t always my favourite trope, but I did enjoy the way this one went (their banter, the dog, the wedding setting, it was all really fun) until about 70% when something happened that made this book irretrievably not a favourite for me anymore. The last part felt completely distorted to me and while I expected the ending, I wasn’t cheering for it the way I often am in a HEA romance.

I’ll still read anything this author writes next though! Just one plotline here didn’t work for me at all on a personal level.

Thank you to Harper Collins and Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Rosaline Palmer Takes the Cake (Winner Bakes All, #1)Rosaline Palmer Takes the Cake by Alexis Hall
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Writing a review for this one is weird for me – there are parts of this book that were really enjoyable and really, REALLY funny. I did truly really like parts of it. There were other parts that just didn’t work for me at ALL though and the middle felt like a little bit of a slog.

I did love a lot of the characters, and I loved all the talk of food YUM, but I think parts of this could have been edited out. I definitely enjoyed the ending and broader message implied.

Thank you to Forever and Netgally for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. I need to go back and read Boyfriend Material now.

The Road TripThe Road Trip by Beth O’Leary
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book has a second-chance now-and-then plotline that was easy to follow and I was quite invested in what happened in the past to lead to the present situation. There were a lot of funny lines and moments in this book and I laughed out loud several times as these very different 5 people end up squished into a Mini on a road trip to a wedding.

I will say that several elements of this plot weren’t my favourite, and I didn’t absolutely adore the characters the way I did in her past books. There was a little bit too much unbridled drama and my favourite relationship in the book was the one that Addie had with her sister, Deb. Second-chance romance storylines don’t always work for me, nor does the instant-love trope, so I’m not surprised that I wasn’t in love with this book. 

It still makes for a fun summer read, but it wouldn’t be my first recommendation. 

Thank you to Berkley and Edelweiss for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Currently reading: People We Meet on Vacation (LOVING IT, almost done), Lost Immunity, and The Lion’s Den.

11 responses to “Recent Book Reviews (Show us Your Books June 2021)”

  1. shootingstarsmag Avatar

    Yay for a good reading month and I’m glad you enjoyed most of these. I do want to check out Rosaline Palmer, The Secret Bridesmaid, and You Will Remember Me.



  2. I have You Will Remember Me on request from the library.

    I hope the US starts sharing vaccines. This world, man.


  3. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts on People We Meet on Vacation! I LOVED it. Second First Impressions didn’t do it for me, but I agree there were some really cute parts between the characters. Hope all is well with you!



  4. ah man, should i be scared of the beginning of glendy?
    maybe i should add the You Will Remember Me book to my list.
    and of course, people we meet on vacation asap lol


  5. I liked An Unwanted Guest, it was definitely a twisty sort of thriller! 🙂


  6. Nadine Mathews Avatar
    Nadine Mathews

    I wanted to love Second First Impressions more than I did. It was really cute and had its moments, but I think I hyped it up too much for myself. I really loved The Soulmate Equation though! It reminded me of their older stuff. I will have to add You Will Remember me to the this. I absolutely loved People We Meet on Vacation, can’t wait to hear your thoughts.


  7. I just added You Will Remember Me to my to read list. I am looking forward to reading The Soulmate Equation! I have One Two Three on my kindle and have not been able to get into it. I will have to give it another go.


  8. Making note of One Two Three, for sure.


  9. You Will Remember Me is such a threatening title! Goodreads keeps going book giveaways for it and the marketing is working because with every giveaway I lose I want to read it more.


  10. I have Second First Impressions on my holds list at the library! Definitely want to read People We Meet on Vacation and Soulmate Equation too! I agree with you about how long but short lockdown feels- it’s so weird. I’m glad they are starting to re-open a bit in your neck of the woods though!


  11. I am very intrigued by your review for You Will Remember Me and I’m definitely adding it to my TBR. One, Two, Three also sound really interesting as well, so it goes on the TBR too!


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