August Reading Wrap Up: 2019

August was a pretty good reading month! In general it was a very busy month and I’m surprised that I read as much as I did! Now that I’m back in school my reading has already slowed down but I’m hoping that I can pull out some decent posts and reviews for September.

If a book has ** next to it, that means the book was an ARC that I received from NetGalley or the publisher in exchange for my honest review ūüôā

100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons**

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2/5 stars

You can read my full review here. It’s a shame such a beautiful cover was given to such a disappointing book. I had such high hopes but it really let me down.

Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai**

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5/5 stars

Y’all… Alisha Rai announced her next book in this romance world a few weeks ago and I shrieked when I saw the tweet. I CAN’T WAIT. The Right Swipe was so good and so heartwarming and it just made me feel all the feels. Such a diverse cast of characters and a kick ass main female lead. I found this book incredibly relatable to my own views on love and relationships and I highly recommend picking it up!

Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

Summer of Salt by Katrina Leno

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5/5 stars

I was really pleasantly surprised by this book. It made me feel full and sentimental. It’s full of magical realism and family and friends and feelings. I highly recommend it. Great LGBT+ representation and while it surrounded a dark topic I felt that it was all handled well and the book was just beautiful in the end. So unique and engrossing.

(TW: Rape)

Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

Bloodlust and Bonnets by Emily McGovern

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4/5 stars

This was available on NetGalley and it’s by the creator of one of my favorite webcomics (My Life as a Background Slytherin) so I had to get my hands on this. It was hilarious!! So satirical about romance tropes and plots and I found myself laughing out loud on numerous occasions through the whole course of reading.

The only reason I docked a star was just because the pacing and plot was not always easy to follow. I got confused by the characters multiple times and there were some cases where I had absolutely no idea what was going on. Not really sure if this was the intention or if that’s just a result of it all.

Still loved it though and this comes out on September 17 if you’re interested in checking it out for yourself!

Preorder links: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

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5/5 stars

Working on collecting all of Sarah Dessen’s books and rereading them as I go. I actually changed my rating from the first time I had read this book to now. Originally I had rated it 3 stars because I didn’t like the main character. Now though, I could see the reasons why I was frustrated with the main character but I think Dessen wrote this book really well with how Macy dealt with grieving and healing.

I’m pretty sure these will always be my favorite YA contemporaries. This is a good story about learning how to be yourself and make decisions that are good for you and not just following what others want for you.

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What You Did by Claire McGowan**

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3/5 stars

So I completely forgot that I had gotten approved for this on NetGalley and ended up borrowing it from Kindle Unlimited. At least I realized after the fact and submitted a review on NetGalley *face palm*.

Anyways, this was a really average domestic thriller. The characters were¬†beyond¬†frustrating so if you can’t look past the idiotic choices that people might make because they’re trying to preserve themselves then this might not be the book for you. There were two parallel timelines and also the perspective changed at seemingly random increments and those aspects seemed completely unnecessary. The overall plot started off really strong but went downhill to the point where I was kind of skimming to get to the end. It was really predictable but I say that about almost every thriller I read.

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Lock Every Door by Riley Sager

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5/5 stars

I did it. I found a good thriller (I’m referencing this post when I say this). Also I wanted to say that apparently I lied in that post because I was going through my Goodreads the other day in order to come up with recommendations for another post I’m working on and I rated a Gillian Flynn book five stars? I need to go reread that now to see what I was so hyped up about with that.

So this book was so gripping and while I figured out aspects of it over the course of the book there was one point that literally BLEW MY MIND and I flew through the rest of the book after that. I stayed up until almost midnight on a weeknight to finish this and while I highly regretted that at work the next morning it was so worth it.

If you’re looking for a book with a good twist, pick this one up and give it a try. This also had really great pacing and I never felt like it dragged which is an issue I’m having with so many thrillers I’ve read.

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The Poison Garden by A.J. Banner**

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3/5 stars

This book was zooming straight for 2 stars until I got to the ending. This was another pretty standard domestic thriller. While I think that if you’re well versed with the genre you might not enjoy this as much, if you’re new to thrillers I think that you could enjoy this.

The Poison Garden comes out on October 22 and I’ll be posting a review around that date where I go in depth with my thoughts for this.

Preorder links: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

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5/5 stars

This is still my absolute favorite book and it was quite an emotional reread. My best friend and I were actually together while I was reading this and she was rereading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and we basically both just sat there reading passages of our books back and forth to each other.

You can check out my post about my reread here.

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The Queens of Animation by Nathalia Holt**

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4/5 stars

This book comes out in October and I got an ARC from NetGalley and honestly I was¬†so¬†excited when I saw that I was approved for it!! I absolutely love Disney and some of my favorite non-fiction books involve learning about women’s roles in big industries from the past.

My only issues with this came from confusion of the timeline but I’ll be posting a full discussion closer to the release date. If you’re interested in learning more about the history of women working in animation then I would highly recommend picking this up. I learned so many things and I was surprised at just how much work went into animation back in the day. It’s just amazing what went into those old Disney movies.

Preorder links: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

Rebel Girls by Elizabeth Keenan**

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1/5 stars

This book made me want to chuck my computer out the window so much. I don’t want to say that I hated the book… But I kind of hated this book. This book could have been groundbreaking in the YA community because it completely surrounds the topic of abortion which is a really heavy topic as of late but this missed the mark on numerous occasions.

I’ll be posting an in depth review with spoilers in it once this book is released. And I will say that while I can see why people would like this, I just think that it pushed the wrong messages unknowingly. Oof, just thinking about this is getting me heated. Writing my full review is going to be tons of fun. I’ve been avoiding it because I don’t want to get angry again.

Preorder links: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // Book Depository

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

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5/5 stars

I really needed this reread. Also this second time around I realized that I have a lot of issues with Alex? But also I relate to him a lot so I’m just leaving my rating at 5 stars because I don’t think his opinions and actions are outrageously bad for his age.

Here’s the link to my original review of this!

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I also did a whole post where I did mini reviews of five poetry collections which you can find here. The five books featured in that post were the ones I’ve inserted the covers of below and all my thoughts and ratings about these are in my post which I’ll link again here.

 

 

And with that, I want to know what you read in August. Anything you loved? Anything you hated? What are you looking forward to reading in September?

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July Reading Wrap Up

Well, hopefully this post will be short and sweet for you today! I read a total of seven books in July, it was a really slow reading month. Nothing has been able to hold my attention so I spent most of my month doing crossword puzzles and watching (and rewatching) Letterkenny.

Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey

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2/5 stars

This book had so much potential and completely did not live up to any expectations that I had. I was so disappointed in the story and the characters. Full review here. A lot of people really liked this book but honestly it just wasn’t to my taste whatsoever.

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The Dead Girls Club by Damien Angelica Walters

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4/5 stars

As of right now, four stars is my rating. I’m not really sure if I’m going to stay with that rating because the more I think about the story the more I’m not sure I liked it as much as I thought I did. There were was this underlying question of the possibility of supernatural aspects through the whole story and that really intrigued me and unfortunately I think that might be really the only thing I liked about the story.

Full review will be out when the book is released in December (wow that’s a long wait, I didn’t even realize that).

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository  (Preorder links)

The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan

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5/5 stars

This is in my top five favorite books of all time. Marina Keegan was a beautiful writer and I get emotional every time I think about this book. Her story is tragic but I hope that her writing lives on in people’s hearts and heads for a very, very long time. She had a lot of stuff worth saying. I found myself relating to her fiction stories more and more this time around and her nonfiction essays really pack a punch.

Here’s the link to my discussion post about my reread.

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The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang

5/5 stars

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This was such a cute read! I really liked it. I almost cried at the ending, it was heartwarming and sweet. What a unique story!

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

Sisters by Raina Telgemeier

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5/5 stars

Raina Telgemeier is my favorite graphic novelist. I have loved every one of her books and I love the story in this one. Cute illustrations and a fun story I really highly recommend these graphic novels to everyone.

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Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker and Wendy Xu

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4/5 stars

This graphic novel comes out in October which I think is perfect because it’s a great fall read. The colors evoked that feeling for me as did the witchy story. The illustrations were gorgeous and there were a few that I would really enjoy getting full size posters of. I’m looking forward to picking up a finished copy when it comes out!

I had some problems with some of the dialogue feeling incredibly juvenile and a lot of the story felt underdeveloped. Sometimes this was due solely to the fact that the characters just didn’t want to talk about what they were experiencing which I felt wasn’t fair to us as readers. I would still definitely recommend it and I look forward to any further stories in this world.

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

Sadie by Courtney Summers

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5/5 stars

This book was really surprising! I had no idea what it was about going into it, I didn’t even read the description before beginning. It was really, really good though and I highly recommend it. It was very dark and sad but it was a story worth reading. If you’d like to read more of my thoughts, you can read my review here.

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Those are all the books that I read in July! Here’s to another month of reading! I’m hoping on finding some really good books to read in August. I’ve been so underwhelmed lately by what I’ve been reading and it’s really forcing that reading slump on me even more.

What was your favorite book that you read in July? Any big plans for reading in August?

 

** I received The Dead Girls Club and Mooncakes from NetGalley for free in exchange for honest reviews.

 

June Reading Wrap-Up

Well I feel like if I continue to read as many books as this month or more I might have to start splitting up my wrap up posts into multiple parts! This was a really productive reading month for me. Although I’m sure if I end up getting back into school this fall that my “for fun” reading will diminish greatly as it always does when I’m in school.

Anyways, after each book I have attached links to the places that you can go to purchase these books if you are interested. The Amazon link is an affiliate link. The links attached to each of the titles will send you directly to that books Goodreads page for more information! And without further ado, here are all the books that I read in June!

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

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4/5 Stars. Overall, I really enjoyed this story. It was an incredibly (sometimes overwhelmingly) detailed tale following a myriad of characters through the events of a Singaporean summer. Though there were some aspects of the story that I didn’t enjoy, I could see why it was written the way it was. Such a lavish and interesting book. I highly recommend.

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barns and Noble // Book Depository

If Only by Melanie Murphy

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2/5 stars. This was a sweet slow-burn romance about second chances, “if only’s”, and learning about oneself. It was an easy read but I felt like the plot dragged on as well as being pretty predictable. I had some problems with the story and characters that kept me from fully enjoying it but it was by no means a bad read. I think I’m just really picky with my romances! It was also a lot more emotional than I had expected it to be but I appreciated the rawness of some of the emotions throughout.

I would recommend this to people who like more emotional contemporaries, sweet, slow romances, and a little bit of magic. Also this was the first ARC review that I’ve done so I was really excited about that! Still kind of surprises me that I can get ARCs!

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

The Girls by Emma Cline

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3/5 stars. This book had been sitting in my Kindle library for over two years and I finally checked out a physical copy of the book from my public library to actually read it. The plot dragged on at some points but it was really well written and incredibly atmospheric. It just felt like it was missing something!

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Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

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5/5 stars!!! Definitely going to be in my top books of the year I feel! Here’s the link to my blog post about this book. I highly recommend this book and I am so excited to read what Casey McQuiston comes out with next!

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One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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5/5 stars. I’m working on a post right now about all of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s books and I started with this one. Absolutely loved it and it had the exact ending that I was hoping for! I found the characters in this story to be really mature and I was really impressed with how logical the ending came about. Reid writes lovely stories that just fly by!

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Fled by Meg Keneally

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4/5 stars. This is a debut novel by Meg Keneally. I got an ARC of this book from NetGalley and will link my Goodreads review here. I think that anyone who likes really engrossing historical fiction would enjoy this. Some bits drag on but the book also takes place over quite a few years so it’s kind of understandable that there will be slower parts. Such an interesting story though and to think it’s based off of a real woman is just amazing. I’ll be interested to see what else Keneally comes out with in the future!

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Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol

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5/5 stars. I thought that this graphic novel was cute and funny and it reminded me so much of my own time at camp that it made me super nostalgic!! The art style was lovely and I really enjoyed the monochromatic color palette that Brosgol chose. When I was reading other people’s reviews I was kind of surprised by how harshly it was rated but it didn’t make me want to change my own review. I could see where everyone was coming from but I thought it was a 5 star book for myself nonetheless.

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

See How She Dies by Lisa Jackson

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1/5 stars. This book was published in 2004 and let me just tell you that it did not age well¬†at all.¬†Trigger warning for abuse, rape, incest (I don’t even care about how the plot ended up but I’m calling whatever this BS romance was incest.) I feel like this book had so much potential and then it just fell short in every single aspect. There were so many plot holes and stupid reasons as to why the plot couldn’t be different (I spent half the book yelling at them to do a DNA test but apparently it wasn’t possible because the parents were cremated, um the girl has four living siblings? Do they not possess the ability to give a sample of their DNA?) Really just not a great book.

Also I’m not linking places to buy this book. Don’t read it, honestly. And if for whatever reason you feel a need to read it, just get it from a library or find it second hand. But truly, guys, it is not worth reading! I’m not even sure anymore if I want to give Lisa Jackson a second chance. There’s a whole shelf of her books at my library but every time I go there I see this book on there and just get sick to my stomach.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

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4/5 stars.¬†This was the first Christina Lauren book that I have read and I really enjoyed it! I’ve come to realize that I am really not a fan of enemies to lovers stories because I’ve yet to see one executed in a way that the “enemy” aspect isn’t literally only from miscommunication. So if any of you know of a book where they’re¬†actually¬†enemies first send that recommendation my way!!

I wrote a longer review of this which you can read here.

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Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

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5/5 stars. If I could go back in time and give this book to my high school self I would. I will be recommending this book to every high schooler and early university student from here on out. Like this is exactly the type of book I would’ve wanted to read when I was questioning my entire life back when I was 16-18. And because I’m in a similar headspace again now I think this book just hit really close to home.

You can read more of my in depth thoughts here.

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Forever, Interrupted by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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3/5 stars. Again, working my way through Reid’s books for an upcoming post that I’d like to publish by the end of July! Of the three books by her that I read in June, this was my least favorite. I found the main character to be really grating and I wish that I had liked the romance in this a little bit more. I just felt like the relationship leaned more towards toxic than it should have. Felt very lusty over lovey in my opinion and I wasn’t overly impressed.

If you like Reid’s other books I would recommend this but if you haven’t picked up her books before I wouldn’t suggest this to be the first one that you read. It was an interesting concept with killing off the love interest in the first chapter and seeing how the characters go from there but the flashbacks to before his death kept me from really seeing how she loved this guy so much. I’m sorry but I really feel like nothing good comes from rushed relationships.

Despite all of that it was breezy to read through as I’ve found with each of Reid’s books and I did enjoy most of it which is why I ultimately gave it 3 stars.

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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5/5 stars. Earlier in the month I had read If Only by Melanie Murphy which is another sort of “what if” plot. I would have to say that Maybe in Another Life executes the plot better. At least in my opinion anyways. I found the parallel plot lines in this novel to be really interesting. Some people didn’t enjoy it when things were the same down to very specific things but honestly I kind of enjoyed that! I thought it was so interesting to see how similar the plot lines could end up and how much overlapped and intertwined despite them playing out so differently.

I also loved that the message in the end was that no matter how your life ends up due to the choices you make, you can find happiness. It just gave me a lot of really warm fuzzy feelings to read the last couple of chapters.

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While the Duke was Sleeping by Sophie Jordan

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2/5 stars. Okay I still can’t stop laughing at the fact that I read this book… Oh boy I am so not a fan of these type of romance novels! But I decided to give it a try anyways because people won’t stop talking about these types of books. Reading this though definitely showed me that these are not my style and I don’t need to try and make myself read others even though people rave about books like this.

I think that people who are fans of smutty romance would probably enjoy this a lot more than I would. It’s a pretty average book and was really quick to read so I’m sure there will be people out there that would love this!

Amazon Affiliate Link // Barnes and Noble // Book Depository

So at this point I have about 6 books that I’m currently reading so if I can make myself come out of this reading slump that I’m falling into I will hopefully be able to finish reading those books. There is a very long list of books that I want/need to review as well as quite a few other posts that I’d like to get out this month. I think July is going to be quite busy for me so we’ll see how this goes!

What books did you read this month? Anything that you think I should check out? Did you read any duds this month? What are you looking forward to reading in July?

May Reading Wrap-Up

This month I finally got back into reading. It’s been a long go with me just sitting there and scrolling through social media mindlessly but I decided I needed to pick up a book. I opened up my Kindle app and started rereading an old favorite and bam, here is the result of that.

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

5/5 stars. Decided to pick this book up because I had no more social media to scroll through on my phone and so BAM reading slump was gone. 100% favorite guilty pleasure read.

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Again, But Better by Christine Riccio

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3/5 Stars. I enjoyed it overall, but there were definitely aspects of the book that I didn’t enjoy. But it was a fun read and made me nostalgic for London so I would recommend it for a summer read.

Here’s a link to a more in-depth review that I wrote right after reading the book.

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Save the Date by Morgan Matson

4/5 Stars. Well, I finally picked up this book and read it. Took me long enough considering I buy and read every single one of Morgan Matson’s books… I feel like a sham of a fan because I waited until this one was out in paperback whereas with The Unexpected Everything I had that preordered well before it came out. Oh well though… I did enjoy this book but it brought up an issue that I had never really thought of before now. I wrote a post about that here.

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The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

5/5 stars. Still probably my favorite MM book at this point. Though I really do love all her books.

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Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

4/5 stars. I actually changed my rating on this from what I’ve had it at the previous times I’ve read it. It is still a favorite of mine but I’m rating it 4/5 stars now because there are some aspects of it that I now don’t love that I glossed over before but still love the book overall.

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Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

5/5 stars. All of SJM’s books are my guilty pleasure reads to be honest. I reread this for two reasons. The first being that I am reading this and comparing it to the book Graceling by Kristin Cashore for a post I’m going to write. And the second reason being that I still have not read Empire of Storms and Kingdom of Ash so I really need to refresh myself on the story so I can finish those books. Now I just need to find my copy of Graceling so that I can get going with that post!

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A Game For All The Family by Sophie Hannah

2/5 stars. I was so thoroughly unimpressed by this book and I was do disappointed by that! I was so interested in this book going into it, I mean the synopsis sounded so intriguing. Then as the book dragged on I was getting more bored as it went. And the ending was incredibly lackluster and I just wished for more!! Overall it really wasn’t a bad book but I think it could’ve been way better. If you want a spoilery short review to read, here’s my post on Goodreads.

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Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

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5/5 stars. Favorite book of the month, hands down! Might possibly be one of my favorites of the year or even all time. I just can’t believe how well written this was, how heartbreaking and riveting this story was. And it’s based off of very real people and events. Here’s the link to my gushing review about it. Highly, highly recommend!

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So that’s what I read this month! What was your favorite book that you read this month? Did you read any duds? What are you excited about reading in June? I’ve got a huge pile of books that I want to read all at once. I’m really excited for some good summer reading! Hope you’re all having a good weekend! I’ll talk to you all tomorrow.