June Reads

            Another nine books down last month. I seriously cannot express how much I am loving the Libby app right now. I never would have thought I’d be just thirteen books away from my goal for the year at the start of July. It makes me wonder if I can get to 100 books in a year. It reminds me of when I was younger and had less responsibilities and could sit and read all day long if I wanted to. Sigh.

            A side note, my thoughts on my reads will be shorter if I keep up at this rate. I wouldn’t want to subject anyone to fifteen pages of my thoughts on the books I’ve read in the last month. That would be a little intense, even for me.

 

The Girls by Emma Cline

            During the read, I had to keep reminding myself that it really happened. The writing definitely gave the feel of a fictional tale, but we all know the real world can be worse than anything we made up.

            I would feel sorry for her, for all the terrible things she went through, but she brought it on herself. Even she admits it in the “Suzanne didn’t act like she wanted me to come along” type phrases. Even Suzanne knew she would be in over her head, and she tried to give her an out, but she persisted.

            And what was really so bad about her home life? Her mom dated weird men, sure. But she could have went to her dad’s. It was just one summer and then she would be away at school. And she clearly enjoyed the school and made friends when she got there.

            So, I will say I liked the book. It was well written and a thrilling story. But I also think Evie is an idiot.

 

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

            I’ve seen parts of this movie, but I knew it was a book so I waited to watch the whole thing. And this book was amazing.

            I felt so many things while reading. I laughed, I cried real tears, and I was sad and hurt and scared and torn and ashamed. I am in no position to claim I understand what happened to these women during that time period, but this book really put things into perspective for me to get closer to understanding.

            When Abilene had to get off the bus to walk the rest of the way home, my heart was in my throat for her. When Minnie was confronted by her husband, my gut clenched. When Skeeter began to see the weight of what she was doing, I felt it with her.

            I will probably read it again, and now I need to go watch the movie.

 

One Day in Budapest by J.F. Penn

            This was a nice quick installment of Dr. Morgan Sierra’s adventures. She’s so smart and quick on her feet and she’s always in the right place at the right time.

            This one didn’t have any supernatural elements, but it’s as still incredibly thrilling and I enjoyed seeing her help save the day. A lot happened in the single day of this adventure, but the pacing was perfect to keep you entertained without feeling overwhelmed.

 

My Confessional by Janet Devlin

            I discovered Janet on Tiktok- I knew absolutely nothing about her except that she told hilarious sixty-second stories and I thought she was beautiful. One day I went to her profile and saw that she’d written a book, so I bought it.

            A lot of her story is sad and I related to pieces of it. Overall, I’m happy to know she’s mostly on the other side of her struggles. I know depression doesn’t go away and I wish her all the luck in staying sane. A great read, and very well written.

 

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

            I’d heard about this book because of Hulu and the Book Riot podcast and at a loss for what to read one day, I picked this one to see what all the fuss was about. And I didn’t hate it.

            The characters were very realistic and they had some truly dramatic situations and experiences that drove the story forward. I enjoyed the way the timeline moved around and we were told just as much as we needed at any given point.

            I know the book was over, and there’s no sequel, but I would definitely like a “Five years from now” summary to see where they all ended up. A very good read.

 

Beloved by Toni Morrison

            Another Book Riot podcast recommendation.

            The story was incredibly poetic and a deep, heart-wrenching tale. It was a true horror story. It gave me the creeps, shocked me, the chills, and had me on the edge of my seat and saying ‘no’ out loud with a hand over my mouth. I almost couldn’t stomach the idea of continuing after the scene with Sethe in the tool shed… but I got to the end, and I’m pleased to have finished the story.

 

The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman

            A great final installment of this trilogy. It answered enough of the loose threats to satisfy me, but also left enough hanging for me to miss the characters now that it’s done.

            I was pleased with hearing more about Janet’s life, but it could have been a book all on its own instead of just a little aside type story.

            A lot happened in this book, just like the other two. And Grossman could have expanded them and had a five or six book series instead. But I enjoyed it like this too. Overall, I am thrilled to have found these books and will probably revisit them. I’ve already recommended them to several people and can’t wait to have someone to talk to about them.

 

Gold Dust Woman by Stephen Davis

            I grew up listening to Fleetwood Mac and was obsessed with the magical sound of Stevie Nicks’ voice. I’m currently writing a book with witches and when I put together my Spotify playlist for the project, I naturally added several Stevie pieces to listen to on repeat.

            So, when her biography popped up as a suggested read, I felt inclined to give it a shot. And I was not disappointed with the experience.

            Stevie has lived quite an extraordinary life and I admire her tenacity and drive. She experienced a lot of ups and downs, but she also proves that putting in the hard work can get you where you want to go.

 

Newsletter Ninja by Tammi Labrecque

            My craft book this month was picked very carefully. I’ve read so many books on so many different parts of a writer’s life now and I need to be more vigilant of finding books to help me with the next step in my journey. I’ve read the ones on how to write and how to edit and how to publish, I’m into marketing and platform building now and this pick has been very helpful.

            I’m still navigating the waters for my mailing list, but I finally have more than just my mom as a subscriber and needed advice on how to proceed. This book had lots of helpful tips and tricks and I will definitely be implementing them into my process.

 

 

            Three of my nine books were actually read and the rest were audiobooks. I’m trying to get back into the swing of reading physical books, but I adore how freeing it is to just listen to a book while I do other daily tasks. But I’ll take three books over none. I just don’t have the time to sit and read right now as I’m trying to excel in my author journey. But audio will always be there to help me along.

What books are you reading or listening to right now? Any suggestions on what I should pick up next? My reading list is getting awfully short, haha.

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