Wednesday, August 29, 2018

August Book Recap & Reviews

Hi everyone! I am so happy to share what books I enjoyed during August. I had kind of a rollercoaster of books this month. Some I loved, some I hated, some were just eh. I read ELEVEN different books though so there is bound to be something you will like too.

Let's get into it y'all!

Dead Mountain by: Donnie Eicher
I was so pumped to read this book y'all! It is about an American documentary filmmaker who sets out to solve the mystery of the Dyatlov Pass Incident that took place years ago in Russia. The evidence is so contradicting and no one has been able to understand why these very experienced hikers were found dead scattered in different spots from their campsites without shoes or appropriate clothing on. WHAT? It was so confusing the whole book.
Although I grasped on to this story immediately I will say that when it got down to the actual explanation and answers, it went over my head. I can't expand on that without giving too much away but it was rather difficult to understand but also amazing and scary at the same time.
The other thing that made this book hard to understand was the names of individuals involved. Because this incident took place in Russia and all the names are obviously Russian, I immediately confused them with one another. I feel that I could have latched on to this story even more had I had a better comprehension of who the people involved were. Again this isn't anything that could have been changed, but it did make it slightly harder to feel attached to the story.

Rate: 3 Stars!

Love & Luck by: Jenna Evans Welch
I really enjoyed how different this book was from so many other YA Fiction books I have read. First of all, I love that Jenna Evans Welch used the location to the advantage of the story and how the beauty and wonder of Ireland, where the story takes place, really progressed the story along. I love when authors use their setting to their advantage and describe it so well, you feel like you're on a journey with the characters. I also loved how this story is mainly about sibling relationships and friendships rather than a romantic relationship, which is rare in cute YA Fiction. This is a quick read, and I recommend everyone give it a shot! I can't wait to read her first book Love & Gelato, which I believe is set in Italy.

Rate: 4 Stars

Castle Of Water by: Dane Huckelbridge
I saw a few bloggers talk about this book and was excited because it reminded me of the books that sparked my love for reading in elementary school. This is an adult story about two individuals from completely different backgrounds who end up stranded on an island after surviving a plane crash.
Sadly, I did not finish this book. I made it about halfway but unfortunately the third person narrative bored me. In something as intense as a plane crash and years on a deserted island, I want perspective into the characters thoughts and feelings rather than plain descriptions of events unfolding. The language in this book was also very gruesome and I had a feeling there would be events to follow suit.

Rate: After making it half way, I decided not to finish this book. I have heard a lot of good things from others, but I don't recommend personally.

By Your Side by: Kasie West 
Who else better to get you out of a reading funk than my girl Kasie West? If you read my July reading recap, you know I read three of her books and loved EACH one. They are so light but gripping and are everything I wish for in a quick YA Fiction book. After not such good luck with my last book, I decided to pick up one I was certain to like, and I most definitely did. Kasie West can do no wrong!
This book is about two high school students from completely different social groups, who get locked in a library together for an entire weekend. They can't stand each other at first but come to realize there is a lot more to people than what meets the eye. Their friendship is on the rocks however when they realize the real world is harsher than the library.
This book started a little slower for me than her other books, but overall it was everything I expected!

Rate: 4 Stars!

The Myth of Perpetual Summer by: Susan Crandall
Hoorah, for the first FIVE star book of the month! This one reminded me of a southern version of The Great Alone which I read last month and LOVED. This book is told in an interesting way and keeps you interested even when the plot is slow moving which is always a sign of phenomenal writing. This book is about a dysfunctional and broken family living in a small southern town full of gossip and segregation. Readers are immediately attached to the main character Tallulah and are dying to find out how her family fell apart years before. As the book goes on, we're left wondering if this broken family is beyond repair or if Tallulah will ever find peace with her past. This story is SO good y'all. You have to read it!

Rate: 5 Stars!!!

Listen to Your Heart by: Kasie West
After another deep and heart wrenching book I decided to pick up a book by my favorite cotton candy writer Kasie West!! I read this book in a day as always with her books and again, loved every minute of it. This book is about a love triangle that centers around Kate and her podcast class. First of all, why isn't a podcast class a real high school elective yet? I SO would have been about that. This is a really cute story for summer and I highly recommend.

Rate: 5 Stars!!

Crazy Rich Asians by: Kevin Kwan
I was so excited to read this book because the movie was coming out in a few days at the time, but let me tell you, this book STUNK. There were far too many characters to feel attached to and the author just constantly recountes how much each character spends on houses and clothes and I think it was pretty much a waste of paper. Don't recommend! I will say however that the movie was BOMB and I loved it!

Rate: 1 Star

Talking as Fast as I Can by: Lauren Graham
It is no secret I have a deep rooted love for Gilmore Girls. My sister and I watched every episode in order together, while sitting on one of our beds eating junk food and giggling at the witty banter between Lorelai and her daughter Rory. You can understand therefore, why I would be SO excited to listen to Lauren Graham's book. Her acting in Gilmore Girls is phenomenal and the show is a gem. I didn't think this could possibly happen, but after listening to Lauren Graham narrate her own book, I love her a little more (just a little) than the sarcastic, hard working character she plays, Lorelai.
If you are a fan on this show, you would LOVE her book. I highly suggest the audiobook because it truly makes you feel as though you're besties with Lauren. Casual right? Hearing her take on events throughout her life had me laughing out loud! READ/LISTEN to this book NOW!!

Rate: 5 Stars!!

Evicted by: Matthew Desmond
I was very excited to read this book along with some other book lovers on Instagram for a virtual book club. This is written by a Harvard sociologist who is passionate about changing the demographic surrounding evictions in America. This book certainly brought to my attention the problems within this broken system but sadly I didn't feel like I finished with many solutions. I am always on board to read a book that will give me insight into how a population of people different from me feel, but I hate when authors don't present clear solution in the end. Overall, I think this author did a great job telling the stories of these individuals who have faced multiple evictions, however I sometimes felt lost with all the names and people mentioned. It was hard to keep track of who was who. Overall, because of all the recognition and awards this book received I was expecting a tad bit more. A book that is a little more personal like Becoming Ms. Burton, is further up my alley. I do recommend this book though. It is very informative and can really carve room for compassion in your heart for others.

Rate: 3 Stars

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by: Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
I will be honest, I never heard of this book until I saw that Netflix was turning it into a movie. I always feel that I owe the book a read before ever watching the movie adaptation so I decided to pick it up. The cashier at Barnes and Noble raved about how much she loved it and since then, I have heard nothing but good things about it. After reading it myself I can say that I loved this book y'all! Definitely one of my favorites of the year so far.
 It is told in a series of letters which is so different than anything I have read recently and it really challenged me. This was one of those books that reminded me of why I love to read. It transported me so vividly to Guernsey and created such strong feelings of love and hate for certain characters. This is a true sign of a talented author. I feel as though I am an honorary member of this society and would love it you were too. READ IT!

Rate: 5 Stars!

Where'd You Go Bernadette by: Maria Semple
I have heard such great things about this book and was so excited to pick it up but it fell slightly short. It was okay and it made for a quick read but the story was just plain odd sometimes. The review quotes on the cover stated that this book is so "funny" and "comedic" but I don't know where they got that from. I mean there were parts that I could tell were supposed to be funny but the writing didn't sell it for me. The story was okay but I didn't quite understand some of the characters. Again, the writing and style of the book was a bit odd but not completely unenjoyable.

Rate: 3 Stars

Love and Gelato by: Jenna Evan Welch
After starting and  not really feeling several books I picked up, I decided to go with the first book by Jenna Evan Welch. I loved Love & Luck earlier in the month and couldn't wait to give this one a try also. I loved it even more!!
This story is set in Italy following a girl who just lost her mom and is meeting her father for the first time. There is love, heartbreak, and lot's of Italian food. Just what I needed. Couldn't recommend this one enough!

Rate: 5 Stars!

Cheers to another great reading month, and learning more and more. I want to hear what books YOU have read this past month. I love recommendations of all kinds. Comment your absolute favs! I have already started thinking about what books I want to read this September and can't wait to share.

I am also going to try to get on my blogging game this month, after slacking big time in August. Talk to you soon!



  1. I love how versatile your book choices are! I've been wanting to read crazy rich asians, but maybe I'll just go see the movie!

    xoxo Shannon

    1. Hi Shannon!
      Several people I know said they loved the book so it may just be me. Either way, the movie is adorable! Thank you for your kind words! (:



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