Okay, so this may be the latest I’ve ever done a reading wrap up. Ever. It is literally almost the end of August when I’m writing this smh. I’ve been doing a whole lot of reading and absolutely no writing. (I guess that’s good for my current tbr though, right?)
I read a ton of amazing books this July and I’m so excited to share all of them with you.
Obsidio | Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff
This is the final book in one of my all-time favorite series. I will say that I didn’t love this book quite as much as the first two, but it was a satisfying ending, to say the least.
This book didn’t quite have the same amount of *wtf is going on* as the first two and I think that’s why I didn’t love it as much as the previous two. They definitely tied up all the loose ends that were left from the first books and brought all of our amazing characters together. So, I can’t be too mad.
Please please read this series if you love crazy sci-fi stories told in an unconventional format.
Before The Devil Breaks You | Libba Bray
Again, not my favorite book in the series. As this is the penultimate book in the series, it very much felt like they were setting up the plot for the big finale in the fourth book (which is not out yet, curses!)
It was slow and even more slow until there was the big bang at the end of the book and literally everything happened in approximately two chapters. And then the book ended.
I have so many questions and no timeline for when those questions will be answered.
Read this series if you love learning about 1920s New York, are obsessed with ghosts, and wish you had cool x men-like powers.
Seconds | Bryan Lee O’Malley
This was the cutest little story I ever did read. Again, a book I went into knowing literally NOTHING about.
Lmao at the fact that I thought this was about superheroes? Maybe that was me thinking about Scott Pilgrim, idk.
But if, like me, you looked at the cover and thought this book was going to be about superheroes or space travel, etc, you would be very very wrong.
This story follows Katie, a chef working at the titularly named restaurant, Seconds. She makes some mistakes, she tries to fix them, things go AWRY.
I don’t want to say anymore because I think it’s fun going in blind.
Final thoughts: the art is so cute as is the writing and every little piece of this graphic novel. It has a nice message for you to think about after finishing which is (also) cute.
Undead Girl Gang | Lily Anderson
Talk about a highly anticipated read. This book was so so fun. I loved all the sass Mila was spouting throughout the whole book! I’m sad it’s over (and I made have read it too quickly) but the read was so worth it. I’m all about stories focused on besties over romance and that is exactly what we got here. #girlpower
There are so many amazing things in this book. The twists and turns and the epic girl gang built from the ashes of girls who used to hate each other. I think there are metaphors aplenty to be had from the growth of these characters and everything that went down in the final fourth of the book (that I will not say here – spoilers!)
It actually wasn’t was I was expecting going into it, but I’m still really happy with how it worked out. The characters and their relationships with each other were complicated and real. Nothing is easy (not even the magic) and that made it even more enjoyable. The relationships are what got me hooked and the thrill of finding the murderer is what had me reading until 2 o’clock in the morning.
I’m sad that this story is over, but I can’t wait to read it all over again.
Six Of Crows | Leigh Bardugo
I love these characters sooo muuuuch. They are so great and complex and full of flaws.
I’m so weak to stories about enemies/people who don’t trust each other when they have to band together to reach a common goal. Like goddamn I love them so much.
This is the perfect book if you thrive under super stressful situations that seem basically impossible and almost definitely set up to fail.
I have yet to read the sequal only because I don’t want this story to be over quite yet.
The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza | Shaun David Hutchinson
So. I really really really love Shaun David Hutchinson’s writing style. I loved the premise of this book and I loved the characters and all of the diverse representation in here. Somehow, it all flowed really nicely together and never felt forced or like he put these characters in there solely for representation. They are just people, characters with diverse backgrounds who happen to be friends. Amazing.
I loved how sassy the characters were and, although they were frustrating at times, I still appreciated them and saw them for the flawed people that they were.
I didn’t like it quite as much as We Are The Ants, but I still loved it nonetheless.
I think it was probably the ending that didn’t hold as strong for me. I literally started reading into the acknowledgments before I realized I had just read the end of the book! Noooo.
Girl Made of Stars | Ashley Herring Blake
This book was so good. So heartbreaking. So important to read.
I’m not really sure how to review this book, but I guarantee you should read it.
It’s an important topic and deserves to be addressed in such a complex and nuanced way. It’s definitely not an easy read. It will hurt. You feel so hard for the main character and watch her work through a very complicated situation.
Flame in the Mist | Renée Ahdieh
I loved this book so much and it was such a surprise???
This is the kind of premise I live for. A daughter of a samurai is born to be married off when she’s capable of so much more. On her way to meet her betrothed, her caravan is attacked. Someone’s trying to assassinate her.
She escapes and decides she’s going to track down her would-be murderers by infiltrating their ranks.
Chaos ensues, obviously.
It’s full of action and adventure, a loveable hate-to-love romance, and some very interesting magic that I still don’t quite understand.
Legendary | Stephanie Garber
I loved Caraval so much and I loved this story almost as much as the first (but not quite.)
It was so so close to being a favorite. Everything was there! The reason it wasn’t a 4 or 5 star read for me was because the mystery and deception that made me love the first book was just missing from this one. All the of twists and turns felt like they were too easy to guess. There was no questioning where the book was going.
I just wish it was harder to guess where the plot was going. All of the “hints” and “clues” seemed more like blatant facts. Where was the mystery that made me fall in love with the first book???
Ngl I’m still 100% going to read the next book (if there is one? I feel like there will be tho) I love the world and the lavish descriptions of the clothes and setting enough to make me want more
Love, Life, and the List | Kasie West
Is it required to read all of Kasie West’s books in one sitting or is that just me?
I LOVE BOOKS ABOUT LISTS! Seriously. There’s just something about summer and a list to cross off that really gets my heart pumping. The romance kind of took a backseat to the fun list adventure and I am totally okay with that.
I LOVE BOOKS ABOUT ART! This is very true, but I’m not exactly sure why. I am not an artist. At all. I can dabble with some bullet journal doodling, but that is as far as my artistic talent stretches. For some reason, I love reading books centered on artists or people who like art.
I really loved the main character’s relationship with her family and her best friend. They seemed more real and fleshed out. The side characters, however, could have used a little more background. I get they weren’t the main focus, but they were around for a bit. Who are you?????
Overall. Love. Definitely the perfect summer read especially if you’re a fan of art and lists (like me).
Born A Crime | Trevor Noah
I’ve been reading this book on audiobook for approximately 5 billion years and just finished it last month.
Reading memoirs in audio format is 100% my favorite way to ingest the story. There’s nothing like hearing someone telling their own story in their own voice. Trevor Noah speaks a bunch of different languages in this book too that is so so much better read through his voice rather than trying (and failing) to pronounce it myself.
I didn’t realize how much I would learn about his life and South Africa’s situation during the time he was growing up there.
This book is funny, heartbreaking, informative and crazy interesting. These are the kinds of books kids should be reading in schools.
Bird Box | Josh Malerman
I don’t know how I feel about this book. It was creepy and sad. The premise was so intriguing. Everything was there. Something about the ending just fell flat for me.
I didn’t get the answers I wanted and most definitely never will.
I am very interested to see how they are going to adapt this for the screen though. Especially considering much of the book is spent with people either blindfolded or in the dark.