Books I Read in June 2020

30 Jun 2020

June was an absolutely incredible reading month for me - so much so that I'm still not entirely sure how I pulled it off but I guess that's what graduating in the middle of a pandemic does for you! I read eight books this month and I read six books during the whole of last year. A lot of this spawned from my re-discovery of Overdrive and the Libby app which ignited my new found love of borrowing and reading ebooks and audiobooks from my local library. It was a ride! So here's the rundown of all the books I managed to read this month!

The Flatshare

Beth O'Leary

This story follows Tiffy and Leon who not only share a flat but because Tiffy works during the day and Leon works nights, they also share a bed! The story follows each of them in their co-existing lives neither really aware of the other but what happens when they finally end up meeting?

This was the first book that I read in June, just after I finished my exams I decided I needed to actually pick up a book for the first time in forever.  This one was so happy. It's a romcom and it just made me really happy reading it. I switched my phone off for 24 hours at the beginning of June and this is the book that I read that day so it was a really nice distraction and I finished it all in one day even though it was over 400 pages long. This book is talked about a lot and there's a very good reason for that. It's just such an enjoyable little read! I can't wait to read more of Beth O'Leary's work.

Such A Fun Age

Kiley Reid

This book focuses on two women, Alix, a white feminist blogger and, Emira, her babysitter, who is black. Emira gets accused of trying to kidnap her child while out in a supermarket late at night and the story follows the aftermath of this incident as Alix tries to befriend Emira but tries a little too hard to make things right. This book focuses on the class system as well as systemic racism and how easily racism is engrained in society.

I didn't dislike this, it's actually a great story and it's such a poignant subject matter especially given the current climate. My main issue is that I just didn't vibe with any of the characters and I'm such a character driven reader that if I'm not invested in at least one character I'm not invested in the story and that was the sad truth about this book for me! I definitely recommend reading it but it just wasn't fully my cup of tea!

Meet Cute

Helena Hunting

This story follows Kailyn who is a bit of a fangirl of super celebrity Daxton Hughes (think Chad Michael Murray) and they have a chance run-in at college and become friends but years later after an incident, they develop a rivalry and when Daxton comes back into her life asking for legal advice things may start to develop into something completely new.

This is one of the first audiobooks that I ever listened to besides the Harry Potter books that we always got an audio version for from the library back in the day! This was such an easy listen and I found myself actually wanting to listen more which is a good thing and the narrators did such a good job. I think if I had have chosen an audiobook that I didn't like it would have put me off the medium completely so luckily that didn't happen! This is an adult romance so there are quite a few fairly explicit sex scenes which I found kind of unnecessary to the development of the story (and I'm usually fairly partial to a sex scene) so if that's not your thing maybe steer clear but the actual plot of this book is so much more than a romance and I actually found that I liked it better. Also, a lot of the dialogue is weird and clunky but besides that, it was a very enjoyable read.

Infinity Son

Adam Silvera

This fantasy set in modern-day new york focuses mainly on twins Brighton and Emil who grew up idolizing the Spell Walkers, celestial vigilantes who are trying to rid the world of specters. Celestials are born with powers while specters harvest them from magical creatures. When Emil suddenly manifests powers they are thrust into the world of the Spell Walkers in order to protect Emil from the Blood Casters - an elite group of specters who are seeking to become the most powerful beings on Earth.

I love everything Adam Silvera writes and this was no different although this was his first foray into fantasy so there are a few things that could be better in the realm of character development and world-building but Adam has already said that he knows he needs to work on that and it will be better in the next book. I wrote my dissertation on CRISPR so the way that specter magic works in this book really appealed to my science brain. A lot of the characters kind of blended together a bit but there is one character who I absolutely ADORE (I have a thing for sweet but angsty teenage boy characters). The ending is truly SHOCKING and I need book two immediately!

The Raven Boys

Maggie Stiefvater

Blue Sargent has lived her whole life being told that if she kisses her true love, he will die so when she gets tangled up with the Raven Boys from the local private school it's the first time that this prophecy is ever really put to the test. The boys are obsessed with the story of Welsh king Glendower and so Blue joins them on their quest to track him down and solve the mystery of the ley lines.

I missed out on a lot of reading in my teenage years. I remember being absolutely obsessed with The Hunger Games, so much so that I would bring it to school and read it between classes, I think I read all three books in just over a week. That was where my teenage reading obsession began and ended. So now I'm trying to catch up by reading some of the series that everyone talks about that just passed me by.

I wanted to love this book, heck I should have loved this book. It has everything that I love in a book and a whole cast of angsty teenage boys should have been right up my street yet somehow after I finished it I just felt kind of meh??? Maybe it's because I listened to the audio instead of reading it for myself but I just didn't vibe with any of the characters and I ended up sticking it on 1.5x speed just to get through it. I'll probably still try and read the rest of the series but I think I'd read them rather than listening to the audio.

Where the Crawdads Sing

Delia Owens

Set in the 1960s, this book follows Kya, the marsh girl, who has lived her entire life, most of it alone, on the marshlands of North Carolina. It's half a coming of age story as we follow Kya on her journey through childhood, adolescence and adulthood in the marsh and half murder mystery as she ends up being accused of the murder of local heartthrob Chase Andrews.

I had heard so much about this book that I knew I had to read it! There's a lot of rich descriptive language that transports you to the marshlands where the book is set and it's fairly ecology heavy which is understandable as this is the author is a naturalist and this is her first novel. I loved ecology in school so that part appealed to me. All in all, I didn't love this book as much as I thought I would but it's still such an incredible piece of literature and will undeniably live on as a classic.

Making Friends With Alice Dyson

Poppy Nwosu

I received an eARC copy of this book from NetGalley and Candlewick Press for review purposes.

This story follows Alice Dyson, she's a bit of a nerd and all she wants for her final year of school is to go unnoticed and just get on with her studying but those plans are derailed when a video surfaces of her with resident school bad boy Teddy Taualai. The book follows her as she navigates friendship, first love and the rumour filled landscape that is high school.

I adored this book! When I saw the title and read the description I was immediately drawn to it: first, my name is Alice and the title characters name is Alice (probably a selfish reason but hey) I also saw so much of myself in this character even from just reading the description that I knew we would click because I was also kind of a nerd and outcast at school. It's also Australian so that meant that I got the break out my best Australian accent while reading (I'll leave it up to you to decide if that's a good thing or a bad thing). I related a lot to Alice's high school experiences and I loved how she got to move on and grow from them. I also ADORED Teddy Taualai but that goes without saying. I think my enjoyment of this at the start may have been hampered by the fact that I was trying to read to many books at once but I ended up just sitting down and inhaling most of it in one sitting.

Daisy Jones and The Six

Taylor Jenkins Reid

Daisy Jones and The Six were the most famous rock band in the world in the 70s but one fateful night in Chicago in 1979 everything suddenly ends and nobody ever knew why. This book follows their rise to fame, the highs and lows associated with it an just what happened that caused the split all told in an interview format. PS: Daisy Jones and The Six are a fictional band.

Okay, so I absolutely ADORED this book!!! I'd seen people raving about it and when I heard the plot and the concept it's not the sort of book that I ever thought I would enjoy but it's literally skyrocketed its way to the top of my list of favourite books of all time. I listened to the audiobook and it has a full cast of actors reading for each of the different characters it truly is an experience. There are so many beautiful quotes in this book that I literally had to take notes and the last time a book did that to me was The Song of Achilles. This book broke me, I don't know how I'm moving on from this point, there where times I had to pause so I could adequately cry. I can't actually put into words just how special this book is and I'm so happy that I decided to pick it up and give it a go. I've literally just bought myself a physical copy so I can have it with me forever.

What have you been reading recently and what should be next on my reading list?

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