Books I Read in August 2020

31 Aug 2020

New month, new reads! This was a bit of a slower month which as I just started a new job is to be expected. I had a bit of a rough start as I was trying to get through some arcs that really just weren't doing it for me but then I finished the month off with a bit of a fantasy binge which put me right back on track! All in all, I made my way through seven books which for my busy schedule I'm happy with! Here's the whole selection including a brief synopsis in case you're unfamiliar with the book and a few thoughts from yours truly.

Nick and Charlie

Alice Oseman

Based on the characters from Solitaire (which I still haven't read), this novella follows fan favourites, Nick and Charlie, during the summer as Nick is about to leave for university.

It seems like I'm developing a bit of a habit by starting my month reading an Alice Oseman book - this is a Solitaire novella and I am yet to read Solitaire but I read the Heartstopper comics last month and this is the same characters which I just fell in love with! This one is very angst and if you know me you know I love me some angst. I definitely preferred Heartstopper to this book but this is still a great read if you need your Nick and Charlie fix!

The Switch

Beth O'Leary

This audiobook was provided by NetGalley

After a disastrous pitch, an overworked Leena Cotton is forced to take two months off from work which leads to her moving into her grandmother's house in a little Yorkshire hamlet while her newly single grandmother Eileen moves into Leena's flat in London and tackles the online London dating scene.

I knew I wanted to read this book the second I heard about it and after loving Beth O'Leary's other book, The Flatshare which I read back in June, I had high hopes! So when I stumbled across the audiobook on NetGalley I jumped at the chance. It's narrated by the iconic Alison Steadman and Normal People's Daisy Edgar Jones. I love audiobooks that have different perspectives narrated by different actors because I just feel like it adds so much to the story

If you loved The Flatshare I'm sure you'll love this one as well. It gave me major Hallmark Christmas movie vibes as in I kind of knew how it was going to end right at the start but it was so fun and sweet and it was nice just to do life with the characters. I actually think I preferred this one to The Flat Share.

If Only

Melanie Murphy

After calling off her wedding, Erin comes back home to Ireland for her thirtieth birthday where an ancient family heirloom comes into her possession allowing her to relive some moments of her life a little differently.

This book gave me massive About Time vibes so if you loved that movie you'll definitely love this book too! I have mixed feelings about it though as while I enjoyed it and enjoyed the story, it was long but I actually feel like it could have done with being even longer because so many points were just skimmed through. I need to read more Irish fiction though so I'm glad that I read it but I don't know if it's one that I'd be rushing back to!

The Thursday Murder Club

Richard Osman

I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and Penguin for review purposes

The Thursday Murder Club meet every Thursday in the Jigsaw Room of their retirement village to discuss past murder cases but when the developer responsible for their village turns up dead they find themselves in the middle of their first-ever open case and they're all eager to solve it!

As a big fan of Richard Osman, I was so excited for his fiction debut but that's when I realised that I really don't like cosy mysteries (or maybe mysteries in general) because although it wasn't boring, I kept finding myself drifting to sleep so I guess it was just too cosy a cosy mystery!

The Diviners

Libba Bray

After an incident in her hometown in Ohio, Evie O'Neill is sent to live with her eccentric uncle in New York City where she finds herself caught up in a whole new world of flappers, speakeasies, murder and even the occult.

I loved this, I especially loved the audiobook because January LaVoy is truly outstanding! It is very long though (about 18 hours) so it took me a long old time to get through but I stuck at it and I truly loved it.  Usually, when I start a series I never end up finishing them but I know that I'm definitely going to be continuing this series and I've already got the second book downloaded and I'm already working my way through it!

The Night Circus

Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus is a mysterious and magical circus that suddenly appears without warning and only opens at night. It is also the backdrop for a battle between two sorcerers. This book is about the circus and its patrons and its performers but this is not an ordinary circus and this is not an ordinary story because when there's magic involved, disguised as an illusion, how can it be?

I've been really craving fantasy lately after finally finishing the Strange the Dreamer series last month and I thought that the natural progression of that would be to finally get round to reading The Night Circus which has honestly been on my TBR for literally YEARS. I so wanted this to be a five-star read, I actually expected it to be a five-star read but unfortunately, it just didn't hit that way for me! It's so beautiful and so magical and I loved it so much but I just wanted that feeling which I'm so sad I didn't get. It's most definitely a very very high four-star but for a book with so much atmosphere and magic, I'm surprised I didn't love it more! I did love the characters in this book though but none of them fully captured my heart (Marco came close though). I definitely recommend picking this book up though and I'm honestly ashamed that it took me so long! I think I'd actually like to reread this at some point as well but I think I'd like to read the paperback to see if there's more magic located in the pages of a physical book but I may just be making up excuses.

Children of Virtue and Vengeance

Tomi Adeyemi

I never know how best to describe the plots of sequels without giving away spoilers for the first book. In Children of Blood and Bone, we follow Zelie as she sets to try and restore magic to Orisha after it was stripped of its magic many years before. In this sequel, we follow what happens in the aftermath.

I've been meaning to read this book since it came out because I loved the first one so much, so I picked it up in an independent bookstore in Conwy while I was on holiday. I hadn't heard great things from other people and during the first half, I couldn't really understand why but then it happened... The lack of communication in this book stressed me THE HECK out and the plot was just very very repetitive. Also, some things happened that literally made no sense for the characters and I just spent the whole second half of this book angry. I'm so upset though because I absolutely adored the first book but I'm hoping that this one just had middle book syndrome and that we will return to form with the third book because I really don't want to give up on this series.

My favourites of the month: The Switch, The Diviners, and The Night Circus

What have you been reading this month? Are you inspired to pick up any of these titles or do you have any recommendations that you think I'd like to read because I'm always open to requests!

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