June Wrap Up

Hi! June was an absolute disaster of a month and I’m glad it’s over. I have barely blogged, read very little compared to the last couple of months and I even neglected Instagram on which I usually post every day. My anxiety got the better of me this month and I’m hoping it will settle soon and I’ll find it in me to be more productive.

I’m kind of afraid of this portion of the post, because… I might’ve bought a good few books. But here are the stats anyway.

  • Number of books read: 7
  • Number of pages read: 2325
  • Average star rating: 3.5
  • DNFs: 0
  • TBR at the start of June: 52
  • Books added: 7
  • Books read: 2
  • Current TBR: 57
The Ghosts of Sherwood by Carrie Vaughn

The Ghosts of Sherwood is a novella about Robin Hood’s kids. I got an e-arc of it and it was a fast read, but I found it lacking. I wanted more depth and development, but because of the short format, I didn’t really get it.

Rating: 3 out of 5.
My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

This one is marketed as a thriller, but I don’t think it fits in that genre. I’m not sure what I would actually shelve it as, because “weird” is not a genre, but that’s what I found it – in the best way possible. It is a one of a kind book, told in vignettes, about an older sister who finds herself helping her younger sibling bury her now ex-boyfriends. It explores the sisterly bond really well and it’s an overall great read, though definitely not for everyone.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
19 Love Songs by David Levithan

Recently I’ve been more and more disappointed with Levithan’s books. I used to love him as a teen, but either the magic wore off or he’s lost his touch. 19 Love Songs is a collection of short stories about different kinds of love, and although I didn’t dislike it, not a single story (maybe apart from the last poem) stood out to me. I found them all pretty samey and so quite disappointing.

Rating: 3 out of 5.
Let Me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson

An absolute gem of a book! I loved everything about it, from the characters, to the setting and the raps included in it. It’s a story about 3 Black teens in Brooklyn whose friend (and brother) was murdered. Said friend was a rapper, but he was killed before he made it, so they decide to make him famous posthumously. It has grief and friendship and 90s Brooklyn and oldschool hip hop and talks about important subjects.

Rating: 5 out of 5.
The Gravity of Us by Phil Stamper

I have a review for this one, so I won’t be blabbing about it much. It was enjoyable, sweet and a fast, entertaining read. Loved the queer rep, talks of mental health and the social media aspect. Very promising, own-voices debut!

Rating: 3 out of 5.
Color Outside the Lines by Various Authors

I’m starting to feel I have some subconscious gripe with short stories. Although I did not dislike it by any means, nothing really stuck with me. There were a few stories that I did not care about, and a lot of cute but not very memorable ones. I liked the theme of this anthology – it’s about interracial couples, so that’s a plus. Maybe the format just really isn’t for me.

Rating: 3 out of 5.
Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron

Kingdom of Souls honestly deserves its own full review and I’ll write one soon. I was very impressed with this YA fantasy, found it unique and so so so rich! But I’ll gush about it in a separate post.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

And that is it!

What is your favourite read of this month?

Thank you for reading. I will talk to you all soon.

Most Surprising Books of 2019

Hi! It’s been a while. Sorry, I was on holidays and even though I planned to draft and schedule posts to go up while I was away, that hasn’t happened. I know it’s a bit late for the 2019 wrap up posts, but bear with me.

Today’s list is my most surprising books of 2019, books that for some reason exceeded my expectations. In no particular order, here they are.

Scythe by Neal Schusterman

This book has been so hyped since it came out and so not to my taste (being a dystopian novel), I avoided it like the plague. I honestly don’t know why I gave in in the end and picked it up but I’m definitely glad I did. I loved the main characters and how different they were. I really enjoyed how morally ambiguous the scythdom, their rules and methods are. It was a really interesting read and a series I would love to continue with this year.

Perfectly Preventable Deaths by Deirdre Sullivan

I didn’t have great expectations starting this one. I didn’t see many people talk about this one, some reviews on Goodreads really made me feel like I might not enjoy it. I gave it a go because it was Halloween and I wanted a witchy, spooky story. Also, it’s by an Irish author and I would like to read more locally, so it was an easy choice. The book was honestly everything I wanted at the time. Extremely atmospheric and somehow familiar, with a very “spoken Irish” writing style. I wish it was a series, because I would love to read more about the characters, and it’s what made me dock a half star. Overall, as you already know, because it’s the sole reason for this post – it was a really delightful surprise.

IT by Stephen King

IT was my first Stephen King book and I’ve heard such mixed reviews on the story and the writing, and to be perfectly honest, Stephen King himself (by the way, what do you think about this current shitstorm feat. King tweeting about diversity?), I didn’t know what to expect. I loved the movies and that’s mostly the reason why I picked up the book and oh, boy, was it good? I skipped the infamous scene at the end of the book (if you know, you know), as by then I was enjoying it SO MUCH I didn’t want my experience ruined. It was creepy, funny, vulgar and even heartwarming at times. I don’t know what I expected going into it, but IT exceeded any expectations I could’ve had.

The Devil’s Apprentice by Kenneth B. Andersen

I’ve been part of the tour for this book, my first one ever, and I agreed to it without expecting too much. I mean, the book has been out for a long time and it didn’t explode the Internet. I know there are hidden gems out there and the popularity of the book should not reflect on how good/bad it is, but it definitely sets some sort of expectations. I won’t go into details here, because I have a full review on here somewhere (link, if you wanna read it), but it really took me by surprise how much I ended up enjoying it. It’s a fun, fast paced MG novel with a quirky setting. I wouldn’t have picked it up on my own so I’m really glad I got to read it through the tour I took part in.

Lumberjanes Vol.1 by Noelle Stevenson

I’m not big on graphic novels and I haven’t read many of them. But I got a free trial of Kindle Unlimited and it had that and a couple of other graphic novels on it for free, so I decided to try them out for myself. I loved Lumberjanes. I loved every single character. I loved their dynamic. I loved the humour in it. Everything about it was perfect and I’m definitely gonna continue with it when I get a chance. It’s a great palate cleanser in between longer books, I think.

And that would be it for my most surprising books of 2019. Have you read any of these?

I will be back tomorrow with my Best Books of 2019 post, so keep an eye out for that, if you’re interested. Thanks for reading.