I can’t believe it is already July! It seems like this year is going by extremely fast and slow at the same time. So much is happening in the real world, that at times can make it hard to focus on books. But today I wanted to show my reading stats so far this year as well as some of my favorites. I’ve put them all in an easy-to-see Instagram post for a change! So no super long blog post!
Hello everyone! I decided that I want to try and do reading wrap-ups every month. I’m hoping it’ll be fun to look back in a couple of years and see what I was reading and if I was enjoying it each month. I love reading other people’s wrap-up so it’s about time I started doing my own. When I can I will provide links to the reviews if I have posted them already.
For the month of June, I only finished 5 books. Not my best reading month so far this year. I did start a lot of books in June and just put them down for various reasons. So in July, I plan to finish those books up and get back on track with reading.
Genre: Mental Health, Realistic Fiction, Contemporary, YA
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
In this raw, searingly honest debut young adult novel, a former aspiring ballerina must confront her past in order to move forward from a devastating fall that leaves her without the use of her legs.
Genie used to fouetté across the stage. Now the only thing she’s turning are the wheels to her wheelchair. Genie was the star pupil at her exclusive New York dance school, with a bright future and endless possibilities before her. Now that the future she’s spent years building toward has been snatched away, she can’t stand to be reminded of it—even if it means isolating herself from her best friends and her mother. The only wish this Genie has is to be left alone.
But then she meets Kyle, who also has a “used to be.” Kyle used to tumble and flip on a gymnastics mat, but a traumatic brain injury has sent him to the same physical therapist that Genie sees. With Kyle’s support, along with her best friend’s insistence that Genie’s time at the barre isn’t over yet, Genie starts to see a new path—one where she doesn’t have to be alone and she finally has the strength to heal from the past.
But healing also means confronting. Confronting the booze her mother, a recovering alcoholic, has been hiding under the kitchen sink; the ex-boyfriend who was there the night of the fall and won’t leave her alone; and Genie’s biggest, most terrifying secret: the fact that the accident may not have been so accidental after all.
TW book has mentions of domestic violence, drinking, and abortion.
Turning follows Genie, who is a teenage ballerina who has her sights set on being a prima ballerina. That dream sadly gets crushed when she has an accident after getting into an accident. She is now paralyzed from the waist down and uses a wheelchair to get around. At physical therapy one day though she finally talks to a fellow new disabled person Kyle who is also learning how to move on. They find comfort in each other as they talk about there ‘used to be’ and the hopes and plans they had for their futures and the changes they are now making.
Overall this book was so good. It deals with a lot of the struggles that people with disabilities can face and the anger that is sometimes felt. I saw some people talking about how they didn’t like her attitude, and while I get that I think it’s also important to note that her attitude was because of how her entire life changed in an instant when her accident happened. Every ballet dream she had had up to that point was gone, and she didn’t know how to move on because of that her anger and frustration was boiling over a lot. Coming to terms with something as life-altering as what Genie went through so suddenly takes time and it’s not always a pretty thing while this acceptance is happening. From learning how to do basic everyday tasks, to having to pick a new career hope, and deal with accessibility issues, on top of all the emotions of fear, anger, frustration, etc. Is a lot and it takes time to learn it. Because of all this though, we do see Genie really grow throughout this book, we see her deal with her accident and learn how to move on, and find new ways to be involved in ballet that she still loves so much. With this growth that Genie has throughout the book, you see her go from living in a tense house with her mom where both of them are about to burst it seems from all the stress and anger. By the end, they have talked about things and in Genie’s case come to terms with her accident and telling her mom finally the secret she had been keeping from her. We also see Genie learn how to deal with the accessibilities issues, the way her friends might see her now, and how they are also having to realize things about accessibilities when it comes to going out to places.
I know I’ve missed something in this review, but please read this book if you can and want some pretty good disability rep. (please note this is of the books I’ve read so far.)
Last summer, Alice Ogilve’s basketball-star boyfriend Steve dumped her. Then she disappeared for five days. Where she went and what happened to her is the biggest mystery in Castle Cove, because she’s not talking. Or it was, at least. But now, another one of Steve’s girlfriends has vanished: Brooke Donovan, Alice’s ex–best friend. And it doesn’t look like Brooke will be coming back. . .
Enter Iris Adams, Alice’s tutor. Iris has her own reasons for wanting to disappear, though unlike Alice, she doesn’t have the money or the means. That could be changed by the hefty reward Brooke’s grandmother is offering to anyone who can share information about her granddaughter’s whereabouts. The police are convinced Steve is the culprit, but Alice isn’t so sure, and with Iris on her side, she just might be able to prove her theory.
In order to get the reward and prove Steve’s innocence, they need to figure out who killed Brooke Donovan. And luckily Alice has exactly what they need—the complete works of Agatha Christie. If there’s anyone that can teach the girls how to solve a mystery it’s the master herself. But the town of Castle Cove holds many secrets, and Alice and Iris have no idea how much danger they’re about to walk into.
Alice Ogiville is basically a pariah after going missing last summer for a week in order to get her parent’s attention. She came back on her own. But when one of Alice’s ex-friends Brooke is now missing as well that’s what the police think has happened. Those who saw Brooke that night think differently but don’t know what to do. That is until Alice decides to start investigating and drags her tutor Iris into it as well. As Alice and Iris start piecing together what happened that night through talking to people at the party, and other items through sources they piece together what happens. Once Brooke’s body is found by them, they are then rushing against the clock trying to figure out what happened and who harmed Brooke before one of their fellow students who they believe is innocent is charged with her murder.
Overall this was such a fun read. Obviously, serious things happened because someone was killed, and domestic abuse was mentioned throughout. But the relationships between Alice and Iris and how they are able to work together despite their differences and the secrets that they are both keeping. Iris’s friends help out and make it so they can get into contact with their sources and occasionally provide good ideas. Little funny moments were thrown in here and there with Alice’s love for Agatha Christy and Iri’s friend’s banter as well. There were several tense moments though because of what Alice and Iris were doing in order to find out information and do the police’s job for them.
That ending wow was not expecting it to get as intense as it did but it was so good! If this does become a series I do think it will be an enjoyable one because of how well Alice and Iris worked together and how now they don’t have any secrets between them that we know of.
After a bestselling fantasy author disappears, only his biggest fan believes he’s in danger and has the courage to uncover the truth in this fast-paced mystery with a chilling psychological twist.
Bridget is RM Haldon’s biggest fan. His epic fantasy series, Swords and Shadows, created a lifeline between Bridget and her mom as she lost her battle with cancer. When Bridget met Haldon at his only book signing, she impressed the author with her encyclopedic knowledge of the fantasy world he’d created. Bridget has been working for him ever since as he attempts to write his final book. Now, Haldon is missing, and Bridget is the only person who seems concerned. Can Bridget piece together Haldon’s clues and save him before it’s too late?
Eyes of the Forest follows Bridget who is a young woman about to graduate high school, but in secret she is also her favorite author’s assistant that helps him keep all the characters and storylines straight as the world he has created is huge. The author reminds me a little bit about what I have heard George R.R. Martin is like with his Game of Thrones series. I have never read anything by him, so I’m just going off of what I’ve seen in interviews and reading other people online talking about it. Mentioned George R.R. Martin is important because the author in this story is also taking forever to write the last book in the series. Because of this fans are getting more and more upset and willing to do almost anything it seems to know what is going to happen next.
Genre: YA, Magical Realism, Urban Fantasy, Mythology
Rating: ★ ★ ★
Meet Jared Martin: sixteen-year-old pot cookie dealer, smoker, drinker and son with the scariest mom ever. But Jared’s the pot dealer with a heart of gold–really. Compassionate, caring, and nurturing by nature, Jared’s determined to help hold his family together–whether that means supporting his dad’s new family with the proceeds from his baking or caring for his elderly neighbours. But when it comes to being cared and loved, Jared knows he can’t rely on his family. His only source of love and support was his flatulent pit bull Baby, but she’s dead. And then there’s the talking ravens and the black outs and his grandmother’s perpetual suspicion that he is not human, but the son of a trickster.
Trigger Warnings: Drug use, Violence, Alcohol use, suicide attempt, child abuse and neglect, and self-harm.
If you watched the show trickster on the CW then the majority of this book you will know to a certain extent. A few details were changed as in any adaptation, but a lot of the trigger warnings mentioned above were in this first book.
I recently finished They Also Burn People by Marcos Hernandez
What do you think you’ll read next?
I’m not really sure what I’ll read next. I have several books out from the library right now but I am such a mood reader so far this month that I keep starting new books before I finish one. You’ll just have to check and see what I’m reading next week or follow me on Instagram to see what I’m currently reading.
Can an amateur detective solve the cold case mystery of her lost father’s murder?
In the winter of 1923, Professor Annalee Spain–a daring but overworked theologian at a small Chicago Bible college–receives a cryptic telegram calling her home to Denver to solve the mystery of the murder of her beloved but estranged father.
For a young Black woman, searching for answers in a city ruled by the KKK could mean real danger. Still, with her literary hero Sherlock Holmes as inspiration, Annalee launches her hunt for clues, attracting two surprising allies: Eddie, a relentless young white boy searching for his missing father, and Jack, a handsome Black pastor who loves nightclub dancing and rides in his sporty car, awakening Annalee’s heart to the surprising highs and lows of romantic love.
With their help, Annalee follows clues that land her among Denver’s powerful elite. But when their sleuthing unravels sinister motives and deep secrets, Annalee confronts the dangerous truths and beliefs that could make her a victim too.
“Do I have a choice?” “A choice? To hear that your son is a crook? Your wife is an adulteress? Your caterer a blackmailer? And your maid takes bribes to stay quiet?”
For fans of Radium Girls and history and WWII buffs, The Girls Who Stepped Out of Line takes you inside the lives and experiences of 15 unknown women heroes from the Greatest Generation, the women who served, fought, struggled, and made things happen during WWII—in and out of uniform, for theirs is a legacy destined to embolden generations of women to come. The Girls Who Stepped Out of Line are the heroes of the Greatest Generation that you hardly ever hear about. These women who did extraordinary things didn’t expect thanks and shied away from medals and recognition. Despite their amazing accomplishments, they’ve gone mostly unheralded and unrewarded. No longer. These are the women of World War II who served, fought, struggled, and made things happen—in and out of uniform. Liane B. Russell fled Austria with nothing and later became a renowned U.S. scientist whose research on the effects of radiation on embryos made a difference to thousands of lives. Gena Turgel was a prisoner who worked in the hospital at Bergen-Belsen and cared for the young Anne Frank, who was dying of typhus. Gena survived and went on to write a memoir and spent her life educating children about the Holocaust. Ida and Louise Cook were British sisters who repeatedly smuggled out jewelry and furs and served as sponsors for refugees, and they also established temporary housing for immigrant families in London. Retired U.S. Army Major General Mari K. Eder wrote this book because she knew their stories needed to be told—and the sooner the better. For theirs is a legacy destined to embolden generations of women to come.
“The Girls Who stepped out of line not only made history, they created the future.”
Learning about all these different women from different nationalities, religions, and walks of life was fascinating and exactly the type of non-fiction book I love. There are huge missing parts of history when it comes to women and how they helped and save the lives of people. I’m loving seeing so many authors focus on the women and the work they did and giving them the proper recognition they deserve while also inspiring the next generation because these stories are finally coming to light.
The author Mari K. Eder put so much into this book trying to get it right and making sure it was still interesting for readers while also telling the truth about what these women did.
Wren hides behind her hoodie at school. But when the handsome, popular Asher notices her, she realizes she might not want to be invisible after all.
Wren Martin plans to hide behind her hoodie and keep a low profile to finish her time at Eastview High. However, when she gets a new babysitting job, it turns out she’s looking after Asher Reed’s sister. Asher is handsome, popular, practically the king of the school. But soon he’s turning his attention to her. He wants to spend more time with Wren, and soon the two are growing close. Unfortunately, Asher’s popular friends despise Wren, and his current girlfriend starts making threats. Before, all Wren wanted to be was invisible, but now all she wants is to be with Asher.
The Hoodie Girl is told from two perspectives: Asher and Wren. Asher is the athletic one, who is popular. While Wren is the quiet one that tends to stick to her small friend group. That is until Wren ends up babysitting Asher’s little sister, and when Asher becomes injured they all end up spending a lot of time together. Wren and Asher slowly become friends and their friend groups start interacting together. They both end up helping each other deal with things going on in their lives.