Happy October! This was a pretty good month of reading. I LOVED The Testaments. And American Predator had me TERRIFIED TO GO OUTSIDE (in the best possible way; I couldn’t put it down and still can’t believe it’s true. There was one dud for me (I’m SORRY! I just couldn’t stand Fleishman!) and two advance copies that I am very excited about… the new Christina Lauren and a fun thriller. (Also, don’t forget – we’re reading How Could She!? by Lauren Mechling for the podcast this month – loved that book!)
I’m always looking for great recommendations… tell me what you’ve been reading in the comments! I love, love, love reading through your suggestions!
IF YOU’RE NEW HERE AND ARE LOOKING FOR A BOOK, DON’T FORGET THAT YOU CAN ALWAYS CHECK OUT MY BOOK CLUB PAGE.
Every month I update it with everything I read – it includes every.single.book I’ve read in the past few years. The best part is that you can filter + search by genre (memoir, light read, historical fiction, thriller, etc!) to find exactly what you’re looking for. I always add whatever it is that I’m currently reading in real-time to my Amazon Shop. If you’re feeling like you need even more book recs, check out last month’s list.
The highly anticipated follow up to The Handmaid’s Tale!
The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
I was so excited to read this one. I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say that I read it without having read The Handmaid’s Tale (I watched the show, though!) This book tells the story of three characters. A girl raised within Gillead who decides to become an aunt, a disciplinarian (okay fine it’s Aunt Lydia), and a girl raised outside of Gillead, in Canada. I found it fascinating, particularly because we get so much backstory to Aunt Lydia. Also, I could not put this book down. I tore through it, wanting to know how things end (or don’t) for Gillead. If you love The Handmaid’s Tale, you’ll absolutely love this.
- Overall Score: A
The scariest book I’ve read… because it’s 100% true!
American Predator, by Maureen Callahan
Holy sh*t. This book is absolutely terrifying. If you love true crime, you are going to love this. I am not a huge non-fiction person but when it’s about a serial killer I obviously change my tune. This one is the story of Israel Keyes, the meticulous serial killer who was largely kept out of the media. The whole thing reads crazier than fiction, truly. If it were fiction, I would have criticized it for being too implausible. But it’s real. I couldn’t put it down, but once I finished it, I was just… terrified – even walking to Sweetgreen to get dinner felt scary! If you want to scare yourself (and learn the story of a terrifying serial killer), this is a must-read.
- Overall Score: A
Everyone but me loved it – not impressed!
Fleishman is in Trouble, by Taffy Brodesser-Akner
I really wanted to like this book and I know that not everyone is going to agree with me – you don’t have to – we can all have our own opinions! I saved it for a moment where I’d want something really fun – I had been so excited to read it, as countless friends and readers had recommended it to me. This was just not that book for me! The reasons that I disliked it so much are not that it’s poorly written or lacking in substance. It’s very well written! I personally found it to be incredibly boring (it really dragged!) and also really depressing.
Frankly, it is an ad for never getting married or having children. But mostly, it was just really boring. I found myself constantly falling asleep while reading this; and feeling really depressed at the end. The last 50 pages are pretty good but do not make up for the rest of the book. Please don’t hate me for not liking this book I am just being honest and sharing my POV!
- Overall Score: C-
A few up & coming titles
A word about ARCs (advanced reader copies!) I know it’s annoying when I share too many books that haven’t come out yet so I will always try to have a balance! This month and last month were heavier as we’ve been vetting books for the podcast. That being said, pre-orders make a big difference to authors, so if they sound compelling or you want to support a favorite author, order it early.
Twice in a Blue Moon by Christina Lauren (Out 10/22)
It is no secret that I love everything Christina Lauren writes. They (it’s two authors) just know how to turn my cold heart into mush, and this one is no exception! Tate Jones is the long lost daughter of the biggest movie star in the country. (Think Tom Cruise.) She spends her childhood very sheltered, hidden away from the press. She goes to Europe with her grandmother and falls hard for Sam Brandis, only to have him out her biggest secret to the media. Flash forward 14 years later and Tate is on the verge of becoming a movie star herself. She takes the role of her dreams… only to walk straight into Sam! This is a very cute love story, extremely heartwarming, and answers the question: can a person do the wrong thing for the right reason and be forgiven?
- Overall Score: A-
Good Girls Lie by J.T. Ellison (Out 12/31)
I obviously adore a thriller, but this one is even better as it features rich unsupervised teens at a boarding school and… a secret society! Ash Carlisle leaves England to attend the prestigious Goode School in Virginia. With her, she takes a very dark past and a huge secret… intending to start her life over again. She attempts to make a name for herself and move on from her dark past but has a hard time doing so at the school… darkness seems to follow her everywhere she goes! A terrible suicide takes place… or was it murder? I couldn’t put this one down and think you will feel the same. Becca and I both really enjoyed it which doesn’t usually happen with a thriller. Highly recommend!
- Overall Score: A-
photography by Carter Fish.