Another busy month of reading! There was a lot of trash this month (I’ve been reading so much YA, thanks to the podcast and the podcast’s Facebook group – you guys are terrible influences!!!) but also a few good thrillers. I absolutely LOVED Then She Was Gone – it was definitely one of the best thrillers I’ve read in a long time. And I’m so embarrassed by how quickly I devoured Paper Princess (and the two other books from the trilogy). But hey – sometimes you just need a guilty pleasure. Right? Right.
If you’re looking for a book, don’t forget – you can always check out my Book Club Page. I have literally listed every.single.book I’ve read in the past few years…. and you can filter + search by genre (memoir, light read, historical fiction, thriller, etc!) to find exactly what you’re looking for And of course, you can also take a peek at April’s reading list, which was a good one – I read seven books last month!! Also, in case you can’t wait til next month, I always add whatever it is that I’m currently reading to my Amazon Shop as I go… I know it’s nice having everything in one place.
AND! Please comment and tell me what you are reading… your suggestions are my FAVORITE… I shop the comments section of these post – you always have such good recommendations for me, which I really appreciate!
* The Good Liar, by Catherine McKenzie, was a really awesome thriller. Set in Chicago, it’s the story of the aftermath of a giant explosion – and the families of the survivors. There’s Cecily who lost her husband; Kate who fled the scene and is now living far far away; and Franny who lost her birth mother to the explosion. The funny thing is, they’re all very much interconnected and they all have pretty giant secrets. This one kept me on my toes the whole time with twist after twist after twist. I really really loved it. I love those books where you feel that amazing rush/satisfaction of having guessed the twist, only to be shocked and surprised by yet another big twist. This was one of my favorite books from the month.
- Overall Score: A-
* Royals, by Rachel Hawkins, was a light and fun read. I have to be really honest with you with the royal wedding coming up I can’t get enough of ANYTHING royal-themed. We are re-reading The Royal We for our podcast, and this book is super cute and fun. Daisy Winters’ sister Ellie is engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. After constant tabloid attention, her family decides to uproot her for the summer (moving from America to Scotland to be near her sister and hopefully out of the press). If Ellie and Prince Alex are Kate and William, Sebastian (Alex’s charming younger brother) is Harry – wilder and unruly. Daisy is in for a wild ride (along with the Royal Wreckers – Sebastian’s friends). There’s a cute little love story and lots of adventures. This is the sort of book you can read in one or two sittings – it’s a fun read and perfect for the beach.
- Overall Score: B
* Then She Was Gone, by Lisa Jewell is the last thriller I’ve read that I got so obsessed that I truly could not put down. If this doesn’t end up getting a TON of press and/or being turned into a movie, I will be shocked. It’s reminiscent of The Lovely Bones (anyone else read + love that one??) where a beautiful girl (Ellie) disappears. She was the perfect daughter, student, etc. and just disappeared into thin air on her way to the library. The story takes place ten years later (though it also goes back in time) as her mother Laurel tries to piece things together. She ultimately meets the perfect charming man, Floyd… only to meet his daughters – the youngest of which looks JUST like missing Ellie. It’s both incredibly disturbing and addicting; and I could not put it down! It was one of those mysteries where I suspected everyone… and if I wasn’t reading, I was thinking about it! You definitely must read this one.
- Overall Score: A
* People Like Us, by Dana Mele. Okay before I fully dive in I had a big realization here. When it comes to YA reads, I tend to prefer books that are written like an adult is writing them and not like a teenager is. Does that make any sense? When it actually feels like a teen is talking to me, I get annoyed. And while I liked this book (the plot is fantastic), I got really annoyed by it because it felt like a whiny, sullen teenager was talking at me for 375 pages. This gives me mixed emotions. I mean for one, it shows the versatility + talent on the writer’s behalf… but teenagers are kind of annoying. I hope this makes sense. I digress. This is the story of a girl (Kay Donovan) attending Bates Academy (a super exclusive boarding school in New England). Kay comes from humble roots (unlike her peers) and has skeletons in her closet but has managed to become the captain of the soccer team and a part of the popular crowd. Then a dead body shows up in the lake and the dead girl sends her on a computer-coded scavenger hunt where Kay will ultimately isolate all of her friends and implicate herself in the murder. The plot is witty and brilliant; and besides the narrator being a bit annoying (as teenagers can be) I couldn’t put it down. I definitely didn’t guess the ending and there was a really heartbreaking twist at the end.
- Overall Score: B
* Paper Princess, Broken Prince, and Twisted Palace by Erin Watt. Okay we are just going to treat these three books as one. I have so many feelings here. First of all, if you read The Selection and miss that feeling you get when you guiltily hole up for an entire weekend reading what really just is absolutely terrible, drop what you are doing and order these right now. I can’t even write out the plot without feeling bad about myself so we’ll try. Ella Harper is poor and orphaned and supporting herself via stripping until rich Callum Royal shows up – he’s her (deceased) father’s best friend and has been looking for her. He moves her into his mansion, alongside his five sons. At first the 5 sons are terrible to her, but ultimately a romance develops. This book is weird as it’s definitely YA but there’s quite a bit of sex. It’s pure guilty pleasure… totally trashy but also totally addicting.
- Overall Score: C (but you know this going in, so you should still read it if you’re in the mood for something that’s terrible yet addicting!!!)
Disclosure: I received advanced copies of Royals and The Good Liar.
photography by Trent Bailey.