July Recap | 2019

Another good reading month for me! I finished six books, which I really enjoyed.

We Sold Our Souls by Grady Hendrix – June 27th – July 3rd
★★★★☆

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid – July 4th – 5th
★★★★☆

Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand – July 5th – 6th
★★★★☆

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart – July 24th – 26th
★★★★☆

No Exit by Taylor Adams – July 27th
★★★★☆

Dress Codes for Small Towns by Courtney Stevens – July 28th – 30th
★★★★★

And here’s the books I’d like to get to in August!

Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence
The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager
Dry by Neal & Jarrod Shusterman
My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides | Book Review

★★★★☆
June 11th – 12th

After reading this book, the cover says a lot more than I thought it did. Looking at it now, it’s very clearly the back of the painting, torn at the mouth of the person painted. When I originally looked at this cover, I was not a fan of it. It’s somewhat bland, and the red font struck me as far too dramatic and very typical thriller. Yet the book kept hitting list after list of thrillers to read in 2019.

And now I see why. The Silent Patient feels dreamy. The quick chapters bring you from one scene to the next without digestion or anything in between. You’re left wondering if Alicia did kill her husband, and more importantly, why.

I’ve found that there are three types of thrillers. There are thrillers that you expect coming from a mile away, the twists feeling more like my daily commute to work than a journey. These thrillers usually feel somewhat lackluster. There are the thrillers that totally surprise you, but these are few and far between. And then there’s the third type, which you can see coming, but it’s murky, not entirely clear. You can see the pieces and how they fit together, but it’s actually satisfying when they come together and make the image you were expecting.

The Silent Patient was this type of thriller. Though the twist did not come out of nowhere, it was a well written and slow burn. I really enjoyed it, and I think that it deserves its place on the many lists it’s made it onto.

-Siobhan

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren | Book Review

★★★☆☆
June 10th – 11th

In an attempt to widen the genres of books I’m reading, I decided to try and get on the Christina Lauren bandwagon. I had seen several good reviews of this book, and the plot sounded like the type of thing I might enjoy if it were made into a movie, so I decided to give it a go.

Having just finished a darker fantasy novel, I was really surprised by how different it felt reading this. It’s been a long time since I’ve read a contemporary, and I wasn’t accustomed to the pop culture references, technology use, and slang. I’m not saying this is a bad thing, it just felt more jarring than I was expecting.

That being said, I wasn’t a huge fan of the story. Olive is perpetually unlucky, and her twin sister Ami is. When Ami’s wedding goes horribly wrong, Olive and her nemesis Ethan (her sister’s new husband’s brother… say that 5 times fast) must take their honeymoon.

The concept is interesting. This is a hate-to-love romance, but it was decidedly lacking in hate. I was expecting Olive to be dripping in contempt for Ethan. I was expecting them to actually hate each other, and to be honest, they didn’t. Their whole “hate” relationship was built off of a misunderstanding.

This was a quick read. I finished the book in just a few hours. I think I would recommend this to people who enjoy reading in this genre, but it doesn’t feel like it’s for me.

-Siobhan

Grey Sister by Mark Lawrence | Book Review

★★★★☆
April 2nd – June 10th

I went into Grey Sister with pretty high expectations. Red Sister was such an unexpected favorite that I expected to jump into Grey Sister similarly and get lost in the continuation of this plot.

Grey Sister turned out to be much more of a slow burn than the first book, and because of that I had trouble getting into it. I ended up putting the book down for most of April and May, picking it back up about a week into June. When reading ahead, keep in mind that this is the second book in the series, so there may be spoilers for both books.

Following the events at the end of Red Sister, we continue with Nona three years later. She’s older, in a different class at Sweet Mercy, and has brought with her a demon named Keot who lives beneath her skin.

This book felt much more like the middle book in a series. The events moved slowly, setting up a grander picture to be wrapped up (hopefully) in the third and final book. I definitely enjoyed this. There was a good mix of politics (more than in the first book) with the role of the inquisition and Abbess Glass’s trial, and action (less than in the first book) with Kettle, Nona and Zole fighting through the hiding place of the Noi Guin.

The last 100 pages I was totally enamored, as everyone collected into one place for the climax of the book. I’m hoping that the third book in the series is paced more closely to the first book, but I’m excited to see the conclusion of the trilogy.

-Siobhan

June Recap | 2019

A bit more than halfway through the year! Last week was the first week that I didn’t post a review (besides recaps) and that was to announce The Shakespeare Project! I’m super excited about this and can’t wait to dive into the plays.

This month I finished six books and one short story, which were rated as follows.

Grey Sister by Mark Lawrence – April 2nd – June 10th
★★★★☆

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren – June 10th – 11th
★★★☆☆

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides – June 11th – 12th
★★★★☆

Normal People by Sally Rooney – June 18th – 19th
★★★★☆

Bound by Mark Lawrence – June 20th – 21st
★★★☆☆

Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado – June 21st – 23rd
★★★☆☆

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo – June 24th – 26th
★★★★☆

This is my tentative list of books to get to in July, some of which have changed up a bit!

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Middlegame by Seanan McGuire
Dry by Neal & Jarrod Shusterman
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

-Siobhan