July Wrap Up

I feel like I’m finally getting back into the swing of things in regards to my reading. I had a really great reading month in July and I am really happy with what I chose to pick up! We have a mixture of new releases, romance, fantasy and a bit of historical fiction which was an interesting time for sure! I can’t wait to hopefully continue on with this bit of momentum I have and pick up some more good books!

In July I read:

Deathcaster by Cinda Williams Chima – ⭐️5/5 stars

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir – ⭐️4/5 stars

Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert – ⭐️5/5 stars

Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms by Anita Heiss – ⭐️4/5 stars

Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray by Anita Heiss – ⭐️4/5 stars

The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo – ⭐️3/5 stars

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid – ⭐️5/5 stars

The Maidens by Alex Michaelides – ⭐️4/5 stars

Survive the Night by Riley Sager – ⭐️4/5 stars

Windwitch by Susan Dennard – ⭐️4/5 stars

The Project by Courtney Summers – ⭐️3/5 stars

The Ravens by Kass Morgan & Danielle Paige – ⭐️3/5 stars

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Books I read in One Sitting

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is books I read in one sitting. Since I’m a pretty quick reader its quite easy for me to finish a book in one sitting, especially if its under 300 pages, so for today these were the first 10 books that came to mind when I went back through my recent reads.

When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain by Nghi Vo

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager

Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour

The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller

Take a Hint Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert

Winterwood by Shea Ernshaw

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

A Winter’s Promise by Christelle Dabos

I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo

The Chosen and the Beautiful Review

Jordan Baker grows up in the most rarefied circles of 1920s American society—she has money, education, a killer golf handicap, and invitations to some of the most exclusive parties of the Jazz Age. She’s also queer, Asian, adopted, and treated as an exotic attraction by her peers, while the most important doors remain closed to her. But the world is full of wonders: infernal pacts and dazzling illusions, lost ghosts and elemental mysteries. In all paper is fire, and Jordan can burn the cut paper heart out of a man. She just has to learn how.

I honestly didn’t realise this was a Great Gatsby retelling. I have read Nghi Vo’s novella’s and when I seen she had a new full length novel I knew I had to read it without even researching anything about it. Unfortunately the plot of the Great Gatsby just doesn’t really interest me all that much. I can appreciate how beloved the book is and how much of a classic it has now become, but it just doesn’t do anything for me personally.

I liked Jordan’s character. She has this carelessness and frivolity about her that is engaging. She is very frank and at times callous with her words which was entertaining and refreshing in the midst of the plot and the very proper way people spoke to each other back in the 20’s. Even though she is very much apart of the upper echelon of the wealthy she does still at times feels different and ostracised because of her appearance and ethnicity which added that layer of depth and realness to the plot.

The twist with the magic and powers that Jordan has was interesting. At first I didn’t quite understand what was happening and whether or not what she could do was real or if she was hallucinating it or something. I would of appreciated if we could of learnt more about how these paper cut-outs work and what brings them to life and how it differs from what Khai is able to do. That whole plotline just somehow felt unfinished and I was left wanting to know more about it.

Nghi Vo’s prose is beautifully descriptive and lyrical. There is this fantastical element to her writing that mixes so well with a realistic setting. That alone really was able to carry me through this book and allow me to finish it in one sitting. Historical fiction isn’t my chosen genre at all and it kind of bores me but those added whimsical touches to the plot perked the story up for sure!

⭐️3/5 stars This was beautifully written, just didn’t dazzle me.

My Ten Most Recent Reads

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is my ten most recent books I have read and my thoughts on each book!

The Girl and the Stars by Mark Lawrence – Underwhelming unfortunately

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong –  Just ok, will definitely be continuing on

Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas – This was strange

When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain by Nghi Vo I was invested, definitely unlike anything I’ve read before

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig – Poignant, relevant & impactful

Across the Green Grass Fields by Seanan McGuire I really enjoyed this

Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire – the series is slowly getting better as I read through

Well Played by Jen DeLuca was an enjoyable, romantic, fun read

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin – lived up to the hype

In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire – Just an ok one for me

Animals from Books

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is animals from books. I have decided to just go back through all the books I’ve read from the last year and list the first 10 books that have an animal that is featured/mentioned in the plot that I can remember!

The Girl and the Stars by Mark Lawrence

When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain by Nghi Vo

The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Across the Green Grass Fields by Seanan McGuire

Flamecaster by Cinda Williams Chima

Lightbringer by Claire Legrand

The Deep by Rivers Solomon

Hollowpox by Jessica Townsend

Night Film by Marisha Pessl

Burn by Patrick Ness