Four Month Wrap Up *whoopsies*: July Edition


G’day friends. I’m back for the third day in a row in order to wrap up the last four months. Today, I will be talking briefly about the books I read in the month of July. Read part one and two of this four month wrap up if you haven’t already!

I hope you are all wonderful! Let me know what you’re reading in the comments below.

July was the month in which I read so much more books than I anticipated…because I got a free trial for kindle unlimited and wanted to read as many books that I could before it ended! it was also the month i discovered Mariana Zapata. It was a great fucking month.


The month began with the finishing of The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow. Now, I did enjoy this book. I thought the writing was fantastic and the story itself was incredibly unique and refreshing. I found it to be an honestly beautiful book. But. I found it slightly problematic that a white author wrote a biracial MC in which racism was an overarching and fundamental theme to the overall story that explored colonialisation, class and racism – albeit in a sort-of fantasy-esque setting.

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4 stars.


I read one of my most anticipated reads of the year (even though I just personally discovered this author last month) which was Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. How fantastically horrific and creepy this book was. If you want to read my full thoughts, check out my goodreads review here. I loved this book so much and i think Moreno-Garcia is a powerhouse author that people need to be on the lookout for.

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4.5 stars.


I have been attempting to read as many books on my physical tbr this year, and finishing off the Thunder Road series by Katie McGarry was on my list – specifically, the last book in the series.

I decided to re-read Walk the Edge (book 2), which I remembered was my favourite of the series at the time in order to get ready for reading the last book in the series, Long Way Home. Walk the Edge was not as fantastic as I remembered it, so my rating went down from a 5 star to a 4 star. I still enjoyed it, but my patience for the characters’ decisions just did not exist. Long Way Home was the last book in the series which I had not read. It wasn’t great – Violet saved the story for me and was the reason why I continued the series. I also gave this 4 stars only because I used to love this series.


I then read my first two Mariana Zapata books, The Wall of Winnipeg and Me and Wait for It. I FUCKING LOVED THE WALL OF WINNIPEG AND ME. It had everything I wanted in a contemporary romance. And the slow build was actual perfection. I gave it 4.5 stars. Wait for It was great and I had so much fun reading it! 4 stars.

Another two Mariana Zapata books was read. I freaking love Mariana Zapata. From Lukov with Love and Dear Aaron. I didn’t really enjoy Dear Aaron much. Yes it was cute. But there wasn’t as much tension between the two characters that I typically love from Zapata. I gave it 3 stars. But From Lukov With Love was so freaking beautiful!!!! It brought me so much joy and cuteness!!!! 4.5 stars.

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To break up my Mariana Zapata obsession of July, I read Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami. This book was actually read as part of the ‘my brother chose my book’ series that I do. Be on the lookout for that post coming soon! This was my first Murakami book and I did enjoy it. It was melancholic and dark, and found the explorations of death, life, light and darkness to be incredibly interesting. I just did not enjoy the way Murakami wrote the women in this story – they were so overtly sexualised.

3.5 stars.

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Another anticipated read was The Henna Wars by Adiba Jaigirdar. What an incredible book. This book effected me more than I anticipated. The setting of the all girls catholic school and the toxic girl on girl bullying was slightly triggering for me that I found it uncomfortable to read – which very rarely happens to me. The writing was immersive and engaging. The characters fantastic. It was absolutely brilliant.

5 stars.


I decided to start reading Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust because the story sounded cute and the cover was absolutely gorgeous. This was a solid and unique fantasy.

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Though I found it to be slightly boring for 70% of the story with the main character being incredibly mediocre. I thought the side characters were so much more interesting and wanted more of them. The last 60-80 pages were the ‘best’ aspect of this book because the plot actually moved forward toward some sort of purpose. The romance was the reason why I continued reading this book because it was adorable and wholesome.

4 stars.


Here comes three more Mariana Zapata books. I was able to read Hands Down (4.5 stars), Under Locke (4 stars), and Luna and the Lie (3.5 stars). Nothing much to say other than Mariana Zapata is the absolute queen of writing slow burn.


As you all know, I love to read Christine Feehan. Not all of her books (the Dark Carpathian series is cursed and I refuse to continue reading that series), but I am a fan of her books. That’s not to say though that I don’t criticise her writing, because I do.

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Desolation Road was one of my most anticipated books of the year because I was hoping that Absinthe’s story would be heavy on the ‘wow’ as his character has one of the most interesting ‘powers’ in the overall Torpedo Ink series. This was just so lacklustre. Honestly, these characters don’t need a romantic relationship, they need extensive therapy.

2.5 stars.


I needed something wholesome after the clusterfuck that was Desolation Road so I read You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson. What an adorable fucking book. I loved the characters, the story but especially the family relationships. That was just too pure for my soul.

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4 stars.


This year gave me the honour of discovering TJ Klune’s writing. As a result, I was able to get my hands on Wolfsong, book one of the Green Creek series. Gay werewolves…do I need to say more?

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The writing is actually some of the most lyrically stunning writing I have written in contemporary writing. I cried four times. I gave it 4 stars because the pacing was off but it was beautiful.


I then finally read DEVIATE by Jay Kristoff. I don’t know why but I am just not into this series. I love Jay Kristoff with all of my heart, but I just have not been able to fully enjoy the LIFELIKE series at all.

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DEVIATE was mediocre at best. I really don’t enjoy Eve’s character as well as Elijah. I was bored SO BORED reading this book. Lemon Fresh and Cricket are the only reasons why I actually finished this book and didn’t DNF it.


One of the best books of 2020. There I said it. The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett was absolutely fantastic and so freaking important. This book was painful, wonderful, heartbreaking, heartwarming and just so fantastically written.

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Check out my friend Bess’ review on her instagram – it’s exactly what I think and she articulated it so much better than I ever could.

4.5 stars.


The Best Thing was my last Mariana Zapata book I read in July. The ending of this book destroyed me. I think that though this book would have to have the best supporting cast of characters out of all of Zapata’s books, i did find myself slightly bored in the middle of it.

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I think it might have been a pacing issue? As well as me not fully loving the character Lenny – her grandpa Gus though and peter? ICONIC. It was a great story though and Jonah, the male romance interest, was one of the sweetest and most adorable men in romance I’ve read.

4. stars.

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At this point in the month, I realised that I had not read a classic. So I picked up The Professor by Charlotte Bronte.

This book was Charlotte Bronte’s first novel and was published posthumously in 1857. I read this as an audiobook and I was pleasantly surprised. The writing was stunning and the story was great. Not my favourite, but I definitely recommend it if you are wanting a short Bronte read!

4. stars.


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I then read one of the most ridiculous romance novels that was actually a novella but was not advertised as such. Harris by Jasinda Wilder is book one in the **Alpha One Security ****and it was shit. Don’t waste your time even attempting to read this.

There was next to no plot. The character Layla was an idiot as well as Harris. Let me just quickly talk about something that annoyed me: SPOILER WARNING:

Harris – after Layla came to his office to use sex to get her way – tied her up whilst doing the sex to then turn it around and make Layla promise not to involve herself in the operation. Layla then felt ‘betrayed’ because he used sex to manipulate her when that was EXACTLY WHAT SHE WAS PLANNING ON DOING?

Make it make sense.

Then, Layla to get ‘revenge’ on her not consenting to being tied up in the first place (which yes, valid) she ROOFIED HARRIS in order to tie him up.

She DRUGGED him. What in the actual fuck.

The sex scenes were okay, not the best or most erotic I’ve read. I think the characters were so incredibly bland that I just didn’t care.

Definitely not continuing this series.

2 stars.


I then read Ravensong by TJ Klune which is book two of the Green Creek series and it was fucking perfection. Klune writes the best found families.

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5 stars.


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Finally! The last book of July was The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins. I did not enjoy this as much as I wanted to. It was a solid read but I kind of found it to be boring. I cannot really pinpoint what exactly about it I did not enjoy. The last 150 pages were good but the previous 300 were boring to me.

3 stars.


Why does it feel like I wrote a full on essay?!

In total, I read 24 books in the month of July which comes to around 10,238 pages . Though, one of those books was a novella so 23.5 books?

They were:

  • two adult fiction
  • six young adult
  • two classics
  • twelve romance novels (in varying genres)
  • two literary fiction

I gave:

  • two 5 star books
  • five 4.5 star books
  • ten 4 star books
  • two 3.5 star books
  • four 3 star books
  • one 2 star book

A really freaking fantastic reading month, if I do say so myself.

Also, if there are any books in particular you would like a full length review for, let me know please!

The last part of this four month wrap up will be posted tomorrow, so please check that out if you can.

I also announced a flash giveaway over on my twitter, so make sure you check that out.

Until then, happy reading!

All the love,

allie

xx


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