So unlike the last set of these I am not going to include all the books I read during these month because yikes, that was a lot. I chose some of the ones I wanted to talk about and asked on Bookstagram if there were any books people wanted to see my reviews for. Somehow I still ended up with 13 books I wanted to talk about.
If you are interested my other mini reviews are linked at the bottom.
Vengeful by V.E. Schwab:
This is the review I posted to Goodreads when I finished the book: Unfortunately I did not love this one like I loved Vicious. I liked the new characters, but the addition of them with the original characters felt like too many. Plus with the super short chapters, I found it so hard to connect to the characters. I had no desire to pick this up and read it in tiny chunks. I did really like the last 100 pages, but I almost wish I had just stopped with Vicious. Schwab’s writing is phenomenal. I have no idea how she keeps everything straight in this series, but it is told beautifully and that is the reason why I kept going.
I still stand by what I said, but I just feel let down by this one. This is because I adored Vicious, it is one of my favorite books of the year and my favorite Schwab book. I originally gave this 3.5/5 stars, but I think I have to lower it to 3/5 stars. I have no idea if I am going to continue with the series.
A Marriage For One by Ella Maise:
This is a solid hate to love romance. It also features the marriage of connivence trope. I really enjoyed my time reading this novel and the chemistry between the main characters is intense. My only complaint is the reason why the characters end up getting married seems a little problematic to me and the guy is a little ~too~ angsty and broody at times. But, wow the slow burn in this one is great. 4/5 stars
Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston:
This novel literally sounds like it was written for me. A political rom-com with a plethora of nerdy references? Sign me up!! This book has been all over the place and surrounded in hype. The hype is well deserved. This book weaves together a beautiful hate to love romance while still discussing very real and relevant political issues. I was not aware that we would get to see a presidential election which are my jam (I literally wanted to run political campaigns at one point in my life). Alex Claremont-Diaz is one of my new favorite characters and I relate to him a bit too much. I am currently wearing the “History, Huh?” shirt that Casey was selling. But, the ending of this book was not perfect, I was happy with how everything ended, but I thought the ending did not go as in-depth into either the politics or the romance for me to be entirely happy. This is still a superior book and I can’t wait to reread it. 5/5 stars.
Ayesha At Last by Uzma Jalaluddin:
I really enjoyed this one! It follows Pride & Prejudice enough for my liking, but has enough uniqueness to stand on its own.
I loved seeing the different POVs from the characters. Seeing inside Khalid’s head and witnessing his journey was my favorite part. Hafsa (the Lydia in the story) was perhaps even more annoying then Lydia in the book, but her ending is much more satisfying. I enjoyed Ayesha, but felt her storyline was a little less developed than some of the other characters. I loved her and Khalid together though, they are so cute.
I loved the addition of the grandparents and Clara and Ayesha’s brother too. All the side characters were excellent, but again maybe muddled Ayesha’s storyline a bit. The drama at the end was excellent too. I just had such a fun time reading this. 4/5 stars
*Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review*
Luna & The Lie by Mariana Zapata:
If you have been here for awhile (or even like a month) you know we love MZ’s books. Her romances are some of our favorites. But, despite being a huge MZ fan, I was a bit hesitant to go into this one. I had seen some so-so reviews comparing it to Under Locke, my least favorite by her. It does feel a little bit like Under Locke, but I actually got into the story this time.
I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this. Yes, the age gap is a bit much and Rip gets way to possessive at the end, but I had such a fun time reading this and read it in one sitting. On a plane.
I loved how soft Luna was and how hard she tried to appreciate what she had. She is the true definition of ‘looks like a cinnamon roll, but could kill you’. I loved her and Rip’s interactions, because even though Luna could not see that he cared, the reader could. If you are a romance fan I recommend picking this up, but if you are new to MZ or romance, I recommend starting with a different novel by her. 4/5 stars.
Wilder Girls by Rory Power:
Trigger Warnings on the author’s website: HERE
I’ve been in such a weird reading mood the past few weeks (travel and life) and I think I didn’t love this book as a result. Rory Power’s has beautiful writing and it’s hella descriptive. But, I did not love the gore (I am a wimp okay) and she is a bit too descriptive at times.In the first 15 pages I was traumatized like three times. I also just could not get into the story and was just kind of like “oh” anytime anything happened. This book was not for me and I have seen all sorts of reviews from praising it (see Bree’s review here) to people calling it the most disappointing read of the year. So honestly, it’s a mixed bag. If you are sensitive to gore and the triggers listed, perhaps skip this one. But, many people have loved it so. 3/5 stars
The Rest of the Story by Sarah Dessen
I am pretty sure I have read all of Sarah Dessen’s books. Some of them multiple times. I read my first SD book when I was 15/16 and fell in love with her books and YA Contemporary as a result. Her newer books have been a bit hit or miss with me and I was a bit hesitant to read this one. I really liked parts of this book, but parts of it were annoyingly YA. What I mean by that is as someone who has read a ton of YA contemporary, parts of the book featured tropes we see over and over and over again in books. Not that the presence of these tropes is bad, it’s just that I have read them too many times to be okay with them.
I loved the family dynamic of this and all the different characters. I fell into the story and flew through it. The relationship was not the central focus of the story and I did wish we saw more of it. I loved the beginning of the story, but the second half/ending were not my favorite and felt a little rushed. I enjoyed the idea of making life happen vs letting life happen to you.
I also could relate to Emma Saylor (the whole dual name thing was a little annoying and done better in Just One Day imho) with her anxiety when it comes to driving and her odd sense of humor.
Overall, I had a fun time reading this and enjoyed this way more than SD’s last book. This is a fun summer read and I am glad I picked it up. I will say that it is not super unique, especially compared to her other books, but I still enjoyed it. 3.5/5 stars
This series is becoming one of my all time favorite and these books are definitely going to be on my favorites for 2019. I am so glad I picked these up. I am waiting for book four because then I’ll be caught up with all the books that are published and I don’t want that yet. I am so excited that there are going to be seven books, but I DON’T WANT TO WAIT! I will say books 1 & 3 have been my favorite so far. I am so bad at talking about these books, but if you like historical fiction mystery with a ship that is ALWAYS bantering I highly recommend this series. If you like Stalking Jack the Ripper, this is basically the adult equivalent. My Goodreads Reviews for the two books are below:
A Perilous Undertaking: “This was highly enjoyable, but I enjoyed the first one a bit more. Stoker’s and Veronica’s banter is amazing and honestly this got +.5 solely for the last page and their last conversation. I am loving this series though!!” 4.5/5 stars
A Treacherous Curse : “A DELIGHT” 5/5 stars
If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio
This is a beautiful and complex novel, but it did not pull me in. The mystery ultimately left me unsatisfied. I like character driven novels and could not connect with any of the characters, even though at times I did like them. This is frequently compared to The Secret History by Donna Tartt which now makes me a bit hesitant to pick that one up. If you like Shakespeare and very atmospheric novels you might enjoy this. 3.5/5 stars
The Right Swipe by Aisha Rai
This is a very well written romance novel. It is also objectively a good book, but I had such a hard time connecting to the characters. I am not sure if it is because I kept having to set the book down or because I was not super invested in the plot. I enjoyed the main character’s story arcs, but was not the biggest fan of their relationship and did not see much chemistry. This is also super diverse with most of the characters being POC, a stay at home dad, and a character with agoraphobia. I am sad I did not enjoy this more, but it just did not click with me. I also saw a reviewer who said not to make this your first Alisha Rai book, which this was. 3.5/5 stars
*Thanks to Edelweiss+ & the publisher for an eARC in exchange for an honest review*
Meet Cute by Helen Hunting
I did enjoy reading this, but it did not grip me in the way that I want romance novels to. It was a fun cute time, but honestly two months after reading it (I write my reviews late okay) I don’t remember anything. If you want to read romance, I recommend reading another one, but it wasn’t terrible so I gave it 3/5 stars.
The Bromance Bookclub by Lyssa Kay Adams
I am a bit torn reviewing this. I really LOVED parts of this novel, but it left something to be desired. I was a bit skeptical of the ‘Bromance Book Club’, it sounded odd and weird and I figured I would be more into the characters’ relationship than the club, but wow I was wrong. The men in this club are HILARIOUS. They say everything that women want men to say. I will say it is a bit unrealistic, but this is fiction so I was here for it. You can clearly tell this was written by a woman. My favorite part was when they defend the PSL and comment how society mocks anything women like (oversimplification but you get it). That being said, I did not really care about Gavin and Thea’s relationship. I guess I am not a fan of a married couple trying to make things work. I did like both their characters and was rooting for them, but it wasn’t what kept me invested in the book. It also gets quite steamy at about 60%. I also, enjoyed that we got a glimpse of the romance novel that Gavin is reading. I will read any other books in this series, but pls don’t just give me couples that are trying to save their marriage lol. 3.5/ stars
*Thanks to Edelweiss and the Publishers for an eARC in exchange for an honest review*
Thanks for sticking around and reading!