Hello readers! August is finally over. It has been a rough month for me, not for reading, but in general. COVID hit my family pretty hard this month, but we are all back and out of quarantine. Everyone in my house got COVID except me. I was so sure I would get it and I didn’t, thankfully!
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I started this month off with the 3rd book in the Beachfront Bakery series. This is a cozy mystery series about a girl who opens a new bakery after ending a long relationship and job.
I am really enjoying making my way through this series. I think the plot was a little TOO similar to the 2nd book. HOWEVER, I still overall enjoyed it and I’m ready to see this love triangle pan out!
In Local Woman Missing, we have 2 timelines. One is leading up to a woman going missing named Shelby, and another woman disappearing named Merideth along with her 6 year old named Delilah.
In the 2nd timeline, we follow Delilah when she is 17 when she escapes from being captured. We have to find out why these two women went missing and if they are connected. In the current timeline, we follow Delilah’s brother through the weird time after her return.
I was truly shocked by this one. I haven’t read from Kubica before, but I really think she could be a favorite author of mine one day. She did an amazing job of giving a ton of different people motives for the crimes that were committed here and I loved it! As the book went on, I kept changing my mind on WHO did it and I didn’t guess right.
I’m coming to realize I really love the thriller format where there are at least 3 POVs and at least one POV is in a different timeline. Most of Lisa Jewell’s books are like that and I really love that format.
Speaking of Lisa Jewell, I read Watching You this month. I have been wanting to get to this book for MONTHS and ended up DNFing it. This is the first Lisa Jewell book I didn’t love.
I think it may have just been me? I had a really hard time distinguishing characters from one another and I just was bored for most of the book. I don’t want to be in the POV of a creepy dude who watches people from his window. It’s so weird. However, I am excited to try other books by Jewell! I think this will be the only one I don’t love.
⭐⭐⭐⭐ (for both)
A Sprinkle of Spirits and A Mixture of Magic are the last two books in the Love Sugar Magic series. This series is about a girl named Leo, who finds out her entire family are brujas, which are a type of witch. In the first book, she cooks up a love potion for this boy at school, who her best friend really likes, and it ends up going VERY wrong for them.
I’m SOOO happy I finished this series. I have been neglecting series in 2021. If you like stories of magic, kitchen witches, family and friendship, this is the perfect middle grade series for you! Honestly, the books in this series remind me of episodes of a Disney show and I really enjoyed that.
Mexican Gothic is about a girl named Noemi, who is tasked by her father to check on her recently betrothed cousin. The cousin keeps sending really odd letters to them, and the family is worried about her.
I wouldn’t call this book a horror, and it isn’t scary at all. It’s more of a speculative or even paranormal historical fantasy. I just didn’t like this book. Maybe if you like speculative fantasy, you might like this book.
It just had a trope that I absolutely hate and I don’t know if it’s thought of as a spoiler, so I won’t say it.
I wish we got more about this creepy house she was in. Most of her experience with this weird magic was oddly sexual. I thought the issues she was having could have been solved by her leaving the damn house and finding HELP. She should have done that day ONE. This family was weird, the whole thing was just weird, and I don’t really like weird books.
I picked this one up hoping to get some of the horror I so desperately craved in Mexican Goth. HOWEVER, this is another book pitched as horror that isn’t a horror novel.
The Hole is about a man who wakes up in the hospital after a horrible car accident that killed his wife and left him basically quadriplegic and without the ability to speak.
When he finally goes home, his mother-in-law is tasked with taking care of him and is harboring a lot of secrets and seems to be attempting to hinder his recovery.
I didn’t love the ending of this one. This is just another book that is kind of weird and ambiguous, even in the ending. I am just not great at taking guesses as to what things mean, but I think I understood this one. Not much happens in this book and it’s essentially plotless, but I still enjoyed it somehow.
All Systems Red is the first book in a series called Murderbot Diaries. We are following a hacked, genderless cyborg named Murderbot. They love movies and normal human things, and they aren’t supposed to.
I just love when I love books in genres I don’t like. Sure, this one has a scifi setting, but is generally about a cyborg who wants to be their self and can’t.
I received an ARC of Battle Royal on Netgalley.
Battle Royal is about Sylvie, who is a baker and Dominic, who is a baking judge. He votes her off his show early in the book. Later on, they are competing to make a wedding cake for Princess Rose.
I really loved this book. Not only is this a foodie rivals to lovers romance, but it was really funny. I would LOVE to see this as a movie. It would be the perfect ROM-COM.
I love watching cooking/baking shows and I saw a lot of those judges in Dominic. For some reason, he reminded me of Paul Hollywood, but a little bit snarkier like Gordon Ramsay. He was just an overall hilarious character.
I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter is about a girl whose sister has just been killed. Her sister was seemingly the perfect person. Olga never went out and partied and only focused on her family, her job, and college.
However, Julia (pronoucned Hulia) is nothing like Olga. She is selfish, angry, mean, and just wants to be accepted as she is. Julia is one of the most realistic teen characters I’ve ever seen in a book.
She is absolutely unlikeable and a bit self-centered, but what teen isn’t? Her family has this idea of how she should be and act and she just isn’t that way. As a person who is always the odd one in groups, I feel for her.
On the negative side. I don’t think this book should be in the hands of young teens. There are a ton of DARK themes including depression, rape and some others. I also think the parents could’ve just been better. They are the least understanding people and just remind me of the type of people who shouldn’t have kids. They expect their kids to try to be their friends and to sacrifice for them. Sure, you can be friendly with your kid, but you are their PARENT, not their damn friend.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ & ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I have a lot of feelings about these two books. I really didn’t love The Final Empire, so going into Well of Ascension, I didn’t know what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised to love it! I just think the characters were better AND the interactions between them were better. There wasn’t a character that I didn’t like, or at least found interesting to follow.
However, I made it to The Hero of Ages and didn’t love it as much. Everything I was interested in the most was in the background of the story. I really loved the first 100 pages and the last 150 pages, but all the stuff in the middle was just okay.
All 3 of the Mistborn era 1 books have such amazing endings that I haven’t seen done often or much of anywhere else. They are always unexpected in a good way, but the more you think about the end, the more you can see he was hinting all along! Overall, I think Mistborn is a really good series and would recommend it to other people, but it still is nowhere near my favorite Sanderson book/s.
⭐⭐⭐⭐ (for both)
So, this series a romance, retelling of popular Disney tales where the love interest is the villain in the original story. The first one centers around Jasmine and Jafar. Jasmine makes a deal with Jafar to take her far away from her father, once he has sold her to Aladdin.
Book 2 is Meg, Hades, and Hercules. It does specifically say that Hades and Hercules are not related in this version of the story, because I was sure wondering before getting into it.
I wish book one were longer. We are a good portion through the story when it begins. I wish we could’ve seen it farther back from before she is sold to Aladdin and has to flee her own home she has been kept captive in.
I was about half way through this book, ready to be done with it because there isn’t really any romance. I’m ACE, so it’s difficult for me to be sold on relationships without any romance. However, the more I read, the more I realized they care about one another. They just don’t show it in conventional ways.
It’s not like I haven’t read smut before, but this one was different. I am kind of intrigued to see what happens with the characters in the other books. AND, if you like smut and don’t care about the romance, I would highly recommend this one!
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