Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Books I read in May & June (and whether or not you should read them)

April was super light on the book front, so I committed to making sure May wasn't like that. What I didn't realize is just how quickly I was going to breeze through books in May & June. Like, to the tune of, I finished several of these in a day. I thought about cutting my May books out from this post, but I figured I'm always looking for a new read, maybe you are too. Maybe you'd like to know you're getting into something worth reading...

So, here goes. Books I read in May & June & whether or not you should read them & linking up in the process to share.

Life According to Steph






Rescue - Anita Shreve : 2 stars
I have a hard time giving this book the same # of stars as Exposure to a Billionaire. But, I was disappointed. The synopsis promised intrigue & a little mystery & I didn't feel like I got any of that. It was all very predictable. I couldn't quite picture any of the characters. I tore through this book in 2 days thinking it was just on the cusp of getting exciting. Only to never get to the exciting part. Meh.






Exposure to a Billionaire - Anne Menke : 2 stars
You can read my review here. This is a fluffy read. I wouldn't bother buying it. The characters are not well developed & the travel aspect that I was excited about is very down played.

I can't talk about this book anymore - or my head will explode.
| END REVIEW |
 The Wish List - Jane Costello : 3 stars
I picked this up from Half Price Books to read on my plane ride to Europe. I didn't realize it was set in the UK, which always means some difference in words & writing style.

"Emma and her friends are about to turn thirty, and for Emma it's a defining moment. Defined, that is, by her having achieved none of the things she'd imagined she would.
Her career is all wrong, her love life is a desert and that penthouse apartment she pictured herself in simply never materialised. Moreover, she's never jumped out of a plane, hasn't met the man she's going to marry, has never slept under the stars, or snogged anyone famous - just some of the aspirations on a list she and her friends compiled fifteen years ago."

This was pretty predictable. A light beach read, but not a lot happened. 
 



Necessary Lies - Diane Chamberlain : 5 stars
5 stars is quite a promise, and I know that. I wavered on giving this book 4 stars, but thought it was much better than some of the other 4 star books, so I went rogue & gave it 5.
This book comes full circle. You get a little piece of information right at the beginning of the book, but you don't know how it's relevant until the end.

It's set in rural North Carolina in a time when women didn't work, sterilization was state mandated & racial tensions were high.




Family Pictures - Jane Green : 3 stars 
2 women's lives intersect when a shocking secret is revealed.

I enjoyed this book, but wish the author had been able to surprise me. I figured out the 'shocking secret' a chapter or two before it was revealed. And the ending seemed a little too tidy. Not a bad read, I breezed through it fairly quickly.




Maybe in Another Life - Taylor Jenkins Reid : 4 stars
I saw this book on a post Amanda did & knew I wanted to read it. Maybe in another life follows Hannah through 2 different story lines. Ever wonder what life would be like if you had made different choices? This follows 2 parallel story lines exploring what happens to Hannah when her road splits after she makes a choice. It was an easy read & it's something I've always pondered. It's still fairly light. But I would definitely recommend.


The Silent Sister - Diane Chamberlain : 4 stars
This is another one I read after I saw it on Amanda's blog. It follows Riley MacPherson who thought all along her sister committed suicide, only to find out years later that may not be the truth.
I found the ending a bit predictable for the story line that was created, but the how's & why's were not details I saw coming.

Definitely worth a read. It's a good mystery, but one that won't prevent you from sleeping at night.









In a Dark Dark Wood - Ruth Ware : 3.5 stars
At the risk of beating a dead horse (or something like that) I think I saw this on Amanda's blog. The story is told in bits & pieces as you flash back & forth between the present & the past.

I thought the book tied everything together a bit too neatly. And I spent the whole book waiting to find out a secret, that when I did find out, I thought was a bit underwhelming.

That being said, I was up until 1240AM finishing this one night.







Vinegar Girl - Anne Tyler : 2 stars*
I wanted to like this book, I really did. Kate's father cooks up a crazy plan to keep his research assistant in the country. I deduced it would be to marry Kate (& I was right)...but for such a crazy plan, the book seemed to reach the conclusion pretty quickly.

I didn't connect with any of the characters & I thought the book skimmed over a lot of issues where there was room for explanation.

Unfortunately this fell super flat for me & I was glad to finish. Even if it was my only in-flight entertainment since I left my iPod at home on accident.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.








Put a Ring on It - Beth Kendrick : 4 stars
First off, keep in mind, I gave this 4 stars as a light, fun, beach read. NOT a literary value, add it to your book club list, book.

Also, no shame in my game...I snagged this one from the library because I liked the cover...yes I pick my books like I pick my wine. #Whaddup

I enjoyed this, I breezed through it in 2 hours or so, it was light, it was fun. There's a good looking main character & a happy ending. What's not to love?




What's the best book you've read recently?
Any thing from here getting added to your reading list?
Are you a fan of these types of posts?

31 comments:

  1. haha - I so laughed about your head would explode talking about that horrid book.
    OK - I've wrote down 2 books here I'm adding to my must pick up list.
    I totally didnt know today was the link up - I was wanting to join in - DANG IT!

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    1. Haha, late on the responding, so I hope you manage to link up in time!

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  2. Maybe in Another Life sounds like a really interesting concept. I'm going to see if I can get that one from the library. And I pick my wine by the label too :) Cute animals are always a plus.

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    1. I just found out she has other books, obviously different concepts, but I put them on hold at the library since I enjoyed this one.

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  3. I had not heard of any of this books before! I'll have to check out Another Life, that one sounds interesting.

    I just finished Mary Roach Gulp, and it was a really fascinating read! Also reading Jen Miller's Running, A Love Story. So far it is pretty good!

    thanks for the recommendations!

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    1. Maybe in Another Life was good especially because I think we all play the what if game sometimes, interesting to see how it played out in the book.

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  4. I can't talk about this book anymore - or my head will explode. <<< I totally just put a warning note on that book in our library's online catalogue so I don't accidentally order it in to read one day :P

    I love Diane Chamberlain's books so Necessary Lies needs to go on my to-read list!

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    1. Haha good for you! Unanimously everyone in the book club that read it agreed it was bad.

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  5. Thanks for the reviews! The cabin I stayed at had books to read, and I started a book there and liked it. When I got home I bought the ebook & only after downloading it did I realize it was #10 in a series. Doh!

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    1. OMG that's totally something I would do. I wonder if you really missed that much if you didn't notice right away it was a series. Maybe there isn't much of a connection.

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  6. put a ring on it sounds cute! i like fun fluffy books sometimes, no shame in my game. i also totally pick books up because of their covers, also no shame. necessary lies is on my list, so i'm glad you loved it. also, yes, i totalyl agree. i don't even want to think about exposure to a billionaire anymore, let alone talk about it.

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    1. I love fluffy books as a way to break up the work day. I think enough at work, I just want to read on my lunch break & turn off my thinking cap. Fluffy reads are a great way to do that. Same with having something to read before bed.

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  7. I reviewed TJR's book today as well. I just love her.

    As far as Exposure to a Billionaire. I've tried to keep my thoughts about it to myself because I personally know the author but let's just say I agree with all that's been said. And more.

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    1. That's a tough spot to be in, like I noted in my original review, it's hard to hate too much, 'cause it's not like I've ever written a book.

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  8. Sometimes you really just need a good and light read, and Put A Ring on it sounds so cute! I like to pick out my books based off of covers sometimes too! No shame! I currently have Necessary Lives on my TBR list, and it sounds like I need to read it sooner rather than later. I also really like the sound of The Silent Sister! I'm always down for a good mystery!

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    1. It's usually what I do when I go to the library versus putting books on hold, just pick up something that looks good & as long as the synopsis doesn't suck, I'm game.

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  9. Necessary Lies is on my to read list. I also picked up a paperback copy of In a DDW for $2 to read on the beach.

    No desire to read Exposure to a Billionaire.

    I like Shreve and Tyler, sorry their books crapped out for you! I don't think I've read either of those and now I'm not really inclined to.

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    1. Definitely a bummer about those two authors, because I had heard good things about them in general. So I was a little surprised to not enjoy these books.

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  10. No shame in choosing a book by its cover. I do it too and read some great books because of it. And a few turkeys too. :) Maybe in Another Life, Necessary Lies and In a Dark,Dark Wood are already on my TBR. Adding Necessary Lies to my TBR.

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  11. Necessary Lies is officially added to my TBR!

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  12. I guess I'm the only one who didn't like Maybe in Another Life. I like the idea - I've always loved the movie Sliding Doors - But though it could have been done so much better. It irritated me how often her high bun and love of cinnamon rolls was mentioned. That's her thing, I GET IT, but now can we talk about something else?

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  13. The Silent Sister sounds good and In a Dark, Dark Wood is already on my TBR list :)

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  14. i've read so many amazing books lately - the cartel, all the light we cannot see, unbroken, the power of the dog, a lucky child...so many!

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  15. I haven't had much luck with the recent Shakespeare Project books. I tried to read Shylock is my Name and didn't get very far. I've been avoiding Vinegar Girl for that reason.

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  16. Loved Maybe in Another Life.
    I've heard good things about Diane Chamberlain but haven't tried one of her books yet.

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  17. Maybe in Another Life is next on my list now that I really liked One True Loves. I really like Diane Chamberlain too (The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes is my favorite if you haven't read that one). I haven't read the two you read yet, but I want to soon!

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  18. I have no problem giving lots of stars to fluffy books (and I was also drawn to the cover of Put a Ring on It). I can't wait to read some Taylor Jenkins Reid. At first I was annoyed by Family Pictures because the secret was so obvious and then was revealed so early anyway, but then I came to like it for relationships in it.

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  19. I actually have both of the Diane Chamberlain books on my to read list already, and I've never read this author before. Like you, I'm pretty sure I've seen them recommended by other bloggers. That's why this book talk by blogger is so much fun!

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  20. Those Diane Chamberlain books both sound really good - I'm going to check them out!!

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  21. Taylor's books seem to be on a lot of posts this month. I've never heard of her so I'm going to check out one of her books and see if I like them.

    I read Rescue when it first came out. I think Shreve is overall predictable.

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  22. Hmmm that's a TON of books. Go you! Wow, looking into necessary lies.... XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

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