June Reading Life

IMG_1977At halfway through the year, I am currently at 92 books read for 2018. I read 65 total for 2017 so this is crazy to me. I have read some wonderful books this year and my TBR continues to grow. I am glad I enjoy a hobby where I will never run out of great books to read. My favorite for June would be Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate and I highly recommend this historical fiction book (see review below). How many books have you read so far in 2018? Any favorites this year?

Lone Witness by Rachel Dylan was a book I received from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review. This Christian fiction book is part of a series called Atlanta Justice. An attorney named Sophie is a witness to a crime in a gas station. Her life becomes threatened and her father hires personal security for her. As the case progresses and threats keep happening she starts to develop feelings for the man protecting her. This story was interesting with the aspect of the law and had some suspense to it.

A Million Junes by Emily Henry was high on my TBR for the month of June. It was also fitting to read it on vacation in Michigan since the story takes place in Michigan. I had the privilege to meet Emily Henry  in May and get an autographed copy. This YA fantasy book was interesting and imaginative. The story kept my attention and kept me guessing of what would happen next in the story. June starts to hang out with Saul and they are both forbidden to see each other by their families. Their families have had a feud for generations and there is magic involved with their families and her home. They decide to search for the reason of the feud and how to end their curse to save both of their families.  If you enjoyed this, I would recommend The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan for YA fantasy.

The High Season by Judy Blundell takes place in Orient (near the Hamptons) during the summer season. A woman rents out her house for the summer and loses her job and other things just are not going her way. The book covers her life and those around her in a wealthy and art driven society. The writing was kind of all over the place with text messages as part of the story. This book was not for me and was disappointing because I really enjoyed What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell.

Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell was the right amount of creepy and twisty that I read it in one day because I wanted to know what happened next. A teenage girl goes missing and the police have no leads. Ten years later, her mom starts dating a man with a child that resembles her missing daughter. She starts to uncover what really happened to her missing daughter and gets closure and a new start on life. I have read some of Lisa Jewell’s other books and enjoyed I Found You.

Us Against You by Fredrik Backman is the highly anticipated sequel to Beartown. I would recommend reading Beartown first since this new book follows right where the first one left off. Beartown is hockey and everyone living there is affected by it in some way. There could be some triggers for people like rape, abuse, and homosexuality. Fredrik Backman does a wonderful job telling a story full of so much hardship and the things that people go through. I also enjoyed A Man Called Ove .

In Conclusion, Don’t Worry About It by Lauren Graham was an enjoyable short book. It would make a great gift for a graduate. I listened to it on audio and enjoyed it being read by Lauren Graham. She shares how she became a graduation speaker and reads the speech she gave. I really enjoyed Talking Fast As I Can on audio by Lauren Graham as well.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel by Tara Jenkins Reid is one that I have seen a lot on bookstagram. I could appreciate the storyline, but it was not a book for me. An actress named Evely Hugo marries seven different men, but none of them are her true love. She reveals who her true love is to a writer to have her biography written towards the end of her life. There were some storyline twists. If you enjoyed this, I would recommend Tangerine by Christine Mangan.

Force of Nature by Jane Harper. This is the second book in the Aaron Falk series. I really enjoyed and preferred  The Dry. This series does a good job of having a good mystery without being scary. In this new book, Falk is investigating a case and his main witness has suddenly gone missing. He helps to uncover the truth of what happened to her. The ending was not predictable which I always enjoy.

Just Let Go by Courtney Walsh is a book I received from Tyndale in exchange for my honest review. It is the second book in the Harbor Pointe Series. I have not read the first book, Just Look Up, and was able to enjoy this book. Quinn is a woman that never leaves her small town. She buys a flower shop that had been her dream for years. As she renovates the shop she meets the new man in town. His name is Grady and he is an Olympic skier that is stuck in the town to fulfill his sentence for community service. As they work together on her renovations and spend time with her family they get to know one another and things begin to change for both of them. If you enjoy Christian fiction then I would recommend picking this book up.

A Storied Life by Leigh Kramer is new this month and one I was given  in exchange for my honest review. I enjoyed this book by a first time author. She used her experiences working in social work to beautifully describe the role of hospice in a family’s life. A young woman becomes the POA to her grandmother and is in charge of making sure her grandma’s wishes are fulfilled for end of life care. While taking on the responsibility of caring for her grandmother, she is also running an art gallery. Her life changes as she begins to share her own paintings with others and meets someone special which makes her wonder if she is finally getting the storied life that her grandmother wanted her to have. The story was touching and the writing style made it an enjoyable book. I look forward to this author’s future work.

Sunburn by Laura Lippman was a great summer read for mystery and suspense. A young woman leads a life of mystery and wonders into a small town. There she falls in love and her past comes to find her. It is less than 300 pages and would be a great vacation read. Similar recommendations are Tangerine by Christine Mangan and What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell.

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate was wonderful. This historical fiction novel is based around a children’s home where children were taken and given up for adoption without the parents’ consent. It was a heartbreaking story told in a beautiful way weaving between the past and the present in a family’s journey to uncover their family history. I listened to it on audio and loved the different narrators. I highly recommend this book.

The Ensemble by Aja Gabel was a unique book. It was beautifully written especially for a first book. The setting of a quartet was interesting and different. The story covers the past and present of these four people during their music career. They share their professional lives and then their personal lives. It was a very good novel.

Books Mentioned in this post:

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A Million Junes

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A Million Junes by Emily Henry was high on my TBR for the month of June. It was also fitting to read it on vacation in Michigan since the story takes place in Michigan. I had the privilege to meet Emily Henry in May and get an autographed copy. This YA fantasy book was interesting and imaginative. The story kept my attention and kept me guessing of what would happen next in the story. June starts to hang out with Saul and they are both forbidden to see each other by their families. Their families have had a feud for generations and there is magic involved with their families and her home. They decide to search for the reason of the feud and how to end their curse to save both of their families. If you enjoyed this, I would recommend The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan for YA fantasy.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Explorers of the Wild

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Summer s a wonderful time to get outside with the kids and explore. These books are a great place to start if you need direction to get outside and have fun exploring.

Explorers of the Wild by Cale Atkinson is an adorable book about a little boy and a bear who are each on their own exploring the wild. They run into each other and have an adventure together exploring. My kids love this book and the illustrations are wonderful.

Nature’s Day Out and About by Kay Maguire is fun activity book for nature lovers. It is divided into seasons and has things to search for outside and lots of coloring activities. The illustrations are wonderful.

Nature Anatomy by Julia Rothman is a beautifully illustrated book all about nature. Things to find outside and animals to identify.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Where Oliver Fits

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Where Oliver Fits by Cale Atkinson is a sweet book that talks about self-esteem. Oliver is a puzzle piece and cannot find which puzzle he belongs in. He tries to change his appearance to fit in. Once he fits in he realizes that he is not really happy because he is not his true self. So he decides to go back to his original appearance and finds where he truly fits in as himself. My kids really love this book and enjoy the story and the illustrations.

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Then She Was Gone

3C175A8D-8381-4F5C-BE5E-E2011CD63A53I did not have high expectations for this psychological thriller because I have read some lately that have been so predictable and unrealistic. That is why I was pleasantly surprised to thoroughly enjoy Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell. It was the right amount of creepy and twisty that I read it in one day because I wanted to know what happened next. A teenage girl goes missing and the police have no leads. Ten years later, her mom starts dating a man with a child that resembles her missing daughter.  She starts to uncover what really happened to her missing daughter and gets closure and a new start on life.  I have read some of Lisa Jewell’s other books and enjoyed I Found You.

Other books by Lisa Jewell:

 

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

 

A Storied Life

5948961E-4F43-486D-BCE2-249424748813A Storied Life by Leigh Kramer is new this month and one I was given to read for free in exchange for my honest review. I enjoyed this book by a first time author. She used her experiences working in social work to beautifully describe the role of hospice in a family’s life. A young woman becomes the POA to her grandmother and is in charge of making sure her grandma’s wishes are fulfilled for end of life care. While taking on the responsibility of caring for her grandmother, she is also running an art gallery. Her life changes as she begins to share her own paintings with others and meets someone special which makes her wonder if she is finally getting the storied life that her grandmother wanted her to have. The story was touching and the writing style made it an enjoyable book. I look forward to this author’s future work.

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Just Let Go Book Review

 

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Just Let Go by Courtney Walsh is a Christian fiction book that I was given in exchange for my honest review by Tyndale. Quinn is a woman that never leaves her small town. She buys a flower shop that had been her dream for years. As she renovates the shop she meets the new man in town. His name is Grady and he is an Olympic skier that is stuck in the town to fulfill his sentence for community service. As they work together on her renovations and spend time with her family they get to know one another and things begin to change for both of them.  If  you enjoy Christian fiction then I would recommend picking this book up.

Also in this series:

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Father’s Day

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Father’s Day is a day to celebrate wonderful fathers. At our house, my husband is definitely the more playful one and definitely a playground. Happy Father’s Day to all of the fathers out there.

Your Baby’s First Word Will Be Dada by Jimmy Fallon is a cute book for younger kids since Dada is usually a baby’s first word. My four year old especially loves both books by Jimmy Fallon.

The Berenstain Bears: We Love Our Dad! by Jan Berenstain is a classic Berenstain Bear story about Papa Bear. The cubs make it a special day for their Papa Bear.

My Dad Is the Best Playground by Luciana Navarro Powell is a cute book about how dads make the best playground for kids. I know this is true in our house.

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Summer Time Books

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School is letting out and summer time is beginning. Here are some books to welcome this season. Also, check out this post to have kids involved in summer reading programs to earn free books.

Summer Days and Nights by Wong Herbert Yee is about a little girl enjoying fun summer activities on a hot day.

Hooray for Summer by Kazuo Iwamura is about a rainstorm during summer. Little animals have to find a safe place to wait out a storm.

The Little Ice Cream Truck by Margery Cuyler is a cute book in a series about different types of trucks. Ice cream trucks are a must for summertime.

And Then Comes Summer by Tom Brenner is a cute book describing all of the fun things to do during the summer.

Happy Summer!

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Sunburn

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Looking for a good thriller to read this summer? Sunburn  by Laura Lippman delivers just that. This book offers mystery and suspense and was unpredictable. A young woman leads a life of mystery and wonders into a small town. There she falls in love and her past comes to find her. It is less than 300 pages and would be a great vacation read. Have you read this or have a favorite thriller to recommend?

Similar books that I would recommend:

 

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.