Friday, 8 July 2016

June Wrap-Up

So June is over, and July has begun. I can't believe I'm already about two months into my summer holiday, in a way I keep on saying I don't know what I've done. But I relaunched my blog and was proud of all my posts throughout June and I've started my novel - as well as had a holiday, moved out of Uni, found a house for next year and have started catching up with friends back home. June was a good month and although I don't think July will be as exciting - I am working for most of it, I plan to really focus time on my novel and just enjoy another month of Summer. 

I read a fair amount in June,  although I hit a week's reading slump in the middle - I tried to start Jane Austen's Persuasion, but I'm still not in the mood to read classics, I'm now waiting for my uni reading lists before I start reading classics again. The last week was my best, being on a festival/ party holiday I hadn't planned to read as much as I did but as seven hour beach day on my last day served me well. So here are the books I read:

(I'm rating them out of 5, and giving the Goodreads rating out of 5.)

The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Hapgood - My rating, 3. Goodread, 3.6.

The Square Root of Summer follows Gottie the summer after her Grandfather has died and her dealings with time. She's marked by losing her Grandfather, her past love Jason and her best friend who moved away when they were twelve, Thomas. 
I loved the premise of this book - a big loss in the family, a past relationship and a promise for a new one however I struggled with the time travel and physics parts. Gottie has a summer project to see if she can figure out who to time travel, and her grandfather's old diaries help - it is about discovering moments of the past, looking to the future and living in the present. The setting of this book, in this cooky family with a hippie brother and a best friend who loves to cook was lovely, it has such lovely summery vibes, that I almost felt the time travel was not necessary and often confused me, therefore I rated it 3/5.

One by Sarah Crossan - My rating, 4. Goodreads, 4.16.

I loved this book, and read it in one day. 
It follows Grace and Tippi, who are conjoined twins, as they go to high school for the first time. Written in verse from Grace's point of view it is such a unique point of view and book. It had me laughing and it had me crying, I can't expand much more on it to be honest. In one way I wished it was written in prose so we could dive deeper into the characters but I understand how unique and how it worked so well to be written in free verse. An easy read but a heartwrencher at the same time, I would seriously recommend reading this book this summer. 

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard - My rating, 5. Goodreads, 4.

"Anyone, anything, can betray anyone. Even your own heart."

This book. Wow. I loved it. So much. 
I connected with the world a lot in Red Queen (once I got into it - as written in my May wrap-up) and I was so eager to read the sequel after the ending of Red Queen. And it didn't disappoint. Now I'm not going to go into much detail about the world and plot of this book, as that means spoilers for the first book. But it started with a jam packed awesome action scene that started the book off as it meant to go on. The relationships throughout this book were really interesting as they took many twists and turns, the main character Mare slightly annoyed me with some of her decisions but that is her flaw, and flawed characters make books great. I cannot wait for the third book, Kings Cage, to be released in 2017.

When We Collided by Emery Lord - My rating, 4. Goodreads, 3.8.

When We Collided is one of those summery beach reads. It follows Jonah, a boy who's struggling to deal with the death of his father whilst trying to keep his family afloat whilst his mother deals with depression, then the wild Vivi who is enthusiastic and happy and lively but has bipolar disorder - and this book is a summer love story of when the two characters collided.
I laughed and I cried at this book (when I say cry, I mean sobbing in the middle of a very busy Croatian beach trying to hide my tears under my sunglasses...) I loved the character Jonah, he was so kind and thoughtful but also so innocent and vulnerable, his family was also crafted in a heartwarming way. However in a way I struggled with the character Vivi, I loved that Emery showcases bipolar in this book but in a way it felt like it didn't need to be a love story. I'm not too sure if I'm making any sense but Vivi was the light in the dark to Jonah and because of that, it was a really beautiful story. 

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Mas - My rating, 4, Goodreads 4.3.

I started this book after hearing so many rave reviews about the sequel, A Court of Mist and Fury, that I just felt the need to be a part of this series - and I'm so glad I did. A fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast follows Feyre, a human huntress who, in payment for her killing of a wolf, is dragged past the wall and into the world of faeries. But not 'happy-go-lucky' faeries, a dark world of faeries - her captor, Tamlin is one of the High Seven Lords, a lethal and immortal faerie whom their kind once ruled the world.
Sarah J Mas's writing and plotting is amazing, it has so many twists and turns and subtle changes of relationships that it gives you so many feels. I loved the change in the relationship between Tamlin and Feyre - and also Lucien, possibly my favourite characters. Although I did find it get a bit slow nearer the end, I really enjoyed this book and raced through it extremely quickly. 

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Manson - My rating, 4.5, Goodreads, 4.1.

I read this book in a day - that is how good it is. I loved it. 
It follows Andie, a politicians daughter who has her summer all planned out - to go to a medical summer school in preparation for her senior year. However after her father becomes involved in a political scandal she is forced to re-think. It is the perfect summer book, it makes you want to go and hug all your friends and go on a massive scavenger hunt together. It makes you want to go and watch movies with dad. It makes you want to find a boyfriend who is a writer (well, I already wanted that before the book, this just exaggerated it...) It makes you want to expect the unexpected and take joy in it. Clark is possibly one of my favourite love interest's in a contemporary book ever, and is definitely my favourite guy out of all the books in June. If you want a fun-filled book packed with family, friends and romance this summer, pick up The Unexpected Everything and you won't regret it. 

My To Be Read list for July:

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Mas
The Boy Most Likely To by Huntley Fitzpatrick
The Problem with Forever by Jennifer L Armentrout

I haven't got that many other books planned but I'm sure I'll find something. I know I've recently started writing much longer blog posts in bit of a sporadic posting pattern but I'm just getting my head back into the blogging game properly - as well as working on my novel - and just finding my way again, and I seem to have a lot to say in each post! 
Hope you've had a good first week of July, Speak soon, Christina. x

(Also, Thanks to my brother Matthew for taking the photo's for this post!)

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