6.13.2017

What I Read In May



Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan I've heard great things about this middle grade book and it's true, it's a nice coming of age story, but it's really far-fetched. I was hoping for something more realistic with such serious topics (adoption, loss, foster care, being an outsider, etc.). It was sweet and hopeful and heartwarming with good writing though. 


Party of One by Dave Holmes I was sort of indifferent about Dave Holmes, but totally remember watching the Wanna Be A VJ contest and hoping he'd win. This book is such a great coming of age/coming out/cool career story and the nostalgia was a blast. It's funny and fun, and I related so much to his take on aging out of top 40 and pop culture in general. Loved it! 


Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han I love this dumb YA series so much. The books are all light and simple and a breath of fresh air when most teen protagonists these days are searching for their BFF's murderer or having an affair with their teacher. While some readers are annoyed by wholesome Lara Jean, I see some of my teen self in her innocence. This was a good conclusion to the series, but I still wish there'd be another book. 


The Dollhouse by Fiona Davis I'm not super into historical fiction, so this book had a strike against it right off the bat. I started it a few months ago, gave up, and forgot about it until I won it in a Goodreads giveaway and felt I had to finish it. It's a silly premise and neither of the stories (one from 1952 and one from 2016) are very interesting. 


Shakespeare Saved My Life: Ten Years in Solitary with the Bard by Laura Bates Laura Bates taught Shakespeare to prisoners for ten years with the help of notorious inmate Larry Newton. Some claim the book is a little dry, but most non-fiction is if you aren't interested in the subject. I have such strong feelings about solitary confinement (and the prison system in general) and this book gave me hope that there are still people out there who care. I couldn't put it down! 

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay  I enjoyed every essays, but wish there was more conclusion to some of the questions she raised. I know, I know. That was the point. I admired and related to her confession of not knowing enough about the history of feminism, and not possessing all the opinions of mainstream feminism, but still calling herself a feminist while exploring racism and sexism in all facets of society. 


There Is No F*cking Secret: Letters from a Badass Bitch by Kelly Osbourne I've always liked Kelly and this little peek into her personal life was honest and interesting. She has great messages in this series of letters, especially for teen girls, and she seems to be in a great place. I was pleasantly surprised. 


Into the Water by Paula Hawkins I was looking forward to this highly anticipated read, but was it was a let down. There were way too many characters, all of them are unlikable, it wasn't suspenseful at all, and I honestly just didn't care about the plot by the end. Meh. 


The Kennedy Chronicles: The Golden Age of MTV Through Rose-Colored Glasses by Kennedy  It is TERRIBLY written, but I couldn't help but love the content. She was a VJ from 1992-1997, when I was 13-18, so MTV was a huge part of my life. It was a fun trip down memory lane. I wrote a longer review and some thoughts about MTV at that time right here


The Perfect Stranger by Megan Miranda This was a good, engaging story right off the bat and though I didn't really like any of the characters, it didn't turn me off. It had me questioning everyone and everything until the very end. 


Priestdaddy: A Memoir by Patricia Lockwood Very interesting memoir by a poet who returned to her childhood home/rectory with her husband after he suffered medical issues. Her father became a priest after he was married with children and she retells stories of her unorthodox childhood. I listened to this audiobook and loved it. She does a great job with narration and writes beautifully. I just wish there was more cohesion. 


Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell I love Rainbow! The Kindle edition of this short story is only $2.99 and all proceeds go to the ACLU, so I couldn't resist. It is very short, but sweet. And as always, I didn't want the story to end. 


One Day We'll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter: Essays by Scaachi Koul I really loved this book of essays written by the daughter of Indian immigrants living in Canada. She covers things like ethnic stereotypes, gender roles, anxiety, sexual assault, body image, and the difference between Indian and western culture, among other things. I loved her voice and thought the essays were funny and reflective. 


North of Happy by Adi Alsaid Right off the bat, I was totally invested in this YA story about a privileged teen from Mexico City who runs away to a small island outside of Seattle to work in a restaurant after his brother's death. But it lost me a few chapters in. It could be because I'm not a foodie, or because the characters weren't very well developed, or because I'm an adult. It just didn't resonate with me. 

I'm linking up with Jana and Steph for Show Us Your Books!

Life According to Steph

18 comments:

Misty said...

I've read several of Rainbow Rowell's books. I always enjoy them.

Heather @ Heathers Hurrah said...

I love Rainbow Rowell but haven't read that book yet. The Lara Jean books sound lovely. I started the first one but didn't finish it before having to return it to the library. I liked Into the Water but I knot it has gotten very mixed reviews!

SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

I'm back and forth on Priestdaddy.

Intrigued by Kelly's book and the Shakespeare book too.

lil desiqua said...

I had to look up who Dave Holmes was, but now I totally remember him! Definitely adding that one to my list, along with Rainbow Rowell. I don't normally spend $ on books and I can't find where it says that, but if all the proceeds go towards ACLU, I'm in! I have Perfect Stranger on my Kindle, I just haven't read it yet. Moving it on up!

Lauren said...

I didn't remember Dave Holmes but I still really liked Party of One! I liked Bad Feminist, but I didn't love every essay. I have Kindred Spirits but I need to read it!

-Lauren

Tiffany said...

I was so bummed about Into the Water. Which I rated high on goodreads because I feel bad about bad ratings. Like I don't want to hurt the book's feelings or something....

Tanya said...

Bummed you didn't like The Dollhouse as I really enjoyed it, but everyone likes different things and that's what makes these link-ups fun. Into the Water is currently on my nightstand and people either love or hate it. The good news, I guess, is if I find myself not enjoying it, I know to quit because it's unlikely I'll start liking it! :D

Jana @ Jana Says said...

I have a bunch of these on my TBR which never seems to stop growing.

I thoroughly enjoyed Party of One.

Laura said...

I've heard the same comments about Into The Water and I must say that I'm a little disappointed and probably won't read it even though a really enjoyed Girl On A Train!

Kristin said...

I was a huge fan of Into the Water for the reasons you listed.

I also didn't like The Perfect Stranger very much ....I read both of those also last month!

Jen @ That's What She Read said...

I felt the same way about Into the Water! I had such high expectations but it just fell flat! :(

The Siberian American said...

I keep hearing The Dollhouse is meh, which is a bummer because it's on my NetGalley list. I really need to read those Jenny Han books!

Jackie @ My (Sort Of) Adult Life said...

That Lara Jane series sounds right up my alley, I think I'll give it a shot! I also want to read that Megan Miranda book, I really like her other All the Missing Girls. Too bad that Into the Water was a let down for you...I'm reading it now.

Laura Darling said...

So many good ones this month! I was really looking forward to Into The Water but I've seen so many less than stellar reviews that I think I might skip it! Shakespeare Saved My Life sounds awesome.

Nadine Lynn said...

Always and Forever and Into the Water are both on my TBR. I hate when books have characters that I don't really like.

Carly Blogs Here said...

I've read one other Rowell book and enjoyed it but didn't know she had a short story- I'm definitely going to check it out. I remember hearing about Priestdaddy on the All of the Books podcast and being unsure of whether or not I would like it, so it was nice to read your thoughts on it!

Kelly said...

I'm sorry to hear you didn't like The Dollhouse or Into the Water! Those are two I've been looking forward to this summer.
I like Rainbow Rowell's books but haven't heard about that short story - Will need to check it out!

Trista @ The Classy Chaos said...

I need to try that YA series, it sounds right up my ally!!