HOW are we already mid-way through September? I’m catching up on all of my reviews, and it just feels like the time is flying by. As we’re entering into the fall season, things have gotten so crazy busy, so audiobooks and having my Kindle with me on the go have been lifesavers! I’ve also started reading just one chapter a day in a few different books so I’m getting lots of content (fiction, Christian non-fiction, something on my Kindle, something else – I’m crazy I know) without feeling like I have to have hours to set aside to read! Without further ado, here’s what I read in August!
AMERICAN ROYALS BY KATHARINE MCGEE – 5 STARS
This series is such a cute, light read that I thoroughly enjoyed. The Selection meets Gossip Girl? In another life, America is a monarchy, and this is the modern day royal family’s story. This book follows the three children of the royal family as they are forced to hold responsibility, find love, and live life as teenagers in the spotlight.
MAJESTY BY KATHARINE MCGEE – 4 STARS
Catch up with the royal teens through breakups, make ups, and lots of drama. I still liked this book, but the first was definitely my favorite! There were just too many relationships that I would get attached to, and then they’d fall apart.
GHOSTED BY ROSIE WALSH – 1 STAR
I really wanted to like this one. It was on my Summer Reading Guide so I was excited to pick it up, but it just fell flat to me. A man and woman meet and spend a whirlwind week together and fall in love. When he has to leave for his scheduled holiday, she never hears from him again. The book is about her journey to figure out what happened to him after she was ghosted. I just felt like it was all way too dramatic and overdone. (I also listened to this one and didn’t love the narrator, so that could’ve influenced my feelings).
THE LAZY GENIUS WAY BY KENDRA ADACHI – 5 STARS
I want to be Kendra’s best friend. The Lazy Genius Way was such an interesting and informative read. Being a lazy genius is all about being a genius about the things that matter so you can be lazy about the things that don’t. There are so many practical tips in this book to help you simplify and streamline your life in a genius way. I loved this one.
SUMMER OF ‘69 BY ELIN HILDERBRAND – 5 STARS
The perfect summer read! I loved this historical fiction beach read from Hilderbrand set in Nantucket in the summer of – you guessed it – ‘69. It kept the same complexity of family dynamics, relational drama, and picturesque scenes of Nantucket that are so prevalent from her other novels and translated it into a story full of historical details from 1969. Highly recommend!
THE STAR-CROSSED SISTERS OF TUSCANY BY LORI NELSON SPIELMAN – 5 STARS
Brb I’m booking a trip to Italy ASAP. I read this for my summer book club, and it did not disappoint! Second daughters in the Fontana family are led to believe that they are cursed to never find lasting love, and for over two hundred years, they haven’t. But the newest generation of second-born Fontana daughters isn’t having it. They travel to Italy in a pilgrimage of sorts with Aunt Poppy to break the curse and discover the true meaning of lasting love.
PRINCESS ACADEMY BY SHANNON HALE – 3 STARS
A favorite from my childhood that was juuuust a lil too cheesy in adulthood. I absolutely adored Princess Academy when I first read it in fifth grade. A group full of girls from a mountain village get forced into schooling and training so that one of them can become the prince’s new wife. I can remember why I loved it so much when I was younger, but let me just tell you that the audiobook ruined it for me. Still cute, but not great.
WHITE OLEANDER BY JANET FITCH – 3 STARS
I’ve seen such high praise for this book so I grabbed it from the used bookstore recently knowing nothing about it other than that it was an Oprah Book Club pick (she actually narrates the audiobook!). It was a tough book to read due to the heavy subject matter, but overall it was good. When Astrid’s mother is sent to prison for murdering her boyfriend, she is bounced around from foster home to foster home, forced to grow up too soon and discover that her mother isn’t the person that she thought she was.
THE PUSH BY ASHLEY AUDRAIN – 3 STARS
I’ve also seen lots of buzz about this book lately! Content warning – if you’re pregnant or have a newborn/small children, this might not be the best book for you right now. It’s a dark look into motherhood and raising children. Blythe thinks that something may be off with her young daughter, but no one believes her. Is it all in her head, or is something darker happening?
DIGITAL MINIMALISM BY CAL NEWPORT – 3 STARS
I really wanted to love this book and learn a lot about myself and my relationship with technology. My screentime has gotten out of hand as of late, and I’m wanting to be more intentional with it. This book gave me some very interesting tidbits, but it was hard to get over the fact that the author has never had any form of social media. I feel like I need to hear this same topic from someone who understands personally the addictive nature of social media, and how they overcame it.
MONOGAMY BY SUE MILLER – 3 STARS
Very reminiscent of Commonwealth from Ann Patchett, Monogamy was a story of relationships and the ebb and flow of life over the span of many years. I found myself reading until the end because I wanted to know how it all ended up, but I don’t really feel like anything actually happened throughout the course of this book. It was pretty slow.
MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE BY TAYLOR JENKINS REID – 5 STARS
Taylor Jenkins Reid can do no wrong! After reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Daisy Jones & The Six, I’ve decided that I want to read everything TJR has written. Maybe In Another Life was the story of Hannah, a 20-something moving back home to LA after hopping all across the US trying to make a life for herself. She goes to a party with her friends upon her return, and then the book splits into two alternate narratives – how her life would go if she leaves the party early, and how her life would go if she stays. I found myself rooting for both Hannahs for different reasons, and it was such a fun read.
LADY IN WAITING BY ANNE GLENCONNER – 5 STARS
The royals fascinate me, and after reading about the fictional American royals this month, I wanted to learn more about the real royal family. Lady in Waiting was such an interesting look at specifically Princess Margaret and the life of Lady Anne living on the periphery of the royal family for the entirety of her life. It reminded me a lot of Julia Child’s memoir for some reason, and I loved it.
THE NICKEL BOYS BY COLSON WHITEHEAD – 3 STARS
I wanted a change of pace for my last book of the month and had heard wonderful things about The Nickel Boys. It kept me interested the entire time, but I feel like I wasn’t truly invested until the very end. The Nickel Boys is based off a real boys reform school that operated in Florida for over one hundred years.