March was the month of audiobooks!! The discovery of the great Las Vegas Clark County library card made binging audiobooks a dream for me, but alas, all good things must come to an end. I guess too many people discovered the wonderful selection available at this library and their lack of verifying Nevada residents, so my account was shut down. But it was fun while it lasted.
I read so many good books this month, and some not so great ones, as well. But I ended the month with 15 books read and two of them were 5 stars, so it was a great time! I have two wedding showers, Easter, and a bunch of random events in April, so it’s going to be busy, but I can’t wait to keep reading! I’m on a roll! Happy reading!
The Cave Dwellers by Christina McDowell – 1 Stars
The best thing about this book was the cover. I finished it only because I bought it at B&N and it’s been on my unread shelf for two years so I held out hope it would get better, but it just continued to get worse. The book is an inside look at the fictional upper echelons of Washington D.C. I’m usually a sucker for a story about rich socialites (Gossip Girl, Crazy Rich Asians, etc) but every single character (of which there were way too many) was so horribly unlikeable that I could barely stomach it. I know this was supposed to be a dark, satirical look at the underbelly of Washington D.C. but there were just so many storylines happening that I didn’t feel like anything really happened. Don’t recommend.
November 9 by Colleen Hoover – 3 Stars
Another Colleen Hoover book just for fun! I have heard so many good things about November 9, but this most definitely wasn’t my favorite of hers that I’ve read. I think I would’ve liked it better had the main characters not been 18 years old? Anyways, the story is about Fallon, a graduating senior moving to NYC to get away from her life in LA and pursue a career on Broadway. On her last day in California, she meets Ben in a random encounter (classic fake boyfriend trope, which I honestly love!), and they make a pact to see each other every year on November 9. There were just some details in this story that I couldn’t get over.
I really wanted to love Shannan Martin’s book as I’ve heard so many good things about her writing, and I follow and admire so many of her friends, but I just didn’t love it. (I feel horribly awful saying that about memoirs and people’s personal stories, but here we are.) I think I will still try to read one of her newer books and see how I feel.
All Good People Here by Ashley Flowers – 4 Stars
LOVED this one! I am not a huge Crime Junkie listener, but I knew that Ashley Flowers’ experience as a true crime podcaster would make for a great read. I was hooked on this one from the beginning, and ended up reading it in just over a day. It’s the story of a small town murder in the 90s and the shockwaves it sends throughout the community even decades later. When another young girl goes missing in 2019, the old crime comes back to the surface, begging the question… Is anyone ever really safe?
Trailed by Kathryn Miles – 2 Stars
I won this book on Goodreads, and while I generally love true crime and was very excited to pick it up, I just wasn’t drawn in. It’s part true crime investigation, part memoir, part look into the ethics of the parks and law enforcement? Two women are murdered while backpacking in Shenandoah National Park, and the author makes it her life’s mission to figure out what really happened. I just wasn’t sucked in, and I felt as though the author put too much of her own personal story into this story that was not about her at all.
Carrie Soto is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid – 5 Stars
YES I loved this! I really loved Evelyn Hugo when it released a few years ago, but wasn’t blown away by Malibu Rising, so I was nervous that this next installation in TJR’s historical fiction world wouldn’t hit the mark, but it did! Carrie Soto is Back is the story of, you guessed it, Carrie Soto. World renowned tennis star, Carrie decides to come out of retirement and hit the circuit just one more time to show the world that she’s the best there is. You kinda hate her and kinda love her, and it’s just such a fun story! I know nothing about tennis, and I was totally swept up in the story.
Big Swiss by Jen Beagin – 1 Star
I debated even adding this book to my list at all because I do not want a single person to pick it up because of me. I literally hated this book so much – it was disturbing and twisted and honestly just not good at all. More content and trigger warnings than I can even name. I’m embarrassed to have even finished it tbh.
Sisters First by Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Pierce Bush – 5 Stars
I needed a winner after reading that last book, and this was it! I came home with Sisters First after our book club Christmas exchange, and I have been so looking forward to reading it! I love the Bush sisters and have always been fascinated with them since their life hit the spotlight as teenagers in the White House. The story was so fun, switching back and forth between the two sisters, and it really gave such a sweet look into their family and memories.
Just My Type by Falon Ballard – 3 Stars
This was cute, but just okay. I really liked the digital journalism and blogging book reviews aspect (duh), but I just don’t think this is my preferred genre. It’s about Lana Parker, a girl who has been jumping from long-term relationship to long-term relationship ever since her high school sweetheart broke her heart. When she finds herself single again at 30, she resolves to stay that way for a while. But when her highschool boyfriend is pitted against her at work for a huge promotion, things don’t exactly go as planned.
After months (literally) of waiting for the audio version of this book, I finally got to hear Prince Harry’s story as told by him in his charming accent, and it was… okay. I have always been completely engrossed with all things royal – I have a box of memorabilia from Will and Kate’s wedding that a friend sent me from England during the heyday of their nuptials. It just felt a little too personal where the royal family is involved. Dragging everyone through the mud didn’t feel totally necessary, but I did enjoy learning new little tidbits about the royal life, Princess Diana, and Meghan Makle.
Someday by Karen Kingsbury – 4 Stars
I love me some Karen Kingsbury! It’s taken me so long to get through all of the Baxter books, but I still love these characters so much! This installment was so full of drama and twists with the Baxter family and friends, and I just can’t wait to see what happens next.
Killers of a Certain Age by Deanna Raybourn – 4 Stars
What a fun read! Four female assassins are sent on a cruise to celebrate retirement from their 40-year careers as hired killers, but all is not as it seems. When they recognize another agent on the cruise undercover, they realize that there might be a hit out for them, and they’re sent on the run. It was so fun and silly and witty and I just loved it!
Sick of Me by Whitney Capps – 3 Stars
I’ve had this on my shelf for years and years, and I finally decided to pick it up! Whitney Capps writes about how to get over yourself and focus on God instead. She shares so many personal stories, Scripture, and application on how you as the reader can take the focus of of me, me, me and start focusing on what truly matters.
Better Than the Movies by Lynn Painter – 5 Stars
How cute was this book?! I have so many friends who have been telling me to read this one forever, and I finally picked it up and loved it. It’s the story of Liz Buxbaum, a hopeless romantic and fanatical fan of classic rom coms. She knows exactly who her dream guy is and how she’s going to create the perfect love story with him. She just needs the help of her neighbor, Wes. It’s a YA romance that I just loved so much, and I can’t wait to read more of her work!
Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist – 4 Stars
Shauna Niequist is quickly becoming one of my very favorite authors. Her writing is absolutely stunning