Recent Reads Vol. 2

It's time again for a book chat! At least, it is for those of us participating in Kels' Bookish Side of Life Summer Book Challenge.
The Blonder Side of Life
I challenged myself to read 10 books over the course of this June, July, and August. I picked a conservative number because at the time, I had never read an audiobook and knew I was a slow—if enthusiastic—reader. As of the end of July, I'm almost there!

I read four books in June, and here are the five I've read in July:

Paper Towns by John Green
I fell in love with Johnny like many of us last year after readingThe Fault in Our Stars. Actually, to be more honest, I already had a massive crush on him when I read An Abundance of Katherines first. I thought I might fly through it, but I didn't. I liked it and enjoyed the narrative, although found it a bit slow in parts. All in all a solid YA read from a super talented writer.

Recommend? — You bet!

Wonder by R.J. Palacio
I wish I had known how much this book was going to make me cry. I love books with multiple narrators, and especially when each voice is distinct and clear and nicely tells the story from each perspective. This book made my heart feel every little damn thing six ways to Sunday.

Recommend? — As long as you have tissues nearby and a heart, yes!

The Martian by Andy Weir (audiobook)
I so did not think this was my kind of book at all—I don't do sci-fi; I barely do fantasy; the concept of "outer space" in general scares the bejeesus out of me. But after hearing so many bloggers say they loved it and it was outside their usual genres too, I gave the audiobook a try. I'm glad I didn't try to read it; I wouldn't have understood the majority of the Martian descriptions if I had. This book was another where the narrative shifted, and I really appreciated the multiple angles.

Recommend? — I think it's worth a shot if you're curious, but the audiobook is definitely the way to go.

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Aw. I felt all the things. I wasn't really prepared for how sad this would make me throughout. I didn't cry; it wasn't a painful, gut-wrenching read. It was just sad. But hopeful somehow at the same time. I enjoyed it, and really recognized a distinctness to Rainbow's voice. I can't wait to read more from her.

Recommend? — Hands down.

One Plus One by Jojo Moyes
Just started this one as I finished Eleanor & Park while on this mini-vacation. Will be sure to include it in the next update!
Which brings me to a grand total of nine read so far, with number 10 in progress. I'm also joining in my lovely Literary Ladies in their summer reading challenge, so here's what's next on my to-read list:

What have you read this month? What's on tap for the next? 

Linking up with Kels on the Bookish Side of Life!


  1. i'm currently reading the wayward pines novels...SO GOOD. i just finished reading Life or Death (Michael Robotham) and that was excellent as well.

  2. I need to read Paper Towns!! I think thats going to be my token YA read for August - not the biggest YA fan but I like John Green.

  3. YES! now you know why I love E&P so much, right?
    I'm glad you enjoyed the martian and wonder! i was not a huge fan of paper towns, it was good, but not fault in our stars good. i still havent read the katherine one.

  4. All of those books are on my list to read, except The Martian because I already listened to it and freaking loved it!! I had all the same thoughts that you did and was so pleasantly surprised by it that I am more open to other genres I may not have been before.

  5. I'm reading an Abundance of Katherine's right now! You need to read Chasing Alaska by John Green next, I read it so quickly. I didn't like Gone Girl, but I really liked Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

    P.s. Am I still a no reply commenter? I use wordpress but not an actual wordpress blog so commenting is confusing. I just made a blogger profile and turned email on.

  6. oh man, I loved the martian but the science talk could drag on for a little longer than I cared for it to. But I woke up feeling like I should check the news to see how he was doing, and I had to remind myself its a BOOK. haha. anyway I'm currently reading me before you, about 60% of the way through (thanks kindle) it'll be interesting to see how it ends but I'm finding it slightly predictable. and prepare yourself for gone girl. I found it infuriating and i'll leave it at that for now.

  7. So I just finished The Paper Magician series and I was on the fence about Eleanor & I'll be picking that up ASAP :)

  8. E&P fills my heart with so many wonderful feelings. As does Wonder. I finished my first ever Jodi Picoult book last week (Nineteen Minutes), and I loved it. It really pulled my emotions in so many different directions.

  9. Paper Towns is up on my list now! Eleanor & Park is so good, huh? I just loved that book in every aspect, and like you said, I wasn't prepared for the sadness either! Going to add Wonder to my list because I keep hearing about it. Thanks for the tissue warning!!!

  10. well done with your #bookishsideoflife reading and what's next for your challenges.. enjoy!
    #AusteninAugust is up nxt for me and a summer book setting for #collaboreads.
    always something to read :)

  11. Yes! Loved Paper Towns, although slightly disappointing in the ending? I think I had too high expectations or too wild an imagination idk. I'd like to read Wonder but my library just did it for their book club so literally every single copy has been checked out all month. Martian I want to try but it' s low on the list


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