June 2019 Book Recap & Ratings | Monthly Book Wrap-Up

June 2019 Book Wrap-Up

monthly book wrap-up

The Month of June

Wow, did June fly by for anyone else? It is always a funny month because half of it is the last two weeks of school and the other two are the first two weeks of summer break. It is a transition time for everyone in our family and the end of some things and the beginning of others which makes it very bittersweet.

While it seems like it flew by, it is also amazing to think of all the things that we did during the last 4 weeks..baseball season and regular school days feel like they were months ago!

Reading Recap

I had a lot of reading favorites this past month, and it was also a heavier non-fiction month. My actual reading is always a bit slower this time of year but my books I listen to on audio increase.

Moving into Audiobook Season

This time of the year I spend a lot of my work time editing because it is the most wedding/photo session time of the year. This will continue into November when photo season quiets down for the winter months. I have found that audiobooks make a great work companion during editing time.

My type of work requires a lot of creative energy but is something I can easily do while listening to something which is great for a podcast and audiobook fan! I prefer to listen to non-fiction books on audio and this past month I listened to Burnout, The Moment of Lift and All The Rage. I would highly recommend all of them!

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Summer of ’69 by Elin Hilderbrand

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

You can read my full review of Summer of ’69 HERE.

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Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking The Stress Cycle

by Emily & Amelia Nagoski

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⁣

You can read my full review of Burnout HERE.

The Moment of Lift

The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

*Full review coming soon.

All The Rage

All The Rage by Darcy Lockman

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

*Full review coming soon.

Claire Gibson

Beyond The Point by Claire Gibson

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

*Full Review Coming Soon.

Three Women

Three Women by Lisa Taddeo

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

You can read my full review of Three Women HERE.

Simple Happy Praenting by Denaye Barahona

Simple Happy Parenting by Denaye Barahona

My Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⁣

You can read my full review of Simple Happy Parenting HERE.

thriller

Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle

My Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️

You can see my full review of Dear Wife HERE.

thriller book

I’ll Never Tell by Catherine McKenzie

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

You can read my full review of I’ll Never Tell HERE.

The Lemonade Life

The Lemonade Life by Zack Friedman

My Rating:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

You can read my full review of The Lemonade Life HERE.


How was your month of reading? Did you have any favorites? Are there any that were you disappointed by? I would love to hear! <3

 

Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle | Park Row | Book Review

Dear Wife, psychological thriller, suspense, mystery

Dear Wife by Kimberly Belle

Book Summary:

“Beth Murphy is on the run…

For nearly a year, Beth has been planning for this day. A day some people might call any other Wednesday, but Beth prefers to see it as her new beginning—one with a new look, new name and new city. Beth has given her plan significant thought, because one small slip and her violent husband will find her.

Sabine Hardison is missing…

A couple hundred miles away, Jeffrey returns home from a work trip to find his wife, Sabine, is missing. Wherever she is, she’s taken almost nothing with her. Her abandoned car is the only evidence the police have, and all signs point to foul play.

As the police search for leads, the case becomes more and more convoluted. Sabine’s carefully laid plans for her future indicate trouble at home, and a husband who would be better off with her gone. The detective on the case will stop at nothing to find out what happened and bring this missing woman home. Where is Sabine? And who is Beth? The only thing that’s certain is that someone is lying and the truth won’t stay buried for long.”

Book Genre:

Thriller/Suspense

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️

My Review:

Dear Wife is a thriller that keeps you guessing, has plenty of twists and was definitely a page-turner. We are introduced to a missing woman/a woman on the run, and the people who were “left behind”, including a husband and a police detective who is investigating this case.

For about 75% of this book, I was very engrossed in this storyline and the main characters. I was interested in learning more about each of these characters and I enjoyed the multiple points of view narrative. Belle definitely succeeded in keeping me guessing until the end, but unfortunately, I felt disappointed. I felt like I had put a lot of energy into a person and storyline that didn’t end being flushed out. It is hard to share this review without giving away the plotlines and/or spoiling it for anyone so I am trying to be vague.

I will say that I often feel this way with thrillers so I may just be the wrong kind of reader for some of these types of books. I am a person that likes in-depth characters and knowing the backstories on them.

In order to create the “thrill” in this sort of genre, there is usually a big switch up which does usually surprise me but often makes me feel underwhelmed with the story as a whole. I can see why this will work for many readers and the style of writing is definitely engaging and fast-paced.

Thank you to NetGalley and Park Row for an advanced copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

Summer of ’69 by Elin Hilderbrand | Little, Brown & Company | Book Review

Elin Hilderbrand, summer reading, beach books

Summer of ’69 by Elin Hilderbrand 

Book Summary:

Welcome to the most tumultuous summer of the twentieth century. It’s 1969, and for the Levin family, the times they are a-changing. Every year the children have looked forward to spending the summer at their grandmother’s historic home in downtown Nantucket. But like so much else in America, nothing is the same: Blair, the oldest sister, is marooned in Boston, pregnant with twins and unable to travel. Middle sister Kirby, caught up in the thrilling vortex of civil rights protests and determined to be independent, takes a summer job on Martha’s Vineyard. Only-son Tiger is an infantry soldier, recently deployed to Vietnam. Thirteen-year-old Jessie suddenly feels like an only child, marooned in the house with her out-of-touch grandmother and her worried mother, each of them hiding a troubling secret. As the summer heats up, Ted Kennedy sinks a car in Chappaquiddick, man flies to the moon, and Jessie and her family experience their own dramatic upheavals along with the rest of the country. 

In her first historical novel, rich with the details of an era that shaped both a nation and an island thirty miles out to sea, Elin Hilderbrand once again earns her title as queen of the summer novel.

Publication Date:

June 18th, 2019

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫⁣

My Review:

Elin Hilderbrand is not only the queen of summer reading but she is also an auto-read author for me. I remember taking her book The Castaways on our 2009 honeymoon trip to St. John and it was just the beginning of a long love affair with her writing. At that point, I read everything on her backlist and have read every single one of her book releases since then.

Elin Hilderbrand June book releases always signify the unofficial start of summer for me. Summer of ‘69 was released on June 18th but I grabbed it a couple of weeks early in my Book of the Month box and couldn’t wait to dive in.

I knew going into it that this book would be a little different than her others. While it was still set on the beautiful island of Nantucket, she took us back to 1969 in her first historical fiction novel. I always love reading the authors notes at the beginning of books and Hilderbrand shared that Summer of ’69 was in honor of her 50th birthday, and I loved that connection so much.

Summer of ’69 delivered with Hilderbrand’s gift of the summer beach read while also diving into some historic events like the lunar landing, The Vietnam War and Chappaquiddick.

We meet the Levin family and with this, there is a personal look at feminist issues, the civil rights movement and the life changes and transitions for this family. This book was packed full of powerful moments but was also an enjoyable coming of age story. There were many different personalities and perspectives in this story which made it feel multifaceted while also being a completely engrossing read.

Having grown up in the 80s and 90s I couldn’t connect personally with this time period but she was able to bring me right there with her vivid details and ability to connect the music and other pop culture of this time in history. I highly recommend adding this to your summer reading list!

I can’t wait for the 2nd installment of her Paradise series later this year…and am so happy I don’t have to wait another year for more Hilderbrand writing! If you haven’t checked out the first book in this new trilogy, Winter in Paradise is also a great summer read and What Happens in Paradise will be released in October!