June Reading Wrap Up

Total Books Read: 8
June TBR Books Read: 4
Total Pages Read: 3,045

Year One by Nora Roberts – 3/5 – This was my first foray into the world of Nora Roberts, and it was not really what I had expected. I think if I had known about the elements that this book contained (*FAIRIES*) I probably wouldn’t have picked it up, and certainly not for my first Nora Roberts read. Having said that, I did still enjoy Nora Roberts’ writing style and I have already picked up another book by her to read next month. If you’re into post-apocalyptic stories that contain magical creatures, this could be for you.

Finders Keepers by Stephen King – 3/5 – This is the second book in the Bill Hodges series and although I enjoyed it, I felt like it fell slightly short of the first book. A big part of the appeal of the first book for me was the Mercedes Killer, and this went in a different direction where he was not really a major element of the story at all. I am really looking forward to reading the third book in the series though, and I’m hoping it will tie everything together nicely.

Misery by Stephen King – 4/5 – For some reason I was really in the mood to read this book this month and I can’t explain why. I’m glad that I did, because it has become one of my favourite Stephen King novels. Annie Wilkes is one of the most authentic villains I’ve ever read, and I think she’s going to stay with me for a long time to come. If you want to start reading Stephen King and don’t know where to begin I’d suggest this as a starting point because I feel like it would be a great way to enter the twisted world of Stephen King.

The Women In The Walls by Amy Lukavics – 2/5 – This was a short and easy read, but it just didn’t do anything for me. I didn’t connect with the characters in any way so all of the reveals throughout the story fell a bit flat. This could be good to pick up if you’re in the mood for a short horror story around Halloween time, but other than that I wouldn’t really recommend it.

Sex Love Repeat by Alessandra Torre – 1/5 – Wow, this book was terrible. This was basically a whole lot of smut with very little character development, so the smutty elements of the book really had nothing to back them up and felt extremely gratuitous. I think I picked this up as a bargain book on kindle and now I know why. Would not recommend.

Everyhing Is Lies by Helen Callaghan – 3/5 – This was a decent middle of the road thriller for me. I’ve been wanting to read a thriller that had some ‘cult’ elements to it, and this fit the bill in that regard. This had some twists and turns along the way, and all in all made for an enjoyable read.

A Game Of Thrones by George R R Martin – 5/5 – I put off reading this series for a long time because it felt so overwhelming to me. I’m not normally a fan of fantasy novels but I love the Game Of Thrones TV series, so when Riley announced the #ReadYourFaceOff Book Club read-along I decided to bite the bullet and join in. I’m so glad that I did because although the series seemed so daunting to me at the start, having each book spread out over a couple of months makes it really manageable. On top of that I have come to discover that these books are GOOD. Like, really good. I think I have the added benefit of recognizing the characters based on the show, but this is a much easier read than I had anticipated. I’m eager to continue with the series and next month we are moving on to Clash of Kings.

June Book Haul

Suicide Club by Rachel Heng“In a near-future world, medical technology has progressed far enough that immortality is now within grasp -but only to those who show themselves to be deserving of it. These people are the lifers: the exercisers, yogacisers, green juicers and early nighters. Genetically perfect, healthy and wholesome, one hundred-year-old Lea is the poster girl for lifers, until the day she catches a glimpse of her father in the street, eighty-eight years after their last encounter. While pursuing him, Lea has a brush with death which sparks suspicions. If Lea could be so careless, is she worthy of immortality? Suicide Club wasn’t always an activist group. It began as a set of disillusioned lifers, gathering to indulge in forbidden activities: performances of live music, artery-clogging meals, irresponsible orgies. But now they have been branded terrorists and are hunted by the state. And Lea has decided to give them a call.”

The Favourite Sister by Jessica Knoll“Brett and Kelly Courtney are the shining jewels in a New York-based reality TV show called Goal Diggers. One of the most popular shows on American national television, its fiercely competitive cast of five self-made women are defined by their success, beauty and ruthless drive to reach the top by whatever means necessary. The Courtney sisters’ rivalry goes skin deep despite the blossoming business they have built together that helps disadvantaged women in Morocco. Harbouring bitter jealousies and dark secrets about their manufactured screen lives they’re joined by three other hyper-competitive women who all have their own agendas. And the latest season promises sparks to fly in the quest for even higher ratings. Vicious backstabbing, scathing social media attacks and finely-tuned scripting draw in the viewing public every week, all orchestrated by the show’s omnipotent producers. But even they don’t know that season 4 will end in murder…”

Shelter In Place by Nora Roberts“When the shots rang out in the shopping mall, Simone Knox knew what to do. Shelter in place. That’s what they taught you to do in the event of a mass shooting. So on that terrible, hot summer day in 2005, Simone was lucky. She escaped death. But she would never be the same again. More than ten years later, Simone still struggles with grief, trauma and the misplaced guilt of a survivor. She spends much of her time alone on Tranquility Island – a quiet, artistic community off the coast of Maine. But she is transforming – shaping herself the way she shapes her extraordinary and highly prized sculptures. As she heals herself, she opens up to Reed Quartermaine, who survived the shooting himself and has become a detective. But someone has been watching all the survivors of the DownEast Mall massacre. They have spent years perfecting a plan to finish what was started that day. Now that Reed and Simone have found each other, they are in more danger than they can possibly imagine – from a killer who will not, and cannot stop.”

Mrs Fletcher by Tom Perrotta“Eve Fletcher is trying to figure out what comes next. A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve is struggling to adjust to her empty nest when one night her phone lights up with a text message. Sent from an anonymous number, the mysterious sender tells Eve, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life-serving as Executive Director of the local senior center by day and taking a community college course on Gender and Society at night-Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website called MILFateria.com, which features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence. Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan-a jock and aspiring frat boy-discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.”

Audio Book Haul

Something In The Water by Catherine Steadman“Erin is a documentary filmmaker on the brink of a professional breakthrough, Mark a handsome investment banker with big plans. Passionately in love, they embark on a dream honeymoon to the tropical island of Bora Bora, where they enjoy the sun, the sand, and each other. Then, while scuba diving in the crystal blue sea, they find something in the water… Could the life of your dreams be the stuff of nightmares? Suddenly the newlyweds must make a dangerous choice: to speak out or to protect their secret. After all, if no one else knows, who would be hurt? Their decision will trigger a devastating chain of events… Have you ever wondered how long it takes to dig a grave? Wonder no longer.”

The Babysitter by Sheryl Browne – “Mark and Melissa Cain are thrilled to have found Jade, a babysitter who is brilliant with their young children. Having seen her own house burn to the ground, Jade needs them as much as they need her. Moving Jade into the family home can only be a good thing, can’t it? As Mark works long hours as a police officer and Melissa struggles with running a business, the family become ever more reliant on their babysitter, who is only too happy to help. And as Melissa begins to slip into depression, it’s Jade who is left picking up the pieces. But Mark soon notices things aren’t quite as they seem. Things at home feel wrong, and as Mark begins to investigate their seemingly perfect sitter, what he discovers shocks him to his core. He’s met Jade before. And now he suspects he might know what she wants… Mark is in a race against time to protect his family. But what will he find as he goes back to his family home?”

The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan“Cormac Reilly is about to reopen a case it took him twenty years to forget. On his first week on the job, Garda Cormac Reilly responds to a call at a decrepit country house to find two silent, neglected children waiting for him – fifteen-year-old Maude and five-year-old Jack. Their mother lies dead upstairs. Twenty years later, Cormac has left his high-flying career as a detective in Dublin and returned to Galway. As he struggles to navigate the politics of a new police station, Maude and Jack return to haunt him. What ties a recent suicide to the woman’s death so long ago? And who among his new colleagues can Cormac really trust?”

#ReadYourFaceOff TBR

The general goal for a #ReadYourFaceOff readathon is to get through as much reading as you can in a 24-hour window of time. It’s a fun (and short) readathon that was created by Riley from RMFickFack. This round will run from 9am on Saturday 9th June to 9am on Sunday 10th June in your time zone. I’m quite a way behind in my Game Of Thrones read-along and as I’m due to finish at the end of this month, that’s what I’ll be focusing most of my energy on. If I manage to finish Game Of Thrones, or I feel like I need a break or want to mix things up I’ll be switching to some of the nostalgic reads I’ve included for good measure. Good luck to everyone who is participating in this round!

Latest Library Loans

The Women In The Walls by Amy Lukavics“Lucy Acosta’s mother died when she was three. Growing up in a Victorian mansion in the middle of the woods with her cold, distant father, she and her best friend and cousin, Margaret, know the ancient hallways inside out. Or so they think… When her beloved Aunt Penelope disappears while walking in the surrounding woods, Lucy finds herself devastated and alone. Margaret, meanwhile, has been spending a LOT of time in the attic. She claims she can hear her mother’s voice whispering from the walls. Shut out by her father, Lucy watches helplessly as her cousin’s sanity slowly and completely unravels. And then she begins hearing voices herself…”

Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman“Carol Evers is a woman with a dark secret. She has died many times… but her many deaths are not final: They are comas, a waking slumber indistinguishable from death, each lasting days. Only two people know of Carol’s eerie condition. One is her husband, Dwight, who married Carol for her fortune, and—when she lapses into another coma—plots to seize it by proclaiming her dead and quickly burying her… alive. The other is her lost love, the infamous outlaw James Moxie. When word of Carol’s dreadful fate reaches him, Moxie rides the Trail again to save his beloved from an early, unnatural grave. And all the while, awake and aware, Carol fights to free herself from the crippling darkness that binds her—summoning her own fierce will to survive. As the players in this drama of life and death fight to decide her fate, Carol must in the end battle to save herself.”

The Swimming Pool by Louise Candlish“The swimming pool- a perfect stage. In the heady swelter of a suburban summer, the Elm Hill lido opens. For teacher Natalie Steele, the school holiday typically means weeks of carefully planned activities with her husband Ed and their daughter Molly. But not this year. Despite Molly’s extreme phobia of the water, Natalie is drawn to the lido and its dazzling social scene, led by the glamorous Lara Channing. Soon Natalie is spending long, intoxicating days with Lara at the pool – and intimate evenings at her home. Natalie’s real life begins to feel very far away. But is the new friendship everything it seems? Why is Natalie haunted by memories from another summer years ago? And, without realising, has she been swept dangerously out of her depth?”

Die For You by Lisa Unger – “Isabel Raine thought she had everything–a successful career, a supportive family, and a happy marriage. Then one ordinary morning, her husband, Marcus, leaves for work and never comes back. She spends the day frantically calling his cell phone and his office, but receives no answer. After a dramatic raid at his office in which she’s knocked unconscious, a homicide detective shows up wanting to question her about Marcus Raine–the real Marcus Raine. Now the only thing Isabel knows for sure is that her husband of five years is gone. Where is he and who is he are questions no one seems able to answer. But Isabel will not rest until she discovers the truth about the man she loves, even if it means risking everything–including her own life.”