I guess I was in the mood for dark and twisted this month because the bulk of my books were psychological thrillers. I’m not too sad about it though because they were all pretty entertaining, some more than others. The few that didn’t fall into that genre were fantastic so overall August was a great month for reading! Click on the links below for the standalone reviews of each title.
My favorite book this month was written by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Maybe in Another Life was so beautiful. Of course, when it comes to TJR I’m very biased. I absolutely love the way she writes her characters and tells their stories and this one was no exception. Told in two concurrent storylines, this book is about a woman who makes a seemingly innocent choice that greatly impacts the future of her life. A story about chance and love in all different types of relationships. So, SO good. Unputdownable. 5 out of 5 stars.
The most compulsive read of the month for me was Never Coming Home, by Kate Williams. A wild ride with a few twists and turns and a whole lot of death. LOL. Nothing about this was scary, but definitely a bit suspenseful for a YA read. Incredibly easy to devour (I finished in two days) and sucks you right in from the start. A group of young influencers travel to a private, invite-only island for free! And if it sounds too good to be true, well, it is. One by one, the young influencers die while on the island, but who’s responsible for their deaths?! I certainly didn’t expect the ending, but was pleasantly surprised with how it played out! If you like a fast paced thriller without the graphic gore, this one’s perfect. 4 out of 5 stars.
The most charming book I listened to this month was written and narrated by my favorite audiobook narrator, Julia Whelan. Thank You For Listening was so much fun. I adored everything about it. This is a story about an audiobook narrator, Sewanee Chester, who reluctantly agrees to co-narrate one last romance novel with the industry’s most steamy voice, Brock McNight. As you can imagine, Sewanee and Brock develop their own brand of romance, but this book is about so much more than that! Yes…the romance (and a little spice!) is there…witty banter and all. But the relationships Sewanee has with those closest to her coupled with the fallout from the accident that changed her life are also big players in this endearing story. Lots of heart and humor…I’ll definitely listen to this one again and I think you should, too. 4.5 out of 5 stars.
My favorite psychological thriller of the month was Greenwich Park, by Katherine Faulkner. This was on my TBR for a while and I was so excited to finally sit down and read it and even happier it didn’t disappoint. An incredibly well written, well paced debut novel, this one had me putting the pieces of the puzzle together right up until the end. This one is written from three different POVs and features my favorite “unreliable narrator” trope I love so much. A slow burn, but so compelling! And quite a bit I didn’t see coming!! All of the characters are hiding secrets that eventually lead to their demise. I don’t wanna spoil anything, but I promise this one’s a keeper! 4 out of 5 stars.
The most disappointing book of the month was The Last Housewife, by Ashley Winsted. Let me just say that I definitely thought this book was entertaining (a very morbid curiosity aspect to the whole thing). But here’s the thing…I had this one on my TBR for months and couldn’t wait for it’s release. There was SO much hype surrounding it and I was expecting a grand slam, but got a base hit instead. A great read, just not as good as I was expecting. This one involves a sex cult and comes with every trigger warning imaginable (please read the content warnings!!!) A cross between Eyes Wide Shut + Fifty Shades of Gray + The Handmaid’s Tale. Really dark and twisted. I don’t mind that in my books, but I just expected more?! Entertaining, well written, quick and easy read. 3.8 out of 5 stars.
The book I read this month that’s most likely to be made into a Lifetime movie was When I Was You, by Amber Garza. Stalking. Obsession. Murder. I mean, if that doesn’t scream Lifetime I’m not sure what does. This fast paced suspense had a twist I didn’t see coming and I don’t feel like that’s always an easy feat to conquer. I was pleasantly surprised with the way it all played out and personally loved the premise. While pretty unbelievable, it was highly entertaining. And I always love a psychological thriller with an unreliable narrator trope! 4 out of 5 stars.
The most heart-tugging book I read this month was The People We Keep, by Allison Larkin. GUSH. Just so, so well done. Beautifully written albeit incredibly frustrating and heartbreaking. A 16-year-old leaves home never to return and navigates life alone after her mom dies and her dad all but abandons her. Her journey of self-discovery had me feeling all the emotions. A messed up coming of age story. At it’s core, this is a book about the people we meet in life – who we choose to keep and who we let go. Keep the tissues nearby with this one. A touching read for sure. 4.2 out of 5 stars.
The book that bookTok convinced me I needed to read immediately was When She Returned, by Lucinda Berry. BookTok usually knocks those recommendations out of the park for me and I couldn’t wait to dig in. While I thought this one was really fast paced and entertaining, I didn’t quite understand all the hype surrounding it. Not to say it wasn’t a good book…I sped through it in two days and really enjoyed it a lot! But I thought it was missing some backstory about the main character that might have helped to make her storyline a bit more plausible. Loved the premise of the story…A woman vanishes from a Target parking lot and returns home 11 years later…and loved the way it was told (three different POVs in both the past and the present). Easy to follow, fast paced, compulsive read. I think I just wanted a little bit more (and I realize this is just a me thing). I’d recommend especially if you enjoy page turners! 3.6 out of 5 stars.
Can’t wait to see what September has in store for me. Bring on the books!
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