Recent Reading Hits and Misses

It’s book day! Reading has become such a relaxing escape for me, so I truly enjoy putting together these posts every month. Ready for some recent reading hits and misses?

Recent Reading Hits and Misses
 

Couldn’t Put Them Down …

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher – 4 stars

I feel weird saying that I enjoyed this book given the story and content. But, nonetheless I did and think it’s an important read for adolescents. I read this just about a week after finishing the Netflix series, and I was thrown a little bit with how many changes there were between the book and show. I found the book to have more of an impact because it wasn’t being sensationalized for the mass media (if you’ve read the book and watched the show, you know what I’m talking about). It’s a tough read for sure but quick if you’re looking for something a little more serious.

Mean Streak by Sandra BrownMean Streak by Sandra Brown – 5 stars

Oh gosh – I LOVE THIS BOOK. I’m even contemplating reading it again. I wasn’t too familiar with Sandra Brown before this, and I definitely plan to read more of her books. This one is the perfect balance of romance and thriller/suspense. I can’t say too much without giving away details. I stayed up until 4 a.m. one night to finish this, and I didn’t guess any of the twists. SO GOOD. Thanks for the recommendation, Kristen!

 

Enjoyable Enough …

The Girls by Emma ClineThe Girls by Emma Cline – 3 stars

I couldn’t figure out if this book was supposed to be a coming-of-age story or an inside look at the life and culture of a cult. The characters did nothing for me, especially the main character. She had a decent-enough life that it didn’t make a whole lot of sense why she ended up in the cult. Plus, the attempts to draw references and similarities from Charles Manson were so obvious that it was hard to separate fact and fiction. If Cline wanted to write a fictional depiction of real-life events, then she should’ve just gone for it.

 

A New Model by Ashley GrahamA New Model: What Confidence, Beauty and Power Really Look Like by Ashley Graham – 3 stars

My mom actually was the one that recommended this to me after seeing Ashley Graham promote it on all the morning talk shows. This wasn’t a bad read but not what I expected. For someone struggling with negative body image, I wanted a self-help read instead of a memoir. Even though she’s had her struggles, Ashley Graham always has had a strong sense of confidence (seriously, she’ll be the first to tell you) so I wasn’t able to relate to a lot of it. It was interesting to learn some of the ins and outs of the fashion/modeling industry, though.

Skip …

Steel Brothers Saga Books 1-3 by Helen HardtSteel Brothers Saga Books 1-3 by Helen Hardt – 2 stars

How this series gets rave reviews on Goodreads is beyond me. These were hilarious, and I don’t mean in a good way. I actually can’t believe that I read all three. The fact that Talon and Jade love each other is comical – they don’t even know each other! And, I’m supposed to believe that all of Talon’s childhood traumas are magically healed and over with? Yeah, right. Every chapter of every book was repetitive, the characters were pretty dumb, and the sexy stuff was just annoying and even odd at times. Talon, you were kidnapped and brutally raped as a kid yet you still insist on ass-play with Jade? Not only do I find that disturbing anyways, but I don’t get it for this fictional character. It makes zero sense. ZERO.

Currently reading: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood and The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin.

What books are on your summer reading list?

Linking up for Show Us Your Books.
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  • Katie Elizabeth

    I just downloaded The Handmaid’s Tale for our book club! How is it?!

    • So far, it’s interesting! I’m about halfway through, and I’m not entirely sure where it’s going. It’s honestly disturbing in a way just to think about what women are used for/treated. Definitely a thought-provoking read!

  • Emily Dunham

    I love Sandra Brown’s books!

  • Debra Stachelski

    My reading list is sooooo long, as you know! I’m looking forward to Elin Hilderbrand’s new book (out today!) and will be anxious to hear how you like The Handmaid’s Tale. Too many books, too little time!

    • I feel like I’m never going to get through my reading list! I’ll be anxious to borrow Elin Hilderbrand’s new book from you if you buy it.

  • I really need to read the 13 Reasons Why after watching it on Netflix. Such an important topic, but I’m sad to hear that the show of course went away from the book.

    Green Fashionista

    • The show just sensationalized/dramatized a lot of it more than I think was necessary. But, I understand the shock value of watching something opposed to reading it. Either way, both adaptations are equally important and heart wrenching.

  • I’m not familiar with Sandra Brown, but I’ll definitely have to look into her books now. From what I’ve read it seems like people either really like The Girls, or just couldn’t get into it.

    • I definitely couldn’t get into The Girls. It took me two attempts to even finish it! I can’t wait to read more Sandra Brown books, I really loved Mean Streak.

  • Okay, everyone’s raving about Mean Streak so now I must read it, lest I be left out. LOL! But seriously, I love a good book with unexpected twists. I thought The Girls started so strong but ended with a whimper. And yes, it modeled a little too closely to Manson in my mind.

    • LOL! I’m glad so many of us get FOMO when it comes to books. 😉 Mean Streak is a great read, though – I loved it. Glad it wasn’t just me that felt that way about The Girls.

  • I’ve read both of your current reads so I’m looking forward to your reviews.

    I felt the exact same way about The Girls. 13 Reasons Why was fantastic.

    • I’m about halfway through Handmaid’s Tale and can’t wait to jump into Storied Life. 13 Reasons Why was SO good. I still think about it weeks later.

  • shootingstarsmag

    I really love 13 Reasons Why. I should re-read it when I can, because it’s been practically ten years now. I read it when it first came out. I have Ashley Graham’s memoir – I need to read that soon. I hope you enjoy The Storied Life…that’s on my wish list!

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

    • I hope that you enjoy Ashley Graham’s book! It wasn’t bad at all, just not what I expected. Can’t wait to read The Storied Life!

  • I’m definitely going to check out Mean Streak!

  • Everybody is raving about Mean Streak this month, so it’s definitely going on my TBR list! I’ve actually been putting off watching 13 Reasons Why because I want to read the book first, but I think that I need to be in the mood for it.

    • Yes, I would agree with that! I watched the show before I read the book, but it really didn’t affect anything since some of the characters and how things play out are different in both. The show is a lot harder to get through/watch opposed to reading it. The show producers really took some dramatic liberties with the story.

  • I felt the same way about The Girls! I didn’t even finish it, I was so annoyed by the main character. I loved 13 Reasons Why! I liked the show too, because it showed different aspects, but the book was definitely better.

    • It took me two separate times to get through The Girls, so I agree with you! The main character was annoying. 13 Reasons Why was so good and such an important read.

  • I need to check out Mean Streak. Girls let me down. So much promise.

  • Nadine

    I’ve heard a lot of good things about Mean Streak and Sandra Brown’s other new novel so I can’t wait to read them!!!

  • Such a great list! I’ll keep this in mind next time I’m trying to find a good book.
    ~Samantha
    http://goldcoastgirlblog.com

  • Christina Sotherden

    When you stay up most of the night you know it’s good! Romance mixed with suspense sounds like a good one to me!

  • Mean Streak sounds like my next book! 🙂

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

  • Ooo, I liked both Handmaid’s Tale and The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, so I’m eager to know what you think! I’m currently on a reading hot streak because ALLL of my holds came in at the library (that’s always the way), so I’m in the middle of The Lost Book of the Grail, Dreamland Burning, Grit, and Bread & Wine. I’m actually loving all of them so far, but we’ll see how it goes!