Summer Reading Update: books that have been my hits & misses lately

 

SUMMER READING UPDATE

Hi Reading Friends! I’m back with a summer update of books I consider my hits & misses these last few months. It seems my blogging hiatus lasted quite a bit longer than I expected. My reading life has been on such a roller coaster of ups, downs, and one major slump lasting over a month that I wondered if I’d ever get my reading mojo back. Good news, it’s back and I’m very excited to get back into the blogging world and catch up on all things books and reading! I do think it’s important to share that even avid readers which I consider myself to be can occasionally find themselves hitting a wall and sometimes the best thing to do is to take a step back, relax and regroup. I’m very happy to be back and sharing some of the books I’ve loved over the last few months. I’ve also got a few average reads that were either disappointing or just didn’t blow me away as well as some DNF’s (Did Not Finish). I’ve decided to make it a priority to put down any book I’m just not enjoying which is actually pretty freeing and has led me to really enjoy my reading life again.

A Few of My Must Read Books

36249638How To Walk Away

Published May 15th by St. Martin’s Press

I wish I could break my rating up for the first 85% of the book…5 stars…and the last 15% 3.5 stars because I really enjoyed almost the whole story. Almost. This love story that starts with a plane crash had me completely engrossed until the last 15% which I felt completely left the rails. Maggie and Ian, the main characters, did some things I just can’t believe based on what we already knew about them and I spent the majority of my time eye rolling and wishing the author wouldn’t have taken that path. If that last part would’ve played out differently this would’ve been a 5 star read for me. But, I do still recommend it and a final positive thought, I’m so glad we got an epilogue.

 

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Summer Wives

Published July 10th By William Morrow

I really enjoyed this book! Told in alternating time periods between 2 women, I really feel that Beatriz Williams is one of the few authors who can pull this type of narrative off SO well. I loved the setting…a little island…and how she was able to evoke the details of time and place so that I felt I was there, sipping one of MANY cocktails with the characters in the story. I thought she weaved a fantastic story and although I may have had a tiny issue with an event at the end, it wasn’t enough to influence my enjoyment of the way the story unfolded. Definitely a summer must read that I highly recommend! 

 

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Tiger Woods

Published March 27th By Simon & Schuster

Hear me out on this one! This was SO much better than I expected. In fact, I couldn’t put it down which believe me was a total surprise to me. I’m not a huge golf fan but my husband and son play. I’ve seen Tiger play in person and I’m familiar with many of the other players on Tour which did help with my enjoyment.  I’ve never actually been all that interested in Tiger as a person but as a parent and someone who’s always loved to study human behavior, I was very interested in how he rose and fell so greatly. The authors did not disappoint, providing a riveting, well balanced, often depressing, yet fascinating, look at the creation of Tiger Woods the golfer which eclipsed Tiger Woods the person by leaps and bounds. There were many juicy details I’d never heard before and the writing and narrative was extremely well paced. I listened to about half on audio and it was also fantastic. An unlikely summer must read in my opinion!!

 

36315374Jar of Hearts

Published June 12th by Minotaur Books

Murder, drama, revenge…yes please. I loved this book! I read this in one sitting and thoroughly enjoyed myself. This was the perfect read to get me out of my month long reading slump. Bizarre, crazy and with enough turns to keep me guessing the entire time. There’s mystery, suspense and some fantastic writing to be found here. This book saved my summer reading and was just SO good!

My Disappointing Reads

You might be surprised to see these popular bestsellers on my list of disappointments and actually I am too because they were all on my highly anticipated list. I’m convinced, however, that these big hitters led to my reading slump. The Outsider , at almost 600 pages, was a huge investment of time and while I absolutely loved the first half of the book, the second completely fell apart for me. Also, I felt like this could’ve had about 200 pages cut and the story would’ve been better for it. Us Against You ended up being just ok for me. I thought it lacked the tension, drama and suspense of Beartown (My Review) and felt bogged down by the political aspects of the story. The Perfect Couple seemed like it would be the perfect beach read, especially since it involved a mystery but overall it didn’t work for me. While I loved the setting and her writing which is always fast paced, the story itself didn’t wow me and I thought there were many holes in the plot of the mystery.

My Summer DNF’s (Did Not Finish) 

Visible EmpireAll We Ever WantedThe Kiss Quotient, and Little Disasters are some of my surprising DNF’s because based on the blurbs and early reviews, I thought I’d really like all of these. Whether it was the narrative structure (Visible Empire & Little Disasters) or the story (All We Ever Wanted & The Kiss Quotient), I couldn’t get into these books and happily made the choice to put them down. The only one I feel like I might give another try to at some point is All We Ever Wanted because I do love Emily Giffin’s writing and most of her past books.

So that’s it for now, I do have some other must reads I’ll share with you soon but in the meantime, I’d love to hear which books have made YOUR summer hits & misses lists so feel free to leave a comment below.   Have a great reading week everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THROWBACK THURSDAY PICK OF THE WEEK

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I began this Throwback Thursday meme as a way to share some of my old favorites as well as sharing books that I want to read that were published over a year ago. You know, the ones waiting patiently on my TBR list while I continue to pile more titles on top of them:)! I like that these older books are usually much easier than new releases to get a hold of at libraries and elsewhere. If you have your own Throwback Thursday recommendation feel free to jump on board, you’re welcome to use my pic as well. If you’d just link back to me I’d so appreciate it.

My PICK this week is:

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Published April 2016 by Random House

My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Wonderfully tender and hilariously funny, Eligible tackles gender, class, courtship, and family 

This version of the Bennet family and Mr. Darcy is one that you have and haven’t met before: Liz is a magazine writer in her late thirties who, like her yoga instructor older sister, Jane, lives in New York City. When their father has a health scare, they return to their childhood home in Cincinnati to help and discover that the sprawling Tudor they grew up in is crumbling and the family is in disarray.

Youngest sisters Kitty and Lydia are too busy with their CrossFit workouts and Paleo diets to get jobs. Mary, the middle sister, is earning her third online master’s degree and barely leaves her room, except for those mysterious Tuesday-night outings she won’t discuss. And Mrs. Bennet has one thing on her mind: how to marry off her daughters, especially as Jane’s fortieth birthday fast approaches.

Enter Chip Bingley, a handsome new-in-town doctor who recently appeared on the juggernaut reality TV dating show Eligible. At a Fourth of July barbecue, Chip takes an immediate interest in Jane, but Chip’s friend, neurosurgeon Fitzwilliam Darcy, reveals himself to Liz to be much less charming. . . . And yet, first impressions can be deceiving. 

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As we’re all compiling our summer TBR’s and filling them to the brim (I know I am:) with all the amazing books releasing now through August, I’ve been so excited to dig into my favorite reads from LAST summer for this post…and possibly the next few TBT’s!  So, Eligible was one of those books I picked up last summer thinking…I don’t know about this, retelling of a classic that I’ve never even read (I know, how is that possible)… I basically doubted it before even starting it. BUT I read somewhere (Goodreads I think) that it was The Bachelor meets Pride and Prejudice and well…The Bachelor meets anything means I’m pretty much going to give that book a try seeing as though that’s a huge guilty pleasure tv show for me. What a total surprise for me to discover I really enjoyed this story!! Mr Bennett, the father, was classic with his witty one liners and zingers that had me laughing, the “girls,” Jane, Lizzie, Mary, Kitty and Lydia had their own issues and drama and the men of the story, Chip and Darcy were fun additions to the zany mix. I highly recommend this as a fun, entertaining, clever read that would be perfect for the pool, beach or wherever your favorite summer reading spot may be:)

HAPPY READING!

**For all you Throwback Thursday bloggers, if you don’t see your blog at the bottom of my post please leave me a comment because WordPress has been VERY bad about sending me links and I want to include everyone!!**

More Throwback Thursday Picks Around the Blogosphere 

Cathy at Between the Lines Book Blog

Jill at Jill’s Book Cafe

Deanna at DeesRadReads and Reviews

Rebecca at BoofsBooks

Nicki at The Secret Library

Amanda at Literary Weaponry

Susan at Susan Loves Books

Julie at Novel Thrills and Chills