It’s the end of August. It’s the end of August. It is THE END of AUGUST. 😱😱😱
Yeah, sorry about the drama. School starts again in September, and I can’t believe summer is drawing to an end already. On that note: I’m not sure what’s going to happen to my blogging schedule once school starts, so just warning you in advance. Let’s see how well I can juggle blogging with real life!
Anyway, all this leading to: Let’s get started with August’s monthly wrap-up!
- My Dear Hamilton, by Stephanie Dray & Laura Kamoie. Everything historical fiction should stand for. Meticulously researched and featuring three-dimensional characters — a new favorite for sure. Also, side note: I completely forgot to copy-paste the final version of my review into the actual post, and I’ve been beating myself up for that ever since, so here‘s the text of what should have been my final review if you want to check it out. (It’s actually not all that different from what was published, but still.) ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑
- The Raven Boys, by Maggie Stiefvater. Perfection. Absolute perfection, with elements including but not limited to beautiful writing, characters so real that I wouldn’t be surprised if they jumped off the page, and a fascinating storyline. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑
- A Song of Wraiths and Ruin, by Roseanne A. Brown. West African-inspired world + suspenseful plot (those plot twists!!) + sweetheart characters I’d do anything for + some intense chemistry = need the sequel. ASAP. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ½
- The Voting Booth, by Brandy Colbert. A charming story with a passion for social justice in every line and a cute romance on the side. I did have a bit of trouble connecting with the main characters, but a lovely read nonetheless. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ¾
- A Love Hate Thing, by Whitney D. Grandison. A hate-to-love romance that would’ve been a solid read if not for the author’s juvenile writing style. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑
- Royal Holiday, by Jasmine Guillory. A lovely, fluffy romance set in the United Kingdom. Plenty of cuteness, but not a lot of substance. Not that I minded. Review to come. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑
- The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood. Reread for my school’s book club. I enjoyed it more than the first time, I guess? I find the entire premise fascinating, but I don’t have a whole lot of feelings about the book. Review to come (maybe)? ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ½
- Interpreter of Maladies, by Jhumpa Lahiri. Required reading that I enjoyed a whole lot more than I was expecting to. The constant push-and-pull between cultures felt by immigrants was thought-provoking to see on page. ⭑ ⭑ ⭑ ⭑
Movies & Musicals
The Greatest Showman. Disney+ is really making it hard for me to quit my subscription. This movie was incredible. Live-action movie musicals are rare enough these days, much less live-action movie musicals with songs as memorable as Pasek and Paul’s. And of course the characters all managed to capture my heart as well. Seriously, what is it with me and musicals about the rags-to-riches stories of historical figures possessing unhealthy amounts of ambition?
Hamilton. Speaking of which… look, I know I mentioned this in July as well. What can I say? It’s just as good as it was last month. 🤷♀️ 😂 I rewatched it for the fourth time a few days ago and had my heart broken by Phillipa Soo’s smile when she sees Alexander onstage during “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story.” So tender and hesitant and beautiful.
So I started saving the posts I wanted to include in this section in my Reader, and I’m at a loss because there are so many????? I did my best to narrow my favorite blog posts of the month down to a manageable number, but please know it was a painful process. I love all of you ❤️
- Caitlin @ Caitlin Althea gives us an insanely organized and thoughtful guide to stanning book blogs
- On the topic of book blogger appreciation, Marie @ Drizzle & Hurricane Books discusses the hundred and one things that book bloggers do and why we should be more appreciated
- Lauren @ Love Yo Shelf talks about performative allyship, white privilege, and white guilt in her incredibly important discussion post that everybody should go read
- Kay @ Hammock of Books gets personal about #OwnVoices and her experiences as a biracial reviewer
- Stephen @ Stephen Writes goes over how exactly he writes his fantastic reviews
- Breanna @ Paws & Paperbacks discusses content warnings, the argument against them, and why they’re important
- Noura @ The Perks of Being Noura raves over A Song of Wraiths and Ruin in her review
- Julie @ One Book More highlights her favorite parts of Six of Crows in a series of posts about the romance, humor, and words of wisdom in this ultra-hyped book that I swear I’m going to read someday
- Charis @ Charis Rae provides the ultimate book recommendations list for contemporary authors
- Chana & Malka @ Paper Procrastinators provide the bookish community with the urban dictionary we all needed in our lives
- Naemi @ A Book Owl’s Corner gives some hilarious dating advice for book nerds
- Tangie @ Mrs. T’s Corner writes a thoughtful post encouraging us all to pray and praise God without ceasing
Books to Read
I’ll keep this section to a minimum this month as well, because remember what I said last month about the holds I have at my library? Yeah, well, I may or may not have another half dozen books due to arrive within a few weeks. What even is moderation.
- Vaclav & Lena, by Haley Tanner. Presenting my first audiobook ever! I’ve been listening to this off and on throughout August, and I still have…… 4 hours to go. It’s nice to rest my eyes though, and the story is interesting as well. (CURRENTLY READING)
- Oliver Twist, by Charles Dickens. I’m in the middle of this one, and I am astonished to say that I’m actually enjoying it??!?!?!? Dickens does have a penchant for run-on sentences and excessive use of semi-colons, but I want to know what happens next, which is more than I can say of my other attempts at reading his books. (CURRENTLY READING)
- Spin the Dawn, by Elizabeth Lim. I’m finally giving into the hype after all the publicity the second book got when it released earlier this year. From the blurb, I gather that there’s court intrigue, slow-burn romance, and a quest? Like, yes please?
- Stitches, by David Small. Another required reading book. I rarely pick up graphic novels, so I’m interested to see how David Small uses the visuals for this memoir.
- The Flatshare, by Beth O’Leary. I’ve been seeing Beth O’Leary around a lot in the blogging community, and for good reason if this book is anywhere near as good as what that blurb is suggesting.
Verse of the Month
Today, I’d like to share a passage from the Bible that I read this month that really resonated with me. (Don’t worry, you can still subscribe to YouVersion’s Verse of the Day here!)
I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss. Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.Lamentations 3:20-23 (NLT)
We are going through an awful time in the world. In the United States, yet another instance of police brutality has been brought to light, the number of coronavirus cases has exceeded 6 million, the country is divided in hatred over politics — it’s awful, to say the least. But God’s faithful love and mercy will get us through this. It’s because of Him that we remain standing, and it’s because of Him that we have hope for the future. God bless you all.
That’s it for today, everyone! How about you? What did you read in August? Did you love or hate any of the books I mentioned? Share with me in the comments!!
Stay safe, everyone. Sending all my love! ❤️❤️❤️
PS: The book I described in emojis in this post was The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater! Congrats to those of you who got it!