Summer 2021 has been quite a busy time for me as I get closer to my fiance and I's upcoming wedding, finding a place to live, work, coaching, and of course, reading as much as I can! As a result, I have not been able to write long reviews. Oops! So, I am trying something new with some mini-reviews! This summer, I have been reading summer romances, deep historical fiction books, and some old favorites. This is usually my typical summer mood before September hits and I go into full spooky, atmospheric, back to school, autumn, cozy reads. And now, onto the mini-reviews!
Book 1: The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles
From Paris 1939 to Montana 1983, Odile Souchet has always been obsessed with books, especially when she worked for the American Library in Paris at the height of the Second World War. She was a quiet woman in Montana and no one knew her past until Lily, her young neighbor who lost her mother, enters her house for a school project. This book takes you through the struggles of living in Paris during the war, the lives lost, the friendships severed and the way books always bring comfort in strife. I highly recommend this book not only for the gorgeous cover but for the beautiful details of the library and the compelling characters.
Book 2: Beach Read by Emily Henry
This book has officially captured my bookish and romance-loving heart. January Andrews is a romance writer who is stuck in a MAJOR rut after her father passes away. He bequests her his Michigan home so she disappears for the summer to a lakeside town with a charming community, well-loved bookstore and a surprising neighbor…her cute yet frustrating MFA program nemesis, Augustus Everett. For the next three months, the two craft a writing challenge to not only inspire their creative side but also to dig deeper into what is really tugging at both their hearts. Emily Henry is truly a genius of combining the writer's life with romance, and it is just a 10/10 for any book lover and romance fanatic.
Book 3: Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson
A historical fiction account of a slave woman’s quest for freedom by bartering love in the most infamous slave jail in Virginia. Pheby Brown was promised freedom by her master until that was all destroyed when her master died and she is taken to the Devil’s Half-Acre, the most notorious jail for slaves in the South. This book takes you on a journey through her life, her struggles and her desire for freedom for herself and her children. A harrowing tale that is a little graphic at times. I did this one on audio, and it was quick yet immersing.
Book 4: Dial A For Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto
What do you get when your mom sets you up on a date unintentionally with her flower delivery guy who turns out to be a creeper? You crash your car, accidentally kill him and call your supportive band of aunties to help you get rid of it all. Oh and did I forget to mention, this all has to happen during a wedding on a remote island where your ex-boyfriend and love of your life is the owner of the island hotel…yikes! This humorous rom-com is perfect for those who love big family stories, messy love stories and silly banter between family members. Again, I did this on audio but it was so good for the accents of the aunties!
Book 5: The Bronte Plot by Katherine Reay
My third Katherine Reay book of the year did not disappoint. Lucy Alling makes a living selling rare books…but sometimes she bends the rules a little to make them more enticing. When her deep dark secret destroys her relationships with her boyfriend and boss, she leaves everything behind to take his grandmother on her last trip to England to help her purchase antique items. While on the trip, she learns Helen has secrets of her own she needs to unpack and Lucy finally starts to heal. While life can have regrets, this story showcases the triumphs one can have even over their greatest mistakes.
These 5 books sum up my summer reading taste which was a contemporary romance with strong life lessons, historical fiction where I learn about a new to me historic account and a hint of humor to keep me smirking at the book while I read. Fall means spooky, atmospheric, and academia-styled books so that is where I will be reading next. I hope you had the best summer!