July Book Reviews

July Book Reviews

Unlikely Animals by Annie Hartnett 5/5 Stars
This is such a great book! I was initially drawn to it because it’s based in a small New Hampshire town. Really I love everything about this book: it’s an easy read though it deals with tough topics; the historical non-fiction tie-ins with Ernest Harold Baynes; a very surprising twist; magical realism and more. It almost reads like a cozy mystery. I really appreciated the author’s note at the end where she says she was inspired by Ernest Harold Baynes and found a way to tie him in to a book she was working on about a teacher without making it historical fiction. She did an absolutely great job of it.
I was given a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Wellington by Aaron Mahnke, Delilah S. Dawson 5/5 Stars
I really liked this comic and would love to read more but it seems that it wasn’t continued. The story was engaging and unique and I liked the art.

Radical Love: Learning to Accept Yourself and Others by Zachary Levi 5/5 Stars
Anyone with any exposure to Zachary Levi at all would know that he is a big advocate for mental health awareness. I never knew his personal story but after listening to this book (I HIGHLY recommend the audiobook, he reads it!) you really understand why he talks so much about it. I went into this book not thinking anything would apply directly to my life and relationships but it it was a big eye-opener. Even if you don’t find any similarities to people in your life, I feel that everyone will end this book with more love for others and themselves. A remarkable book, I hope everyone reads it.

In the Company of Witches (Evenfall Witches B&B #1) by Auralee Wallace 5/5 Stars
Witches, magical realism, and New England come together for a goth beach read. There’s a lot going on in this story: Brynn dealing with her husband’s death and loss of her witchy superpower; the family drama of the woman who was murdered in her family’s B&B; Brynn’s aunt being the main suspect for the murder; and other small-town happenings. It was an engaging and enjoyable read for me. The perfect witch-cozy I didn’t know I needed.

The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley 4/5 Stars
I think what draws me most to this book is that there’s a lot going on and it is all intriguing. Every single person in this building has secrets they’re trying to keep but they’re no match for Jess, who is trying to find her missing brother. As you read this it’s like finding out one dirty little secret, one after the other. Very entertaining and a great escape-read.

The Cartographers by Peng Shepherd 5/5 Stars
I didn’t love the main character, Nell, but I did love the magical realism and that the book revolved around such a niche speciality (adding this to my wheelhouse): maps. 
Nell to me is a lost, stagnant person. It seems like she feels sorry for herself and since she was fired from her dream job almost a decade ago she’s been wallowing and feeling sorry for herself. It seems to come from not having much of a support system in her life and thankfully she finds that in this story. 
I did suspect the main reveal but didn’t mind it because there were smaller surprises to keep things going. I love the maps theme; it made me wish I would have thought of cartography when trying to find a way to pursue my favorite class in high school, geography. 
Overall, loved the book and had a hard time putting it down to continue on with life outside the book. 

Pretty Little Wife by Darby Kane 5/5 Stars
I am not a frequent reader of thrillers so when I find one I love I get really excited and have a very hard time not dropping everything to read it until I finish. I love that it’s not a whodunnit, but a where-did-the-body-go-and-was-he-really-dead. The action snowballed as the book progressed. I did guess the big reveal but it wasn’t until close to the reveal and it fit in well with the story (by that I mean you’re given enough clues to figure it out and the author didn’t blindside you with this “magical” reveal). I will keep an eye out for more from this author.

Kaikeyi by Vaishnavi Patel 5/5 Stars
I LOVE this book! Love the India setting, Mythology/gods, low fantasy, and the ancient royal family theme (it reminded me of The Lost Queen which is my favorite book this year so far). I love that Keikeyi gracefully steps into any role that is demanded of her and does all she can to have the life she wants no matter how bleak her situation. No idea why it’s getting a lgbt label on Goodreads. 
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I got a lot of reading done this month and they were all fantastic books. If you’d like to follow along with what I’m reading as I’m reading it, you can follow me on Goodreads.