July Reading Wrap Up

Wednesday, 3 August 2016
July was a good month for me in reading. It always is because I set myself a week every July to read as much as I can. I actually read 4 of these books during that one week so you can see how much it works for me. I spent a lot of time reading Kindle books this month until I had read all but two of the books on my Kindle. It was nice to feel caught up. Then there was a really good sale on Kindle books so I stocked up on 5 new ones which only cost me £7.95 which is a total bargain! I read faster on Kindle for some reason so that really helps me be able to read more. I also really enjoyed the books I read this month: in particular the Holly Bourne novels which I got hooked on. I've taken on a second job at another pharmacy which means that I'm going to be a lot busier in August but hopefully I'll still get a lot of reading done. At the moment my plans are to finish rereading the Harry Potter series and try out some of my new Kindle reading. But until then, here's what I thought of the books I read in July...

Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison - When my sister said that she was thinking about throwing out her copy of this one I seriously couldn't help but rescue it. I absolutely loved Louise Rennison's books when I was a younger teenager and was so saddened when I heard recently that she had passed away. Despite being older now I still really enjoyed rereading this book. It was just so much fun! The voice of Georgia Nicholson is so strong, almost like a teenage Bridget Jones. This book is laugh out loud funny and I'm not ashamed to say that I enjoyed it just as much this time around as I did when I was 13. 5/5 stars. Really tempted to reread the whole series now if I can find them somewhere cheap. 

Liberty's Fire by Lydia Syson* - This is an interesting one because I was sent a review copy of this around April time 2015. But no matter how many times I tried to start it I just couldn't get into it. Recently I started it again and got properly hooked. Sometimes you just need to be in the right mood for a book! This book is about a young poor girl and a violinist during the Paris Commune of 1871. Which honestly wasn't something I'd even heard of. If I was more interested in history I think I could have appreciate this book a lot more but I did fall in love with the really rich and poignant writing style of the book. The character relationships were pretty complex for a young adult book and it made for a really addictive read once I actually got into it. I gave this book 3/5 stars as I enjoyed it but as I struggled with getting into the book I feel like a higher rating would be wrong. 

Stardust by Neil Gaiman - I've read some Neil Gaiman books before and I managed to get this book on Kindle for free as part of some offer they had going on a few months ago. It's a really short book so I'm glad that I got round to reading it as it was a nice, quick summer read. I'd seen the movie before years ago and enjoyed it so was looking forward to seeing what the book was like. I enjoyed it overall but I'm not a big fantasy novel fan so it didn't suck me in as much as I imagine it would big fantasy fans. I also thought that this was a childrens book but it was actually pretty gruesome at times. I gave it 3/5 stars.

How Hard Can Love Be? by Holly Bourne - After we read Am I Normal Now? as part of Sassy Books (full review here) I've wanted to read the second book in the series. I actually downloaded this to my Kindle in Dublin airport for my travels through North America but I didn't actually get round to reading it until now. This book follows Amber as she visited her alcoholic mother in America. It's the first time she's seen her mum in two years and she's agreed to work for the summer at her stepdad's summer camp. This book deals with the resentment that Amber has for her mum because of her addiction and also her meeting lots of new people (and a potential love interest) from a different culture. I enjoyed this book but at times I found Amber to be a very annoying narrating character. So in the end I gave this book 4/5 stars.

The Manifesto On How To Be Interesting by Holly Bourne - After finishing How Hard Can Love Be? in the space of 24 hours I wanted some more of Holly Bourne's writing so I dived straight into this. This book is narrated by Bree - an unpopular high schooler who dreams of being a writer. She tries to convert herself into one of the popular kids in the hope that it will make good writing material. Honestly I didn't enjoy this one. I couldn't identify a lot with the main character as I found her to be really whiney and quite frankly the cause of most of her problems. Had I read this at 13 I probably would have loved it but I think I'm a bit too old now to be the target audience for this one. I gave it 2/5 stars.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by Harry Potter - Pretty self explanatory! I started rereading the Harry Potter books before my exams and stopped after Goblet of Fire because I was going on holiday and this book is massive and far too heavy to have gone with me. This is actually my least favourite but a lot of plot setting is done in this book so it's really important. I think I dislike this one because I hate Umbridge so much and I get really angry reading about her. I also have been watching the films alongside the books. It's really fun so read and watch them at the same time as you notice all the tiny details. 5/5 stars as even though it's my least favourite Harry Potter, it's still Harry Potter.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by Harry Potter - This is probably my second favourite book in the series so I really enjoyed rereading it. I think this is the book where it starts to get serious and we start to discover a lot of the darker side of the wizarding world. Plus seeing the relationships bloom is really nice. One of my least favourite things about the Harry Potter films is that Ginny isn't as good a character as she is in the books. She's so much more fun! And I love Slughorn as a character I think he adds a good bit of humour to the story with his collecting. 5/5 stars.

Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella - I've never read any of Sophie Kinsella's books before but I know that she is a really famous chick lit author. When I saw that she'd released a young adult book I was curious. So I downloaded this without really knowing what it was about. It's actually about a young girl with social anxiety (should have known - Zoella's review is on the cover). I read this book in the space of 24 hours. It's not too long and is really easy to read. I gave this one 4/5 stars because unfortunately it went down one of the 'oh my god my life is 100x better now I have a boyfriend' routes which is definitely unrealistic for someone with social anxiety. But despite that I really enjoyed the rest of the book.

Have you read any of these books? What did you think of them?

July Reading Wrap Up 2015 // July Reading Wrap Up 2014

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