5★ books | book review | wrap-ups

July wrap-up: What I’ve read


Hoohoo, friends.

Another month has passed and so it is time to show you what I’ve read.

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton & Jodi Meadows ★★★★

What’s it about?

It is basically a retelling of Jane Eyre but with ghosts. And the Brontës, who are part of the story. Charlotte then writes about it. Minus the ghosts. Anyways, Charlotte and Jane are friends at Lowood school. Jane then receives a job at Thornfield Hall with Mr. Rochester and Charlotte gets the knowledge of Jane being and danger and rushes to her aid. She is also helping Mr. Blackwood, a ghost hunter, who thinks that something at Thornfield Hall is not as it seems…

My opinion:

This book was hilarious! Jane Eyre is one of my favourite books of all time and after reading My Lady Jane (The first book by Hand, Ashton & Meadows), I knew what kind of writing style and humour I signed up for. And while I did not like the characters as much, I still fell in love with this book and read it in two days. If you like Jane Eyre and want to laugh, then please read this book. The twist with the ghosts and also some new characters thrown in makes this story amazing!

Olympian Challenger by Astrid Arditi ★★★

What’s it about?

Hope would do everything to save her mentally ill, dying mother. When she receives a mysterious invitation for a contest, she thinks about going because the winner will get a wish. Even though she is not sure, after trying to save a boy who jumped off a bridge, she finds herself on Mount Olympus as a part of the contest. There, she finds friends and love and gods who might help her as well as dangerous gods, who can destroy everything she fought for.

My opinion:

The concept of the story was really good, but the execution was only okay. I would have loved more details, especially when it came to the different characters. There are a lot of important characters but in my opinion, all of them lack a certain depth. The plot was fast paced and exciting, the gods interacting with humans was portrayed in an interesting way and all in all, I really enjoyed this book. (full review)

Save the Date by Morgan Matson ★★★★

What’s it about?

When Charlie sister marries, it brings together the whole Grant family as well as friends and lovers from the past. And of course with so many people, old wounds are opened, feudes are heating up and some hook up with childhood crushes. This makes for a very chaotic weekend, and Charlie just tries to keep everything together.

My opinion:

Everything about this story was stressful. Not necessarily in a bad way, but if I had such a weekend I’d probably just break down at some point. Literally everything that could go wrong also goes wrong. But if Morgan Matson can write one things, it’s family dynamics. They are always amazing and the Grants are no exception. All those different characters, none of them even remotely the same, but a big, lovely, chaotic family nevertheless. Some things were probably too much, but it definitely got the drama going and myself getting embarassed for the characters.

The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine ★★

What’s it about?

After Lorelai’s mother dies, her aunt Irina marries the king and becomes queen. With her dark power she manipulates everyone around her. Everyone but Lorelai who has the same magic running through her veins. Together with her brother and a palace guard she flees the capital and prepares to take back the throne.

My opinion:

There was nothing new really. If you have seen Snow White and the Huntsman… then you have this story. Though there were dragons in this one which was pretty cool because dragons are amazing. And to be honest, the Huntsman’d friends were my favourite characters and I wish the book was about them. It would have been more fun to read, I think.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon ★★★★★

What’s it about?

Dimple loves programming. When she has the chance to take a summer course with an amzing prize before uni starts, she takes it, surprised her parents were so quick about allowing her to go. But the reason for that is clear when she meets Rishi, who her parents think would be a fit husband for their daughter. And just like that, the program is about a lot more than programming.

My opinion:

Oh my god, I loved this book! Dimple is such a strong, cool character. And Rishi is really just the sweetest person on earth. Both of them have their flaws, but that makes them only more real and likeable. I enjoyed reading about them so much, especially with the setting in summer campus and tech and programming. I also loved how Dimple was the one who wanted to go there and develop her own app. God, I loved this book.

The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan ★★★★

What’s it about?

Christmas does not go as expected for siblings Carter and Sadie Kane. After their father causes and explosion in the British Museum and disappears in a golden coffin, they are on the run. From what, they find out soon enough: Egyptian deities who want to take over the world. And just like that, they are thrown into a world they did not know existet and have to save the world.

My opinion:

This was actually a reread and a first part of an experiment I’m doing. Because I read the trilogy before I studied egyptology and now I’m reading them while studying. And basically the whole experience was “I know those hieroglyphs! I know the places! And the people! This is correct! This… not so much!” So basically, I still loved this book, Rick Riordan’s humor is just amazing as always and while there were some things I do not agree with, this book is A+.

A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir ★★★★★
(An Ember in the Ashes #3)

What’s it about?

Spoilers for book 1&2 incoming: The Nightbringer must be stopped. But he grows stronger and stronger and his allies more numerous, thanks to the Commandant. But still, Laia, Elias, Helene and their friends try to bring him down. It seems to be impossible, especially because Elias is not ready to be Soul Catcher and the ghosts grow restless and Laia and her people are hunted. Even though there seems to be no way, they don’t give up…

My opinion:

Wow! That was amazing and shocking and had me on the edge of my seat. Sabaa Tahir’s writing style is wonderful. I loved how the seperate stories of each character continued, but how it all interacted and influenced other stories. And the whole magic thing? YAS! Just… this is one of my favourite series and I definitely remember why.

Everless by Sara Holland ★★★

What’s it about?

Time = blood = money. And when Jules’ father can’t pay the rent for their cottage anymore, she decides to act against his wishes and goes back to the place that brought them into the situation they are in: Everless, the estate of the Gerling family, where Jules spent the first years of her childhood. There, so she hopes, she will get enough time to save her father and their home. But she discovers truths about the world that change everything.

My opinion?

I can’t say exactly why, but I did not enjoy this book as much as I thought I would. It was good and a a nice read for inbetween, but I did not get warm with the protagonist and the love interest. To be honest, the love interest was quite boring. And of course the protagonist also turns out to be the only one who can save everyone. And just… while the world and story concept were amazing, it was nothing new really. Still enjoyed it.

Verliere mich. Nicht. by Laura Kneidl ★★★★
(Berühre mich. Nicht. #2)

Um was geht’s?

Nachdem Sages Vergangenheit sie eingeholt und sie deshalb mit Luca Schluss gemacht hat, zieht sie kurzerhand in ein Motel und zieht sich von der Welt zurück. Doch ihre Freunde wollen nichts davon wissen und versuchen, ihr zu helfen. Auch Luca tritt zurück in ihr Leben, doch sie weiß nicht, ob sie ihre Beziehung zu ihm wirklich noch retten kann.

Meine Meinung:

Ehrlich gesagt gefiel mir dieser Teil sogar besser als der erste. Ich konnte mich besser mit Sage identifizieren und fand es klasse, wie sehr sie sich entwickelt hat. Luca hat mich teilweise echt aufgeregt, aber trotzdem war er immer für Sage da und man hat gemerkt, wie sehr auch er unter der Trennung leidet. Wie die Beziehung zwischen ihnen, aber auch die in der Freundschaftsgruppe beschrieben werden, war sehr realistisch und hat mir sehr gut gefallen.

Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi ★★★★★
(Shatter Me #4)

What’s it about?

Spoilers for book 1-3 incoming: After Juliette killed the Supreme Commander of North America, she has declared herself that title. With Warner at her side, that should not be too hard. But the job itself is more difficult than she thought and Warner’s past catches up with him and Juliette has to deal with it as well. And suddenly, she is in more danger than she imagined.

My opinion:

Waahhhhhh! I did not realize how much I’ve missed Juliette and Warner. And Tahereh Mafi’s writing style in this series, how each character has a very unique voice. I love how Mafi deals with the trauma of war and torture. Also how she writes relationships and their dynamics. And oh my god, I love Kenji. Above everything else. One of my absolute favourite characters. Sassy, saracastic, witty. My boy. And everyone grows so much. I need the enxt book. I need more of those characters.

Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton ★★★★★
(Rebel of the Sands #2)

What’s it about?

spoiler for book 1 incoming: The rebellion is growing. But the Sultan is not a stupid man and this is not the first war he is fighting. While his power is not exactly diminished, Amani and her band of rebels do everything they can to win this fight. Both camps have asses up their sleeves, the others don’t know about. But will it be enough for the rebels to win in the end? Especially, when Amani is captured and is forced to serve the Sultan in a similar way her brother did.

My opinion:

Why are all the sequels I read this month so good? This one as well, had me screaming and groaning more than once. So much happened. The plot was so fast paced, but the characters were still extremely important, old ones and new ones alike. Just… Alwyn Hamilton knows how to write. Damn. This was an amazing and heartbreaking story and I’m lucky to already own book 3 because it’s about time I read it!

Damsel by Elana K. Arnold (ARC) ★★

What’s it about?

In Harding, the prince can only become king when he defeats a dragon and saves the Damsel. And that is exactly what Emory claims to have done, when he returns from his mission with Ama, a damsel who cannot remember anything from her life before the dragon. Ama soon discovers, that not everything is as it seems and that there are many secrets to uncover.

My opinion:

I loved the sound of it, but I was disappointed. The plot was really slow, the writing style was as well. And basically the whole book was just men being stupid fuckers (sorry) and keeping Ama down. Seriously, there is rape and mental and physical abuse. At least Ama doesn’t just take everything as it is and tries to save herself. But to be honest? The ending was the only thing I really, truly liked. Everything else was just weird and not to my liking.

  1. “Save the Date” habe ich gerade vorgestern beendet und meine Gedanken waren ganz ähnlich wie deine: ich hätte mich wahrscheinlich schon am Freitag Abend auf eine einsame Insel abgesetzt 😀 Ich fand das Buch aber sehr unterhaltsam, wenn auch – durch die ganzen Probleme – etwas over the top. Auf eine sehr sympathische Art 😉
    Was ich bei Morgan Matson auch immer toll finde, ist, dass sie Crossover ihrer eigenen Bücher schreibt 😀 Das fiel mir schon bei “The Unexpected Everything” auf und auch bei “Save the Date” hat sie’s wieder gemacht ♥

    “Everless” wartet derzeit auf meinen eReader, gelesen zu werden. Eigentlich gar nicht so mein Genre, aber es kostete nur 0,99€, da dachte ich, ich kann es ja mal probieren 😉

    Liebe Grüße und ein schönes Wochenende

    1. Hallöchen 🙂
      Ja, ich finde Morgan Matson auch klasse, vor allem – wie du gesagt hast – die Crossovers. Ich hätte so ein Wochenende echt nicht durchgehalten. Schon ein Tag wäre mir wahrscheinlich zu viel 😀 Aber zum Lesen war das eben sehr unterhaltsam 😀
      Ich hoffe, dass Everless dir gefällt! Das ist ja auch so ein Buch, wo sich die Meinungen komplett spalten. Und für 0,99€ ist es auf jeden Fall einen Versuch wert 🙂
      Danke, dir auch ein tolles Wochenende!
      Liebe Grüße

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