July Reading Recap and August Reading Plan


I participate in far too many GoodReads groups and challenges. I read so much this past month in an effort to keep up and know I'll be slowing down over the next several months. 

July Reading Recap 

There are books you enjoy and then there are books you love. In July, I read 24 books and many of those books I enjoyed. However, there was only one book I LOVED. Keep your eyes out for my love letter to this cute little novel by Alysia Constantine - Sweet. Coming soon to a blog post near you.


  • fawn by Nash Summers: I think it's brave of authors to play with their writing style and go for something slightly more artistic and experimental. The language in fawn is beautiful and the romance between two teenage boys that manages to blossom into adulthood is very well done. 
  • The Love of a Cowboy by Anna Jeffrey: It's exactly what it says on the tin - a cowboy romance. I'm not gonna lie, I love this trope. And I enjoyed this book even more for the fact that the heroine is a person of color and race is regularly brought up in the novel. I could have done with this novel being about 200 words longer. The romance was hot and there was so much drama potential after the HEA ending. 
  • The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley: A historical romance about a man with Asperger syndrome long before Asperger syndrome was ever diagnosed. The true madness in this novel is how everyone else reacts to minor idiosyncrasies of the hero. This book is romp. Everyone is ridiculous as is the plot, but it was so much fun to read. 
  • Master of the Crows by Grace Draven: This was a slow build, but I definitely enjoyed it. The world building was beautiful and the romance was beautiful. I found the hero, a dark mage, to be especially compelling. When it comes to the fantasy genre, I really enjoy my heroes and villains to be capable of bodily harm and to act on it if necessary and Grace Draven delivered in this department. 
  • Off the Ice by Julie Cross: A new adult romance!! This may have been my first new adult romance and I thought Julie Cross did an amazing job conveying the challenges that arise when you're that age and I just adored the conflict in this book. It being a book about a hockey player and his old crush, it forces you to root for the hero as if you're fan in the stands. I felt so relieved when hero beat all of his obstacles. It was like winning the big game. 
  • Shelter the Sea by Heidi Cullinan: This was the sequel to Carry the Ocean, a book about a young man with autism and a young man with clinical depression falling in love. In Shelter the Sea, the story continues with both characters becoming activists in order to protect and create more independent living spaces like the one they currently live in. I cried like a little bitch. So good. 
  • Slightly Married by Mary Balogh: Another historical romance. I didn't realize I was a fan of this genre but apparently I am. This has another favorite trope of the forced or fake relationship. The hero marries the heroine in order to keep a promise and ensure that she's able to maintain her land. But of course, when you're fake married to someone, you eventually realize how amazing it'd be to be actually married. This was just a fun, enjoyable read. 
  • Trailer Trash by Marie Sexton: Ugh. This was damn good. This is set during the 80s AIDS crisis and tells the story of a straight middle class kid falling in love with a boy from the trailer park. This book bucks so many teen gay romance tropes that I immediately loved it. At no point is the middle class, popular kid mean to his love interest just because he's struggling with recognizes his sexuality. You can be popular and nice, people, and I'm glad this book showcased that. 

I also read Mastery by Robert Greene this month, but like Sweet, I'll talk about that in a later post. 

August Reading Plan

I'm definitely cutting back in the month of August. My most anticipated reads of the month include: 

  • The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky: Rincey from BookRiot and BookTube is holding a read-a-long for the Brothers Karamazov. Every August she hosts this event for a challenging or intimidating book and it doesn't get more intimidating than this 800 page Russian novel. 
  • Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream by H.G. Bissinger: I love how Texans romanticize football. I was a big fan of the show Friday Night Lights and I'm eager to dig into this one as part of BookRiot's Read Harder challenge. 
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling: Yeah, so...I haven't read any Harry Potter. I constantly tell people that I was too old for this book when it came out, but my friends like to remind me that we're the same age as Harry Potter. I don't look books about kids, so I don't have high expectations for this one, but I'm going to do my best to enjoy it and not be contrary just to be contrary. 
  • Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquirel: When I was reading Sweet this month, I was reminded of the sensuousness of this film. I remember trying to read the book in Spanish as a teenager and giving up after a chapter or two. This time, I'm going to go with English and actually finish it!


  • Aftercare by Tanya Chris
  • All Night Long by Jayne Ann Krentz
  • The Art of Three by Erin McRae
  • Brake Job by Nadia Diament
  • Deep Deception by Cathy Pegau
  • The Follow by Eliza David
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  • Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel
  • Queen Heir by Jaymin Eve
  • Shadows at Sunset by Anne Stuart
  • Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon
  • A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

Questions for the audience:

  • What books have you enjoyed this summer?
  • What books are you most looking forward to reading?