Here are all the books I read in June, along with brief reviews. So lets get started!
“A touchingly honest, candidly hysterical memoir from breakout teen author Maya Van Wagenen
Stuck at the bottom of the social ladder at pretty much the lowest level of people at school who aren’t paid to be here,” Maya Van Wagenen decided to begin a unique social experiment: spend the school year following a 1950s popularity guide, written by former teen model Betty Cornell. Can curlers, girdles, Vaseline, and a strand of pearls help Maya on her quest to be popular?
The real-life results are painful, funny, and include a wonderful and unexpected surprise—meeting and befriending Betty Cornell herself. Told with humor and grace, Maya’s journey offers readers of all ages a thoroughly contemporary example of kindness and self-confidence.”
I heard amazing things about this book, so when I saw it at the bookstore, I knew it was the next addition to my bookshelf. I gave this memoir 5 stars out of 5, it was that good. It was funny, relatable and inspiring. The author, who was only 15 when she wrote it, explores the definition of being popular. She finds a book, which is a guide of how to be popular from the 1950s, and decides that she is going to follow the advice from the book for an entire year. I don’t think I would ever be able to do that. This book is really empowering and is a must read for anyone in middle school or high school.
“When Gia Montgomery’s boyfriend, Bradley, dumps her in the parking lot of her high school prom, she has to think fast. After all, she’d been telling her friends about him for months now. This was supposed to be the night she proved he existed. So when she sees a cute guy waiting to pick up his sister, she enlists his help. The task is simple: be her fill-in boyfriend—two hours, zero commitment, a few white lies. After that, she can win back the real Bradley.
The problem is that days after prom, it’s not the real Bradley she’s thinking about, but the stand-in. The one whose name she doesn’t even know. But tracking him down doesn’t mean they’re done faking a relationship. Gia owes him a favor and his sister intends to see that he collects: his ex-girlfriend’s graduation party—three hours, zero commitment, a few white lies.
Just when Gia begins to wonder if she could turn her fake boyfriend into a real one, Bradley comes waltzing back into her life, exposing her lie, and threatening to destroy her friendships and her new-found relationship.“
I picked up this book because I was looking for a light read to distract myself with and read instead of studying for exams. I gave this book 3 stars out of 5. I got exactly what I expected to get: a sweet romance story that ends in happily ever after. And there is nothing wrong with that but there was no depth to the story. Further down, I discuss Along for the Ride and I mention that it gets heavy at parts. I think those heavy parts made the book more then just the average love story. I think that was what this book was missing. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t special either.
“Life shouldn’t be about picking up the pieces.
Beth Bradshaw has spent her life hiding from her tragic past. From the moment a trusted family friend steals her innocence until the moment another rescues her, she struggles to just survive.
Surrounded by the comfort and protection of her extended family, Beth embarks on a journey of healing far from the horrors of her home. In her darkest moments, she meets a boy named Ryan. For one incredible summer, Ryan shows Beth what it’s like to act her own age.
To feel free and let go.
If only for a while.
Years later, another tragedy threatens to shatter the life Beth has carefully crafted. When faced, yet again, with more pieces to pick up, Beth begins to question what her choices have cost her.
Leaving her old life behind, she sets forth on a pilgrimage that will bring her back to the boy she could never forget. He wants to help her pick up the pieces of her life, but is she willing to do what it takes to become whole again?
Can she trust him with a piece of herself?”
When I picked up this book, I was unaware of what I was getting myself into. I had read the description ages ago, and had totally forgot what it was about. So, when I started reading about someone who was sexually abusing a child, I was defiantly surprised. After the first chapter or two, I was not a fan of this book. It was a heavy topic and sort of hard to read, especially when the author went into more details about the abuse. The book did get a lot better. By the last page, the author had managed to discuss a really important and serious topics in a really captivating book. Beyond abuse, the author explored trust, self worth, death, and emotional strength. Therefore, The Final Piece got 4 stars out of 5.
“It’s been so long since Auden slept at night. Ever since her parents’ divorce—or since the fighting started. Now she has the chance to spend a carefree summer with her dad and his new family in the charming beach town where they live.
A job in a clothes boutique introduces Auden to the world of girls: their talk, their friendship, their crushes. She missed out on all that, too busy being the perfect daughter to her demanding mother. Then she meets Eli, an intriguing loner and a fellow insomniac who becomes her guide to the nocturnal world of the town. Together they embark on parallel quests: for Auden, to experience the carefree teenage life she’s been denied; for Eli, to come to terms with the guilt he feels for the death of a friend.
In her signature pitch-perfect style, Sarah Dessen explores the hearts of two lonely people learning to connect.”
I am a huge Sarah Dessen fan. For those of you who read my Summer in a Café post, you would know that I had been loving this book. In the end, I gave it 4 stars out of 5. It was the perfect summer read. It had the perfect mix between a love story and a story of friends. The characters were all relatable, as all of the character in Sarah Dessen books are. The book does get kind of heavy at points but it really adds to the plot and it isn’t heavy for long. I have heard people say that Sarah Dessen repeats a lot of the plot elements within her books, and I would have to agree. This book had elements that reminded me of Just Listen and That Summer but it isn’t a bad thing. Overall, if you are looking for a great book to read on the beach, pick up any Sarah Dessen book.
“I didn’t ask for any of this. I didn’t ask to be some kind of hero.
But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado – taking you with it – you have no choice but to go along, you know?
Sure, I’ve read the books. I’ve seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little bluebirds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can’t be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There’s still a yellow brick road – but even that’s crumbling.
What happened? Dorothy.
They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe.
My name is Amy Gumm – and I’m the other girl from Kansas.
I’ve been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked.
I’ve been trained to fight.
And I have a mission.“
This was the final book I read in June. I ended up giving it 3 stars out of 5. I have always been a fan of modern adaptations of classic books, such as The Wizard of Oz. The way the author portrayed Dorothy was really unexpected but well done. As for the main character, Amy, I was disappointed. There was an opportunity for an strong, unforgettable female protagonist, like Katniss from The Hunger Games and Tris from Divergent, but that potential wasn’t meet. Finally, I wasn’t a fan of the ending, but I have yet to read the next book in the series, so maybe it will make more sense once I do.
Have you read any of the books that I mentioned? What books did your read this month? Let me know in the comments below!