As you all know, I participated in my first Booktube-a-thon this year. It was an incredible week, and I’m thoroughly proud of myself. July is always my best reading month of the year, and this July was no exception. Including the books I read for BTAT, I managed to read a whopping 21 books this month!
First off – BOOKTUBE-A-THON!
So, were 7 challenges for BTAT, and I completed all 7, though my initial TBR got a bit shuffled around. For the sake of brevity, I’m going to just list the books that completed each challenge, and then I’ll do my mini-reviews in the actual July wrap-up below.
1. Read a book with a person on the cover –
Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour (307 pages)
2. Read a hyped book –
A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab (398 pages)
3. Read a book in one day –
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews (295 pages)
4. Read a book with a character who is very different from yourself –
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon (378 pages)
5. Read a book completely outside –
Night of Cake and Puppets by Laini Taylor (100 pages)
6. Read a cover-buy book –
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon (344 pages)
7. Read 7 books –
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen (374 pages), Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld (I only finished this one, reading the last 217 pages) , When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi (234 pages)
Books read: 9 (Yes, nine. I have never been more proud of myself)
Pages Read: 2,361
Challenges completed: 7/7
The Diviners by Libba Bray: ★★★★ This book was really good. I loved all the characters, though the plot was a little slow. I can’t wait to continue on with this series.
How to Be Happy by David Burton: ★★ I really wanted to like this book, but I just couldn’t relate and connect to Burton’s story. You can read my full review here.
The Odyssey by Homer: ★★ I liked The Iliad, but this one had almost no redeeming qualities. Odysseus was such an awful human, and I spent the entire book feeling terrible for his wife, who was so loyal to such a bastard of a man.
The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman: ★★★★ This book wasn’t really what I was expecting, but I enjoyed it all the more for that. The weird anti-religion vibe wasn’t all that appealing, though.
The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson: ★★★★★ This one is definitely a new favorite. It’s everything I’ve ever wanted in a contemporary, plus dogs. Could it get any better than that?
The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman: ★★★★ I didn’t like this one quite as much as the first, but at the same time, I loved how the series was progressing. The world-building got much more interesting, and I loved all the new characters.
Style by Chelsea M Cameron: ★★★★ This book was the perfect f/f contemporary. It was cute and sweet, but I also loved that it was a bit more of a slow-burn romance. I also LOVE that the title is the ship name (Stella/Kyle) of our main characters.
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee: ★★★★★ If I could give this book all the stars I would. I knew I was going to love it, but OH MY WORD did I love this book. I don’t actually have words.
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens: ★★★★ I wasn’t expecting this book to give me so many emotions. While it took me a while to actually figure out what was going on, once I figured it out, I really enjoyed it.
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie: ★★★★ I absolutely loved listening to this one on audiobook. Alexie’s deadpan delivery of Junior’s narration was hilarious, and I think I liked this book a lot more because of it.
Noteworthy by Riley Redgate: ★★★★★ Another new favorite. This book was so relatable, and I loved the diversity. You can read my full review here.
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews: ★★★★ This book has been on my TBR for literal years. YEARS. I’m so glad I finally read it. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like it, but I ended up really appreciating that this wasn’t the typical *teen cancer* book.
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon: ★★★★ This book was so cute, and I loved reading about an Indian character. Perfect for the BTAT challenge. I wish there had been a little more focus on the technological aspects, though.
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon: ★★★★ Ok. I was not expecting this book to be as emotional as it was. I can tell I’m going to be thinking about this one for a LONG time. The only reason I took off a star is it took me about 100 pages to really get invested in the story and characters.
Night of Cake and Puppets by Laini Taylor: ★★★★★ I knew this was going to be cute, and it was EXACTLY what I needed. The perfect break after reading the emotional disaster that was Sun is Also a Star. Why can’t all books be this adorable?
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen: ★★★★ Sarah Dessen’s books are always the perfect blend of light-fluffy contemporary and more emotional drama. I loved the exploration of grief and familial relationships. Plus, the romance was so cute.
Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour: ★★★★ I have a cousin that works in the film industry, and I loved reading about the intricacies that go into making films. I also loved the slow-burn romance. It’s refreshing to read a contemporary that doesn’t feature an insta-love story.
Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld: ★★★ I really wanted to like this one more, but I found it really hard to become attached to Lizzie and Darcy. There stories felt extremely shallow and surface-level for a 600-page book. I feel like their characters could have been explored much more thoroughly, and this book ended up being very meh as a result.
A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab: ★★★★★ My first ever VE Schwab book was amazing. I read this book in 2 sittings, and absolutely flew through it. While it is a little more like 4.5 stars, I decided to round up because I didn’t have any major problems with this book.
Dracula by Bram Stoker: ★★★★ I wasn’t expecting to like this book as much as I did, but after the first few chapters, I ended up getting sucked into the story. It’s incredible to think that this was written over 100 years ago. It felt far ahead of its time.
When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi: ★★★ I feel really bad for not loving this book, but honestly it just wasn’t all that amazing to me. The writing didn’t feel particularly original or special, and it really bothered me that there weren’t chapters. It made the book feel like it was dragging on forever.
What books did you read this month? Did you participate in Booktube-a-thon? Let me know in the comments!